About the chamber
Ballard Chamber Accomplishments in 2011
The Ballard Chamber is one of the oldest and strongest in Seattle. Since 1927, this organization has been a strong and constant voice for businesses and the community at large. In addition to its advocacy work, the Chamber also offers promotional and networking opportunities to support a strong local economy. Here’s some of what we accomplished this year.
- Developed/maintained relationships with City of Seattle officials, including City Councilmembers and staff from various departments, including the Office of Economic Development (OED), the Department of Neighborhoods (DON), the Department of Planning and Development (DPD), Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) and the Seattle Police Department.
- Represented industrial interests via such organizations as BINMIC (Ballard Interbay Northend Manufacturing and Industrial Center) and NSIA (North Seattle Industrial Association.)
- Lobbied DPD and City Council to prevent adverse zoning changes in Ballard’s industrial zones. Successfully fought to block residential uses, as well as maintaining commercially zoned land in the urban village area.
- Collaborated with representatives from the MIC (Manufacturing and Industrial Council), the Port of Seattle and the West Seattle Chamber to keep the tunnel project on track. As a viaduct replacement is critical for freight mobility as well as other business support activities, the Chamber continues to fight efforts to quash the tunnel for a surface street alternative.
- Provided informational meetings and e-mail updates for community stakeholders regarding the NW Market/45th Transit Priority Improvement Project, which proposes signalization/lane reconfiguration at 24th Avenue NW and NW Market Street.
- Fought to protect Ballard’s on-street parking inventory and to oppose increased meter fees.
- Worked with property owners in the business core to find more employee and patron parking.
- Continued studying bicycle safety issues, looking for alternative solutions, including cycle tracks.
- Represented business and community interests at monthly Northwest Design Review meetings, following up with letters of concern/support to DPD.
- Lobbied SDOT for safety improvement on Leary Way, including a signed mid-block crosswalk with handicap ramps for senior residents, as well as sidewalk changes to the dangerous 20th Avenue intersection.
- Worked with SDOT and Ballard Avenue property owners to resolve sidewalk/street tree issues.
- Continued working with other local organizations and government officials on issues of homelessness, public safely, graffiti, and public inebriation.
- Hosted walking tours with various elected officials, including a recent lunch visit with County Councilmember Larry Phillips.
- Represented business interests at monthly Ballard District Council meetings.
Executive Director served as a member of the Neighborhood Chamber Alliance, a group of local Chambers representatives. Meeting bi-monthly, the alliance hosts speakers from the Seattle Police Department, the City Attorney’s office, City Council, OED, DON, etc. to create awareness of common issues in these underserved business districts.
Local Business/Community Development
- Offered networking opportunities for members to help promote their goods and services, keeping business in our own community.
- Worked with the Ballard Journalto publish the third annual Ballard Business Directory.
- Provided hundreds of referrals to the public for area shops, restaurants and businesses.
- Applied for and received a grant for participation in OED’s “Buy Local” promotional program. As a result, Ballard will be showcased with five other business districts in a citywide campaign, launching Fall 2010.
- Collaborated with In Ballard Merchants Associationto promote Ballard’s business district as a shopping and dining destination.
- Represented Ballard to the local media and worked to garner media coverage in local, regional and national publications.
- Produced and promoted the 36th Annual SeafoodFest, with increased attendance and participation. The event not only serves as a community celebration, but also familiarizes the general public with our business district and all its offerings.
- Chamber leadership canvassed door-to-door to seek input regarding SeafoodFest date changes and the resulting impact on the July ArtWalk and the summer Sidewalk sale. Other general merchant concerns were also solicited.
- Hosted a special breakfast meeting for area merchants to discuss ways to drive sales during SeafoodFest. Written materials with suggestions for increased promotion were provided.
- Produced and promoted monthly ArtWalk events, building a reputation as one of the most well attended art walks in the city. The event successfully brings hundreds to our business district each month, promoting shopping and dining.
- Organized and hosted the Annual Summer Sidewalk Sale, handling permitting and logistics and providing promotional support.
- Hosted and promoted the annual Trick or Treat event in Ballard.
- Served on the Advisory Panel for SDOT’s Route 44 Corridor Project, offering input and guidance on proposed bus stop consolidation and street revisions.
- Studied/researched proposed low-income housing development, scheduling informational meetings for the community with representatives from DPD and non-profit housing entities, helping to mediate concerns and conflicts.
- Studied City’s proposal to expand its street vending ordinances, conducted outreach to restaurateurs, and provided an informational meeting with a DPD representative.
- Assisted in the development of the Swedish Medical Center-Ballard Advocacy Council and provided representation to this group, whose mission is to offer community input, as well as educate the community about the medical services provided.
- Worked in concert with numerous other non-profits, fraternal organizations and service groups for the benefit of the community, providing event promotion, raffle items and other donor services.