Published May 18 2021
Amazon announced Monday that it is donating $1.4 million to the City of Bellevue, which includes $1 million for the city's Human Services Fund, $289,000 for neighborhood enhancement projects and $150,000 for parks improvements.
Amazon donated an additional $500,000 to the Bellevue Human Services Fund in 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. These funds help support a range of critical community programs, from food assistance and housing to education and behavioral health care.
“We’re excited to continue working with policymakers, local organizations and the community as Amazon continues to invest in Bellevue,” said Brian Huseman, Amazon’s vice president of public policy. “As a member of Bellevue’s vibrant and resilient community, the company is pleased to work with the city to help address community needs and support beloved parks and neighborhood assets.”
“Amazon continues to invest in Bellevue, and I thank the company for setting such a stellar example of community partnership,” said Mayor Lynne Robinson. “These dollars will have a significant impact on our community as we begin to recover together from the effects of the pandemic.”
The Human Services Fund is the primary resource Bellevue uses to support social services in the community. There are still many Bellevue residents who continue to struggle to provide the basics like housing, food and transportation for themselves and their families. The city will distribute these funds to more than 40 organizations that provide direct services across the Eastside, helping people recover from the pandemic and related shutdown.
“Like so many other social service organizations, Hopelink has seen a drastic increase in need in the community that is likely to last for several years," Hopelink CEO Catherine Cushinberry said. "We are grateful to the Human Services Fund for dedicating significant resources in support of services for Bellevue residents."
The neighborhood enhancement and park donations will fund multiple projects to help improve outdoor spaces in Bellevue. The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified the need for outdoor recreation opportunities for children and adults and a safe and attractive outdoor environment. These projects include:
- Bellevue Botanical Garden
- BelRed mini-park off-leash dog area
- Citywide tree planting via Bellevue’s Environmental Stewardship Initiative
- Crossroads Park
- Kelsey Creek Farm
- Lake Hills Greenbelt (Bat Houses)
- Northtowne Park Playground
- Utility box art wraps in downtown and BelRed
- Wilburton children’s tiles on Northeast Eighth Street
In 2020, Amazon announced it is planning to bring 25,000 jobs to Bellevue as part of the expansion of its Puget Sound headquarters. To accommodate its planned job creation, Amazon has been securing office space in Bellevue and has begun construction of the first office tower at 600 108th Ave. NE. Amazon’s downtown construction will provide its teams with state-of-the-art office space, and the community with new amenities – such as new art installations, outdoor plazas, two new daycare centers and street-level retail space – to help fulfill the city’s vision of a thriving, connected and pedestrian-friendly business district.
Amazon is committed to being good neighbors and supporting the Bellevue community. Amazon’s new $2 billion Housing Equity Fund will create and preserve housing for moderate- to low-income families in our three headquarters communities, including Puget Sound. The first investment consisted of $185.5 million in below-market loans and grants to the King County Housing Authority to preserve up to 1,000 affordable homes on the Eastside, including units in Bellevue’s Pinewood Village, Hampton Greens and the Illahee Apartments.
Amazon also continues to support various charitable organizations across the region, including the Bellevue LifeSpring, KidsQuest Children’s Museum and LifeWire.