West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Next Wednesday afternoon, the full city Landmarks Preservation Board will formally consider the Alki Homestead‘s restoration plans. As a prelude, Homestead owner Dennis Schilling and his architect Jeff Hamlett spoke this morning with the board’s Architectural Review Committee – almost exactly one year after we first reported that Schilling was the historic Fir Lodge‘s new owner, and more than seven years after the fire that ravaged and closed what had been a beloved restaurant.
What is before the board now isn’t the full site plan, which is eventually expected to include apartments to the south of the city landmark. But because much of the Homestead is protected, changes and repairs have to get approval from the board as well as from city staff.
The committee meetings are open to the public but informal, so this morning’s session was a discussion more than a presentation. And this stage of the review generally follows months of discussions between building owners and city staffers:
6:41 PM FRIDAY: It’s early – but the National Weather Service wants you to know there’s a chance of a windstorm Sunday afternoon through late Sunday night, possibly bringing southerly winds 20 to 40 mph and gusts up to 60, so it has issued a “High Wind Watch” (read it here). We’ll update through the weekend, as usual.
6:51 AM SATURDAY: The High Wind Watch is officially in effect noon Sunday-5 am Monday, as of the most-recent update (see it here).
2:13 PM SATURDAY: Now the alert is up to a ‘high wind warning,’ noon-11 pm Sunday, gusts up to 70 mph.
5:30 PM: Thanks for the tips – we’ve just checked out the incident that has eastbound Barton blocked across from central Westwood Village, west of 26th SW. Emergency responders tell us a female pedestrian was hit while crossing there. She’s being taken to the hospital by private ambulance, indicating her injuries are not life-threatening.
5:44 PM: Our crew tells us police and fire have all cleared the scene and the road is open again. Community advocates have long lobbied for safety improvements there, and SDOT indicated at a recent meeting that some are finally in the works.
That’s a quick Instagram-video spin (mouse over the image to bring up the “play” button) around the treacherous intersection of 30th/Avalon/Yancy/Andover. Busy road, many residents, south edge of the Luna Park business district, RapidRide stop steps away … dangerous whether you’re on wheels or on foot. It’s been a concern for many years – and now improvements are on the way. This came in from project manager Brian Glas at SDOT this afternoon:
Starting as soon as late March, crews working for the Seattle Department of Transportation will add a curb extension, curb ramps, a striped crosswalk, and a flashing crossing beacon at the intersections of SW Avalon Way, SW Andover St, SW Yancy St, and 30th Ave SW.
As I’m sure you know, this junction of intersections does not have a marked crosswalk across the SW Avalon Way arterial. Also, the current sidewalks do not have curb ramps that are compliant with current Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards, making access difficult for people with assistive devices (such as wheelchairs, walkers, or strollers). Please see the map in the attached project fact sheet for more details about the planned improvements.
The contractor has not yet finalized the construction schedule, but we wanted to give you and your readers a heads up of some general construction impacts. Crews will need to temporarily close SW Andover, SW Yancy St, and 30th Ave SW at SW Avalon Way as they build the improvements. They plan to close these side streets on a rotating schedule, to minimize impacts. There will also be intermittent single lane restrictions on SW Avalon Way while crews are working. During these lane restrictions, a flagger will be present to maintain two-way traffic. As of now, we expect King County Metro routes will not be impacted. We anticipate construction will last approximately 6 weeks, though the paving work is very weather dependent. As we know more about the traffic impacts during construction, we will distribute construction notices door-to-door in the project area and to the project email list.
This project is part of the Pedestrian Master Plan, which aims to enhance pedestrian safety, comfort, and access in all of Seattle’s neighborhoods. This project is also part of the Neighborhood Street Fund Program and was one of three projects the Delridge District Council submitted in 2015.
We also plan to send out project listserv email updates throughout construction. People can sign up to receive updates here.
Note that this does *not* include a signal, though one was decreed as “warranted” back in 2011 – before the signal was added at Genesee/Avalon nearby.
Three incidents in West Seattle Crime Watch so far today:
BUSINESS BREAK-IN: Pharmaca in The Junction opened late today because of a burglary. Damage was visible to the shop’s door on the SW Alaska side of the drugstore the first time we went by at mid-morning after a tip; we went by again, and someone fixing the door said the shop would open as soon as the repairs are done. No other details about the burglary yet.
CAR PROWL: Joe in Arbor Heights reports his car was gone through overnight in the 9800 block of 32nd SW. Charging cables were taken.
BICYCLE STOLEN: Kim is asking that you be on the lookout for this bicycle stolen from a backyard patio around 9 pm last night in the 8400 block of 8th SW: “Voodoo titanium cyclocross bike. Serial number b115420.” If you have any info, in addition to calling police, you can contact Kim at email@example.com
We hope crime doesn’t happen to you. If it does, once you’ve reported it (911 if it’s in-progress or just happened), let us know so we can get the word out via Crime Watch – firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-293-6302 text or voice – thank you.
(ADDED FRIDAY NIGHT: Newly published Port of Seattle video that, toward the end, shows one of these tests)
12:54 PM: We’ve just confirmed with the Port of Seattle that what rattled windows from Admiral to Pigeon Point a little while ago was another one of those rapid-load pile tests related to the planned Terminal 5 modernization project. Port spokesperson Peter McGraw says the test scheduled for yesterday – second one this week – was postponed until today because of the wind. Judging by the messages/questions we received, this one was apparently the most widely felt one yet. Here’s the original alert from December.
P.S. The next major step in the T-5 project, after this testing ends later this month, is the release of the draft Environmental Impact Statement, expected in May.
ADDED 1:32 PM: McGraw just sent word that two more tests are scheduled, Monday (~3 pm) and Wednesday (~noon).
ADDED 8:06 PM: The Port has just published a video explaining how the tests work, and showing one – we’ve added the video above.
11:41 AM: Two crashes of note this morning:
WESTWOOD STAPLES: Thanks to Andy for the photo taken right after a driver hit the Westwood Village Staples about 9:15 am. We missed it in real time, having been downtown covering a meeting about the Alki Homestead (story to come); by the time we checked on the scene an hour later, the only sign of it was this damage to tiles on the store’s facade:
We’re checking with Seattle Fire about the driver’s condition when transported; staff inside the store tells us everybody there is OK.
1:19 PM UPDATE: SFD spokesperson Corey Orvold tells us the driver in the Staples crash is 92 years old and was taken to the hospital via private ambulance with minor injuries.
(back to original report) HIT-RUN SOUTH OF THE JUNCTION: The owner of this car says it was hit between midnight and 4 am, on the west side of California SW by Rite-Aid:
Please contact SPD if you have any information about what happened. And yes, the victim is checking with nearby businesses to see if any surveillance cameras caught the crash.
We’ve just received a couple questions about a loud takeoff from Boeing Field within the past half-hour. According to flight trackers, it’s the military tanker-jet testing we first wrote about three months ago. (Hat tip, @civmilair.)
(Steller’s Jay, photographed by Mark Wangerin)
Happy Friday! From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: 5:30-10 pm, leave the kid(s) for a fun night, and have one of your own. Last call to sign up for the Parents’ Night Out planned for tonight by West Seattle High School senior Gabby Carufel, as part of her project to raise money to buy audiobooks for learning-disabled schoolmates. More info here. (3000 California SW)
ARBOR HEIGHTS ELEMENTARY DINNER/AUCTION: 5:30 pm at The Hall at Fauntleroy, it’s the biggest benefit of the year, to help AHES students. Everyone’s welcome – check here for ticket availability. (9131 California SW)
PANAMA HOTEL JAZZ, BENEFITING WEST SEATTLE HELPLINE: Another one-of-a-kind concert at Alki UCC, benefiting West Seattle Helpline, 7:30 pm – ““music made from memories,” a combination of stories about the Japanese internment during WWII and original jazz compositions by Steve Griggs. More info here. (6115 SW Hinds)
Beethoven: Overture to Egmont
Mahler: Four songs from die Ruckert-Leider featuring Evan Norberg, Baritone
– Ich atmet’ einen linden Duft
– Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen
– Liebst du um Schönheit
– Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder!
Saint-Saëns: Danse Macabre
Khachaturian: Masquerade Suite
Say hello to the musicians at the reception over cookies and snacks after the concert!
In the CSIHS Auditorium. (2600 SW Thistle)
MORE, MORE, MORE … on our complete calendar (where you can preview the weekend, too).
Holy Rosary School will have a new principal for next school year – and she’s already a Holy Rosary parent. The school has just announced Anna Horton as its next leader:
Holy Rosary School is pleased to announce the appointment of Anna Horton to the position of principal, effective July 1, 2016. Ms. Horton succeeds Mr. George Hofbauer, who will retire in June after serving with distinction as teacher and principal for 45 years in the Archdiocese of Seattle.
After an extensive search both locally and nationally, Ms. Horton was the unanimous choice of the Principal Search Team. She brings many gifts and talents to the Holy Rosary School community. Her background in science education will help her integrate STEM into all areas of the school.
The announcement continues:
(SCROLL DOWN for weather updates as well as traffic)
(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)
6:35 AM: Good morning! No incidents on the routes through or from West Seattle so far.
DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME REMINDER: Saturday night/Sunday morning at 2 am, we “spring forward” an hour.
6:38 AM: Trouble on the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth ferry route, just tweeted by Washington State Ferries:
The 6:40am departure from Vashon to Fauntleroy is cancelled due to a shortage of Coast Guard documented crew. Replacements are being dispatched. This will also cancel the 7:05 am departure from Fauntleroy to Vashon. The next departure from Fauntleroy to Vashon is 6:50 am. We apologize for the inconvenience. Updates will occur when more information is available.
6:48 AM: Thanks to Thomas for e-mailing about a small power outage – 15 customers (homes) in Seaview, surrounding 45th/46th/Graham. No signals on that stretch, so it shouldn’t affect traffic. He reports hearing a distant boom just before it started.
7:06 AM: Update from WSF: “The Fauntleroy/Vashon/Southworth route will return to full service with the 7:30am departure from Vashon to Southworth.”
7:14 AM: The backup will take a while to clear – via Twitter, @SudsyMaggie says, “Line is 2+ miles long on Vashon! Past the fire station and around the corner.”
7:58 AM: We’re headed downtown for a City Hall meeting this morning and can report the bridge is moving relatively well – we’re just off it at 4th Avenue South, barely 15 minutes after leaving Upper Fauntleroy. (Updating from the passenger seat, of course.)
8:01 AM: Traffic alert downtown for tomorrow, with a local angle: The St. Patrick’s Day Parade goes down 4th Avenue at 12:30 pm, and three local schools have marching bands in it, according to the running order: Denny International Middle School, West Seattle High School, and Chief Sealth International High School.