Help review zoning ‘departures’ for new Arbor Heights school

October 18, 2013 at 11:31 am | In Arbor Heights, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 8 Comments

From the latest edition of the city Land Use Information Bulletin, members are now being recruited for a committee that will review zoning “departures” – exceptions, basically – for the new Arbor Heights Elementary School. From the official notice, here’s what they want for the committee makeup:

1. A person residing within 600’ of the proposed site.
2. A person owning property or a business within 600’ of the proposed site.
3. Two representatives of the general neighborhood.
4. A representative-at-large to represent city-wide education issues.
5. Two representatives of the Arbor Heights PTSA.
6. A representative of the Seattle School District.

The proposed “departures,” according to the notice, involve “greater height, less-than-required parking and on-site bus loading.” If you’re interested in being part of the review committee, the notice explains how to apply; do it by the November 6th deadline. (Under the current construction schedule, this is Arbor Heights’ last year in the current, much-deteriorated building.)

8 Comments

  1. TR: Do you happen to know when construction is scheduled to begin for the Genesee Hill School site? Thanks.

    Comment by Genesee Hill — 12:21 pm October 18, 2013 #

  2. GH – there is a ton of new info (including comment ops) linked from the Genesee-Schmitz Neighborhood Council’s newest e-mail message:
    .
    http://us2.campaign-archive2.com/?u=15faef5c26237e86c4e1f31bd&id=c24c624c92&e=dd6df90576
    .
    One of the links therein leads to the “Questions and Answers from September community meeting” doc, which says in part:
    .
    “How long will it take to demolish the school and what disruption? Response: About 3 weeks to demolish in March or April. Want to start construction by June 30, 2014.”

    Comment by WSB — 12:26 pm October 18, 2013 #

  3. Hmmm,
    “Less than required parking”
    – because teachers like walking that extra distance to and from school each day with all the work they carry home/bring back to school, plus the supplies they buy with their enormous paychecks?
    Or is it to encourage more adults to volunteer– nothing says “welcome to our school” like tough access….

    Comment by happy — 12:54 pm October 18, 2013 #

  4. As a future Arbor Heights elementary parent, this is incredibly exciting (and I wish I had time for this, but oy).

    Comment by Joe Szilagyi — 1:17 pm October 18, 2013 #

  5. NO,NO,NO,NO,NO to the “less than required parking”.

    Traffic and parking related to the current school are already a problem. It is completely unacceptable to develop a new plan that makes it worse instead of better. Neighbors blocks away do not appreciate having their property treated like a McDonald’s parking lot.

    Comment by anonyme — 2:05 pm October 18, 2013 #

  6. Sounds to me like they are trying to fit too large of a school for what the small streets can hold. Also, departures from height restrictions should not be allowed. Neighbors views should not be in jeopardy in order to build school over height.

    Comment by j — 4:02 pm October 18, 2013 #

  7. Thank you, TR. I am very excited to see a new elementary school built on this gorgeous Genesee Hill site.

    Comment by Genesee Hill — 4:17 pm October 18, 2013 #

  8. If you live within a couple blocks of the school property and feel passionately, please participate! I have kids at AH and while parking and traffic around the current building is thick, it is not enough to make the experience stressful. I went to the meeting over the summer unveiling the new design, and if I remember correctly, the current code will require we have 70+ parking spots. The school currently has about 5 parking spots on property. With that said, “less than required parking” could simply mean slightly less than that 70+ requirement. A lot of our teachers live in our neighborhood or nearby in WS and probably don’t mind walking a block or so (which is what they currently do). Teachers do a lot to bring their best selves to our school every day and I doubt any of them are going to get picky about parking spaces. Anything is going to be better than the tough access we have now, and we’ve been making it work. Besides, for the most part, we are a healthy, active community with lots of walking! It is a rush to judgement that “less than required parking” means tough access. It just means the planning is going to have to get creative. Positive, innovative people wanted!

    Comment by help out — 8:33 am October 19, 2013 #

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