Mayor Jenny A. Durkan recently signed the Cultural Space Agency Public Development Authority charter to create the first new PDA in nearly 40 years.

According to a press release, the Cultural Space Agency’s purpose “is to develop cultural space real estate projects in a way that reflects the needs and desires of communities that have borne the burden of institutional racism; build community wealth through investment opportunities in cultural real estate projects; and partner with commercial real estate developers and cultural community stakeholders to create real property projects that reflect the interests and priorities of both.”  

 The Cultural Space Agency will seek long-term site control on behalf of and in partnership with community cultural organizations representing communities of color. The organization will acquire properties and create property ownership opportunities in communities historically denied ownership options.

The City of Seattle has dedicated $500,000 each year for two years for initial operating costs and anticipates leveraging philanthropic investments to secure millions of additional dollars in capital investment in community-based projects.