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How harmonious are the need for density, and the desire to preserve urban fabric? At b9 we find the most harmony in thoughtful design impelled by site specific solutions. 

As the need for density in Seattle has grown, so has the pushback in demolishing the current urban fabric of single family homes. It sometimes feels the default strategy for residential development is to demolish everything that exists on a site and maximize the number of units in a multifamily development.  At the beginning of the year, b9 architects examined the history of our work, and we noticed a different, recurring typology: infill buildings that we are calling Urban +. If site and zoning constraints are met, it becomes possible and sometimes financially beneficial to preserve a site’s existing structures while placing new structures in infill positions in current driveways or backyards. Not only does it afford more financial safety to a development project, this typology also allows a developer to maintain existing urban fabric, while adding surrounding density.

This page is dedicated to our on-going research on Urban + strategies, in relation to land use regulations, development, culture, and design.


Blog posts on Urban +

b9 Urban + Projects

Featured here are our own Urban + projects, click on the images to learn more about the projects.
*Those without titles do not currently have project pages.


Thursday, September 13

Seattle Design Festival 2018

Urban +: Adding Density while Retaining Character

As a part of Seattle Design Festival, b9 architects is excited to host a panel discussion, exploring alternative development strategies to preserve Seattle’s existing physical and cultural character while meeting the city’s growing density needs. With an esteemed panel, we will be examining strategies in design, municipal code, and policy in Seattle that balance future growth with current physical and cultural character. Our panelists include -

Rick Mohler, UW Architecture & Mohler + Ghillino Architects

Jessica Clawson, McCullough Hill Leary, PS
Brian Heather, SolTerra
Quanlin Hu, City of Seattle
Matt Hutchins, CAST Architecture
Maiko Winkler-Chin, SCIDpda (Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority)

The event is free and open to the public. It will take place 6-8pm on Thursday, Sept 13 at our storefront studio.

Click here to our facebook event and to RSVP