West Seattle, Washington
Just in time for the peak of swimsuit season, the namesake proprietor of Heidi Fish Swimwear has moved her business to a storefront on California Avenue SW, after 17 years in what she describes as a “very hidden” location in The Junction. Her new boutique at 4141 California SW is open 11 am-5 pm Tuesday through Saturday, or, she says, you can call 206-938-9928 to make an appointment for a custom fitting.
Heidi Fish Swimwear has been featured nine times in Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit edition and carries its own line of swimwear and resort wear, including women’s, men’s, and children’s apparel: “Retro, and one-of-a-kinds; so many different styles,” she says.
P.S. You’re invited to a special Ladies’ Happy Hour event coming up later this month at Heidi Fish Swimwear, 1-4 pm on Sunday, June 25th, including gift certificates and prizes.
That’s the new Snack Shack for West Seattle Baseball, and you’re invited to the Pee-Wee Fields at Riverview Playfield this Saturday to celebrate it, and to watch championship games. We heard about this from Megan Varner, a WS Baseball board member who has run the Snack Shack for the past three years. She explains, “We finally got a new Snack Shack after 15+ years, through large donations and fundraising!” They’re still adding the finishing touches – “literally … down to the final minute” to get ready for Saturday: “A lot of local sponsors donated time and work to pull this off. Great community effort.”
The “grand reopening” will start around 11 am Saturday, with a ribboncutting planned at 11:45 am, followed by the Pinto and Mustang season championship games starting at 1 pm. Megan says, “It will be a day filled with food, games, and baseball!”
P.S. Megan says special thanks goes to: “Eric Moe of JEM Contractors and Mark Hubbard of Grindline Skate Parks did all concrete work. Big thanks to O’Neill Plumbing for their help, and our many sponsors this season, as well as several WS families who went above and beyond to support this effort.”
Until 8 pm, you can go check out the newest addition to the West Seattle Art Walk – the Makers’ Market, set up in Junction Plaza Park. Participating makers include Mari from Moss and Branch, one of your West Seattle neighbors:
With sweet treats, here’s Andrea from Dolcetta, also a West Seattleite:
Emily from Panacea and Ceres, with watercolor on a 19th century print:
The park is at 42nd SW and SW Alaska.
As mentioned in our West Seattle Thursday highlights this morning, Highland Park Elementary School‘s playground project has a dine-out fundraiser continuing this evening at Zippy’s Giant Burgers in White Center (open until 9 at 9614 14th SW). We recently asked the HPE PTA how the project is going, since the city mentioned some grant money had been awarded. Here’s the update from PTA vice president Connie Wolf:
After three years of work on our playground project, we are ready to break through the asphalt. Construction drawings from the Pomegranate Center along with funding from the Neighborhood Matching Fund’s Community Partnership Fund and King County Youth Sports Facilities Grant have us set to build Phase 1 of our new playground.
This phase will include installation of a net climber, hill slides, a boulder scramble, an ADA ramp, and a new welcoming community entryway. Two key principles of the design are a natural landscape that encourages imaginative play for our children and a welcoming place for our school and neighborhood.
In order to ensure the funds on hand will cover all of the construction work, we had to pull certain elements out of our base bid. Gateway artwork, landscaping, and a seat wall are pieces of this phase that we are currently fundraising for.
Phase 1 should be completed this fall, and then we will begin working toward the second half of the project which will include more play equipment: a tree deck, log steps, and boulder stacks.
You can support the HPE playground project by participating in our dine outs (thank you Proletariat Pizza, Zippy’s Giant Burgers, Chipotle, and Mioposto), attending our fall playground celebration (currently being planned), and volunteering in our work parties (more info on that to come).
Thank you to everyone who has helped to create this incredible play space for our children.
Just in from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office: 43-year-old Aaron Rillera is charged with second-degree murder for allegedly beating 24-year-old Dillon Graham to death with a baseball bat. It happened Monday afternoon at an encampment on the slope between Highway 509 and Myers Way. We first reported on the investigation that afternoon, on Rillera’s arrest the next day; Graham was identified yesterday.
Court documents filed along with today’s charging papers say witnesses told police it started when a woman came to one of four encampments on the slope claiming that the victim was trying to rob another woman. The first person she approached didn’t want to get involved; he said the two women came to his encampment later and said “AJ” – later identified as Rillera – had “taken care of” Graham by hitting him. Police found Rillera and two women – one of whom was the alleged robbery target – near his encampment, described as a “large, fort-like camp” and took all three in for questioning. They also later questioned the first woman who had been seeking help. The woman that the victim allegedly was trying to rob said he had hit her and pushed her to the ground. She said she didn’t know the other woman had gone for help, but that Rillera and another man showed up with bats, and she said she didn’t see what happened because she turned away. Graham was described as an occasional visitor to the encampment, not a resident. Rillera remains jailed in lieu of $1 million bail and is expected in court to answer the charge on June 22nd.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
If all goes well, the Highway 99 tunnel will open in January 2019 – after three weeks with no Alaskan Way Viaduct, and no tunnel.
That’s what Joe Hedges, the West Seattle resident who currently runs the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program for WSDOT, told the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce at its monthly lunch meeting today.
His presentation was introduced by Pete Spalding, the Chamber’s government-affairs committee chair, who also has long served as a member of the Viaduct/Tunnel project working group advisory committee.
Hedges called it a “wonderful treat” to be able to “come home” for the presentation. He’s been running the project for more than a year.
The “most important lesson learned” – “This Viaduct Replacement Program is a couple decades old, and the contribution to it involves a couple thousand people … what’s important is that (all that) is going to transform Seattle for the next couple centuries.”
He didn’t bring a slide deck, saying he just wanted to “catch you up, tell you where we’re at, where we’re going.” Right now: “Out of 32 projects that comprise the program, and $3.4 billion, we’re about 85 percent complete …” Read More
If a proposed development project is going to have any public meeting at all, Design Review is the only city process that allows for one – and not all projects qualify.
Now the city is proposing big changes to the process, and they’re out today. First, the official announcement from the Department of Construction and Inspections, followed by some highlights from our review of a key summary:
Our proposed amendments to the Land Use Code are intended to improve the overall function of the program to enhance the efficiency and predictability of the project review process, improve dialogue amongst applicants, and make the program more transparent and accessible to the community.
The Mayor’s Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda recommended changes to the Design Review program to streamline process and reduce the cost of building housing. In addition, program changes focus on development projects most likely to influence the character of a neighborhood and incorporate many of the recommendations from the report we released in March 2016.
Key proposals in the legislation include:
*Simplify and raise the thresholds for projects subject to design review, switching from a variety of thresholds based on use, residential units, and zoning to simple square footage thresholds that respond to the complexity of a site and type of project.
*Create a new “hybrid” process that allows one phase of design review to be handled administratively and the remainder by the design review board.
*Affordable housing proposals have the option of an entirely administrative review process.
*Require that all applicants for projects going through design review conduct outreach to the communities near their projects before they begin design review.
The legislation would also modify the composition of design review boards, modify the review process for exceptional trees in Title 25, and update and clarify other provisions related to design review.
We anticipate making final recommendations to the Mayor later in 2017. An environmental decision (SEPA) on the draft legislation is also available. This decision is subject to a comment and appeal period that runs until June 29. Please submit comments on the proposal and the environmental decision to:
City of Seattle, Seattle DCI
Attn: William Mills
P.O. Box 94788
Seattle, WA 98124-7088
The documents specific to the proposed changes are linked here.
If you just want to get right to the changes – go to this document and start on page 5.
Most notably, this means many projects that do qualify for Design Review would get fewer public meetings – in a new “hybrid” process, the Early Design Guidance phase would be handled by city staff, and then the board would have a public meeting for the Recommendations phase, at least one, no more than two.
A new requirement for early community outreach – something some developers have engaged in voluntarily – is detailed starting on page 10.
Starting on page 15, the report describes how the changes would affect the volume of projects going through Design Review. Fewer than half the projects that go through full Design Review today would do so under the new proposals.
The full proposed ordinance – City Council approval is required – is here.
(Displays from recent Avalon project “open house,” starting with the current proposed alternatives for lane reconfiguration)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
With two days left to answer the SDOT survey about rechannelizing SW Avalon Way when it’s repaved in ~2019, local merchants and bicycling advocates are backing an alternative route for new bike lanes
– one that’s not currently part of SDOT’s proposals.
That was the major agenda item at last night’s Southwest District Council meeting.
AVALON RECHANNELIZATION: John Bennett and Angela Cough from the Luna Park Merchants Association first recapped the back story – as reported here two weeks ago – of being surprised to find out that what was announced as repaving was also going to include rechannelization.
SDOT contacted merchants to ask for a meeting at which they learned “they’re redesigning the whole street .. their plan was to take away a big chunk of parking on (the east side of) Avalon Way, which merchants rely on for customers.” Five years earlier, they had lost parking in the morning (for the 6-10 am bus lane). Now, 25 to 28 parking spots further south would be lost permanently. Cough, who owns Shack Coffee, explained that they’re also concerned about losing the center turn lane, which area businesses need for everything from deliveries to tows (Alki Auto Repair). The center turn lane also assists pedestrians, Cough pointed out, since there is no crosswalk in the area (the city removed one by her shop, then Java Bean, 10 years ago), and the rechannelization/repaving project so far doesn’t include one. And it’s used by Seattle Fire vehicles and other emergency personnel when there are incidents. Read More
Before we get to what’s up for today/tonight – anybody able to ID that chipmunk? Mark says it has “taken up residence in our yard on Gatewood Hill. Over the 32 years we have lived in our house we’ve never seen a chipmunk in the neighborhood, and I’m not at all sure they are all that common in our part of town. I’ve seen plenty over the years in the foothills and higher peaks of the Cascades and Olympics, but not in our suburban environment.”
Now – to calendar highlights.
DINE OUT FOR HIGHLAND PARK ELEMENTARY PLAYGROUND: 15 percent of proceeds today/tonight at Zippy’s Giant Burgers in White Center (open until 9 pm) will support the Highland Park Elementary playground project – watch for an update on the project here later today! (9614 14th SW)
DRAWING & WINE AT LOG HOUSE MUSEUM: 4-6 pm on second Thursdays, stop by the Log House Museum and sip wine while drawing – perhaps inspired by the courtyard garden. Free, but donations welcome. (61st SW/SW Stevens)
WEST SEATTLE ART WALK, FEATURING MAKERS MARKET: Another new addition for tonight’s WS Art Walk – a Makers’ Market in Junction Plaza Park! It starts at 5 pm in the park at 42nd SW/SW Alaska. Info’s in this month’s Art Walk roundup, which also has highlights from some of the regular stops on the map:
At Click! Design That Fits (WSB sponsor), you’ll find Fritz Rud and his unique work:
As explained on the Click! blog, “West Seattle local Fritz Rud pairs salvaged vintage equipment with his own custom woodworking to create sculptural objects for listening to music on your phone.” (4540 California SW)
Remember that the Art Walk now includes supporting food and drink specials at some venues – that includes Viscon Cellars (WSB sponsor), where there’s no tasting fee on Art Walk night. Viscon’s newest releases are available for tasting and purchase, and you can meet artist Lindsay Peyton. (5910 California SW)
OPEN HOUSE AT ‘THE BUILDING’: 6-9 pm, this Gatewood building full of art and artists welcomes you to stop by tonight for its “Spring Into Summer Open House.” (4316 SW Othello)
AND THERE’S MORE … on our complete calendar.
6:58 AM: Good morning! The rain is the big factor in your commute today. No incidents reported so far in West Seattle or headed outbound from here.
1ST AVENUE SOUTH BRIDGE ALERT: For this coming Saturday morning, an alert from WSDOT:
Drivers heading into Seattle via northbound State Route 99 should plan for delays on Saturday morning, June 10.
Washington State Department of Transportation bridge maintenance crews will close the two right lanes of northbound SR 99 on the 1st Avenue South Bridge from 5:30 to 11:30 a.m. for bridge deck repair work.
7:11 AM: Just tweeted/texted by Metro:
Transit Alert – Route 56 to downtown Seattle due to leave 61st Av SW & Alki Av SW at 7:36 AM will not operate this morning.
— King County Metro (@kcmetrobus) June 8, 2017
8:11 AM: Still no incidents but local traffic-watchers report it’s slow everywhere.
8:46 AM: Police and one SFD engine are headed to a two-vehicle crash reported at 16th SW and SW Cloverdale.
8:50 AM: The crash is reported to be blocking 16th southbound.
9:24 AM: One more transit note texted and tweeted by Metro (this route goes through White Center and Olson/Myers among other area stops):
Transit Alert – The last Rt 113 to downtown Seattle due to leave Shorewood at 8:12 AM is operating over 50 minutes late this morning.
— King County Metro (@kcmetrobus) June 8, 2017