Public Realm Perspective

Liz stands against one side of Nord Alley alongside public art.

Meet Liz:

Pioneer Square has an unprecedented number of projects impacting the public realm: reclaiming alleys, redesigning streets and parks, fixing curbs and medians, waterfront, parking, and bike lanes. All this and more are all-in-a-day’s work for Liz Stenning, our Deputy Director. A friendly and familiar face in the neighborhood, Liz is all about ongoing improvements to our public realm from curb cuts to crosswalks.

Nord Alley:

Liz stands in Nord Alley, a signature space in Pioneer Square. Liz has a rich history working in and around Nord Alley. Liz led several major improvements for Pioneer Square’s alleys including activation and restoration. Today, Nord Alley is a hub for pedestrians in Pioneer Square, a space for public and private events, and – more generally- one of the neighborhood’s most iconic spaces. The activation of Nord Alley and Pioneer Passage to the north are examples of a developing fine-grain walking grid for Pioneer Square pedestrians and a home for small and innovative shops (such as Back Alley Bike Repair and Casco Antiguo.

Liz this Week:

This is a week of changes for Liz and for the Alliance for Pioneer Square. Liz has accepted an invitation from the Downtown Everett Association to join the organization as Executive Director. The Alliance for Pioneer Square team is elated for Liz and her opportunity to develop her professional career, while in some ways returning to her roots.

As Liz walks through the UPS Waterfall Garden Park to find a spot to chat, Liz describes the various types of winter-blooming plants found within the park and talks about her history with Pioneer Square. “When I was a student at the University of Washington, I would plan out which coffee shop I would go to study,” Liz remembers. “Elliott Bay Book Company was a regular favorite.” As it would turn out, the Alliance for Pioneer Square office is located in the same building that Elliott Bay Book Company used to occupy before the store moved to their current Capitol Hill location. Liz says that, “Pioneer Square has and will always be a special place.”

During her time in Pioneer Square, Liz has had the opportunity to deeply engage with the neighborhood- its businesses, residents, and events.  Liz says, “I feel a sense of community here in Pioneer Square- it’s like we’re part of a family.” Over time, Liz has held several roles at the Alliance for Pioneer Square- Public Realm Director and Deputy Director. With that professional growth, Liz has developed an extensive professional community. A community who will certainly miss her presence in the neighborhood.

Liz’s last day with the Alliance for Pioneer Square is February 21st, 2020.