West Seattle Crime Watch: Car break-in; purse theft; 2 bicycles found; more…

In West Seattle Crime Watch:

CAR BREAK-IN: From Patrick in the 4700 block of Delridge:

(Early Thursday) someone broke into my car around 4:30 am and stole sunglasses, change, and my house key. Suspect it was a prowler who on the previous night stole items from neighbors. Locks have been changed, but prowler is probably still around. People should be alert.

PURSE THEFT: From Michelle:

Last Monday, September 19 at 9 a.m., my mother dropped her purse on the sidewalk at the intersection of Manning and 41st Ave SW. When she realized it was missing and went back to look for it, it had been stolen. A neighbor reported seeing that a man pulled up in a truck and stole the purse, then drove away. On Thursday, this same man was observed on another neighbor’s porch, where he was reported to be looking around. Please be on the look-out for a white man who drives an older two-tone blue Chevy pick-up truck with a job box in the back. The man has light colored shoulder length hair and a narrow face and appears to be in his early 30s.

If you have any information about this individual, please contact the Seattle Police Department. There is a police report on file. 2016-339779

REPEAT-OFFENDER FOLLOWUP: A new charge is filed against one of the three repeat offenders whose cases we covered in this Tuesday story, with additional information in our Wednesday report on the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network meeting. We mentioned 23-year-old Sean Jeardoe, previously convicted of multiple property crimes in West Seattle, and at the time didn’t know if his most recent arrest, related to a stolen vehicle, had happened here. Then on Thursday, we heard from the vehicle’s owner, who said it was a pickup truck had taken in West Seattle, near 34th and Barton, and that Jeardoe had been arrested with it at a Renton restaurant. Tonight, we found that Jeardoe was one of two people charged with stolen-vehicle possession in the case; the charging papers say someone reported him and a woman “unconscious” in the stolen pickup outside the restaurant. He remains held without bail.

(PROBABLY) STOLEN BICYCLES FOUND: Robert sent these photos:

He explained, “We have had a rash of probably stolen bikes found in the Pigeon Point neighborhood in the past week or two. I am attaching pictures of two of them. Both have flat tires and rusty chains.” If you recognize either, let us know (editor@westseattleblog.com, or comment below) and we’ll connect you.

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35TH SW UPDATES: Kenyon crosswalk work; West Seattle Transportation Coalition briefing

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The flashing-beacon signs are in at 35th and Kenyon, the first big step in the work to bring back a marked crosswalk there, nine years after one was removed there. The plan to reinstall one, as requested by local business owners during planning for the 35th SW Safety Project, was confirmed earlier this year.

Just last week, SDOT’s Jim Curtin had told the West Seattle Transportation Coalition that the 35th/Kenyon crosswalk installation was about to start (and he told us today it should be done “within a week or two” depending on weather). He was at the WSTC meeting with updates on the planning for Phase 2, as well as Q&A. He said SDOT is continuing to work on its promised report about the first year since Phase 2 rechannelized 35th to one lane each way plus a center turn lane for most of the stretch between Holly and Roxbury.

For those who contend the rechannelization has driven drivers to side streets, Curtin told the WSTC that the volume on 35th is down a little, most notably just north of Roxbury, which SDOT interprets as an indication that Arbor Heights residents are taking other routes – Roxbury or SW 106th, depending on where they’re going. Delridge volume is down slightly on the south end, up a bit on the north end. And SDOT is observing side-street traffic volumes, Curtin said, to either verify or debunk the contention that people are diverting to residential roads.

On 35th, post-rechannelization, hey’ve had a reduction in crashes involving drivers hitting parked cars, which is “the #1 crash type in the city of Seattle,” no right-turn crashes, a major drop in left-turn collisions, no pedestrian collisions, but rear-end crashes are up, especially on weekends.

That’s expected to be alleviated, he said, by new signal timings, which are being worked on right now – they were mentioned at the August community meeting, and Curtin replied to our followup question today by saying “we’ve gone to longer signal cycles on Saturdays to accommodate higher volumes of vehicular traffic between noon and 6 PM.”

He also told the WSTC that Roxbury signal timings are being worked on, and that left-turn signalization is being looked at for 35th/Barton.

What’s next? As explained in August, they’re still evaluating possible options for Phase 2 – see page 7 of the presentation. SDOT is “slowing down,” Curtin said, because of the decisions to be made about the route for West Seattle’s next “greenway” (have you taken the online survey yet? deadline is Sunday).

No date set yet for the next community discussion, he told us today as part of our followup exchange: “We’re developing the Phase 1 report now but we do not have our next set of meetings planned just yet.”

P.S. The WSTC meeting also included a vote to endorse Sound Transit 3, the Regional Proposition 1 ballot measure you’ll see on your November ballot – 5 WSTC board members for it, 1 abstaining, none against.

WSTC also saw a presentation of the city’s plans for the waterfront, once the tunnel’s open (still skeptical? tunneling is about to hit the halfway mark, WSDOT said today). We don’t have toplines for the latter but we did get the meeting on video and it’s the first presentation, if you want to watch:

The West Seattle Transportation Coalition meets fourth Thursdays, 6:30 pm, at Neighborhood House‘s High Point Center.

West Seattle restaurants: A la Mode Pie shows off Junction café, 4 days before opening

There it is – the “boozy milkshake” menu for A la Mode Pies‘ West Seattle shop, 4 of 5 named from WSB readers’ suggestions. Five months after we brought you first word that A la Mode was expanding to add a location at Junction 47 (SW Alaska just east of California SW), tonight was friends/family/media open house night, 4 days before the Monday opening.

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Pie fries (savory OR sweet), anyone?

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As promised, the baking will happen before your eyes while you’re in the shop.

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We can’t tell you anything about how it all tastes, because we don’t eat or drink on the job – but it looked pretty luscious, like the peanut-butter mousse pie.

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The “pie guy” behind it all is Chris Porter:

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His West Seattle shop isn’t just about dessert, it’s offering a “savory menu” too – salads, soup, quiche for brunch, dinner pies including Shepherd’s Pie, and hand pies from barbecue pork to spinach and feta:

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As announced in August, next Monday (October 3rd) is the official opening day for A la Mode Pies in West Seattle, at 8 am. Hours will be 8 am-10 pm Sundays-Thursdays, 8 am-11 pm Fridays and Saturdays.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Jean Carroll’s big 90th bash @ Senior Center

Photos by Leda Costa for West Seattle Blog

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A West Seattle legend celebrated a milestone today. The Senior Center of West Seattle threw a party for Jean Carroll‘s 90th birthday. About 60 people were there for a party she pronounced “absolutely marvelous”!

Carol Johnston, former Program Coordinator and Jean Carroll dancing. (Carol Johnston dancing with Jean)

Jean has been a volunteer at the center for 18 years. If you don’t already know her, you might remember her in the spotlight for another reason this past summer – she spoke at the 75th anniversary celebration for Colman Pool (WSB coverage here), where she was one of the first two people to swim before it opened on July 4th, 1941. Ahead, more from today’s party: Read More

Life-saving lesson: Firefighter Story Times coming up at local libraries

If there are one or more preschool-age children in your family, next month brings two chances for them to learn life-saving lessons: The Seattle Public Library has just announced its next round of Firefighter Story Times, when crews from local stations come read a special book that helps the little ones learn what to do in case of fire. The two set for local libraries are 11:15 am Wednesday, October 19th, at South Park Library (8604 8th Ave. S.) and Wednesday, October 26th, at Delridge Library (5423 Delridge Way SW). All are welcome and ASL interpretation will be available.

HOW TO HELP: Donation drives for people displaced by Lam-Bow Apartments fire

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(WSB photo, Tuesday afternoon)

12:44 PM: We finally have additional information on how to help the dozens of people who lost their homes and belongings in Tuesday’s 3-alarm fire at the Lam Bow Apartments.

Many are continuing to be sheltered, with the help of the American Red Cross, at the Delridge Community Center. However, we learned during a visit there on Wednesday, they cannot directly accept donations, so they ask that you please do NOT go there.

Good news is, there are bins right across the street at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW), thanks to the teamwork of Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association (which owns and operates Youngstown) and the West Seattle Helpline, which has offered some assistance directly to the fire victims, including bus tickets – the type of emergency help that the Helpline is known for.

When we talked with DCC and Red Cross workers helping with the shelter, they stressed that adult items were most needed, but there are some needs for kids and babies too. Here is the list we were given as of late yesterday:

Sweats, shirts 16 XL woman
sweats shirts XXL/ size 40 man
baby clothing 3 months, diapers size 1

(the above is for a family of 3)

shoes blouse pants, women’s size 8, medium, medium
shoes blouse pants for 15 year old girl, size 8
blanket that is NOT wool for someone who is allergic

boys clothing sizes 6+, 8+, 10

underwear for boys, size 4

girls’ underwear sizes 7, 10

socks/underwear for men, sizes M, L, XL
socks, underwear for women, sizes M, L, XL

diapers sizes 1 and 5

blankets and pillows

LONG dresses and skirts for females sizes S, M, L, XL
shirts for women (long sleeves) S, M, L, XL

hygiene products for males and females

pants men’s sizes 32/32 and 34/32

men’s shirts, coats M, L, XL

ADDED: size 28 women’s pants

Note that the 5-week-old baby is a boy

Please donate new, or if gently used, clean items, and again, long sleeved tops and long pants for women.

Youngstown asks that you drop off donations between 10 am and 6:30 pm weekdays.

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(One of the donation bins at Youngstown – find them inside the west and north entrances)

Also – as mentioned in comments on our Wednesday followup, there is a collection drive at 24-Hour Fitness in Westwood Village, and Sanislo Elementary is collecting some items from its school community during its Multicultural Potluck event tonight.

And you can support the ongoing American Red Cross sheltering service – which they provide to many victims in all types of disasters large and small.

Meantime, SFD has not yet announced the results of its investigation into how the fire started.

ADDED 1:15 PM: Just as we were publishing this update, SFD announced:

The investigation showed the fire started on the exterior of the building. Fire Investigators were unable to determine a specific cause. The damage was estimated at 3.3 million dollars.

ADDED THURSDAY NIGHT: Thanks to the person who texted that West Seattle High School is collecting items for at least one family. They shared this image of a message from a school-community communication list with the requests and how to drop them off.

We expect to have an updated list sometime Friday with more information on how to help, so please check back.

FOLLOWUP: Injured Junction workers improving; state investigating

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(WSB photo from Monday)

Three days after two workers were seriously hurt when a portable crane touched power wires at a Junction construction site (WSB coverage here), they’re both improving. That’s what we’ve heard both from a co-worker and from Harborview Medical Center, which says that both men “continue to improve” – one man is out of intensive care and listed in satisfactory condition, while the other remains in intensive care but has been upgraded to serious condition, from critical. We don’t have any information about possible community contribution drives to help them and their families but the co-worker promised to let me know if there was anything to be made public. Both were on the ground near the crane, whose operator was apparently unhurt, when it touched the wires, according to early word from investigators at the scene on Monday.

Meanwhile, the state Department of Labor and Industries tells WSB that they are investigating two companies because of what happened at the 4505 42nd SW mixed-use-building project site. According to L&I spokesperson Tim Church, the companies are Spartan Concrete, a subcontractor that he says is the employer of the two injured workers, and MarPac Construction, the general contractor. Spartan’s record shows a power-line/crane-safety violation at a jobsite in 2012, marked as “corrected.”

L&I has up to six months to finish its investigation.

FOLLOWUP: SDOT pushes back Admiral Way Safety Project work to next week

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Just in from SDOT – the Admiral Way Safety Project work that was supposed to be happening now has been delayed until next week. SDOT’s Dawn Schellenberg just sent word that the construction schedule is now 7 am-5 pm Wednesday, October 5th, and Thursday, October 6th “depending on weather.” The “no-parking” signs in the area are to be updated. On construction dates, the plan remains:

· No parking on both sides of SW Admiral Way between California Ave SW and 63rd Ave SW to keep a travel lane in each direction open

· Existing striping will be removed and new striping will be installed

· Temporary lane closures and lane shifts around the work area; flaggers will be present to direct traffic

· Sidewalks will remain open during work; people biking on the sidewalk must yield to people walking at all times

· People biking should use alternate routes during construction

· Construction equipment, trucks, noise and activity will be in the area for about one week

· Emergency response vehicles will have continual access

The project has been in the works for a year and a half. The final design was announced by e-mail in July.

Live/work in Delridge? October 8th open house, workshop, resource fair set

(WSB photo from our coverage of the Delridge Projects Workshop at SWTLC in June 2015)

As mentioned in our coverage of last week’s Delridge District Council meeting, the next community workshop /open house about the Delridge Action Plan – multiple potential neighborhood improvements – is set for October 8th. The city has just sent this announcement with new details:

The City of Seattle is collaborating with communities to create a shared vision and Delridge Action Plan to improve the livability of the North Delridge neighborhood.

For two years, the Office of Planning and Community Development has worked with the community on plans to create great community places and improved services. City departments have coordinated work on the action plan with other projects on Delridge Way SW, including transportation safety improvements and better transit service.

The City is holding an open house on October 8 to present the highlights of the plan, gather feedback and additional input. At the workshop, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods is hosting a community resource fair where neighbors can learn and share projects, improvements, resources and initiatives that Delridge community and neighbors are leading.

Open House and Community Resource Fair

9:30 a.m. to Noon, Sat., Oct. 8
Southwest Teen Life Center
2801 SW Thistle Street

Child care, light snacks, and foreign language interpretation will be provided.

To make the street safer and more comfortable for all users, the Delridge Way SW Multimodal Project is considering improvements to the roadway from SW Roxbury St. to the West Seattle Bridge. At the workshop, residents will look at different segments of Delridge Way SW and discuss a range of transportation improvements and the trade-offs between them.

The proposed improvements under consideration were identified based on public input, traffic and collision data, and recommendations from the Seattle Department of Transportation’s (SDOT’s) modal plans. The result will be new street designs that improve safety and mobility for people and goods. Transit service will be improved through RapidRide transit service.

In the Longfellow Creek Watershed, Seattle Public Utility’s (SPU) Natural Drainage Systems (NDS) Partnership Program will build right-of-way stormwater projects to help achieve the water quality goals identified in the Plan to Protect Seattle’s Waterways. Visit SPU’s website to learn more about natural drainage systems.

Over the years, the residents of North Delridge have worked with the City to create neighborhood assets such as the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, Longfellow Creek Legacy Trail, Cottage Grove Park, and affordable housing options. Fifteen years have passed since the Delridge community completed their neighborhood plan.

West Seattle Thursday: Benefit bake sale; Curriculum Night x 2; Kenney meeting; more…

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West Seattle firefighters are in The Junction today as part of Seattle Fire Fighters Union IAFF Local 27‘s annual “Fill the Boot” drive for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. You’ll see them until noon and then 2-5 pm – in our photo above, that’s firefighter Jennifer from Ladder 11. Here’s what else is going on:

DROP OFF YOUR ART FOR SOUTHWEST LIBRARY SHOWCASE: Today’s the first of three days that you are invited to drop off your visual-art work for showcasing starting this weekend in the 25th annual community showcase at Southwest Library – details in our preview from earlier this week. If you’re a musician, you can upload your work right now, as explained here. (35th SW/SW Henderson)

BENEFIT BAKE SALE: During the Delridge Grocery Farm Stand 4-7 pm today (“or until we run out of baked goods”), a Camp Fire group plans a bake sale to raise money for the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, in memory of group leader Katie‘s dad. Details in our calendar listing – including an invitation to donate baked goods – just drop them off during the sale! (Delridge Way SW/Puget Boulevard SW)

COOKBOOK SIGNING: Leslie Mackey signs “More from Macrina 5-7 pm at Admiral Metropolitan Market (WSB sponsor), as part of the ongoing “Kitchen Superstars” series. (41st/42nd/Admiral)

COLLAGE WORKSHOP: With artist Linda McClamrock, 6:15 pm tonight and next Thursday night at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor) – our calendar listing has details, including how to sign up if there’s still room. (5612 California SW)

COMMUNITY MEETING AT THE KENNEY: 6:30 pm in the meeting rooms downstairs, community members are invited to talk about The Kenney‘s future, including potential expansion of its independent-living units, as previewed here on Wednesday. (7125 Fauntleroy Way SW)

DENNY CURRICULUM NIGHT: Families are invited to find out more about what and how their kids are learning this year, 6:30 pm at Denny International Middle School. (2601 SW Kenyon)

WEST SEATTLE HS CURRICULUM NIGHT: It’s also Curriculum Night for families of students at West Seattle High School, 6:30 pm. (3000 California SW)

‘GHOSTS’: Second week for the first production of ArtsWest Playhouse‘s new season, curtain time 7:30 pm. (4711 California SW)

FOLLOWUP: 35th SW road repairs continuing into Friday

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Our photo from early this morning looks south toward where the pavement is torn up across both lanes of northbound 35th SW just north of Alaska, as WSB readers first started pointing out during Wednesday’s afternoon/evening commute, when encountering the resulting bottleneck without warning. After publishing an item about it last night, we contacted SDOT this morning to ask about it, as promised, and to find out how long the work will last. The reply, from SDOT spokesperson Sue Romero:

There was a lapse in timing of communicating on this specific project, therefore the work began without notification. In response to complaints from the public about the street, our crews are removing and replacing some concrete panels on 35th between SW Snoqualmie and SW Alaska. The work should be completed tomorrow and all lanes open by Friday afternoon.

So be forewarned, the lane closures will be continuing for the pm commute today – that caused some backup off the westbound bridge yesterday, coupled with a stalled vehicle by the last curve.

West Seattle development: 5952 California apartments now in Administrative Design Review

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9 AM: Back in May, we mentioned an early-stage proposal for 48 apartments north of Morgan Junction at 5952 California SW.

Today’s city-circulated Land Use Information Bulletin includes the official notice that Administrative Design Review is under way – that’s a no-meeting form of Design Review – for the project.

The project is now described as “37 small efficiency units and 4 efficiency dwelling units (41 units total).” As was the case when we made note of it last spring, 5 offstreet-parking spaces are in the plan, and it’s replacing a single-family house plus “garage spaces” behind that are part of an auto-body business.

One wrinkle with this, as of this writing – while you’re invited to comment on this project through October 12th, as explained in the notice, the design packet is not available on the city website as of the moment we’re publishing this. We noticed this last week, even before the formal notice was issued, and called it to the designated planner’s attention, but it hasn’t appeared yet, and the project’s page on the city website – where the notice says you SHOULD be able to view the design packet – says you have to go downtown to look at it. That’s why we’re showing the map from the notice above, rather than a frame from the design packet.

We’ll update if and when that’s fixed and the design is available for online viewing, as is usually the case with projects assigned to Design Review.

9:56 AM: Available now (here).

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Thursday alerts & updates

(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

6:58 AM: One lane is reported blocked by a crash on the NB 1st Avenue South Bridge. And as promised, we’re off to check on the two lanes of NB 35th SW south of Avalon where torn-up pavement caused traffic trouble yesterday afternoon.

7:20 AM: Just checked. Yes, two lanes of 35th are still closed with torn-up pavement between Alaska and Avalon. This will be a bottleneck, albeit a relatively short one.

7:34 AM: The 1st Ave. S. Bridge crash has cleared.

10:53 AM: SDOT says the pavement work will continue into tomorrow. Separate update ahead.

@ West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network: Prosecutor offers peek behind ‘revolving door’; police pursue repeaters

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Concerned about what can seem to be a “revolving door” for crime suspects? The guest at last night’s West Seattle Block Watch Captains’ Network offered some frank insight into it.

FROM THE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE: Alex Voorhees, a senior prosecutor with the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, was invited to offer insight into how the justice system works, and doesn’t work. She opened by explaining she’s worked in various units during her 14 years in the office. “One of the things I’m most proud about …is a program called CTI.” That dates back about a decade, when the late Norm Maleng, then KC Prosecutor, came up with a plan to tackle the fact that the county was among the nation’s top hotspots for vehicle theft. “We started working with a number of proactive law-enforcement groups around the county,” including Seattle Police. Participants had quarterly meetings and targeted suspects and cut the auto-theft rate in half. But, she said, a lot has changed since then.

The KCPAO handles felonies throughout the county as well as misdemeanors from the unincorporated area. It includes these units:

Special Assault Unit
Domestic Violence Unit
Homicide and Violent Crimes Unit
Property Crimes Unit

When someone is arrested for a felony property crime, they appear in front of a District Court judge within 24 hours, and “an initial bond is set.” That calendar has dozens of suspects on it some days. “We send a prosecutor to that hearing, and in cases involving burglary and auto theft, we ask that people be held. I hear this frustration about revolving doors …” Read More

TRAFFIC ALERT: 35th SW narrowed to 2 lanes between Avalon and Alaska

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Several people have pointed out the traffic snarl caused by a section of northbound 35th Avenue SW being torn up between Avalon and Alaska, near West Seattle Stadium. There was no advance warning of, nor alert about, this, so we don’t know (yet) exactly what’s being done here nor whether it’s related to the almost-complete mixed-use project nearby. But unless a crew returns sometime tonight, this could still be in place tomorrow morning, so this is a heads-up that you might want to avoid the area while outbound, if you can.

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We’ll check on it by 7 am for an update in our morning traffic coverage, so check for an update on whether it’s fixed by then.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Fugitive arrested; stolen pickup found; car prowl

In West Seattle Crime Watch:

FUGITIVE ARRESTED: What started as a Narcotics and Gang Unit “emphasis operation in South Park” last night wound up including the arrest of a fugitive wanted on a felony warrant from Oregon, according to SPD Blotter. The officers found a stolen pickup truck at 5th Ave. S. and S. Kenyon in South Park, then checked out a Jaguar parked nearby and found it “belonged to a wanted fugitive.” They “watched the vehicles until two men approached the vehicles and drove away. Detectives followed and SWAT officers made the stops at two separate locations. The stolen truck was stopped in the 5900 block of 1st Avenue South and the 35-year-old man was arrested for auto theft. Police stopped the Jaguar at 9th Avenue SW and SW Roxbury and arrested its 27-year-old driver, who had a felony fugitive warrant out of Oregon. Officers also recovered a loaded 9mm Glock handgun on the floorboard of the car. Detectives impounded both vehicles and booked both suspects into the King County Jail.”

Another stolen vehicle has been found, with a WSB reader’s help:

TRUCK FOUND: We reported on Sunday about the theft of Caleb’s truck. As noted in the comment section, Adam spotted it on Pigeon Point, reported it police, and mentioned it here. Caleb’s friend, who had sent in the report, confirmed it was recovered.

And a Crime Watch reader report today:

READER REPORT: Anonymous message: “Car prowl last night (in the 8800 block of) 36th Ave SW. Took a green wallet with all my credit cards, ID, etc. Police report done, but wanted neighbors to be aware. (Wallet fell out of my purse, apparently.)”

FIRE FOLLOWUP: Heroes recognized at City Hall

3:05 PM: Almost 24 hours to the moment after the 3-alarm Lam Bow Apartments fire broke out in Delridge, more than a dozen people from the Seattle Police and Fire Departments and Seattle Housing Authority stood behind Mayor Ed Murray, Fire Chief Harold Scoggins, and Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole at City Hall, as they announced honors for heroes.

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(Added: WSB photo of SPD honorees)

“These public servants saved a lot of lives,” said the mayor. At the top of the story is our phone video of what he and the chiefs said; we have more to add, including photos, names, and our conversation afterward with SHA’s Thaddeus Perry, who was working on a project in the main office when a tenant came running in yelling, “Fire, fire, fire” – he rushed into the building to get people out.

4:23 PM: Here’s SHA employee Perry, at center:

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He told us he just started working for SHA in the West Seattle area – assigned to several buildings/complexes including Lam Bow – as of about two weeks ago. After he ran into the building and discovered a “barrage” of smoke on the 3rd floor, he was soon joined by SPD Sgt. Britt and they went up and down the hallway, “banging on doors,” to tell people to get out. They all did, and as SFD said yesterday, everyone escaped without injury.

4:55 PM: Here are the names of the SPD personnel who were honored:

Sgt. Jim Britt
Officer Aaron Briggs
Officer Nick Meyst
Officer Garth Lindelef
Officer Nick Burk
Officer German Barreto
Officer Sandro Fleming
Officer Ryan Levens
Officer Jack Johns

FIRE FOLLOWUP: Today’s developments in aftermath of Lam Bow Apartments fire, including how to help

1:28 PM: Here’s what’s happening so far today in the aftermath of the 3-alarm fire that displaced almost 50 people at the Lam Bow Apartments at 6955 Delridge Way SW (our Tuesday afternoon-through-evening coverage is here):

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*Seattle Fire remains on “fire watch” at the site, in case of hotspots. We stopped by the scene this morning and that’s when the photos in this update were taken.

*No cause announced yet, but SFD spokesperson Lt. Harold Webb tells WSB the information should be available before day’s end.

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For everyone asking how to help the 47 people who are unable to return to their apartments:

*The Red Cross will have a shelter again tonight for residents who need it, at the Delridge Community Center. But a spokesperson tells us, “In terms of tangible needs, we have not heard any reports of unmet needs in the shelter.”

*They and the Seattle Housing Authority, which owns the Lam Bow, have not heard yet of organized donation drives, nor of a specific request for specific items.

*A commenter says Sanislo Elementary is organizing a food drive for two families. We’re awaiting details on that. (Today was a 2-hour-early dismissal day for Seattle Public Schools, so don’t go to the school now.) 6:24 PM UPDATE: They’re collecting items during tomorrow night’s Multicultural Potluck, as explained here.

*This afternoon at City Hall, the mayor, police chief, and SHA director will “formally recognize the heroic efforts of Seattle Police Department and Seattle Housing Authority personnel in responding to yesterday’s apartment fire.” We will be covering that separately.

More updates as we get information. For everyone who wants to help, please keep in mind that those who lost their homes and belongings will be affected for a long time, and it might take a while for “how best to help” to emerge, so be patient and keep that good energy going until we hear where best to apply it.

2:18 PM: We’re at City Hall for the aforementioned recognition event and have talked to the Seattle Housing Authority rep, Kerry Coughlin, who’s here. She said the Fire Department has just turned the damaged building – one of two that comprise the Lam Bow – to them, and they’re boarding it up; a long list of inspections and assessments is ahead. They’re also continuing to work, she confirms, on organizing a list of needs and who can coordinate donations.

3:02 PM: SHA director Andrew Lofton elaborated on that during Q&A after the ceremony. He said that they are working to identify a fiscal agent for donations, among other things, and hope to have some news on that “within 48 hours.”

6:25 PM: There’s lots of coordination going on between people who are trying to organize ways to help and we’re expecting to have a clearer picture tomorrow (Thursday).

Why The Kenney is having a community meeting Thursday night

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(WSB file photo of The Kenney)

Five years after shelving what was once a major redevelopment plan, and one year after finalizing a new “affiliation” and halving its debt, The Kenney is taking the next step into its future.

Tomorrow (Thursday) night, the retirement center at 7125 Fauntleroy Way SW is hosting a “community meeting” announced earlier this month with this description: “We want you to hear about changes that have taken place in our community over the last 18 months and to share with you some of our plans for the future.”

The meeting’s been listed in the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar a while. In the past few days, The Kenney has distributed hard-copy invitations to nearby residents, prompting several to contact us about it.

This morning, we talked with Larry Foss, The Kenney’s executive director, to find out more about those “future plans.” First, we checked online files, and the only thing that’s in the city-permit system is for what he called some “internal renovations.” But, Foss said, there’s one potential project they’re considering, and want to talk with neighbors about: “Increasing the amount of independent senior housing” on The Kenney’s campus.

Right now, the “independent” housing on site is at the Ballymena Apartments on the west side of The Kenney. Foss says that 34-unit building has a waiting list, so that’s why they want to talk with neighbors as a “first step” toward a possible expansion. (In the original circa-2008 Kenney expansion plan, that building was to be demolished and new apartments were to be built around the campus. But The Kenney has gone through a lot of changes since then, including adding a memory-care unit in 2012.)

He added that the meeting is also a chance for community members to learn more about Heritage. It’s at 6:30 pm Thursday (September 29th) in the community rooms on The Kenney’s lower level, all welcome.

West Seattle Hi-Yu says this might be the end after 80+ years, unless you care enough to help

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(July 2016 photo of what might be the last West Seattle Hi-Yu float – photo by Jim Edwards)

ORIGINAL REPORT, 10:27 AM: After more than 80 years, West Seattle Hi-Yu – the last Seattle neighborhood organization with a traveling parade float – might be history.

Hi-Yu’s been pleading for community support and warning that it can’t continue without some emerging.

It apparently hasn’t, according to this announcement that just arrived, which concludes with one last opportunity to get involved:

The newly elected West Seattle Hi-Yu, Inc. officers on the board have decided to not have the Hi-Yu float go to the Issaquah Salmon Days parade on Oct. 1st and discontinue attending the Fauntleroy Fall Festival and Alaska Junction Fall festival and not have any of the Jr. Court, Teen Ambassador or Sr. court scholarship programs this upcoming year.

Due to the lack of volunteers and West Seattle community and business financial support, the West Seattle Hi-Yu, Inc. will be taking a break from all activities for a year or more to reorganize.

Unless there is a lot of community support the West Seattle Hi-Yu Summer Festival will have had its final year ending on Sept. 30, 2016, after 82 years of existence,

The archives of West Seattle Hi-Yu, Inc. history will be turned over to the Southwest Seattle Historical Society.

Thanks to all of the past Hi-Yu volunteers and court members for their involvement over the years. The scholarship programs will be discontinued. We know the experiences have been beneficial to those who have participated in the various community events and parades over the years.

We wish the best to the reorganizing team.

Jay Murray, West Seattle Hi-Yu president 2014-2016
Joanne Murray, West Seattle Hi-Yu historian, 2014-2016

The next meeting will be on Monday Oct. 3, 2016 at the West Seattle Library in the Admiral district at 7 pm in the community room on the lower level. If you are interested in the future of West Seattle Hi-Yu, come to the meeting and voice your opinion.

ADDED 1:32 PM: As discussed in comments, Hi-Yu does NOT produce the summer parade. But the reorganization could have effects on it. Here’s a statement we just received from Michelle Edwards on behalf of the parade committee:

Despite the possible reorganization of West Seattle Hi-Yu, the West Seattle Grand Parade will continue to be produced by the West Seattle Rotary Club Foundation and will be held on July 22nd, 2017 at 11am. The only impact to the West Seattle Grand Parade will be the possibility of losing visiting festival parade floats and entries, as there will no longer be a West Seattle float attending festivals around the region. This impact will be addressed by the West Seattle Parade Committee in 2017. We wish the best to the West Seattle Hi-Yu team. – West Seattle Parade Committee

West Seattle Wednesday: Highland Park Action Committee; High Point farm-stand finale …

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(Anna’s Hummingbird, photographed by Mark Wangerin)

Five possibilities for your Wednesday:

CAREGIVER SUPPORT GROUP: 3 pm at the Senior Center of West Seattle, caregivers are invited to come “share your challenges, frustrations, successes with other caregivers.” More in our calendar listing. (SW Oregon/California SW)

FARM-STAND FINALE: 4-7 pm today, it’s the last day of the season for the High Point Market Garden Farm Stand, fresh produce sold steps from where it was grown and harvested. (32nd SW/SW Juneau)

IRISH SET DANCING: At Kenyon Hall, lessons at 6:30 pm, dancing 7-9 pm, details in our calendar listing. (7904 35th SW)

HIGHLAND PARK ACTION COMMITTEE: 7 pm at Highland Park Improvement Club, HPAC is back for the fall monthly-meeting season. Lots to talk about – see for yourself here. (12th SW/SW Holden)

MUSIC OF JERRY GARCIA: That’s what you’ll hear from tonight’s featured band at Parliament Tavern in The Admiral District, 9 pm. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

MORE! on our days-and-weeks-at-a-scroll WSB West Seattle Event Calendar page.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Wednesday updates & alerts

(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

7:25 AM: No incidents to report so far this morning, in West Seattle or on the major outbound routes from here.

TODAY’S ALERTS
*Seattle Public Schools get out two hours early today
*Work on the Admiral Way Safety Project starts today
*SODO alert: Sounders FC game @ 7:30 pm (vs. Chicago)

WEEKEND REMINDER:
*West Seattle Bridge west-end closure 12-9 am Saturday to replace damaged jersey barriers

8:02 AM: Trouble on northbound I-5 – a medic response in the Convention Center area. Left two lanes are blocked, according to WSDOT.

8:16 AM: That scene is reported to be almost fully blocked. And you know how morning NB I-5 backups compound quickly. So if you’re heading out soon, we’d advise not trying to get onto NB I-5 for a while.

8:47 AM: The NB I-5 crash scene is now down to one lane blocked. The backup, of course, will take a while to ease.

10:33 AM NOTE: We checked the Admiral Way project zone a bit earlier this morning – no signs of crews yet – we’ll check back later.

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