In November, seven of nine Seattle City Council seats will be up for grabs. However, this election will be a little bit different than in years past because Seattle recently redrew the council district map.
This means some neighborhoods will be in new council districts starting in January 2024. Let’s break it down, in case you missed it.
Why were the districts redrawn?
The Seattle Redistricting Commission redraws these boundaries every 10 years after the US Census is completed to make sure each district includes about the same amount of people living in it as the others.
There are basic rules to how the commission can divide the different areas up to protect against gerrymandering like:
- Population data like race and political party cannot be used during this process.
- Boundaries should be compact and make sense geographically.
- New boundaries should remain pretty similar to the previous version.
Districts 1, 2, 6, and 7 will see the biggest redrawings.
- Georgetown, the Industrial District, SODO, and Pioneer Square are moving from District 2 to District 1.
- West Magnolia is joining District 6 from District 7.
One smaller-but-notable change is that Eastlake will be moving from District 4 into District 3.
How does this affect who my councilmember is?
There are two big events to watch — the City Council election in November and the date the map goes into effect.
For simplicity’s sake — and because the two events are so heavily connected — newly elected councilmembers will take their seat on the same day the new map goes into effect. Your current councilmember will remain so until January 2024 no matter where you live.
But, residents will vote in accordance with the newly drawn map. So, if you were previously zoned for District 7 but are getting moved to District 6, you will be voting for a District 6 councilmember in November.