By Scott Schaefer

At its Monday night (April 4, 2022) regular meeting, the Burien City Council voted 5–1 to place an interlocal agreement (ILA) between the city, the King County Regional Homelessness Authority (KCRHA) and the Downtown Emergency Service Center (DESC) on the consent agenda for its next meeting.

Specifically, Section 1 of Resolution No. 473 states that:

“The City of Burien shall develop a comprehensive ILA with the KCRHA, prior to the opening of the DESC facility to ensure that at least 30% of the units will be prioritized for people who are identified as living in Burien at the time the building is completed.”

Voting in favor were Deputy Mayor Kevin Schilling, Councilmembers Hugo Garcia, Jimmy Matta, Cydney Moore, and Sarah Moore; against, Stephanie Mora. Mayor Sofia Aragon was absent/excused.

This means that – at its next regular meeting set for April 18 – when council votes on the consent agenda, that agreement will likely be approved, allowing the City Manager to execute the interlocal agreement with KCRHA and DESC.

As we previously reported, four plaintiffs filed a lawsuit against the City of Burien in late December, 2021, seeking an order prohibiting the city from including the project in its Affordable Housing Demonstration Program. A trial is currently set for Dec. 27, 2022.

The new DESC facility is set to be built at 801 SW 150th Street (map below).

The building is designed to be six stories tall, and will contain 95 studio units of housing with supportive services onsite including behavioral health care, crisis intervention, and employment services.

The development will also include indoor and outdoor community spaces for single adults who are disabled and formerly homeless.

On June 21, 2021, the Burien City Council voted to include DESC Burien into the Burien Affordable Housing Demonstration Program.

An administrative design review decision was issued by the City of Burien on Dec. 16, 2021.

The building permit application was accepted by the City on Jan. 18, 2022.

The controversial project, which is due to open in spring 2023, would be the DESC’s first permanent supportive housing project outside of Seattle.

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