This reader report is from Vanessa, whose daughter plays at Westcrest Park:
Recently kids in Highland Park have started donating riding toys to the playground at Westcrest. Everyone here loves Ercolini with all the riding toys, and the new playground and trails are a perfect place to ride.
Unfortunately most of the toys have been stolen from the playground. Everything has been clearly marked “donated to Westcrest playground.” There are a few toys that are still there but the thieves have taken a big wheel, a tricycle, and a push car. The kids that are donating these toys are also frequent visitors to the park and one mother shared how her girls were upset to go back and see that the toys they put there to share with their neighbors had been stolen.
Maybe you could share this story in Crime Watch or somewhere. I know that there isn’t actually a crime here but it’s still a bummer to see this happening.
That’s Vanessa’s daughter in the photo, taken last weekend, featuring a donated toy that’s since disappeared.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The Highland Park Action Committee reconvened after summer recess with an information-packed meeting. Crime and safety comprise a major concern, as is the case for most neighborhood groups, so that’s where the meeting on Wednesday night at Highland Park Improvement Club began.
CRIME, SAFETY, AND THE POLICING PLAN: Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith was at HPAC to talk about crime and safety. HPAC meetings previously have been attended by one or both of the Community Police Team officers who, as we’ve reported in coverage of other meetings, have advanced – Erin Nicholson is now an acting sergeant in another precinct, and in line for a promotion; Jonathan Kiehn has been working on a citywide technology-related project. (As he had told the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network the previous night, there are three “very good candidates” who will get tryouts in the role before they decide who will succeed Nicholson and Kiehn.)
First, it was a review of HP’s “micropolicing plan” – the first version of the plan listed five primary concerns for HP:
3:27 PM: Seattle Fire is sending a full-size response to the 8600 block of 9th SW in Highland Park for a possible house fire. More to come.
3:32 PM: The first units on scene say it appears to be just a fireplace problem, so the response is being scaled back. Our crew, on arrival, has confirmed: Fire in fireplace, flue not opened, smoke got out of control, no problem otherwise.
The first phase of Delridge-Highland Park Neighborhood Greenway work began last month with repaving and other work on SW Myrtle, east of Sanislo Elementary. Now a new phase starts Monday, also with a road closure, according to this alert from SDOT:
Construction on the Delridge-Highland Park Neighborhood Greenway has begun. The Delridge Greenway will connect West Seattle to White Center and run generally north-south on 21st and 17th avenues SW. See the fact sheet for specific improvements planned for the corridor. You can also view a PDF of the full project plans.
What’s happening now?
Beginning Monday, September 14, SDOT will be making street repairs on southbound 21st Ave SW between SW Andover and SW Genesee streets. This work is expected to take 3-5 days to complete. The following traffic and parking changes will be in place during this phase of construction:
Thanks to the texter who let us know about this – a driver crashing through a fence and into the edge of the apartment building on the southwest corner of 15th SW and SW Holden. When we got over there, the car was already out of the building and firefighters were covering up a basement window that had been broken out.
They told us no one was seriously hurt.
(WSB photo by Tracy Record)
2:56 AM: If you’re hearing the sirens in southeast West Seattle – Seattle Fire and Police are headed to a crash involving an overturned vehicle on the Highland Park Way hill. No word yet on injuries.
3:06 AM: The SFD response has been canceled, generally an indication of no serious injuries.
3:55 AM: The crash was midway on the hill, south/west-bound side. Trying to determine that, we were stopped for a short time as the tow truck brought the vehicle upright and temporarily blocked all lanes (that’s over now). We weren’t able to talk with police to get information but will follow up when we can.
The photos are from Dina Johnson, showing a house in the 9200 block of 12th Avenue SW being cleared out today by a company called Aftermath (specializing in, according to its website, “trauma cleaning and biohazard removal”).
Dina says the house generated complaints for years, and that the crew told neighbors “this dumpster they’re loading is the SECOND one – the first was filled up with every kind of trash – in one room ‘up to the ceiling’,” including what was described as “drug paraphernalia.”
The home’s owner died earlier this year; city records show complaints and citations about junk storage over the years.
(ADDED 1:06 PM: WSB photo)
Thanks to the tipster who let us know about a crash at 8th south of Barton. We just got to the scene; 8th remains blocked south of Barton while tow trucks are awaited. Police tell us one person was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The tipster says a Route 131 bus has been stuck at the scene too.
On August 17th of last year, an important conversation was convened at the Highland Park Improvement Club – community, city, and school leaders talking about how best to support Highland Park Elementary School.
On August 17th of this year – two weeks from tonight – you’re invited to the school library for the next installment in that conversation. Announced today:
*Highland Park Elementary School Town Hall Meeting*
Monday, August 17, 2015 @ 6:30 pm
Highland Park Elementary School Library, 1012 SW Trenton
The Highland Park Elementary PTA invites the community to a meeting to discuss our neighborhood school. We will learn about results from this past year, what the plan is for continued improvement, and the long-term vision for the future of Highland Park Elementary.
*Questions? Contact HPE PTA President Holly Briscoe, email@example.com*
The school’s population continues to grow, projected at about 385 students in the coming school year.
Just published on SPD Blotter:
Detectives are asking for your help finding a man who attacked a girl late Wednesday night.
A 15-year-old female was walking along 14 Ave. SW approaching SW Cambridge St. at 11:15 p.m. Wednesday when a Hispanic male in his mid 40s grabbed her from behind, tried to cover her mouth, and began pulling her toward a parked SUV.
The girl screamed, alerting two witnesses who stopped to help. The suspect fled to his waiting blue SUV, possibly a newer Jeep, with a plate beginning in “A,” and sped off, leaving the girl behind.
Detectives are now requesting your assistance in finding the suspect. Witnesses said the suspect is heavyset, five foot eleven, and was wearing blue jeans and a blue shirt. If you have any information in this case, please call (206)625-5011 and speak with officers.
More than six years ago, work began to “bury” West Seattle Reservoir in Highland Park, creating land for a Westcrest Park expansion. And now, the park work is finally done. A ribboncutting ceremony this morning kicked off the official celebration, two weeks after the fences came down to open the expansion to the public. See the man with the white beard helping cut the ribbon? That’s Marshall Dunston, who named the park Westcrest decades ago:
We’re told that was the result of a contest (update: see a 1976 photo on the Parks website). At the podium in the photo above is Brian Hawksford, who represented Mayor Murray’s office today; Michael Shiosaki from Seattle Parks represented Parks Superintendent Jesús Aguirre. Also represented in abundance: West Seattleites having fun at the 20-acre park expansion!
In addition to the newly built features including ziplines and play equipment, Parks brought in a bouncy house for today’s celebration:
Also invited, local food vendors, including White Center-headquartered Full Tilt Ice Cream, whose founder Justin Cline was staffing the truck:
If you haven’t checked out the park, the expansion end is near 8th/Cloverdale.
SATURDAY: Westcrest Park celebration to include bouncy house, art dedication, obstacle course, food truck, music…July 20, 2015 at 2:37 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news, West Seattle parks | 4 Comments
2:37 PM: When Seattle Parks officially opened the five-years-in-the-making Westcrest Park expansion almost two weeks ago, they mentioned a July 25th celebration. That’s coming up Saturday, and today Parks shared more details: Music, balsa-wood planemaking, a bouncy house, and an obstacle course from Camp Long will all be part of the 11 am-1 pm party next Saturday. Plus the dedication of Flyers (part of which is in our photo above), the park expansion’s wind-spun public art by David Boyer. If you’re new – this all happened because the city decided to bury what had been an open-air reservoir in this area of Westcrest Park, and that made room for more park space on top, including a new permanent play area.
6:16 PM: We’ve verified a few more details with Parks spokesperson Karen O’Connor: The What Up Dog food truck will be there (maybe you’ve seen it recently at Don Armeni Boat Ramp) and music will be by Correo Aereo.
Just announced by the Seattle Fire Department: You’re invited to an open house 11 am-1 pm tomorrow at Fire Station 11 in Highland Park (northeast corner of 16th/Holden) to see the results of its million-dollar safety upgrade. See the details here. (The time is concurrent with the West Seattle Grand Parade, but if you want to go to both, our tip – watch the parade from the start of the route at California/Lander.) SFD has two other projects under way in West Seattle – upgrades at FS 29 in Admiral and a complete rebuild of FS 32 in The Triangle; both are at interim locations as a result.
(City of Seattle photo by Jason Huff: ‘Flyers,’ installed @ park expansion last year)
More than five years in the making, the Westcrest Park expansion at West Seattle Reservoir finally opens tomorrow.
On Wednesday, July 8, 2015, Seattle Parks and Recreation will open the 20-acre expansion of Westcrest Park at the West Seattle Reservoir, located at 9000 8th Ave. SW in the Highland Park neighborhood of West Seattle. The new park expansion is the fifth reservoir lid-park collaboration between Seattle Parks and Recreation and Seattle Public Utilities (SPU).
The 20-acre expansion of the park captures panoramic views of the mountains and city skyline, while integrating a range of multi-generational amenities. Features include a flexible great lawn, a new play area with two zip-lines and a hillside slides, swaths of native prairie, strolling paths, parking and streetscape improvements, restrooms, and public art.
(Added: WSB photo taken today)
A mix of oak species will provide strategic shading, frame views and contribute to Seattle’s urban forest and habitat for generations to come. Site Workshop collaborated with the community, Seattle Parks and Recreation and SPU on designing the park and Mid-Mountain Construction built the park.
A new public artwork by David Boyer, “Flyers,” was installed in the park [photo above]. The piece consists of 15 bird- and plane-like kinetic sculptures mounted on steel poles. Grouped in three locations around the park, the sculptures will move to face the wind and the articulating tails will pivot as the wind blows. His inspiration for Flyers comes from airplanes in the SeaTac flight path and birds in the Duwamish Greenbelt. The artist worked with Seattle Public Utilities, Seattle Parks and Recreation and local community members to develop the wind-driven artwork. Flyers was commissioned with SPU and Seattle Parks and Recreation’s 1% for Art Funds and managed by the Office of Arts and Culture.
In addition, the Department of Neighborhoods constructed a P-Patch in Westcrest Park featured in our park design. This feature is funded by the community garden funding included in the Parks and Green Spaces Levy.
Seattle Public Utilities has replaced open reservoirs with underground structures to improve the quality and security of Seattle’s water supply. That replacement also provided for new park space at Jefferson Park, Cal Anderson Park, Myrtle Reservoir Park and Maple Leaf Reservoir Park.
Seattle Parks and Recreation will host a community celebration for Westcrest Park expansion at West Seattle Reservoir on Saturday, July 25, 2015 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
City-authorized West Seattle encampment? Former site listed as ‘potential future’ site on new map the mayor just made publicJune 29, 2015 at 4:56 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news | 54 Comments
When the city launched a process to come up with three sites to house up to 100 homeless people each, it was promised that they’d come up with a list of city-owned properties as the next step. Now, we have the first list. No West Seattle sites on the “preferred” list, but one familiar site is on the “potential future locations” list – while the address on the new map (7115 2nd Avenue SW) is slightly different, the “Glassyard” description indicates it’s at the site of the original home of the encampment calling itself “Nickelsville” (which was evicted almost two years ago). See the map above; here’s what the mayor’s office announced:
Today Mayor Ed Murray released a map of City-owned properties most suitable for new permitted encampments to serve at least 200 individuals experiencing homelessness. The mayor will transmit a resolution on the encampment sites to the Seattle City Council tomorrow.
The three preferred City-owned sites for 2015 are:
· 2826 NW Market Street for approximately 52 residents.
· 3234 17th Avenue W for approximately 70 residents.
· S. Industrial Way between 5th and 6th Avenue S for approximately 78 residents.
Four City-owned sites were identified as potential future locations:
· 8030 15th Avenue NW for approximately 36 residents.
· 3830 4th Avenue NE for approximately 64 residents.
· 7115 2nd Avenue SW for approximately 95 residents.
· 7110 Rainier Avenue S for approximately 32 residents.
“Permitted encampments are not a permanent solution to the crisis of homelessness we are experiencing in Seattle,” said Murray. “These encampments will provide a safer community environment than sleeping under a highway overpass or on a park bench. Residents will have improved access to services and we hope to open the door to permanent housing as quickly as we can.”
This year the mayor proposed and the City Council unanimously adopted an ordinance that allows up to three permitted encampments of no more than 100 persons each on City-owned or private property. Each location will be permitted for one year, with the possibility of permit renewal for an additional year. Each site must be vacant for one year between encampments.
“The One Night Count, tells us that there were over 2800 people in our community living without shelter this year,” said Councilmember Mike O’Brien. “Identifying city-owned sites for transitional encampments is an important next step. I look forward to working with community to establish up to three sites where people can stay safely and in community as we seek permanent housing solutions.”
“I am right by Mayor Murray’s side as we create safe spaces for community members who are without shelter,” said Councilmember Sally Bagshaw. “Managed encampments will offer the most basic resources for people, such as a 24-hour shelter with public health services, hygiene facilities, and potentially access to electricity. I wholeheartedly support this approach which will make our city better for all of us.”
Before recommending the sites, Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development reviewed more than 135 vacant City-owned parcels. The ordinance adopted by the Council limits encampment locations to unused property in non-residential zones, excluding park properties. Each encampment must be at least one mile from other legal encampments.
The City estimates that one-time start-up costs for the encampments will be $32,000, with annual lease costs and services for encampment residents of approximately $200,000 already provided in the 2015 budget.
Seattle’s Human Services Department (HSD) has selected two encampment operators through a qualification review process: SHARE and Nickelsville. The encampment ordinance requires that operators have prior experience managing shelters, low-income housing or homeless encampments. The Murray Administration continues to reach out to other faith-based and non-profit organizations that may be interested in operating an encampment.
The encampment operators are responsible for safety and security within the camp and residents will be screened by the operators for acceptance. A third organization, Low Income Housing Institute, will provide case management services to individuals living in the encampments.
HSD contractors and staff will make regular site visits to support SHARE and Nickelsville, and coordinate public health, medical outreach and food assistance.
“A place to store your things, sit and talk with friends, and rest your head at night are taken for granted by most of us,” said Mark Putnam of the Committee to End Homelessness in King County. “For many, however, these are not givens. Encampments can offer a temporary safe place for people to be human, while working to get back into stable housing.”
“The Mayor rightly sees the crisis facing people experiencing homelessness as requiring a response that includes the safety and community of sanctioned encampments,” said Michael Ramos of the Church Council of Greater Seattle. “We welcome this step to expand the continuum of care to meet this most basic of human needs.”
Encampment operators will form a Community Advisory Committee to respond to community concerns, review operations standards, and work with neighbors when encampments move to new permitted sites.
More information is available on HSD’s website.
On that page you’ll find this FAQ as well as backstory. The previous encampment site was known as 7116 W. Marginal Way SW so we have a followup question out to the mayor’s office regarding the address discrepancy.
5:04 PM: Quick reply from Murray spokesperson Jason Kelly, just after we published this: He confirms the “potential future location” on 2nd SW is the same site where there’s been an encampment in the past, an SDOT-owned parcel adjoining state-owned land.
West Seattle safety: Next set of ‘rectangular rapid-flash beacons’ going in @ Highland Park intersectionJune 23, 2015 at 9:57 am | In Highland Park, Safety, West Seattle news | 7 Comments
Thanks to Beef for the photo from 11th SW and SW Holden in Highland Park, where SDOT’s installing another set of “rectangular rapid-flash beacons” in hopes of making it safer for people to cross. West Seattle’s first set has been up for about a month at California/Dakota north of The Junction, as reported here; a third set is in the works for the new crosswalk in front of the Boren Building at 5950 Delridge Way SW, home to K5 STEM and interim home to Arbor Heights Elementary (for one more year).
11:46 AM: A reported motorcycle/car collision at 11th and SW Holden in Highland Park is leading police to detour traffic off Holden. (Westbound traffic is being diverted at 9th, per scanner.) No information yet about injuries or circumstances.
12:07 PM: Police say the motorcycle rider, described only as “male,” was taken to Harborview Medical Center by a Seattle Fire medic unit. Our photo shows the motorcycle, which has already been righted and moved to the roadside. The road likely will be reopened soon, as the victim does not have life-threatening injuries and so the Traffic Collision Investigation Squad will not be called out, we’re told.
3:51 PM: Via scanner, this has just been confirmed as a kitchen fire, “food on the stove.” Lots of smoke in the house, though. Most SFD units are being canceled.
Two West Seattle Crime Watch notes this morning:
PARKGOER’S WARNING: Police were in Highland Park Tuesday afternoon looking for what was dispatched as a man asking women for hugs. Then overnight, a reader e-mailed us to say that the man “groped” her while she was at Westcrest Park playing with her child “and attending to the garden.” She added, “This same man also appeared at the park next to the Highland Park Elementary playground, which I happened to be at after the P Patch. I informed the other parents and then called the Police.” She says he is known to him, is developmentally disabled, and apparently “tends to run away from his foster parents and go to the parks where he asks for hugs from girls. If you ever see him, he is about 6’3″ about late teens with blondish hair, call the police and let them know.”
HAMMOCK CHAIR THEFT: Also in Highland Park, a case of chair theft:
Our hammock chairs were stolen off our front patio Monday morning between 5:30 and 8 am. We live on the corner of 11th and Holden Street. Chairs are rare (made in Hawaii, available only [online]) and we have never seen anything like them. Any and all help relocating them is much appreciated.
Please call police if you’ve seen them.
Thanks to Alicia for the photo – finally, sunny, warm weather, on the sixth day of the 2015 season at Highland Park Spraypark, open 11 am-8 pm daily at 1100 SW Cloverdale until summer’s end.
A thief stole Cynthia‘s scooter overnight:
2009 Genuine Buddy Scooter (orange) with trunk box stolen last night/this morning on the 8100 block of 13th, between Elmgrove and Thistle. [map] License Plate is 4B9633. Police report has been filed under incident number: 2015-169636
If you see it, call 911 and refer to that case number.
SIDE NOTE: We just checked the incident-response map and so far that’s the only vehicle theft reported in this area today.
Within minutes of each other late last night, two reader reports came in (firstname.lastname@example.org) about bicycles found in West Seattle – stolen and dumped? or? – Above, Alicia spotted that child-size bicycle in the 8800 block of 30th SW, “lying out on the grass parking strip across the street from our house – for a few days now. It’s a newer bike and looks like it was ditched. Perhaps stolen.” Below, Alan spotted this bicycle “in a location where we have had multiple dumped stolen bikes (14th & Holly)”:
He added, “This one looks like someone may have found it in the woods and brought it out to the street. The tires are flat and the chain is rusted. Still, it looks like a bike that someone cared about at some point.” We’ve suggested to both that the bicycles be reported to police, but in the meantime, in case they look familiar, we’re sharing the photos and reports.
This e-mailed photo solved a mini-mystery for us …
Someone texted us last weekend and said they were pleasantly surprised to have seen people picking up trash in Highland Park. They didn’t know who or why. Neither did we, and the busy pre-WSCGSD week proceeded without further word – until the photo above arrived with this explanation:
We thought we would share a little neighborhood news for Spring Cleaning inspiration. A group of us from the 9000 block of 12th and 13th cleaned up 10 bags of trash all along Henderson and south of Henderson on 11th, 12th and 13th Ave this past Sunday.
If other blocks want to join in, the city is holding their annual Spring Clean and
they will give you supplies and pick up the trash from your block. All info here.
We know at least one other West Seattle neighborhood has Spring Clean plans this weekend. Get yours going too! (And you’re welcome to send us a photo afterward so we can let your West Seattle neighbors know what a cool thing you did. From left in the pic above are Irene Davis, Blair Johnson, Sarah Rudinoff, Wendi Sargent, and Jessica Bomball.)
Just about six weeks left in the Seattle Public Schools year, and that means some PTAs/PTSAs are meeting soon for the last time until fall. Holly Briscoe tells us that the Highland Park Elementary PTA has its last meeting of the year tomorrow night – Monday (May 4th) – starting with a potluck dinner 5:30-6 pm, then continuing with business including electing next year’s board. All welcome. HPES is at 1012 SW Trenton.
West Seattle Crime Watch reader reports to share:
LUNA PARK TRUCK THEFT: Bob discovered this morning that someone had taken his white Chevy Blazer from what’s supposed to be a secure garage at City View Apartments in the Luna Park area. License plate 105YGD – call 911 if you see it.
STOLEN PLATES: From Andi:
This morning I discovered someone had swapped my back license plate on my car with someone else’s. I have reported them as stolen, so if anyone sees plates ASU6665 call the police. The ones they put on the car were ANK8876, and the officer said he recognized them from a call this morning. I live on Trenton & Delridge [map] if anyone saw anything.
This happens more often than you might think, so it’s always worth a quick glance at your plates every time you go out to your vehicle, if it’s parked outside.
POSSIBLE STOLEN BICYCLES: Two posts in the WSB Forums regarding bicycles -
**Vintage Puch bicycle found in a Westwood/Roxhill-area backyard
**Redline bicycle frame spotted in Admiral in unusual circumstances
HIGHLAND PARK MAIL THEFT: In the 9400 block of 10th SW (map), Fran A spotted several mailboxes open this morning, with mail littered on the street, including an envelope that was supposed to contain her husband’s new driver’s license.
Love wine? Love sidewalks? Love solar power? Support all of the above – and then some – by attending and/or sponsoring Highland Park Uncorked. It’s happening three weeks from tonight (Saturday, May 16th) at Highland Park Improvement Club. Here’s how it works:
Each person brings a bottle of their favorite wine, priced at $15 or less. You are assigned a table. The bottle is placed in a brown paper bag, given a number and eventually placed somewhere on your assigned table. You don’t worry about that, as you relax with the wines from the award-winning Northwest Wine Academy, mingle with your neighbors, and munch on a wonderful spread of food prepared by our talented gastronomes.
When the tasting starts, you will go to your assigned table and your table captain will walk you through the process. Everybody tastes the wines that each person at their table brought and end up voting for the best. The winning wine from your table progresses to the finals where they are all tasted and the top three are chosen. There is still lots of wine at your table to further “examine” and enjoy with your tablemates.
Raffles too, and something new – the “Wine Aroma Challenge“! Find more details about Highland Park Uncorked here. Oh, and about the sidewalks? HPIC is raising money not just to support its ongoing operations as a community hub and event venue, but also to help with grounds improvements for its almost-century-old site at 12th/Holden. It’s received grants and donations for raingardens, a cistern, a courtyard, and future solar panels – but it’s also (as explained and shown here) had to spend more than $15,000 to fix broken sections of sidewalk and to replace part of its roof. Every bit of fundraising helps, HPIC says. So:
*Want to be a sponsor? (WSB is signed up to co-sponsor again this year.) Go here.
*Just want to save a spot at the table? Go here – HP Uncorked has sold out in advance in previous years, so don’t gamble on just showing up at the door.
2:14 AM: Police, including a K-9 team, are searching right now in the Highland Park Elementary vicinity (and beyond). We don’t know what preceded the search but they’re looking for someone who has an arrest warrant on record.
2:49 AM: Sounds like it started with circumstances including a car, a report of a fight, and two people fleeing, including the car’s owner.
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