Video: 3rd meeting for DESC Delridge Advisory Committee

March 28, 2012 at 1:55 am | In DESC Delridge project, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

A wide-ranging agenda Tuesday night for the third meeting of the Advisory Committee formed as a means of addressing community concerns regarding DESC‘s planned Delridge Supportive Housing project. (Our coverage of the first meeting is here, the second meeting here.) Above, our unedited video of the entire 2-hour meeting (makes better audio than video – we apologize for awkward angles on a few public commenters because of where they stood to speak in relation to where our photographer was positioned).

Toplines, ahead:

Two central agenda items were related to business in the area – both the ideas that emerged from the recent Brandon Node Visioning Open House (an overview was presented by North Delridge Neighborhood Council co-chair Parie Hines, who also talked about a recently unveiled study suggesting that Delridge couldn’t support a supermarket – see its toplines here) and the proposal for the Delridge Produce Cooperative to run the commercial space that DESC plans for the ground floor of its building.

DPC board members Galena White and Ranette Iding explained that it would be a store, not a “buyers’ club,” though they expect to sell memberships for those who want to support the co-op that way, and have a say in its operation. They hoped the space would include a kitchen demonstration area as well as retail space, and that some of their produce would come from small local growers. More discussion is planned before a final decision is made on supporting the plan for DPC and DESC to work together. (To find out more about DPC, check out the slide presentation on its website.)

There also was more discussion about issues of community concern that should be on the committee’s radar. They included:

*Neighborhood safety, including concerns about drug activity since addicts are expected to be among the tenants
*DESC tenant screening and tenant agreement
*Traffic safety
*What everyday life is like in a DESC supportive-housing building – perhaps hear from counselors
*What will it be like for the community when the building is open?
*Synching DESC’s project timeline with the advisory committee’s work/priorities

The committee’s next meeting will tackle community issues as well as the DPC plan, 6:30 pm April 12th, at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (site of all its meetings so far).

15 Comments

  1. I loved the study findings for the planned? Delridge Produce Cooperative, I hope you fly against all advice and open it-on your dime, and not public funds or resources. After all, you are the “compassionate neighbors” who want the DESC to come in and add another level of criminal activity to an already infested area.

    Comment by delridge neighbor — 10:17 am March 28, 2012 #

  2. By the way, the NDNC has been largely in support of the DESC project, for the most part,against the very real objections and concerns of the neighborhood. These meetings are largely exercises in futility, and things are not going to be “OK”, and they won’t be addressed other than after the fact, by the SPD. Once again Seattle is always, always, always, about the money made.

    Comment by delridge neighbor — 10:39 am March 28, 2012 #

  3. Actually, Delridge Neighbor, I have not seen any organized opposition beyond the efforts of a few vocal individuals.
    .
    To date, the NDNC has not taken a position for or against the project. It has supported two groups of neighborhood volunteers so far.
    .
    The Delridge Community Forum came together to conduct research, get word out about the proposal, and to support neighbors wishing to take a stand for or against the project.
    .
    The Alliance was formed to work with DESC to represent neighborhood concerns and interests as the project moves forward.
    .
    So, while there are many “very real concerns and objections,” I am not sure what you expect to be happening. Are you hoping they will spend their precious volunteer time and energy fighting for what you want?

    Comment by Mickymse — 2:27 pm March 28, 2012 #

  4. If I were writing a headline for this piece, it would be,

    “DESC: Sex Offenders Out, Grocery Store In.”

    -
    Nowhere in this piece is there attention to these news-making issues.
    -
    No mention that, although they have less than 1% sex offenders in their homeless population which would equal zero sex offenders in 66 units as proposed, DESC has re-affirmed that they will screen for and reject any applicants with sex offenses. DESC stepped up and did this unilaterally in light of the community groups’ inability to agree on a formal request letter.
    -
    No mention that DESC has magnanimously offered to have a grocery store move in to the retail space in DESC.
    DESC architects have already contributed design work.
    DESC also offered to help with the costly build-in, even so far as helping with fixtures and appliances.
    -
    Of course, you can see this for yourself if you wish to wade through the long unedited video feed provided by WSB.
    -
    Also not noted in this piece is that DESC handed out their 16 page information packet (dated 3/6/12 and now available at (www.desc.org/Delridge_Supportive_Housing.html).
    that responds with facts to hundreds of questions and concerns submitted by anti-DESC activists. Much of the information provided by DESC has been overwhelmed by the streams of ignorant posts, with no corrections from activists or WSB, the sex offender being prime example.
    -
    A few facts do certainly get in the way of a good story.
    -
    I post this in hope that it will soften the outrage some express here toward DESC.

    Comment by Reporting? — 9:54 pm March 28, 2012 #

  5. All of those have been reported here BEFORE the meeting and were not new news.

    Sex offenders issue, settled the day before the meeting:
    http://westseattleblog.com/2012/03/no-sex-offenders-in-delridge-supportive-housing-project-says-desc

    Grocery store? There is no “grocery store” going into the building. The Delridge Produce Cooperative’s likelihood of being the tenant has been reported here going back at least as far as last November
    http://westseattleblog.com/2011/11/desc-in-delridge-design-review-packet-now-published-another-community-conversation

    and was reported again in our story about the previous advisory committee meeting March 8th
    http://westseattleblog.com/2012/03/desc-delridge-project-advisory-committees-second-meeting

    which also included a link to the DESC FAQ that was printed and handed around
    http://westseattleblog.com/2012/03/desc-delridge-project-advisory-committees-second-meeting
    (second paragraph)

    We’ve been reporting facts about this project going back to June of last year, when we first heard about it while covering the North Delridge Neighborhood Council’s meeting, and immediately contacted DESC to find out more.
    .
    http://westseattleblog.com/2011/06/details-permanent-housing-for-75-homeless-people-proposed-for-delridge-site
    .
    You can catch up on the multitude of facts we have reported by reviewing the entire DESC Delridge Project coverage category through the link below the headline on all of these stories.

    TR

    Comment by WSB — 10:51 pm March 28, 2012 #

  6. DESC? Stands for? Sorry, wading through all of this is painful.

    Comment by denise — 8:21 am March 29, 2012 #

  7. DESC is Downtown Emergency Service Center, though they seldom use the full name any more (kind of like institutions of yore, CBS network was originally the Columbia Broadcasting System but nobody ever spells it out). Its website is linked to its name on first reference in all our stories. http://www.desc.org – any term in blue in a WSB story will link you to the website or webpage for whatever the term is, and there is so much background in this story after nine months of extensive coverage that if you are just coming to it, that’s your best bet. (For example, read about the advisory committee at its linked webpage, about the Supportive Housing project itself at its linked webpage, etc.) – TR

    Comment by WSB — 9:11 am March 29, 2012 #

  8. As a Board member at Delridge Produce Cooperative, I’d like to volunteer an amendment to WSB’s statement that there will be no grocery store, because we have recently changed our goals so that we will be a grocery store of sorts. We’ll be a greengrocer that sells fruits, vegetables, roots, and greens, as well as bulk dry goods like nuts, seeds, grains, and flours – and we will also be selling milk, cheese, beef, poultry, fish, eggs, and a few simply-prepared but time-consuming staples like bread, peanut butter, and tomato sauce. Our focus is to provide all the ingredient that you might need to prepare any recipe, while still staying true to our belief that whole, unprocessed, pesticide-free fresh food is the healthiest thing we can provide.

    Comment by Galena White — 10:37 am March 29, 2012 #

  9. Great, I stand updated – “greengrocer” seems like a great term, rather than “grocery store” which like it or not evokes all sorts of boxed items as well as fresh. Is that in the slide deck on your website? I went through that before publishing this and don’t recall seeing it, or maybe I clicked past a page. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 10:51 am March 29, 2012 #

  10. I have to say that as one of the folks at the meeting, based on what I saw from the co-op, I’m excited about their plans–they seem very dedicated to this community.

    Comment by DelridgeV — 11:21 am March 29, 2012 #

  11. I can only assume that my previous comments we’re too honest for some to read so they were flagged and deleted. Sorry.

    Hey “Response?” quite the lame title to a lame “response”. You’re trying to bash the very source that myself and my neighbors rely on for information regarding the steps and progress DESC makes. FAAAAR from the effort DESC has tried to make regarding their future neighbors. You sound like a blind firecracker waiting to pop off on someone has a different opinion. Who are you? I bet you don’t live in any direct vicinity of this proposed place just like the rest of the hypertension hypocritical ridden folk on here here who decide to bash the very neighbors this place WILL affect. During the video you snoozed through and so blindly dissmissed the speaking points of the very people this will affect such as myself in which you respond “Of course, you can see this for yourself if you wish to wade through the long unedited video feed provided by WSB” Hey bud i spoke for the first time on there. Go ahead and try to tell me my oppinion doesnt matter. Those are the facts. That’s how people feel. Nobody is or should feel guilty for being concerned about this. My address is 5070 23rd ave Sw. Again whats yours? I challenge everyone on here to ask the same questions to those who are “so emmitionally tied” to this project and defend it who don’t even live near it. Especially those like “Response?” (give me a break) who think they can bash and silence those who not only deserve to speak their minds but those who go out if their way to inform the neighbors they care about. Thanks west seattle blog and the few neighbors who have gone out of their way to inform the rest.

    Comment by Austin Hugill — 9:11 pm March 29, 2012 #

  12. Austin, FYI – this is the first comment I have seen under your name, so no, no one has flagged anything you said, but our automated filter might have; we have a rather aggressive spam filter and lately the site has been slammed with so much spam (hundreds a day) that I can’t even wade through it any more to see if there’s any bycatch of real comments that need to be rescued. Sorry if something non-rule-breaking got caught there.
    .
    Speaking of which, this is a general comment to *others* regarding our rules: WSB does not require commenters to use real names (much less addresses), though my hat’s off to those who choose to – I am a strong defender of people’s right to speak out without identifying themselves, both online and in person. I strongly disagree with those who claim “anonymous Internet commenting is the bane of our existence and if everyone had to use real names, things would be just peachy.” No, they wouldn’t. Some of the ugliest comments I’ve seen in the past few years have been on the WSB Facebook page, by people ostensibly using their real identities. We believe that having and enforcing rules is the true path to something resembling civil discourse. That said, here’s my rules reminder: No identifying information about other commenters who haven’t volunteered it themselves, regardless of whether you’re sure it’s correct. They have the right to be anonymous, as do you. Today in this thread, we have declined to publish one comment that would have broken that rule in a multitude of ways. It did not have a valid e-mail address attached, so the only way I can address that is with this reminder. Thanks – Tracy (WSB editor/co-publisher)

    Comment by WSB — 10:25 pm March 29, 2012 #

  13. @ Mickymse — 2:27 pm March 28, 2012
    -
    “So, while there are many “very real concerns and objections,” I am not sure what you expect to be happening. Are you hoping they will spend their precious volunteer time and energy fighting for what you want?”
    -
    Mickymse, you spelled out the problem and unfortunately probably don’t even realize it. The DESC is THE reason why there is now even LESS volunteer time and energy for fighting for the things that Delridge needs and has needed for decades, thanks to the naive who thought it was such a wonderful idea to support bringing yet more low income, ill and addicted people into Delridge. The Delridge Community Forum and the Alliance were made up of people who were either very much in favor of the DESC location chosen in Delridge, or were neutral or were supposed to be neutral. Concerted effort was put forth by the forementioned groups to keep those who thought the location was a bad one quiet and stifled those voices with nonsense about how Delridge needs to save the homeless and is the only part of the city that can do so. When it came to an actual community meeting sponsored by the Community Forum, people attending were stifled or not allowed to speak to the point of it being a waste of their time. Hence the reason a lot of people, especially people of color, left the room at the Youngstown Center last fall. They grew tired of the talking heads, and seen this old school game one to many times to think that their opinion was going to matter one iota.
    -
    Early on, the Forum and Alliance kowtowed to city departments, politicians and the whole political, construction contractor, social service machine that is the DESC, with the result being the NDNC volunteer board and its involved members now finds itself saddled with a huge ugly issue that is sucking the life out of all the other things that needed tending to and fighting for in the neighborhood. Gee, who would have guessed! Burnout and a hamstrung neighborhood organization that got co-opted by the DESC is the likely result.

    Comment by Lost In Space — 3:26 pm March 31, 2012 #

  14. @ Austin, you rock! Great statement on the video and here in the comments section.

    Comment by Lost In Space — 3:33 pm March 31, 2012 #

  15. Tracy – thanks for the idea to add a description of what we will provide at the DPC store to our slideshow. I’ve also included on the main page of the website a copy of the handout that was given to committee members at the meeting, with a timeline.

    Comment by Galena White — 6:26 pm April 1, 2012 #

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