City Council approves massive University of Washington growth plan

SEATTLE (AP) — The University of Washington has won City Council approval for an immense growth plan including a high-rise "innovation district."

The Seattle Times reports the university's master plan for its Seattle campus in the next 10 years calls for up to 6 million square feet in new construction to accommodate an additional 7,000-plus students and employees.

The council approved the plan Monday with conditions including a more aggressive goal for reducing car commutes.

The legislation says the university must have no more than 12 percent of students and employees commute by driving alone by 2028. The university had proposed 15 percent.

When council members gave preliminary approval, they included a condition that the university build at least 450 units of affordable housing for its lower-wage employees.

The university agreed to build the housing but asked that the legislation treat the construction as voluntary.