Urban Public Waterfront Association - UPWA Logo
Join Donate

UPWA Connects People to the Sea By Inspiring Development of Enjoyable Waterfront Activities and Public Access Docks.

Most of the world's population lives at or near urban shorelines. Population maps generally indicate that humans have an inner desire to be near the sea. The seashore is a pretty amazing place for young and old, rich and poor alike.

The sea provides a means of sustenance, transportation, enjoyment, freedom--and perhaps most of all, a source for dreams.

Water connects everyone on earth. Every port is but one voyage away on a road that has existed since the beginning of time.

The Urban Public Waterfront Association creates projects and programs that attract and enable people to interact with the sea. We generate concepts for public access sites and inspire the development of activities that bring value to shoreline communities.

UPWA Provides Shoreline Communities with Visualizations for Improved Public Access to the Sea

A primary initiative for UPWA is to inspire the development of vibrant spaces along urban waterfronts where the public can have direct involvement with small maritime vessels. Small vessel traditions in the most traveled ports throughout the world provide an attraction that offers intrinsic value to coastal communities. Classic sea culture ports throughout Europe including Venice, Naples, Lisbon, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Hamburg offer an immeasurable attraction for visitors and residents alike.

Small vessel accommodation in ports like San Francisco, Vancouver, Victoria, Baltimore and Miami have greatly added to the unique cultural character and authentic regional experiences found in these cities. UPWA is dedicated to helping waterfront communities visualize and develop attractive, vibrant and economically sustainable small-vessel maritime culture.

We begin our advocation for public connections to the sea by creating early-stage concept visualizations. Illustrations help community members see possible future scenarios for waterfront connections to the maritime environment. It is through these sketches that discussions can be started.

Seattle Pilot Program: The Urban Public Waterfront Association is presently engaged in working to inspire improvements for intamate maritime culture along the City of Seattle waterfront. Seattle has very limited public access to small vessels. The vast majority os small vessel infrastructure is private marinas, yacht clubs and exclusive residential waterfront real estate. People who don't own boats or waterfront property are essentially cut off from maritime activities in Seattle.

Seattle has numerous opportunities to increase public access to the sea. Community connections via water form a network of small business commerce opportunities, alternative transit solutions and recreational enjoyment for community residents and visitors alike.

The map below shows Seattle Area waterfront communities that are currently being studied for inclusion in our Harbor Concept Visualization Series (UPWA Connections). The series of illustrative views reveal possibilities for vessel landings and community gathering places along Seattle area shorelines.

Click on the map above to learn more about each public waterfront access location.