West Seattle, Washington
Seattle City Light says it’s starting work soon on its project to replace underground cables for “enhanced electrical reliability and efficiency” in South Arbor Heights and The Arroyos, so if you have questions about the project, a drop-in open house has been announced for one week from today: 5:30-7 pm at Southwest Library (9010 35th SW). SCL says the work “will require installing new conduits, vaults, and other associated work. Streetlights will also be replaced as part of this work.” The work is expected to start in early-to-mid-May, on California SW between SW 106th and 107th. This will be a long-running project, per SCL: “Civil construction is estimated to last approximately 1 1/2 years. Additional streetlight work will follow.”
The map is from SDOT’s Ching Chan, who has been out going door to door and also e-mailed us to be sure everyone knows about a community meeting one week from tonight for the Arbor Heights sidewalk (and more) project along 35th SW between SW 100th and SW 106th. As we reported a month ago, it’s starting this spring – likely next month, Chan says, with completion projected by Labor Day. And SDOT now confirms the south end of the project, which includes drainage work, will close 35th SW between SW 104th and SW 106th for “up to four weeks.” Here’s the newest flyer/postcard. Get the details, and answers to your questions, at the community meeting 6-8 pm Tuesday, April 24th, at Arbor Heights Elementary (3701 SW 104th).
Yet another development note today:
Almost two years have passed since we first reported on a project proposed for a small slice of commercial/multifamily-zoned property in Arbor Heights, the former church site at 4220 SW 100th. At the time, the proposal was for nine live-work units; last year, that changed to eight townhouses and one live-work unit. Today, a tentative date was set for the project’s next Southwest Design Review Board meeting, June 7th, more than a year after its second review in April 2017 (WSB coverage here). Its draft “design packet” is also now available (see it here – big PDF). The June 7th hearing is set for 6:30 pm at the Senior Center/Sisson Building (4217 SW Oregon)
Out of the WSB inbox, from Aiko:
My forest green 2000 Chrysler Cirrus LX was stolen from the front of my house this morning between 12:00 am-7:15 am. I live in the 9000 block of 32nd Ave SW in the Arbor Heights neighborhood. The license plate number is BGK1449. I have reported this to Seattle Police.
If you see it, call 911.
APRIL 18TH UPDATE: Aiko tells us her car was found today in SODO.
In West Seattle Crime Watch, two followups and an alert:
FOLLOWUP – SUSPECT AWAKENED IN STOLEN CAR: Remember last Friday’s incident in Arbor Heights during which Guardian One‘s crew recorded that video of Seattle Police awakening a man found asleep in a stolen car? The suspect got out of jail tonight after five days. Prosecutors have yet to charge 34-year-old Craig R. Crisler in last week’s case but we are identifying him because he was being held on a warrant from a similar case in which he is charged. Crisler was charged three weeks ago in a February case in which police found him asleep in a stolen pickup truck in Burien. Also asleep in the truck, a 6-year-old whose mother is described in court documents as Crisler’s girlfriend; he was taking care of the child because she had been booked into jail two days earlier. The child was turned over to CPS; meantime, it was discovered that the stolen truck had been painted a new color since it was taken, and that it was found to contain tools including a pressure washer stolen from someone else. Crisler missed a court appearance in the case and that led to a warrant carrying $5,000 bail. He posted bond tonight and got out before 9 pm. Court documents from the Burien case show his last known address in North Shorewood, not far from where he was arrested last Friday.
SPEAKING OF STOLEN TOOLS: We’ve published more than a few reader reports recently of tools stolen in break-ins, both vehicles and structures. This alert from Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Danner says it’s a trend:
The SW Precinct Crime Analysis Unit Detective informed us of a recent crime trend involving burglaries of sheds, outbuildings, and garages. A variety of items have been stolen including bicycles, power tools and generators.
Please keep an eye out on your sheds/garages/out buildings! Ensure they are securely locked, regularly check to see if your door has been tampered with, take inventory of your items and secure bicycles with quality locks! Remember to always report theft and suspicious behavior to the Seattle Police Department by calling 911.
ONE MORE FOLLOWUP: Back on March 24th, we reported on trouble for a Southwest Precinct police officer while he was taking a suspect to jail – the suspect allegedly started a fire in the patrol car just as they were arriving downtown. As first reported in The Seattle Times, that suspect, 24-year-old Nickolas J. Osborne, is now charged with felony malicious mischief and misdemeanor harassment.
We have obtained the court documents, which say the latter charge is for the original reason he was arrested, reportedly harassing Lincoln Park and Lowman Beach park visitors and threatening them with a stick. The former is for the squad-car fire. The charging papers say that even before being placed in the car, Osborne was accusing police of being “agents of the Illuminati” out to get him; in the car, police say, he “slipped his handcuffed hands to the front of his body, unbuckled his seatbelts and began violently kicking the rear driver side window.” The officer radioed for backup at that point. Osborne then allegedly said the officer would have to kill him and should be nervous. After that, the charges say in-car video shows Osborne picking up a lighter from the car floor (whose lighter, it doesn’t say), using it to generate a flame, and setting the car ceiling on fire, including a camera; he was recorded, the report continues, saying, “There we go! Let’s both burn in hell!” Shortly afterward, the officer pulled over and got the suspect out of the car; Osborne’s clothing had ignited but he wasn’t hurt, nor was the officer. The car was damaged badly enough that it had to be taken out of service, SPD says. Osborne remains in jail, his bail set at $10,000.
Thanks to Krista for the photos and report on the garden party that just wrapped up at Arbor Heights Elementary:
Dream of teacher Marcia Ingerslev to see the new Arbor Heights Elementary school garden go in! Families, staff and community members were here working.
From left, teachers Marcia Ingerslev, Megan O’Neil, and Emma Cornwell:
AHES principal Christy Collins (below right) was there to dig in, too!:
Some backstory on the garden is here – including an explanation that the work was to include “creating a wheelchair accessible garden area, planting a sensory garden, transplanting shrubs, and weeding and mulching around garden beds.” (We’ve reported on Ms. Ingerslev’s garden projects in the past, long before AHES’s new school was built.)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council continues to evolve.
Co-chair Kim Barnes says it’s now meant to function as more of a “support group for committees” – each one, small now and hoping to grow, taking on a particular area of interest. If any are of interest to you – or if there’s something else you’d like to help make happen in the area – jump in!
Among those areas of interest discussed at this month’s WWRHAH meeting:
ROXHILL PARK: The recent kickoff meeting for getting Roxhill into the Park Commons project went well. This would be a two-to-three-year project, Barnes said, “for us to develop ways and means” – some through assistance, some through guidance – “to create more interactive activities in the areas of the park that are less utilized and need ore positive activities in them.”
Thanks to Cub Scout Pack 799 parent Jason T. for the photos from and update on today’s Scouting for Food door-to-door-and-dropoff food drive:
Last Saturday 3/10, twelve Cub Scouts (Tiger, Wolf, Bear, Webelos) and families put out approximately 850 door hangers, requesting food donations from their local neighborhood.
This Saturday, March 17, eleven Scouts and their families collected 952 pounds of food for West Seattle Food Bank!
Our kids are very grateful for the kind and incredible response from community, and they had an absolute blast (and great exercise) walking their neighborhood, representing Pack 799.
Overall, 21 Scouts and families participated in the drive, collectively putting almost 8 hours of community service, applying stickers to door hangers, distributing hangers, collecting food, and helping weigh and sort food at the West Seattle Food Bank.
P.S. Next door-to-door food drive is Stamp Out Hunger on May 12th – same day as West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day, as always – leave a bag of food by your mailbox that day for your carrier to pick up.
The aerial imagery is from Arbor Heights Elementary, just before school got out for the weekend. Staff and students assembled on the playground in the shape of a heart, as a sign of support for the survivors in Parkland, Florida. The image was made with a drone piloted by a parent volunteer.
ADDED SATURDAY: Here’s the official photo:
SDOT says the long-planned sidewalk project along 35th SW in Arbor Heights will start construction soon – possibly before the end of the month. It was originally scheduled for last year, but as reported here in December, it slid to this year. And now, we have received an update from SDOT project spokesperson Ching Chan, along with the “fact sheet” and map embedded above (and visible here):
As you may know, this project to improve the intersections along 35th Ave SW, from SW 100th St to SW 106th St near Arbor Heights Elementary and Westside School, has been in the planning stage for a couple of years now. Due to a number of factors, the project was placed on hold previously. I am writing to inform you that the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will be moving forward with the construction work and may begin construction as early as the week of March 26. We hope to complete this project before school starts in September.
Chan says SDOT already has “reached out to Arbor Heights Elementary, Westside School, Seattle Public Schools Transportation Department, and sent construction notices to nearby residents to inform them of the upcoming construction work,” but that still doesn’t include everyone who drives/rides/walks in the area, so they asked us to get the word out too. Chan also says SDOT is working to schedule a “public meeting to help provide more project information to community members in a couple of weeks” – we’ll publish a followup when there’s a date/time/place for that.
On Friday, we published Arbor Heights-based Cub Scout Pack 799‘s announcement that next Saturday (March 17th) will be their day for pickups and dropoffs in the Scouting for Food donation drive. Tonight, troop parent Jason T. shares the photo, after they distributed about 850 doorhangers to let people know:
Here is a group photo of all the Scouts and parents who helped put out the word today. They worked hard, and covered a majority of houses in our map, meeting some friendly people and pets along their routes.
If you got a doorhanger, put out your bag of food by 9:30 am next Saturday. And if you didn’t, but want to donate, you can drop off nonperishable food for the West Seattle Food Bank that same day outside Arbor Heights Elementary School, 3701 SW 104th St, between 10 am and 11:30 am. (Other packs and troops do this too, so you might hear from one of them!)
It’s Scouting for Food time – when local Scouts help the fight against hunger by collecting your donations. We heard today from Cub Scout Pack 799, which will be collecting in Arbor Heights a week from tomorrow, and putting out door hangers before then to let neighbors know about the drive. And they will have a dropoff spot, too, for anyone who wants to donate but is outside the pickup zone. Here’s the announcement:
Cub Scout Pack 799 Scouting for Food drive — Donation Collection in Arbor Heights
Saturday, March 17, 10 am to 12 pm, Cub Scout Pack 799 will be collecting donations for the West Seattle Food Bank, in the blocks between Marine View Drive and 35th Ave SW, and SW 100th St and SW 112th St, in the Arbor Heights/Arroyo Heights neighborhoods. Anyone in these blocks who wishes to donate can simply leave donations by front door by 9:30 am on Saturday, March 17th. Scouts will be distributing door hangers in the neighborhood this week, to get the word out.
Additionally, anyone who lives in the surrounding neighborhood, but is not exactly within our pickup area, is welcome to drop off donations at Arbor Heights Elementary School, 3701 SW 104th St, between 10 am and 11:30 am. Scouts will be stationed inside the front parking lot to accept drop-off donations.
Last year we had a successful drive, and our Scouts had a lot of fun doing it. We hope to have just as much fun this year, serving our community.
Our friends at West Seattle Food Bank say the most-needed items are:
– Canned meals (also meat, beans, fruit, vegetables, sauces) – list
– Kids’ backpack food (bars, juices, snack cups, instant soups, ramen) – list
Many thanks in advance, to all those who are able to participate, helping those in need in our community!
Parents, Leaders and Cub Scouts of Pack 799 (Arbor Heights)
Questions about our Scouting for Food drive? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Anyone else? Let us know – email@example.com – thanks!
6:44 PM: A “full response” was heading to a possible house fire in the 3500 block of SW 108th in Arbor Heights – but now most units are being canceled, as the first units to arrive say it’s a “large illegal outdoor fire” that is not threatening any structures.
6:55 PM: The address was corrected to the 10800 block of 36th SW. Our crew has just arrived and was told that the fire was in a big pile of construction debris behind a house.
7:05 PM: The last engine has left and the call is closed.
(Starr W., Simone S., Zoe P., Tevia & Taytum C., Denise K. singing ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’)
“We’re here to remember, honor, and celebrate Black history and Black culture, which is American culture.”
With that mission, Arbor Heights Elementary students and staff presented songs and stories in an hour-long assembly this past Thursday afternoon. They were each other’s audiences – joined by many parents, too. A big ovation greeted AH staffer Rosslyn Shea, who emceed the assembly (and kindly invited us to cover it).
She explained the backstory of Black History Month – which became a monthlong celebration in 1976, half a century after it began – “a time to remember the struggle, while remembering the accomplishments …” The program, directed and produced by Laura Drake, then began, with the anthem “Lift Every Voice and Sing” (top video). Ms. McAlpin‘s class sang “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around”; then Reyana H. portrayed Sojourner Truth, telling her story of slavery, and marriage with five children.
She was 30 when slavery ended in NY State in 1827. “I began to work with other abolitionists … I was also a strong believer in women’s rights.” Student Artise B., portrayed Frederick Douglass. “It was against the law for slaves to learn to read and write,” but he secretly taught himself.
“Once I learned how to read, I taught other slaves.” He was an adviser to President Lincoln. “A white man’s happiness cannot be purchased by a black man’s misery.”
Ms. Irish‘s class sang “Keep Your Eyes on the Prize.” A poem by Langston Hughes was performed by students Simone D. and Naimo M. Then pilot Bessie Coleman‘s story was told by Mariah R., speaking of achievement despite discrimination.
“I opened the possibility for women of color to become pilots,” though her life was cut short by an airshow-rehearsal accident.
Booker T. Washington, the influential educator, was portrayed by Joaquin L.. “Once I saw white children inside a schoolhouse reading books, that was what I wanted to do.” He ran a school “that is still going strong today.” He closed by reading this quote spiritedly: “If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else!” Then Ms. Ciocca‘s class sang “Woke Up This Morning with My Mind Set on Freedom,” and Ms. Amble‘s first-grade class performed to Ella Fitzgerald‘s version of “Old MacDonald Had a Farm.”
That was followed by Ms. Wilson‘s class with “If You Miss Me at the Back of the Bus.” Then, from even-more-recent history, more historic character portrayals – two trailblazing Black candidates for President, U.S. Rep. Shirley Chisholm (by Phalestine W.) and Rev. Jesse Jackson (by Zinneddine A.). “What is the American Dream? The American Dream is one big tent.”
Two third-grade classes sang along with Sly and the Family Stone‘s “Everyday People” – “Sometimes I’m right, I can be wrong …” they raise their index fingers on the chorus.
“Love’s in Need of Love Today” by Stevie Wonder was the afterschool program’s presentation, and then “We Shall Overcome” as a closing song, with everyone in the auditorium invited to join in. And on the way out, we stopped to notice student work on the walls:
AH and other Seattle Public Schools are now out for a week of mid-winter break, with classes resuming Monday, February 26th.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Some promising news emerged on multiple fronts at this month’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting.
CRIME DROP: WWRHAH was briefed by Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith. The area covered by this community group, he said, has had 56 incidents in tracked categories compared to 119 a year earlier. That includes one fewer robbery, one more aggravated assault, 7 crimes against persons compared to 5 – but property crime is down dramatically – one more burglary, one more commercial burglary (3 compared to 2), but larceny (much of it shoplifting) is down dramatically, about a fourth of what it was. Also: 15 car prowls compared to 17, 8 car thefts compared to 13. 49 property crimes in all – less than half it was at this point last year. Police continue working harder to get repeat offenders kept in jail – including for example making sure the “(law enforcement) objects to release” box is checked on reports.
The subject of the arrest of officer-assault suspect Jorge Cruz-Benitez two nights earlier came up; he was allegedly first spotted doing graffiti vandalism in the area (Delridge/Henderson). Lt. Smith echoed what we noted in a previous discussion, that not all tagging is gang-related. (This meeting was on Tuesday night; one night later, on Wednesday night, Cruz-Benitez was released from jail, according to the KC Jail Register.)
(Southwestern side of Roxhill Bog – WSB photo from 2014)
ROXHILL PARK AND BOG: WWRHAH has been pushing forever to get the bog water-flow fixed –
here’s an extensive report we published in 2014 – and is making progress. Your involvement can accelerate things. First:
The Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition usually meets on first Tuesdays – but not tonight, given the proximity to the holidays. However, WWRHAH is helping coordinate these two special upcoming community discussions that you’re encouraged to be part of. First – imagine more events in Roxhill Park!
On Tuesday, January 9, from 6:30 to 7:30 at Southwest Library, we’ll join Parks Commons and Arts in Parks Coordinator Randy Wigner to discuss ways Roxhill Park could be a good location for this program. The goal of the Parks Commons Program is to develop community capacity and civic engagement in event production, and the program is assigned to parks that experience long-term public safety issues and where those issues would be improved by increased community use of these parks. We’ll discuss park needs and if the program is a good fit.
Next – looking ahead to the RapidRide H Line, but not about the buses or routing:
On Thursday, January 18, community members and kids are invited to join artists from Oakland’s WowHaus studio for a discovery walk to help inform art projects coming to our neighborhood as part of the redevelopment of the 120 into the Metro Rapid Ride H line. Around 2:30 pm, we’ll meet at Roxhill Elementary under the main entry awning, then walk over to the 26th and Roxbury stop and hop on the 120 bus to the stop at Trenton and Delridge (so bring your bus fare). Members of the public can also meet at between 3:30 and 4 at the corner of Delridge and Henderson (where the largest concrete triangle is located in the right-of-way), and join the walk from there. What ideas do you have? Join us and share! Learn more about our selected artists here.
In case you missed last week’s community meeting about the recent Arroyos/south Arbor Heights power outage and related trouble – what you see above is the slide deck explaining what Seattle City Light has planned for the area. A project spanning multiple blocks of South Arbor Heights is expected to last about a year and scheduled to start next March. (The slide deck includes a map you can also see here.) SCL says it’ll be putting in “new electrical conduit and cables” to replace “underground, direct buried cables (that) are approaching the ending of their life.” Besides this month’s outage, the area’s relatively recent outages included last April, August 2016, and May 2016.
STOLEN CAR FOUND: Thanks for the text about a sizable police presence at 16th and Henderson this past hour. Officers were questioning someone after finding a stolen car.
Two reader reports:
CAR PROWL: From Cheryl:
Wanted to let you know that I filed a police report on 12/12 regarding a break in of my car parked in front of my apartment building (in the 3500 block of) SW Ocean View Drive, Arbor Heights. They took several personal items including leather gloves (which were in a compartment), my phone holder, CDs (in the trunk) and my handicap parking permit (in the side compartment of my door). Other silly items taken as well.
ABANDONED BICYCLE: Lisa says this has been on a Fauntleroy corner for almost two weeks:
Yours? Let us know.
Back in March, we mentioned three West Seattle sidewalk projects were in the works for this year; the city-provided map above accompanied the announcement. With the year almost over, we found that two of them have slid to 2018: The city is currently seeking bids to build the sidewalk along 35th SW between SW 100th and SW 106th in Arbor Heights and a shorter stretch near Sanislo Elementary on Puget Ridge, plus a project outside West Seattle in the same solicitation. No word on the status of the third project, one block of SW 104th in Arbor Heights.
Weekend before last, more than 100 homes in The Arroyos and South Arbor Heights lost power. The unrelated but concurrent Trader Joe’s outage overshadowed it in our headlines, but it’s not the first time an equipment problem took out the power for southwesternmost West Seattle, and so Seattle City Light is having a community meeting Thursday to answer questions and explain “future electrical infrastructure upgrades” in that area. Bring your questions/concerns to the meeting at 6:30 pm Thursday (December 14th) at Westside School (10404 34th SW; WSB sponsor).
Thanks for the tip: We just checked with Seattle Public Utilities about a reported water break in Arbor Heights. SPU says a 4-inch main broke and water was welling up in the 11400 block of 35th SW. They “partially closed a valve to reduce the flow” while making repairs; water should be returning to the 58 homes and four hydrants that were temporarily affected.
P.S. If you have water problems, such as no service or discoloration, 206-386-1800 is the SPU hotline. And thanks for then letting us know too, so we can check on the big picture of what’s going on.
4:33 PM: Seattle Fire has a “full response” headed for a house in Arbor Heights, in the 9900 block of 37th SW. More to come.
4:49 PM: The log shows most of the SFD units have been dismissed from the call, so it’s not major. We are en route in hopes of finding out.
5 PM: Last SFD crew (Engine 37) left just as we were arriving in the area and the call is officially closed. No one else around to ask but note that 99th is blocked off in the area – looks like downed wires/cables of some kind, on the other side of the yellow “caution” tape.
SUNDAY NOTE: Lynn explains here what happened.
Quick toplines from this past Tuesday night’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting at Southwest Library:
CRIME TRENDS: Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith said a major problem in the area – shoplifting at Westwood Village – is down significantly, after months of emphasis patrols. (More on that in our upcoming Southwest District Council report.) SPD’s work at Westwood will soon be enhanced by an observation station.
SAFETY: WWRHAH member Earl Lee reported that the long-awaited lighting of the bus stop across Barton from WW Village is up and working:
HALA UPZONING APPEAL: As reported previously, WWRHAH is participating in the citywide coalition that is appealing the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed upzoning in the city’s HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability plan. The coalition is now awaiting hearing dates, planning to go door to door to talk with neighbors, and raising money for legal help.
NO GENERAL MEETING IN JANUARY, BUT … Since the first Tuesday is the day after New Year’s, no general WWRHAH meeting until February. But watch wwrhah.org for TBA details of a January 9th meeting about Roxhill Park.