Proof in Partnerships: South Park Community

When public and private interests join forces, amazing things can happen. On Saturday, October 2, Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County celebrated the Dedication of its 13-home South Park Community with elected officials, community leaders, Habitat Homeowner families, and a robust network of community partners involved in this award-winning build.

Habitat’s South Park Community illustrates what is possible by engaging in private-public partnerships. Blueprint Capital assisted Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County in buying the double lot of land for its land trust. It also helped create the award-winning architectural design of these 13, 2-bedroom, 1.5-bath cottages that landed the project a “Best Innovative Design” award in the annual Habitat House Design Contest from Habitat for Humanity International. Additionally, the City of Seattle’s Office of Housing also funded nearly $1M for the South Park Community, as part of its 2020 permanent supportive housing pilot investments.

Blueprint has become an important partner of Habitat for Humanity SKC. The relationship began four years ago on Habitat’s Lake City project with the support and leadership of Blueprint Co-founder Dan Duffus (who had connected with Habitat during a volunteer opportunity), Co-Founder Mark Knoll, Managing Director Darin Granger, and Blueprint’s Feasibility and Permitting Manager and new Habitat Board Member, Lucas DeHerrera. In Lake City and South Park, Blueprint provided pro bono master planning, design, and project management. Today, Blueprint proactively works with Habitat CEO Brett D’Antonio and Director of Real Estate and Development Patrick Sullivan to identify, facilitate the purchase of and develop land parcels for Habitat projects.

“Blueprint’s development and finance expertise, its connections to designers, architects, other developers, and City staff, are robust,” said Habitat SKC CEO Brett D’Antonio. “We are now able to compete for land within city limits and build really incredible projects for our deserving families like never before; Blueprint has been an invaluable partner as we work toward our 2025 goal to serve 1,000 families through new builds, renovations, and repairs.”

A meaningful partnership presented itself for the actual buildout, as well. Square Peg Development served as the South Park Community’s contractor. The local company employs hardworking skilled craftsmen, some of whom have histories of criminal justice involvement, addiction recovery or homelessness – giving these tradespeople a chance to reintegrate into society with meaningful jobs. Square Peg’s excellent construction leadership and their second-chance employment model set an example for others to follow.

Collaborating with the community-led South Park’s Duwamish Valley Affordable Housing Coalition was also key, as the organization ensures that homeownership benefits are equitable and community-driven. As the cost of a home in South Park has soared—up nearly 25 percent over last year—projects such as the South Park Community give families living at or below 80 percent of the area median income a chance to own a home in this high opportunity area.

The South Park Community shines as an example of what happens when many interests come together in the name of building safe, equitable housing for hardworking families. If your business or community-driven organization is interested in exploring a partnership with Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County, get involved today! There are many ways to make a difference. Contact us to learn more.