If you’re interested in light rail, the time to speak up – or, speak up again – is here. Sound Transit will soon make major decisions on what to take to voters, seeking money that will shape the next generation of its projects. West Seattle needs more planning, and needs you to advocate for that, says the West Seattle Transportation Coalition:
Dear West Seattle, South Park, White Center, and Burien Residents,
The West Seattle Transportation Coalition (WSTC) is made up of your neighbors. We are community volunteers who have been tracking mobility issues for the Peninsula and White Center since September 2013. We have been successful in bringing attention to our transportation challenges by banding together and asking for solutions.
In the Sound Transit 2 package, money was set aside to study potential corridors for Sound Transit expansion (ST3). Sound Transit has been studying the Ballard transit expansion since 2012. The three years of comprehensive citizen outreach and planning sessions have culminated in multiple routing and delivery options for Ballard. However, West Seattle and points south have not had the benefits of the same planning sessions. On December 4, 2015, Sound Transit presented to the Sound Transit Board (STB) a proposal for expansion of Sound Transit light rail.
The WSTC has raised a question (see attached letter) to the STB and the City of Seattle. The proposed three options are in direct conflict with projects voted on in Move Seattle. With a draft proposal set for March 2016 and a final draft set for June 2016, how can we get three years worth of planning done in three months?
We need your help. Our next meeting is Thursday, January 28, 2016. We want to have a brainstorming session on ways we can help Sound Transit and the Cities of Seattle and Burien hold successful accelerated planning sessions.
You don’t need to be a transportation planner, you just need to want light rail to come to West Seattle, White Center and Burien!
Date: January 28, 2016
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Location: (new location) The Kenney, 7125 Fauntleroy Way SW
Hello! As of tonight, January 15th, WSB is emerging from its first-ever major technical overhaul, in “beta” mode. It’s our next chapter, in partnership with you. Packing up 10 years worth of news, information, and discussion and moving it into a new shell turned out to be mightily complex; it had to be done to get to a point where we now have the ability to add, expand, improve. What you’re seeing now is just the start of WSB’s next chapter; much of what happened is “under the hood” but the look is different as well because the one we’d had since 2005 wouldn’t work with current upgrades. WSB has always been “community-collaborative news” – your tips, your comments, your events, your concerns – and now we will appreciate your collaboration on tweaking what’s live now, and then as the weeks and months go on, your ideas for what more is needed to truly serve our community. For now the biggest change is that we’re using more of the screen and surfacing more of what’s always been happening “inside” WSB – comments, forum posts, lost/found pets – and alongside in social-media channels. We look forward to talking with you here and/or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. P.S. Thanks to the thousands of readers who have joined us on our backup site as we continued covering the news there this past week.
Two West Seattle Crime Watch reader reports. First, from Brooke:
(At mid-afternoon today) while a contractor was on break, someone stole the tools from his truck, and kicked in the door of the house he was working on and stole the tools from inside as well. The tools were taken from the 9000 block of 14th AVE SW. He is really distressed, and just called the police after much urging from several of us on the street and him being pessimistic that they could do anything. I was hoping we could be awesome neighbors and keep our eyes peeled to see if we can reunite him with his tools. If anyone sees anything or notices someone unloading or trying to sell a large number of tools, please call the police and tell them you think it might be related to this case.
And from Heather:
I am contacting you so you can remind our West Seattle community to be vigilant about checking their mail every day. I live at on the 6000 block of California Avenue near the Morgan Junction and a row of mailboxes was broken into last night.
We found out the hard way that a new credit card had been in the mailbox: At about 6:00 (Thursday) evening, the thieves went to a gas station and then tried to buy merchandise at Nordstrom’s. For once, the fact that the card was at its limit saved us because the transaction was denied. The only way we found out was an email from Amex apologizing for not being able to complete the purchase.
I strongly urge everyone to check the balances on debit and credit cards regularly for suspicious charges. Check your mailbox every day. And keep your eyes peeled for these criminals. Something as simple as stealing mail can cause quite the headache, financial and otherwise.
And a reminder – the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council resumes its monthly meetings next Tuesday, January 19th, 7 pm at the Southwest Precinct (2300 SW Webster). Along with local police, an insurance-industry expert will be there to talk about current trends in car break-ins and thefts, in hopes the information can help reduce your chances of becoming a victim.
By Randall Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
Guadalajara Mexican Restaurant is vacating its longtime Fauntleroy-area location (9214 45th Avenue SW) after this Sunday.
Jose Prieto and Maria Rodriguez say they were unable to negotiate an extension of their lease with property management, after nearly 13 years near the Fauntleroy ferry terminal, and were forced to seek alternatives for continuing operations. The husband-and-wife restaurant owners looked at Morgan Junction as a possibility, but ultimately decided paying a third more rent was more than their business could handle.
“It’s sad, you know,” says Prieto. “I have all my regulars. I even have people who come all the way from Lynnwood and Des Moines. It’s a really great neighborhood. We hurt, you know?”
Prieto says he has no idea what the current property owners have planned for the space, but is already working hard to reopen in a new Federal Way location as El Mariachi (29100 Pacific Highway S.).
Before they leave West Seattle, however, Prieto plans to say goodbye to the neighborhood by running Happy Hour specials all weekend long, offering buy-one-get-one-for-half-off entrée deals, and opening earlier than their normal 12 noon Sunday start time to accommodate those who want to watch the Seahawks-Panthers playoff game.
“Hopefully, we’ll clear out all our food and be out of here after Sunday,” says Prieto. “We’ll open up and start fresh down there. Our goal is to be open March 1st.”
Got something about Seattle Public Schools on your mind? Tomorrow is your first chance to join an informal community conversation with your new School Board rep for West Seattle and South Park, Leslie Harris. She’ll be at Southwest Library (35th/Henderson) 3-4:30 pm on Saturday – just drop in.
A new bakery and café is on the way to South Delridge – an expansion for Fresh Flours, which already has three locations, on Phinney Ridge and in Beacon Hill and Ballard. Fresh Flours proprietors Etsuko and Keiji happen to be West Seattle residents and are “so very excited” to be opening a location here in their neighborhood, at 9410 Delridge Way SW. Etsuko tells us via email that it’s more than another café:
We will bake all breakfast pastries such as croissants, danish, scones, muffin, macarons, and cookies, out of our Delridge kitchen to cater to other locations. Of course we will have an espresso bar – serving Stumptown coffee. The cafe will be small but there will be nice seating space. We are planning to do some landscape work to install outdoor seating after taking down an old house next to our bakery.
They expect to open the new Fresh Flours in the spring, possibly April, and Etsuko promises: “It is going to be fun!” If you’re not familiar with what they offer, take a look here.
10:32 AM: We mentioned the other day that the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) was scheduled to deploy from Bremerton today – and a texter sends word that it’s in view (or will be shortly) from West Seattle, rounding south Bainbridge Island as it comes out of Rich Passage. The Navy says the Stennis is headed for the Western Pacific.
11:54 AM: Added photos, courtesy of Greg Snyder – above, we had heard the Stennis would be flying a 12th Man flag, and indeed it did.
Seattle Public Utilities confirms there’s a water-line break in Fauntleroy. We checked with them after hearing from Danielle that she had lost water service near 44th and Barton and that water was in the street. SPU says a crew is making emergency repairs and they expect to have more information for us to add shortly.
10:21 AM: Our crew reports that 44th SW is closed south of Wildwood (Barton) while repairs are under way.
11:18 AM: From Ingrid Goodwin at SPU: “Water is off to about 28 homes to allow SPU crews to repair the broken 4-inch water main that runs ups 44th Ave SW to the dead end. Excavation has occurred and crews estimate that the repair will be done and water back on to customers by 3 pm today. The water was turned off about 9:45 am today.”
2:05 PM: SPU had hoped to get the repair finished earlier than expected, but then, Goodwin updates us: “Unfortunately, as crews were back filling the hole and preparing to leave the site, the water main sprung another leak. So crews are digging up the pipe again and have turned off the water. I will let you know when we expect to have the water back on, but it will likely be off through the remainder of the afternoon.”
3:05 PM: Update – SPU says they made the original 3 pm estimate after all.
6:23 AM: Good morning – we start another morning with no incidents reported in/from West Seattle so far.
WEEKEND REMINDER … If you drive Highway 99 north of downtown, WSDOT wants to be sure you know about this: “2 right lanes of SB SR 99/Aurora Ave N at Aurora Bridge closed 6:30 am-noon Sat. and Sun. for bridge inspection work.”
THEN STARTING MONDAY NIGHT … that’s when a month-plus of lane closures begin, also on Highway 99 north of downtown, but both ways – details here.
ALSO ON MONDAY: Transit changes for the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day holiday include a “reduced weekday” schedule for Metro buses and no service for the West Seattle and Vashon Water Taxi routes. (And remember that school’s out on Monday.)
NIGHTTIME ROAD CLOSURE REMINDER: Nightly work on SW Alaska between 40th and Fauntleroy is scheduled to continue into next week.
7:05 AM: Megan tweets that her RapidRide C Line bus is stuck on the eastbound bridge, in the bus lane.
9:14 AM: Texter says there’s a crash at West Marginal Way S. and Holden/599. The SFD response is closed, though.
9:20 AM: WSDOT says it’s blocking the two right northbound lanes.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Tending a community garden requires more than planting, weeding, harvesting.
This week, members of the Barton P-Patch community gathered to talk about problems and solutions.
The meeting was mediated by neighborhood district coordinator Kerry Wade of the city Department of Neighborhoods, which runs the P-Patch Community Garden Program and worked with local gardeners to turn this site from dream to reality four-plus years ago. It’s full of special touches, not the least of which is its community pizza oven, which has been at the heart of neighborhood events.