The Urbanist is sustained by volunteer writers and we got some new contributors in the last year that helped spread the workload. Ray Dubicki and Shaun Kuo became regular contributors and we appreciate their insight and persecptive. They helped us maintain our hallmark depth of coverage focusing on sustainable transportation and land use from our Puget Sound perch.

Dubicki got his start wading into the morass of industrial land use policy and long-range plans–definitely not glamorous work, but a revamp is on the horizon that could have huge consequences. The pending Armory site decision–and the prospect of an Interbay EcoDistrict in the footprint of the soon-to-be-decommissioned state-owned property–inspired these investigations. Dubicki has branched out to other topics, bringing his signature thoroughness and humor. I’m especially grateful for him keeping alive my longshot dream of removing I-5 from Seattle’s core.

Kuo got his start trying to glean lessons from California high-speed rail’s travails. He followed that up with a deep dive on vertical farming, and we’re excited for what complex topic he dives into next, and we’re thankful for his help behind the scenes doing research.

Senior Reporter Natalie Bicknell continued to cover an impressive variety of topics from backyard cottages to the Global Climate Strike. She also keeps us apprised of the latest happening on the quest to lid I-5, such as official confirmation the lid is technically feasible and could support large buildings overhead.

And of course we’re thankful for our veteran reporters like Ryan Packer, our dogged safe streets reporter, and Stephen Fesler–who is our most prolific writer and one never afraid to tackle wonky issues, including how to redesign Pioneer Square Station to take advantage of the temporary center platform.

Thanks to this amazing team, we’ve reached new heights–including record readership months–since our last publication accomplishment update in September. We’ve done that by covering local politics and housing, land use, climate, and mobility justice issues from a unique progressive urbanist perspective.

Some of our post popular articles of 2019 included Rubén Casas’ Tacoma says “yes” to backyard cottages story and an update on East Link construction and transit-oriented development progress, which shows our readers’ interests are broader than Seattle city limits. Our annual Seattle Subway vision map update is also a perennial favorite.

I served as publication director for more than two years. This year, I’m taking on executive director duties and leading efforts to grow our team, chart an organizational course, and expand our collaborations with like-minded advocates and organizations. I’ll still be wrangling and cajoling writers, but my top mission will be growing our capacity and fundraising.

If you’re interested in writing or editing for us, please reach out. If you’d like to support our journalism and advocacy infrastructure with your financial resources, please become a monthly donor. It’s a group effort to make The Urbanist happen, and we’d be honored to have your support.

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