West Seattle, Washington
And now, in the final minutes of 2016, the one lookback we publish every year … the 10 most-commented-on WSB stories of the year. Like last year, this year it’s a Top 11 list because of a tie along the way:
#10 – LINCOLN PARK GEESE RELOCATED TO VASHON
September 9th – 122 comments
#9 – ILLEGAL TREE-CUTTING FOLLOWUP
March 30th – 123 comments
#8 – THE CITY’S HALA-AND-MORE OPEN HOUSE
December 7th – 128 comments
#7 – POLICE RELEASE DASH-CAM VIDEO FROM PURSUIT THAT PRECEDED DEADLY CRASH
April 7th – 136 comments
#6 (tie) – LAWSUITS FILED IN ILLEGAL TREE-CUTTING
September 20th – 145 comments
#6 (tie) – ‘RV SAFE LOT’ PLANNED AT EX-ENCAMPMENT SITE
January 19th – 145 comments
#5 – OUTRAGE OVER ILLEGAL TREE-CUTTING
March 26th – 152 comments
#4 – WSB’S FIRST TECHNICAL OVERHAUL IN 10 YEARS
January 15th – 154 comments
#3 – CITY COUNCIL’S PROPOSED ENCAMPMENT RULES FOR PUBLIC PROPERTY
October 7th – 214 comments
#2 – WSHS STUDENTS’ POST-ELECTION WALKOUT
November 9th – 216 comments
#1 – TREE-CUTTING INVESTIGATION FOLLOWUP
March 28th – 269 comments
West Seattle’s New Year’s Eve celebrating started early at Highland Park Improvement Club, with one of the biggest Not-So-Silent-Night Parades we can recall in the 8 years HPIC’s been organizing them. Around quarter past 6, ~80 people of all ages headed out of the historic HPIC building, with drums and horns and homemade noisemakers and even a Christmas-lights-decked trombone.
The parade headed east toward the nearby flashing-beacon-enhanced crosswalk on SW Holden, and onto neighborhood streets to the south.
The weather cooperated – chilly but not too cold, very light mist, wet ground but not icy. And after about half an hour of walking, noisemaking, and occasionally shouting “HAPPY NEW YEAR!”, paraders headed back toward HPIC:
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) January 1, 2017
Inside, the New Year’s Eve edition of HPIC’s Corner Bar (which is otherwise a pop-up on the 1st Friday of each month) was already getting started, with lights, drinks, snacks, and activities for the younger partiers:
DJs Dr. Lehl and Evan were in the “costume party” theme spirit:
Their sets were to be interspersed through the evening with McTuff. Still time to head to HPIC and join them for the rest of the night – party’s on until 1 am.
After two texts about a big police response at Jefferson Square, we headed over to check it out. What we know so far is that they have recovered a stolen car after a 911 call about suspicious activity involving the car. One person is in custody.
The challenges of getting to, from, and around our peninsula make transportation a hot topic just about any time. So here’s our view of the top 10 transportation stories, for another 2016 lookback:
#10 – UNDER-THE-BRIDGE PROJECT WINS NEIGHBORHOOD STREET FUND
(May 2016 photo contributed by Chris, showing one traffic-choked morning at south section of the project zone)
In October, West Seattle Bike Connections found out that its proposal for the Harbor/Avalon/Manning/Spokane intersection, basically under the west end of the West Seattle Bridge, would be funded. This will help with safety and flow at an increasingly busy confluence of paths, roads, and bridge on-/off-ramps.
#9 – FAUNTLEROY EXPRESSWAY CUSHIONS RE-REPLACED
(WSB photo, June 2016)
674 quake-safety cushions under the deck of the Fauntleroy Expressway (southwest end of the West Seattle Bridge) had to be re-replaced because of a design flaw. The work started in May and, despite requiring more than a few bridge closures, proceeded fairly painlessly, traffic-wise, over the ensuing two months.
#8 – WASHINGTON STATE FERRIES VOWS TO FIX FAUNTLEROY-VASHON-SOUTHWORTH
After a summer of problems that made things miserable for many trying to get to and from Vashon – and for Morgan Junction/Fauntleroy drivers/riders trying to get around the traffic – WSF launched a process to gather comments and make an action plan, including an October open house. Next step, launching a task force – including ferry users.
#7 – ADMIRAL WAY RECHANNELIZATION
A year and a half after announcing a controversial plan to rechannelize Admiral Way between The Admiral District and Alki, SDOT finalized it, announced it in summer, and restriped the road in fall.
#6 – DOC MAYNARD BECOMES WEST SEATTLE’S WATER TAXI
What began with an Argosy Cruises vessel in the ’90s finally got its own brand-new vessel in 2016, as M/V Doc Maynard officially took over King County’s West Seattle to Downtown Seattle run in January (four months after its dedication).
This could start sticking soon. pic.twitter.com/tRCczhvcjI
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) December 31, 2016
(A few seconds of snowfall during one of the heavier showers)
12:37 PM: The newest forecast from the National Weather Service says, “A SLIGHT CHANCE OF RAIN AND SNOW IN THE AFTERNOON. SNOW LEVEL NEAR 500 FEET.” We’re at about 350′, uphill from and east of Lincoln Park, and seeing a snow shower for the past 10 minutes or so. How about you?
1:20 PM: Seems to be lightening up, at least here. Hasn’t yet reached the point of sticking, not even on car tops.
1:30 PM: Hasn’t stopped yet. Gets lighter, gets heavier, gets lighter. By the way, here’s Cliff Mass‘s most-recent update – in short, he says it’s still hard to predict exactly how this is going to play out over the next 12 hours or so.
2:13 PM: Minutes ago, the National Weather Service added our area to the Winter Weather Advisory alert for tonight and tomorrow morning – it’ll be in effect 10 pm until 10 am. “Up to 2 inches [of snow] with locally higher amounts possible,” says the NWS.
4:56 PM: As night arrives, it’s NOT snowing. So far. But wear (or take along) shoes/boots with traction, in case that changes later.
We told you earlier this month about West Seattle Girl Scout Alina Guyon‘s Gold Award project to build a library in a Ugandan refugee camp. She asked for donations, and the community responded! She sent this update:
A big Thank You to VAIN hair salon and the West Seattle community for bringing in over 1000 books! The books are all in amazing condition and will help make the library very diverse in topics. The refugees in the camp will be so thrilled to see what was donated. If you didn’t already donate books, the book drive will continue for a few more days at VAIN in the West Seattle Junction!
VAIN (WSB sponsor) is at 4513 California SW.
Happy last day of 2016!
RESTAURANTS OPEN TODAY/TONIGHT: Here’s the list of those that confirmed to us they’re open New Year’s Eve and/or New Year’s Day. Restaurants that aren’t listed either are closed for both or didn’t answer our inquiries. It’s not too late for changes or additions – via text (206-293-6302) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) – thanks!
CELEBRATIONS TONIGHT: See the New Year’s Eve/Day section atop the WSB West Seattle Holiday Guide for details on where and how you can celebrate – including two places with earlybird celebrations as 2017 arrives in East Coast time!
JUNCTION PARKING: Reminder that if you are celebrating in The Junction tonight, the four parking lots that are usually free for three hours of shopping/dining will suspend that limit between 7 pm tonight and 10 am tomorrow.
SPACE NEEDLE FIREWORKS: If you’re out at midnight, remember that parks and overlooks facing north are usually filled by then with people seeking a view of the Space Needle fireworks show. If you want to watch too, don’t wait until the last minute to find a spot.
WEATHER WATCH: The National Weather Service still has an alert up, warning of possible snow overnight – not expected, so far, to be major, but we’ll be watching closely for forecast updates throughout the day and night. Even if we don’t see snow, it will be cold, so don’t go out without a coat!
LAST NIGHT FOR WEST SEATTLE LIGHTS: The lights-and-music show at 3908 SW Charlestown is scheduled for 5-midnight tonight, and then it’s off until next holiday season. Bring a donation for the West Seattle Food Bank.