A police briefing – including the Delridge shots-fired incident from hours earlier – was part of last night’s combined Southwest District Council/Delridge Neighborhoods District Council meeting at Southwest Teen Life Center. City Councilmember Tim Burgess and County Assessor Lloyd Hara also talked with – and heard from – the councils, whose members represent community associations and other major organizations around West Seattle. Read on for the hot topics:
UPDATE FROM POLICE: Southwest Precinct operations Lt. Pierre Davis discussed two recent gunfire incidents, the one at Alki’s Whale Tail Park two weeks ago (WSB coverage here) and the one in Delridge just hours before the meeting. No new information regarding the Alki case, but he said police are hearing from Whale Tail neighbors more since the incident, and that’s a good thing. In the Delridge investigation (WSB coverage here) – where we had talked to him at the scene – Lt. Davis said police are seeking warrants to look at certain apartments/houses in that general area. Patrol officers have noticed “suspicious individuals” in the area in recent weeks, but they don’t seem to be associated with any one particular place – they move around between locations in the area of the incident.
COUNTY ASSESSOR’S UPDATE: Overall, home values in King County remain down, but city properties are holding their value better than rural properties, according to Assessor Lloyd Hara. He also mentioned noticing the uptick in commercial construction and single-family-home building since the third quarter of last year.
CITY COUNCILMEMBER BURGESS: Hara’s comment segued into one of Councilmember Tim Burgess‘s first comments, how the city Department of Planning and Development is fee-based, so staff cuts had come with a drop in the fees received by the department. The upswing in construction is part of the reason why budget cuts next time around likely won’t be as drastic. Burgess said Seattle still has it better than some cities, particularly in California, where he said there are places with “rolling fire-station closures” as well as deep cuts in police services and emergency food/housing.
On the proposed SODO arena: Burgess says it’s not a great deal for the city right now; he described himself as “agnostic” on the general idea of another arena, but regarding this specific proposal, he wants to see a better deal before he’d consider voting “yes.” He expects the council to vote before the next round of budgeting gets into high gear in September.
He was asked the pilot program to test every-other-week trash pickup – which was abruptly revealed in May (WSB coverage here) to include a West Seattle test zone, in Highland Park:
(Click to see full-size map, as PDF)
At last night’s meeting, North Delridge Neighborhood Council‘s Amanda Leonard and Pigeon Point Neighborhood Council‘s Pete Spalding both brought it up; Burgess said it was generating lots of e-mail. While the city might be saving money, he was told, the program was shifting the cost to people who might not be able to afford it – forcing them to get a bigger can, for example.
He also got an earful about SDOT and the various plans they keep bringing to Delridge – in particular, the South Delridge rechannelization plan that was suddenly revealed at the last Delridge District Council meeting (WSB coverage here – which included the following graphic):
The Delridge leaders told Burgess the group handling that plan seemed to be completely separate from and unaware of the work of the group that had been talking to them about a rechannelization plan on the north end of Delridge. The councilmember called that “unacceptable.”