A vocal audience– twice the amount of available seating– flooded Leif Erikson hall, lining the chairs and hallway corridor. Representing the city at tonight’s city-designated encampment meeting was Deputy Mayor Hyeok Kim and staff from the Human Services Department, the Department of Planning and Development, and the Department of Neighborhoods.
According to Neighborhood District Coordinator Thomas Whittemore, presentations by the city were shortened to allow for extended Q&A in the interests of those attending.
A heated crowd wanted their frustration to be heard. Ballard resident Linda Melvin demanded to know where the Mayor was at the meeting he had called.
The city staff were often interrupted by shouts, as they continued to both defend their decision and suggest that other locations were still being considered.
“I hope to see that we do better,” said another citizen speaker of the transparency she feels has been lacking in the Market Street encampment process. “We can do so much better with this community engaged.”
Photos Meghan Walker