4Culture Grant Funds Restoration Plan of Landmark Building

Written by Laura Paskin
October 26, 2015

Institute of Public Service Professor Marie Wong is part of a historic restoration consultant team that is developing a plan for the West Kong Yick landmark building in Seattle's International District, thanks to a grant from King County 4Culture. The building, one of two twin buildings erected in 1910, was designated a landmark in 1986.

"West Kong Yick has a long history as a central gathering place for the Chinese and Chinese American community and as housing for Chinese immigrants," Wong said. "With restoration, it will be in full use for another 100 years."

The 4Culture grant is being used to develop a proposal on the best future uses of the building along with cost and financing projections for the building's restoration. The grant is supported by a King County Lodging Tax fund.

The planning and development study will be completed by March 2016.

Wong, who is on the Kong Yick board of directors, has a long history of working with owners of historic buildings and with government leaders on historic preservation. Last year, she was appointed by the Seattle City Council to serve on the International Special Review District board. The board reviews preservation, planning, design, redevelopment, and development proposals for buildings and open spaces in Seattle's Chinatown-International District.

Wong holds a doctorate in Urban Design and Planning and teaches in the Institute of Public Service and the Environmental Studies Program. Her research focuses on housing, urban and architectural history, land use development, sustainability, and Asian American studies. She is the author of Sweet Cakes, Long Journey: The Chinatowns of Portland, Oregon.

The College of Arts and Sciences, the largest college in Seattle University, offers more than 80 undergraduate degrees, 7 master's degrees, and 3 graduate certificates. The Institute of Public Services offers undergraduate degrees in public affairs and nonprofit and public administration and a Master of Public Administration.