A Community Celebration! – Liberty Bank Building
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A Community Celebration!

A Community Celebration!

On Juneteenth we were proud to host a groundbreaking ceremony and celebration for the Liberty Bank Building.

Set to open in spring of 2019, the Liberty Bank Building represents the collective hard work of Africatown, the Black Community Impact Alliance, Capitol Hill Housing and Centerstone to use redevelopment of the site to maximize empowerment of the African-American community.

Mayor Ed Murray, Rep. Eric Pettigrew, Sen. Rebecca Saldaña, Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant and King County Councilmember Larry Gossett were all on hand to witness the historic event.

In addition to the official “first dig,” more than 300 community members came out to enjoy music, food and performances by Northwest Tap Connection, an Ethiopian coffee ceremony, and a libation and blessing of the site. While the afternoon was celebratory, many speakers and attendees noted their anger and grief for the death of Charleena Lyles, a Black mother of four who was killed on Sunday.

“Juneteenth is a celebration of resilience in the face of extreme adversity. We celebrate this groundbreaking of the new Liberty Bank Building to provide a sense of place, connection, rootedness, and sanctuary for our communities going forward,” said Wyking Garrett, the President of Africatown Community Land Trust, in his remarks.

When completed, Liberty Bank Building will provide 115 homes affordable to working families, include 2,695 square feet of commercial space, and 11 art installations to honor the history of Liberty Bank and the African-American community in the Central District.

This unique project would not have been possible without support from the City, specifically the Office of Housing and Office of Economic Development. Additional funding comes from Enterprise Community Partners, Impact Capital, the Lucky 7 Foundation, Heritage Bank, Washington State Dept. of Commerce, and the Wyncote Foundation NW.

Working with our partners to maximize the participation of African-American during construction, we are driving $3 million to Black-owned subcontractors, as well as over $2 million more to other minority and women-owned firms.

Project Partners include Enterprise Community Partners, Heritage Bank,  JRS Engineering, Mithun Architects, Walsh Construction and Al Doggett Graphic Design.

A special thanks to all of our event sponsors: Agency Security Group, Coughlin Porter Lundeen, Enterprise Community Partners, Heritage Bank, Mithun, and Walsh Construction.

Check out more photos below!

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