West Seattle Thursday: 4755 Fauntleroy design review; Alki Elementary centennial; Whale Trail talk; compost demo …

March 28, 2013 at 10:31 am | In West Seattle news, WS miscellaneous | 21 Comments

(4755 Fauntleroy Way SW’s proposed northeast corner; rendering by Fuller Sears Architects)
Will the 4755 Fauntleroy Way megaproject finish the Design Review process tonight? It’s part of the highlights from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

HOLY WEEK CHURCH SERVICES: As Easter approaches, some West Seattle churches have Maundy Thursday services today/tonight; our annual list includes information we have received/found about those as well as Good Friday/Easter events – find it here.

FIREFIGHTER TRAINING: In case you missed the alert here Wednesday afternoon, it’s under way right now at the Lowman Beach buildings that the county plans to demolish as part of its sewer-overflow-control project.

WEST SEATTLE LIONS CLUB: The special guest at today’s noon lunch meeting at the Senior Center of West Seattle (Oregon/California) will talk about the history of the Philippines.

ALKI ELEMENTARY CENTENNIAL – AND GROUP PHOTO! We’ve previewed this event a few times (including here), and now it’s time – Alki Elementary is celebrating its centennial, starting with a 5 pm group photo outside the school for past and present students and staff, and events indoors 6-8 pm. All welcome, of course, whether you have/had ties to the school or not.

COMPOST DEMONSTRATION: 6 pm with “Johnny Rotten” at the Community Orchard of West Seattle (north end of the South Seattle Community College [WSB sponsor] campus, 6000 16th SW) – details in the calendar listing.

VINTAGE DIY/NIGHT MARKET: 6-9 pm at Twilight in The Junction – details here.

THE WHALE TRAIL TALKS PORPOISES: The third in The Whale Trail‘s popular series of talks is at 6:30 pm at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California; WSB sponsor) – with researcher John Calambokidis talking about harbor porpoises in our regional waters. Here’s our original preview (also including other participants who’ll update you on our seas and shores); just note that ticket sales are over, so your $5 suggested donation will be accepted at the door.

4755 FAUNTLEROY WAY BACK TO DESIGN REVIEW: This is the 400-apartment, Whole Foods Market-including proposal for Fauntleroy/Alaska/40th SW, and tonight it’s going before the Southwest Design Review Board for what might be its final meeting in this stage of the process. The newest design proposal is outlined in this “packet” (note that it’s a big download, 92+ MB) – the rendering at the top of this story is what the architects envision for the northeast corner of the site at Fauntleroy/Alaska. Public comment is welcome, regarding the design, and you’re also welcome simply to observe – the meeting starts at 6:30 pm upstairs at the Senior Center of West Seattle (Oregon/California). Our previous coverage includes the project’s Design Commission review earlier this month, its second Early Design Guidance meeting last November, and its first EDG meeting last September.

21 Comments

  1. The “mega” building looks nice (for an apartment building). I mean it’s sure better than the current state of the space (gas station, funeral home, parking lot, abandoned car dealership). This is definitely a step up. :) Nothing will please everyone, and I understand the concerns about growth, but growth is happening whether you like it or not…it’s BEEN happening in West Seattle since the Denny party landed 1851. It’s nothing like then, or like 1900, or 1950 or 2000. And trust me, it will have a different character in 2050. I totally am on board with SLOWING growth (I wouldn’t support a 50 story building in that spot) but this is just apartment building, shorter than other buildings in that corner/area already (the Alaska House apts are 9 stories). And I LIKE that fact that this BIG apartment block is directly on the street for the Rapid Ride to downtown.

    Comment by Alki Area — 10:45 am March 28, 2013 #

  2. What going on with the projects in the Junction itself? Are they delayed?

    Comment by DW — 10:59 am March 28, 2013 #

  3. We reported recently that 4724 California, the ex-Petco/ex-Sound Ad Group site, could start as soon as next month.
    .
    California/Alaska, the Equity Residential project, announced a couple start dates – and now is in a “no start date yet” spot – no officially announced reason why.
    .
    TR

    Comment by WSB — 11:01 am March 28, 2013 #

  4. Anyone complaining about an Apartment being build in that location should pack up and move to the Country. Seattle is a City that is expanding. If it’s too crowded or City like for ya, move away! Stop complaining about progress.

    Comment by Matt — 11:02 am March 28, 2013 #

  5. Lots of changes coming to this part of West Seattle, can’t wait for the Whole Foods.

    Comment by MrB — 11:03 am March 28, 2013 #

  6. Nobody can say that it is boring for sure. I like the different colors and the mosaic.

    Comment by chris — 11:08 am March 28, 2013 #

  7. As the one person who has to eventually read all the comments, I would summarize the most overriding concern as not so much “no apartments! as: concern and frustration over the ability of the transportation system to handle more residents during traditional commute hours. Since we don’t have a major employment base here, meaning almost everyone (unless you’re in a local service job or can telecommute) has to head out on the bridge in the morning in a car or on board a standing-room-only bus, the concern is somewhat understandable, especially when you then hear (working on an update to this one) that Metro not only has no money to add more service but may well have to cut it later this year or next if Olympia doesn’t provide more $. Hopefully the pressure will ultimately make things better in a variety of ways – transit funding, more carpooling, employers allowing flex hours so the pressure’s not all on the traditional commute times, telecommuting, and (we did this one!) new businesses here at home … TR

    Comment by WSB — 11:09 am March 28, 2013 #

  8. Yes-parking/traffic is a huge issue. With so many potential building lots-why has there never(that I know of anyway) even been a whisper about a parking structure? Not everyone has convenient( can’t walk the hill to a stop-or their routes have been cut etc.) access to a bus-but would probably take one if they could.A central parking structure could be a dream come true for many.
    On another note-regarding the building for California & Alaska. Many years ago I worked in a little shop close to Talaricos & there was talk then of demolishing the buildings for a project-supposedly what stopped it going forward was the old oil tanks below what was recently-Super Supplements & the cost to get them out-envirnmental issues etc. Does anyone know if there is any truth to that? At the time it was just talk/rumor. If true-would that be a cause of the hold up-or would it be a fairly routine thing to deal with?

    Comment by Anne — 11:41 am March 28, 2013 #

  9. Looks good. Seeing a representation with some color and texture definitely gives a better sense of the final product. I’m very happy something is finally happening on this block, and I’m looking forward to seeing more details at tonight’s review meeting. I will never ever set foot in a Whole Foods, though.

    Comment by Peter on Fauntleroy — 12:07 pm March 28, 2013 #

  10. Anne – re: park and rides, it has been asked at meetings, and it has been unequivocally stated by various city reps that it is not the current city policy to support them.
    .
    Re: abatement on California/Alaska – there has been abatement work already for various things. I don’t believe there were any secrets left to the site. It has been pointed out that Equity Residential is now involved in some even bigger projects in the area (outside WS) and perhaps that plays a role in its decisionmaking regarding the site – we are continuing to follow up. Certainly it’s nothing to joke about, yet in the mode of how 39th/Alaska (starting one of these days) became “The Hole,” we wondered aloud recently if we should start calling this “The Corner.” We’re continuing to follow up …

    Comment by WSB — 12:24 pm March 28, 2013 #

  11. Glad to see they went with the small version of the building

    Comment by Costanza — 12:30 pm March 28, 2013 #

  12. I can’t go to tonight’s design review meeting, but have a truly important question that I wish someone would raise. In case of a natural disaster (e.g. earthquake, tsunami) how would the evacuation of West Seattle be impacted by the addition of 400-800 cars at that location? Someone, please ask and let me know the answer (uualpeters@aol.com). Thanks.

    Comment by Lola P — 3:02 pm March 28, 2013 #

  13. I don’t think that’s in the Design Review Board’s bailiwick. You certainly should e-mail it as an overall question to the city planner, though.

    Comment by WSB — 3:09 pm March 28, 2013 #

  14. Can’t wait to see what the roads are going to look like in 2-3 yrs after all these big projects are done. Having all the big trucks and heavy equipment using the roads heavily for these projects. Then add improvements to handle the increased traffic. Can you say tolls to get across the bridge soon and taxes going up to improve and fix the roads. To bad this city builds first then worries about the infrastructure later. That way they get us to pay for their infrastucture improvements to allow this build up in areas never designed for it.

    Comment by wetone — 3:24 pm March 28, 2013 #

  15. Anne, many years ago I had a shop 2 doors south of SS and I also had storage access to the basement. I’m not aware of any oil tanks down there but I do know there is a large boiler room (complete with very large boilers) which I’m pretty sure would have been part of the abatement process.

    Comment by Rick — 3:42 pm March 28, 2013 #

  16. @Alki Area; the biggest problem re Rapid Ride/transit; this project is being marketed as “quick easy access to Rapid Ride”, which is already overloaded; this project is adding 400 apts (400+ riders? equates to 4+ standing-room-only-packed-to-the-gills-not-at-all-safe Rapid Ride busloads), and Metro keeps telling us they are already at capacity, cannot give us any more buses; and in fact, Metro is threatening to cut buses and routes even more, due to “not enough money”; I participated in a Metro meeting yesterday where Kevin Desmond (Metro GM) said he would be announcing “fairly grim” report next Monday about 17% cuts to bus service, and presenting to KC council on Tuesday, followed by lobby day in Olympia on Wednesday
    ~
    there are 2000+ apts being built/planned on the Rapid Ride bus line; how will everyone get to work?
    ~
    I have repeatedly advocated that these developers (especially the projects that are marketing their apts as “quick easy access to RR) should be required to buy one Rapid Ride bus for every 100 apts they are building
    ~
    as of now, developers are contributing zero to our bus system, yet marketing their projects to receive benefit from our buses
    ~
    and all those people who sign a top dollar lease, expecting “quick easy access to Rapid Ride” are going to be very surprised, disappointed, pissed off, give up, get back in their cars, create more traffic
    ~
    those of us who show up to design reviews advocate for the entire neighborhood, for good design; it’s not just about “anything is better than what is there now”; this project is going to be built; this is our opportunity as a community to make requests that will benefit our neighborhood; so please show up; make your suggestions
    ~
    and re park & ride; it won’t be any help anyway if we don’t have enough buses to “ride”
    ~
    also out of sync, the city code no longer requires projects that are built on transit corridor to have any parking; yep, zero parking required; but the transit has not caught up; in fact the opposite, transit has been severely diminished, and they are threatening further cuts

    Comment by Diane — 4:23 pm March 28, 2013 #

  17. Look, bus or no bus, people need places to live. What’s your answer to that?

    Comment by Miss Ruby — 5:42 pm March 28, 2013 #

  18. I understand our neighborhood already is at 156% of its targeted twenty year plan for housing after only eight years and this figure doesn’t include the 900 + units approved and under development!

    Comment by Jetcotygirl — 6:11 pm March 28, 2013 #

  19. Yeah, and the mosaic makes it looks so different from all the other boxes. Please!

    Comment by T — 2:34 am March 29, 2013 #

  20. I thought the presentation looked great.. lots of improvement. Still work to do on that “iconic corner”, but getting there!

    Comment by Miss Ruby — 11:48 am March 29, 2013 #

  21. Park space is badly needed in this area.

    Comment by RB — 2:37 pm March 29, 2013 #

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