West Seattle, Washington
Two site notes:
MAINTENANCE DOWNTIME: Our server-management company tells us we’ll be down for a while at some point at/after 11 pm tonight, while they do some semi-urgent maintenance for multiple customers including us. Could be anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 hours. If there’s breaking news and we’re down, we’ll report it in the WSB social media channels.
COMMENTING GLITCH FIXED: Some who use one of our mobile modes have had trouble commenting – it even happened to us: If you tapped the comment window, the keyboard wouldn’t come up unless you hit a formatting key first (bold, yellow highlight, italic, etc.). This has now been fixed. Thanks again to the people who reported this – glitches don’t always affect everyone, because of the differences between the way browsers, operating systems, devices interact, so we don’t always know about problems until they’re reported (firstname.lastname@example.org).
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Consider last Monday: She read two poems at the inauguration ceremony for four citywide elected officials, including West Seattle-residing City Councilmember Lorena González (click the image to see and hear via YouTube):
That same day, she started her fourth year working at Denny International Middle School, teaching poetry to Spanish-immersion students, a four-week series in conjunction with the Jack Straw Cultural Center, where the students will record their poems at the end of the series. Some will be set to music this year, with the help of a guitarist.
The next day – this past Tuesday – she was at Seattle University, teaching a composition class.
Next Wednesday (January 20th), she’ll be at Elliott Bay Book Company, for a reading from her new book “Killing Marias: A Poem for Multiple Voices,” with a classical guitarist who has set eight of her poems to music: “I was floored by what she did – it’s incredible.”
But of all the events on her busy schedule, the biggest will be at 7 pm January 31st, when she officially becomes our state’s new Poet Laureate, succeeding Tod Marshall (who himself followed West Seattleite Elizabeth Austen), in a “passing of the laurels” ceremony during a reading event at the Central Library downtown.
This comes close behind the conclusion of her term as Seattle’s first Civic Poet.
For much of the rest of the week, 45th Avenue SW by Madison Middle School – between SW Hinds and SW Spokane – will be closed to all vehicle traffic but school buses. Seattle Public Utilities says it’s a sewer-repair project, and should be complete by the end of the week. They’ve distributed flyers along the street and talked with the school, but just in case you’re a 45th user who is outside that notification scope, this is an FYI. (Thanks to the person who tipped us to this!)
4:57 PM: A texter told us about a “smell of smoke” at Westwood Village Barnes and Noble just as SFD was dispatching four units that way. They’ve arrived and so far have NOT found a fire but are checking it out as an electrical problem, so they’re calling for City Light (whose map shows some power trouble in the area).
5:16 PM: SFD cited a “widespread” electrical problem, which we’re also hearing about from some in the area, so we’re headed to WWV shortly to check.
5:43 PM: Just spun around WWV. B&N was the only store clearly dark & closed.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
After the first two RapidRide H Line options for Delridge Way SW failed to generate “a lot of enthusiasm,” as SDOT spokesperson Dawn Schellenberg puts it, there’s now a third one on the table. And even if you don’t ride the bus, it will change the road – so you’ll want to take a close look.
“Option 3” (embedded above, and in PDF here) will be in the spotlight at the next RapidRide H Line drop-in info/input event – 5-6:30 pm this Wednesday at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, to be followed by a 7 pm Delridge Neighborhoods District Council discussion of the H Line. You might even have previewed it at one of the H Line open houses in Burien and White Center last week.
We obtained more information via a briefing with SDOT and Metro reps downtown. SDOT is much more closely involved in planning the RapidRide conversion of Route 120 than it was in planning the 2012 conversion of Routes 54/55 into the C Line, for reasons including the money that city taxpayers now pay for more bus service.
Along with Schellenberg, the meeting included SDOT project manager Thérèse Casper, Metro outreach specialist Jenna Franklin, and SDOT communicator Karen Westing.
Before we go through the details, note that this is not necessarily anything resembling a final design. So they want to know what you think. But it is about more than where the bus will stop – it’s about “redesigning” much of Delridge, and it incorporates some other projects that have been discussed in past years. Even before the H Line was announced and named, in fact, some changes were discussed a few years ago under the Delridge Multi-Modal Corridor project umbrella.
“It’s an opportunity to put those pieces together,” Schellenberg said.
The “pieces” potentially include:
One week after we showed you the long-awaited start of demolition at the former West Seattle PCC Community Markets (WSB sponsor) site – which will become the Luna Apartments/new PCC mixed-use development – we have updates. A spokesperson for site owner/developer Madison Development Group sent an official announcement this morning that the project is under way. It included this new information:
-The 25,000-square-foot store and 108 apartments are expected to open “by late summer 2019”
-The apartments will be a “mix of studio and one-bedroom” units, that will “include 27 apartments available at affordable rates between 50 to 80 percent of area median income under the City of Seattle’s Multifamily Property Tax Exemption program”
This is Madison’s third West Seattle project, after Spruce in The Junction and Element 42 in Admiral. (Both of those projects were initiated by other developers, then stalled, and were taken over and built by Madison. Luna/PCC has been a Madison project from the start; MDG bought the site two and a half years ago.)
Two reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch so far today, and a reminder:
CAR BREAK-IN: From Steve:
We had our car prowled overnight, sometime between 11 pm and 9 am. We are on 37th Ave SW between Lander and Stevens [map]. Registration and Title, Insurance, car chargers, special parking permit and shopping bags were taken. The car was completely cleaned out. The registration (etc.) was in a bright-orange vinyl folder.
The tracking number for the incident is T18000652.
(ADDED 1:12 PM) After reading this, Todd e-mailed to say his car window was broken by someone last night just a block west, on 38th SW.
BICYCLE FOUND: A texter found a bicycle at 12th SW and SW Myrtle [map] – near Riverview Playfield – and turned it over to a Parks and Recreation crew that was nearby. The finder didn’t take a photo but described it as a black or gray Trek “commuter bike” that had been purchased at Gregg’s. (The general Parks number is 206-684-4075.)
REMINDER – WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL TOMORROW: 7 pm Tuesday (January 16th) at the Southwest Precinct, it’s the next meeting of the WS Crime Prevention Council, with your chance to bring neighborhood crime/safety concerns to local police. A drug-trend guest is booked this month too.
8:06 AM: Seattle Fire has a “full response” just arriving in the 4000 block of 39th SW [map] for a possible house fire.
8:12 AM: Per scanner, at least one injured person has been found. They’re calling for more units.
8:19 AM: This is affecting traffic nearby – SFD is asking for SPD help at 40th/Andover.
8:26 AM: The man brought out of the house is described as around 50 years old and seriously injured, with burns. He will be taken to Harborview. The house is extensively damaged; our crew is there now and we are adding photos.
8:42 AM: We’re waiting for an official update from SFD’s public-information officer, who’s at the scene. The fire itself appears to be largely out.
8:58 AM: Capt. Shata Stephenson tells us the man, who is believed to be 55 to 60 years old, was in critical condition as he was being taken to Harborview; life-saving measures started even before the medic unit left. The fire itself was put out relatively quickly, thanks to fast work by neighbors in spotting the smoke and flames and calling 911. SFD’s investigator is working to find out how it started.
9:45 AM: Added above, video of Capt. Stephenson’s briefing. We will update if/when more information about the fire victim and/or cause becomes available.
ADDED TUESDAY AFTERNOON: Commenters say the victim has died (we have contacted the Medical Examiner, Harborview, and SFD to try to confirm this and none have that information so far). Meantime, we also asked SFD about the fire’s cause; spokesperson Kristin Tinsley replied, “The fire started on the first floor of the home, near the side entry door in the kitchen. The fire cause was ruled undetermined by investigators.”
7:24 AM: Good morning! Here are the transportation changes for today’s Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day holiday:
METRO – Reduced weekday service
WATER TAXI – No service
SOUND TRANSIT – Regular weekday service for Route 560; light rail, Saturday schedule
CITY STREET PARKING – No charge at city-run pay stations/meters
SCHOOL BUSES – No school, so no buses
Remember that Metro plans to stop most buses for a “moment of remembrance” at 4:04 pm today.
Also: As announced last night, Washington State Ferries’ Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route is down to 2 boats.