BHC Consultants

1601 Fifth Avenue
Suite 500
Seattle, WA 98101

P: 206.505.3400
F: 206.505.3406



Tacoma Office
950 Pacific Avenue
Suite 905
Tacoma, WA 98402

P: 253.344.5084
F: 253.244.7165



Bellingham Office
1155 N State Street
Suite 528
Bellingham, WA 98225

P: 206.505.3400

Planning - Special Plans and Studies

Project Briefs

Angle Lake Water Main Replacement – Community Outreach, Highline Water District, WA
The BHC planning team developed a comprehensive community outreach program to obtain more than 100 permanent easements and temporary construction easements for the replacement of an aging water main located in a dense single family residential area. An open house was held to introduce community members to the project impacts and team members. Neighborhood Captains were identified to serve as a local community contact and organizer. One-on-one meetings were held with property owners to obtain access agreements and easements. If property owners were difficult to locate, team members identified by ID badges hung door knockers with project information. Contact information and communication records were maintained in a project database.

Downtown Vision Plan, City of Orting, WA
Redevelopment and infill of Orting’s historic downtown is challenged by current development patterns, small parcel sizes, and a regulatory framework that inhibits the financial feasibility of new private investment. In addition, Orting’s “main street” is a state highway which will require long-term city/state coordinated planning to ensure that future traffic solutions also achieve desired pedestrian safety and amenity objectives. BHC is preparing a downtown vision plan in conjunction with the City and Orting Chamber of Commerce. A community visioning workshop identified strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, and led to technical work on development feasibility analysis, parking, and design considerations. The Vision Plan produced Comprehensive Plan policies and development code amendments aimed at increasing the downtown’s marketability.

In formulating an action-oriented vision for the redevelopment of Orting’s historic downtown, BHC also evaluated current and future parking demands and potential solutions that could be implemented through regulatory and investment strategies. For a small city with limited resources and a “soft” market for retail and service businesses, these solutions were organized in an iterative and flexible framework to be implemented as sites and funding becomes available.

Design Guidelines Illustrated Handbook, City of Orting, WA
BHC illustrated Orting’s Architectural Design Review Guidelines in a handbook designed to assist planning staff and developers prepare projects for the Architectural Design Review process. Orting’s existing design review code, applied to all development in their Mixed-Use Town Center and Mixed-Use Town Center North zones, was illustrated using examples of successful Orting projects; photos from similar project sites showing desirable features; and colors, fonts, and architectural features showcased in reference books. The guidebook also includes few counterexamples of styles to be avoided. The handbook is intended as a supplement to the Orting Municipal Code.

Comprehensive Flood Hazard Management Plan (CFHMP), City of Orting, WA
The City of Orting is subject to frequent flooding by the Puyallup and Carbon Rivers. Under a state Department of Ecology FCAAP grant, BHC Consultants and another consultant provided assistance to the City in the development of the CFHMP. The Plan refined the hazard characteristics, identified local vulnerability along the Rivers and developed mitigation strategies to address future flooding. Mitigation strategies built in an understanding of the river’s expected behavior based on the Pierce County Channel Migration study plus data provided by FEMA. Strategies were developed to complement current planning priorities, such as those presented in the Shoreline Master Program, and other City/County efforts, such as setback levee siting. The Plan was prepared with active participation from the Advisory Committee which consisted of representatives from participating departments, as well as critical partners. The multi-faceted Advisory Committee assisted in establishing the scope of the mitigation strategies included in the Plan. The public was involved though public meetings and outreach, such as a flood hazard booth at the farmers’ market.

Livable South Downtown Plan, City of Seattle, WA
South Downtown is a very diverse area with a wide range of land uses, people, cultural and historic resources, and an important role regional entertainment and recreation. The neighborhoods anchoring the southern edge of the downtown urban center are home to industry, small retail and service businesses, and market rate and subsidized housing and human services, in addition to serving as a hub of regional transportation infrastructure. It is an important part of the Mayor's "Center City Seattle" strategy for housing and economic growth within Downtown and surrounding neighborhoods. There are at least five identifiable sub-areas including Pioneer Square; Chinatown/International District; Little Saigon; the industrial area south of Chinatown; and the "stadium transition area".

Over the next 20 years, the Pioneer Square and Chinatown/I.D. neighborhoods are targeted for a total of approximately 5,500 new jobs and 2,000 new housing units. Additionally, the industrial portion of the study area outside Downtown is targeted for roughly 200 new jobs. The Livable South Downtown Plan is focused on creating even greater opportunities for growth and development through increased building heights, incentives, and other strategic actions.

BHC Consultants, in association with a property consultant, assisted the Seattle Department of Planning and Development in evaluating South Downtown development potential and identifying issues to be addressed in the formulation of alternatives and the subsequent environmental review. We interviewed key stakeholders including developers, business owners, service providers, and constituent organizations. The interviews and our review of the early planning analyses produced recommendations for further analyses as part of the plan refinement and EIS. Scenarios for zoning “envelope” changes were created and tested through pro forma analysis to estimate the market suitability for future residential and commercial development projects.

Evergreen Crescent Initiative, Snohomish County Economic Development Council, WA
BHC was part of the team that provided economic development strategy assistance to 5 Snohomish County small cities. The objective of the initiative is to promote local business growth and attract new business to Monroe, Sultan, Granite Falls, Lake Stevens, and Snohomish. The team was responsible for providing analysis and strategies to help the communities define the characteristics of development "readiness" of land suited for economic development. The team also made recommendations to the cities and property owners on marketing those properties. BHC provided land use and development feasibility analyses.