West Seattle Crime Watch: Police search in Highland Park

July 23, 2014 at 12:52 am | In Crime, Highland Park, West Seattle news | No Comments

Police are searching for two people suspected in a reported ‘home invasion’ situation in Highland Park. Scanner-monitored information indicates shots were fired – with at least one casing found – but the victim was not reported injured and no medic crew has been summoned. This happened near 10th and Trenton (map); police, including a K-9 team, are looking for a woman and man who might be known to the victim. More info if/when we get it.

Update: Highland Park duplex fire, nobody hurt; caused by ‘improperly discarded smoking materials’

July 9, 2014 at 12:21 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle fires, West Seattle news | 7 Comments

(UPDATED THURSDAY with fire’s cause, damage estimate)

(WSB photo by Katie Meyer)
12:21 PM: Now there’s another fire call in Highland Park – this one for a house in the 7500 block of 11th SW (map). First crews on the scene are seeing smoke.

12:26 PM UPDATE: Fire crews say the house is fully engulfed in flames. Per scanner, they’re saying they’ve been told no one is inside. It’s a duplex and they report the fire is “knocked down.”

(This photo and next by WSB’s Christopher Boffoli)
1:10 PM UPDATE: WSB’s Katie Meyer confirms from the scene that everyone got out OK, including a cat and dog. Firefighters are still working to figure out how the fire started.

2:04 PM UPDATE: Also from the scene, WSB’s Christopher Boffoli reports that SFD plans to keep a crew there on “fire watch” in case it rekindles.

ADDED THURSDAY MORNING: SFD spokesperson Kyle Moore says the investigation determined the fire was caused by “improperly discarded smoking materials, discarded into a couch. The damage estimate is $60,000 to the structure and $10,000 to the contents.”

Update: Industrial fire in ‘bin of metals’ in Highland Park

July 9, 2014 at 12:01 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle fires, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

(Seattle Fire Department photo via Twitter)
12:01 PM: The big Seattle Fire response is for an industrial building in the 7000 block of Highland Park Way SW, near the intersection with West Marginal Way SW. SFD describes it via Twitter as a machinery fire and says all employees have been evacuated.

12:05 PM: Per scanner, the fire is declared “tapped.” The address checks to Pioneer Industries/Human Services. Firefighters are working to ventilate the building because of the smoke.

12:57 PM: SFD says the fire was “limited to a bin of metals” and that the “smoking bin” is being taken out of the building.

1:25 PM: SFD also has tweeted a picture of the aforementioned bin:

You can help! Girls on the Run expanding to Highland Park Elementary

June 19, 2014 at 2:01 pm | In Highland Park, How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 3 Comments

Even as the school year ends today, planning is under way for the next one starting in September – and that’s what this call for volunteers is all about: Girls on the Run is on its way to Highland Park Elementary for 2014-2015.

HPE is starting Girls on the Run at our school starting in the fall. Girls on the Run is an after-school program that uses the power of running to give girls the tools to celebrate their bodies, honor their voices, recognize their gifts, and activate their power!

The program is open to 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade girls. Both girls from HPE and from the surrounding community who do not have GOTR at their home school are encouraged to join. We are looking for volunteers to coach our girls. The commitment would be one or two times a week Starting September 29th and running through December 8th. Minimum age is 16. If interested please contact Holly Briscoe, the site liaison for HPE. hollybriscoe@hotmail.com

Update: Police response in Highland Park starts with stolen-car crash

June 9, 2014 at 2:09 pm | In Crime, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 13 Comments

2:09 PM: If you’re noticing a heavy police presence in Highland Park right now, here’s what’s going on (per scanner, though we have a crew arriving in the area): A car reported as stolen crashed through a fence on 11th SW; at least one person ran from the car and was caught by a citizen on 12th SW. Some confusion over the latter location ensued, briefly, but has been resolved.

2:31 PM UPDATE: Adding photo of the crashed car – which, from the plate and appearance, is this one tweeted by SPD just this morning:

(No word so far whether it was stolen in WS or elsewhere.)

The suspect was taken to the Southwest Precinct.

First Sunrise Heights/Westwood, next Highland Park? County update on roadside-raingarden (and other) possibilities

June 2, 2014 at 11:56 am | In Environment, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 1 Comment


(Click image for full-size flyer also showing the South Park area and the explanatory legend)
With two major combined-sewer-overflow (CSO) reduction projects under way in West Seattle, the King County Wastewater Treatment District is looking ahead to its next one, in Highland Park and South Park. The most-recent HP Action Committee meeting got an update from KCWTD’s Kristine Cramer and John Phillips.

In addition to possible “roadside raingardens” along some streets in the area (highlighted above in yellow) – like the ones going into more than a dozen blocks of Sunrise Heights and Westwood – they also are looking at permeable (porous) pavement in some parts of the area, and possibly a runoff-control project using part of one of the Seattle City Light “surplus” ex-substation sites.

Click to read the rest of First Sunrise Heights/Westwood, next Highland Park? County update on roadside-raingarden (and other) possibilities…

Happening tonight: Sanislo end-of-year party, and more!

May 23, 2014 at 2:41 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

A busy morning got in the way of our usual calendar-highlights roundup, so we invite you to just visit the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar directly to see what’s up. One spotlight event – what we believe to be the first “end-of-school-year party” in West Seattle, though school has a few weeks to go. From Sunshine, the announcement of the Sanislo Elementary PTA‘s End of the Year Party tonight:

Please join us as we get together to celebrate another successful year at Sanislo.

Where: Highland Park Improvement Club, 1116 SW Holden St

When: TONIGHT (Friday, May 23rd) 6 pm-9 pm

Adults only; beer and wine will be sold. 50/50 Raffle and a wine cellar raffle. Feel free to bring finger food to share, a bottle of wine ($10 or more) for the wine cellar raffle. Open to the public, cash only!

(The last day of the Seattle Public Schools year, by the way, is June 19th.)

West Seattle weekend scene: Highland Park, Uncorked!

May 17, 2014 at 9:55 pm | In Highland Park, How to help, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

Thanks to Donna for photos from the early going of tonight’s Highland Park Uncorked! – the sold-out fundraiser at historic Highland Park Improvement Club. Note the decoration in the foreground of the top photo! It might be best described as a collaborative wine tasting event, as explained here – everybody brings a bottle of their favorite $15-or-less wine, and, under wraps, they’re distributed to the tables. Tasting, voting, noshing, and raffling ensue.

We’ll update later when the winners, and the fundraising estimate, are announced. If you haven’t been there – HPIC is both a community organization and an almost-century-old hall that serves as a community hub, and continues to avolve (the recent “de-paving” out front is just one example). This year’s HP Uncorked! sponsors included WSB.

Highland Park Action Committee: HPIC ‘greening’ update; more

March 28, 2014 at 9:18 am | In Environment, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

The “de-paved” lot outside Highland Park Improvement Club was a major topic at this week’s meeting of the Highland Park Action Committee, which convenes at HPIC. As work continues on greening the HPIC grounds following last Saturday’s work party (WSB coverage here), two events are ahead: Boeing employees will volunteer at a work party on April 19th; a week later, on April 26th, the site will be a Sustainability Stop on the annual Northwest Green Home Tour, with co-hosts including Sustainable Seattle and Stewardship Partners, and a chance to look at nearby RainWise installations too. Find out more about the tour here (scroll way down that page to see HPIC, “stop #11″; two West Seattle homes are on the tour too).

Two more toplines from HPAC’s meeting, ahead: Click to read the rest of Highland Park Action Committee: HPIC ‘greening’ update; more…

Video: De-paving party at Highland Park Improvement Club

March 22, 2014 at 12:12 pm | In Highland Park, How to help, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

ORIGINAL REPORT, 12:12 PM: Until 3 pm, you are still welcome – actually, we’d say encouraged! – to join the volunteers busy right now with something you just don’t see that often, captured for posterity in our 15-second Instagram video clip above: De-paving! The historic, nearing-a-century-old Highland Park Improvement Club is greening its grounds (with help from Sustainable Seattle) and taking out old asphalt to (un)pave the way for that; HPIC’s Rhonda Smith told us more about the rendering shown in our preview the other day, with not just a reconfiguration but also new planting planned next month. A donated catered lunch is on the way and work will continue today until 3 pm – just go stop by at 12th/Holden. As Blair Johnson quipped, as is done during so many volunteer work parties, they’re removing invasives – just that in this case, it’s invasive asphalt.

(P.S. We’ll be adding photos later tonight.)

ADDED 7:42 PM: As promised:

They were starting toward the south side and moving north – lots of square footage to de-pave!

A trailer filled up with pieces of removed asphalt:

The de-paved area won’t all be greenery and dirt – see the plan here. Part of the HPIC lot already had been “de-paved” for a raingarden, and this is a continuation of the theme.

Break it up! Help Highland Park ‘de-pave’ this Saturday

March 20, 2014 at 2:50 pm | In Highland Park, How to help, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

Having a rough week? Saturday brings a volunteer project that might be a way to get out your frustrations. It’s happening at Highland Park Improvement Club, where a “greening” is under way, as envisioned in the plan above. Here’s what’s happening Saturday, for the next step toward that “greening”:

We’re building an oasis in the asphalt – a courtyard, replacing a portion of the parking lot with permeable pavers and more gardens. So we have some asphalt that needs to be ripped up and taken away. Bring your muscles and whatever you need to vent this Saturday and help us hoist chunks of asphalt outta here. The asphalt will be prepped, scored and ready to rumble into a big Dumpster that will cart it away.

We will start at 10 am till however long it takes. Lunch will be provided and activities for all ages. And yes, there will be beer and other refreshments after all that hard work.

HPIC is at 12th/Holden.

5:10 PM UPDATE: A little advance depaving is going on today – Highland Park Action Committee co-chair Carolyn Stauffer just shared this photo:

Just a start!

Reminder: Guardian One helicopter visiting White Center Heights Elementary this afternoon

March 13, 2014 at 10:28 am | In Helicopter, Highland Park, West Seattle news, White Center | 2 Comments

One more early warning – as first noted here last week, White Center Heights Elementary is due for a special visit by the King County Sheriff’s Office helicopter Guardian One around 1:25 this afternoon, as part of a special project kindergarteners have been working on. The North Highline Fire Department will be there too. WC Heights is at 6th SW and SW 100th, so Highland Park’ers might notice this too.

4:24 PM NOTE: We’ll publish a separate story here later but photos and video are up right now, if you’re interested, on our partner site White Center Now.

Neighbor Appreciation Day tomorrow: 3 fire stations to tour

February 7, 2014 at 11:05 pm | In Highland Park, Sunrise Heights, Triangle, West Seattle news | Comments Off

(Neighbor Appreciation Day at Station 37, photographed in 2011 by Cliff DesPeaux for WSB)
Going through football withdrawal? There’s lots to keep you busy this weekend. One thing we’re reminding you about quickly right now: Three West Seattle fire stations are open for tours 11 am-1 pm Saturday as part of the city’s Neighbor Appreciation Day: Station 11 in Highland Park at 16th/Holden, Station 32 in The Junction at 38th/Alaska, and Station 37 in Sunrise Heights at 35th/Holden. It’s your chance to get an up-close look WITHOUT having an emergency in your neighborhood!

‘Nothing decided yet’: Ideas for Mayor’s Neighborhood Summit @ Highland Park Action Committee

January 24, 2014 at 10:52 am | In Highland Park, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Seattle’s new mayor has promised a “neighborhood summit” within his first 100 days in office. No date is set yet, not even a format, but the person who’s organizing it came to the Highland Park Action Committee‘s January meeting to talk about possibilities. That leads off our report from the meeting Wednesday night:

Click to read the rest of ‘Nothing decided yet’: Ideas for Mayor’s Neighborhood Summit @ Highland Park Action Committee…

Highland Park to talk about Mayor Murray’s ‘Neighborhood Summit’

January 21, 2014 at 3:52 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Highland Park Action Committee just shared a preview of tomorrow night’s meeting, and one topic is of interest even beyond HP and vicinity:

… We’ve invited Kathy Nyland to come speak. She was recently “borrowed” from city council staff to help Mayor Murray’s office coordinate a Neighborhood Summit. We’re going to hear what she’s up to and share our thoughts about what this could look like and how Highland Park and Riverview can participate. We’d like Mayor Murray to be aware of the concerns our neighborhood may have, so please join us to learn about this effort and provide feedback to her.

We trust other community councils are participating in this planning in other ways, but this is the first we have seen with a specific agenda item about it. HPAC plans a 6:30 pm potluck, 7 pm meeting tomorrow (Wednesday, January 22) at Highland Park Improvement Club (12th and Holden).

West Seattle scene: Cheering the Hawks in Highland Park

January 11, 2014 at 8:05 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news, WS & Sports | 3 Comments

Highland Park has no sports bar/lounge where you can go for a big game like today’s Seahawks victory over the Saints – or a small game, for that matter – but the Highland Park Improvement Club transformed itself into a viewing venue – same way it morphs into the pop-up Corner bar one night a month. Members and neighbors gathered to watch today’s game – and yes, there was at least one Saints fan in the crowd:

That’s Mike in the Saints jersey and Jim in the Seahawks jersey. By now, of course, you know who won. The Seahawks stay home to host the NFC Championship next Sunday, 3:30 pm, vs. either Carolina or San Francisco, depending on who wins those teams’ faceoff tomorrow; tickets for the January 19th game go on sale this Monday at 10 am.

Update: Emergency response in Highland Park

December 26, 2013 at 5:52 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

5:52 PM: An assault-with-weapons response rushed to the 1500 block of Holden. A man is reported to be there with a ‘knife wound to the buttocks’ that is believed to have happened somewhere else. More to come.

6:01 PM: Now radio traffic suggests it wasn’t a stabbing after all.

6:22 PM: No police/fire left at the scene by the time we got there.

You can help! Highland Park Neighbors’ Sunday invitation

December 12, 2013 at 12:18 pm | In Highland Park, How to help, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Can you spare some time Sunday afternoon to give the gift of time? Craig Rankin shared the photo and the call for volunteers:

A small informal group called the Highland Park Neighbors have just received a Small Sparks grant for the “Kenyon St Right-Of Way Beautification Project.” The $1000 grant from the City of Seattle /Department of Neighborhoods will be used to purchase plants for the space, which has been an on-going restoration project for just under two years. The sloped area, which is used locally by students and bus riders willing to climb/descend the steep “social trail,” is partially planted and mostly mulched. Most of the grant will go toward purchasing native bare-root plant stock to be planted in the spring.

The first official work party will be this Sunday between 12 pm and 3 pm. There are 10 yards of mulch to move via 5 gallon buckets. If you would like to join the fun, please bring some gloves.

That’s John Gray, moving mulch, in the photo Craig shared. Here’s a map to the area.

Followup: Charges filed in ‘My Gun’s Bigger’ Highland Park robbery attempt

December 3, 2013 at 5:59 pm | In Crime, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 11 Comments

Three men are now charged in what’s been dubbed the “My Gun’s Bigger” robbery attempt at Highland Park’s Morning Star Market. Seattle Police announced the arrests on November 26th, three days after the clerk scared the would-be robbers away, and we got word of the charges today. Read on for the story they tell:

Click to read the rest of Followup: Charges filed in ‘My Gun’s Bigger’ Highland Park robbery attempt…

West Seattle Crime Watch: Outgunned Highland Park suspects nabbed

November 26, 2013 at 5:37 pm | In Crime, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 7 Comments

Remember the Saturday night Highland Park robbery attempt thwarted by a clerk who said he had a bigger gun? Tonight Seattle Police say suspects are now in custody, after the distinctive getaway car was spotted following a street robbery in South King County. This is all explained on SPD Blotter.

Highland Park/South Delridge greenway followup: Missed the meeting? See the maps

November 21, 2013 at 9:26 am | In Delridge, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 7 Comments

If you live in Highland Park/South Delridge but didn’t get to Tuesday night’s open house about the greenway proposal – the maps shown that night are now linked on the city website, and you might want to take a look, particularly to see where new stop signs and other features are being proposed. See the maps here; see the background explanation, including how raingardens will tie in along part of the way, here. (Note that on the north end, the plan goes a bit further north than Highland Park, including a stretch of SW Myrtle by Sanislo Elementary – the plan there includes two blocks of repaving.) The official project website includes a comment sheet that was available at the meeting – you can still download it and send it in; the deadline is December 10th.

Update: 1,100 customers lose natural-gas service in South Park & Highland Park

November 13, 2013 at 12:39 pm | In Highland Park, South Park, Utilities, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

(WSB photo: Crews mobilizing in South Park)
ORIGINAL REPORT, 12:39 PM: Just in from Puget Sound Energy:

A natural gas regulator is having some problems in the Highland Park area in West Seattle. More than 1000 customers are currently without natural gas service. There is no safety issue. Work is under way to fix the problem. Once the gas-system pressure is operating normally, PSE personnel will go door-to-door to inspect the meters and gain entry to re-light furnaces, water heaters and other gas equipment. Most of the customers affected are residential. This situation is not due to a natural gas leak. There is no escaping natural gas.

We’re hearing about some customers out in South Park, too, and are asking PSE about that.

3:06 PM UPDATE: PSE’s Ray Lane tells us the bulk of the outage IS in South Park, though some are affected in Highland Park too. Here’s his latest update:

Approximately 1,120 PSE customers in the South Park area are without natural gas service due to a suspected problem with the gas system pressure equipment.

This means there is not adequate gas pressure in the system to operate equipment, such as furnaces, water heaters and other appliances. The situation is not due to a natural gas leak.

PSE is on site to correct the problem. We have 28 technicians in the field and will be working to shut down gas service to impacted customers. This allows us to reintroduce gas into the system safely. We anticipate having all customers shut off by 8:00 p.m. Once we have tested and stabilized the system, PSE personnel will need to enter homes and businesses to relight equipment. This may not occur until late in the evening. Customers wanting gas restored overnight should leave a front exterior light on. Service crews will be available all night and through tomorrow morning until all customers are restored.

As in any situation, call PSE or 911 immediately if you smell leaking natural gas. For updates, follow us on Twitter.com/PSEtalk or call 888-225-5773. PSE representatives will also be able to answer customer questions at the South Park Playfield at 8th Ave S and South Sullivan Street.

Happening now: Highland Park Improvement Club holiday bazaar

November 9, 2013 at 11:26 am | In Highland Park, Holidays, West Seattle news | Comments Off

The first big weekend of bazaars means the holiday season is off and running in West Seattle! At historic Highland Park Improvement Club, the bazaar that’s under way until 3 pm includes artists and crafters including Deloris (above). Vendors’ tables are full of gift possibilities like these (who WOULDN’T want Darth Vader on their wallet?):

Among the vendors, historic HPIC itself – with the all-new Highland Park hoodies!

(Added: Found out post-publication, they’re screenprinted by local Rain City West!) Even if you’re not in the shopping mood, go learn more about raingardens:

At right in that photo is Jo Sullivan from King County Wastewater Treatment Division, which is in the early stages of a green-stormwater-infrastructure project for Highland Park and vicinity and, at left, Hannah Kett from Sustainable Seattle, which has been working on other raingarden projects in the area. (If you need new inspiration for considering/supporting raingardens – think of the Longfellow Creek coho salmon, often killed by polluted stormwater runoff. The more runoff you keep out of the system via raingardens (etc.), the more you keep out of local waterways.)

Haven’t been to HPIC? Find it at 12th/Holden (map).

‘Tis the season to snag a spot at HPIC’s holiday bazaar

October 8, 2013 at 12:13 pm | In Highland Park, Holidays, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

Chilly storm moves through, a little ice from the sky … In the holiday mood yet? Highland Park Improvement Club hopes so – Christie Sjostrom is organizing this year’s Holiday Bazaar for Saturday, November 9th, 10 am-3 pm, and looking for vendors, $20/table, $15 for HPIC members, handmade arts/crafts only (no commercial items) – e-mail her ASAP to snag your spot, csjostrom@hotmail.com.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Big police response in Highland Park

October 4, 2013 at 1:32 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news, West Seattle police | 3 Comments

Thanks to everyone who messaged us about a big police response in the 17th/Kenyon vicinity of Highland Park. Police on the scene told our crew it’s a case of suspected auto theft. Witnesses saw at least three people detained – but keep in mind, detained doesn’t always translate to arrested; we will be checking back with police a little later to see how the case shook out.

Commercial site? Park? Housing? What’s best for ex-substation in Highland Park?

September 30, 2013 at 9:18 pm | In Highland Park, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

One of the former substation sites that Seattle City Light might sell is right in the heart of a Highland Park crossroads.

With this Wednesday’s formal public hearing on the ex-substations’ fate approaching, what’s called the Dumar site – on the southwest corner of SW Holden and 16th SW – got a spotlight at this month’s Highland Park Action Committee meeting.

After City Light rep David Barber‘s presentation about the process that’s under way, community discussion revealed some sentiment that it might be optimal for that site to become commercial/retail property, like two of the three other corners at 16th/Holden (NW corner is 7-11, SE corner is Seamart and Wanna Teriyaki/Burger, and the NE corner holds Fire Station 11, which SCL says is using part of the ex-substation for parking).

One attendee voiced surprise that a park/open space wouldn’t be considered the highest and best use of the site, but HPAC co-chair Carolyn Stauffer said some community members with whom she had spoken suggested that HP has a relative abundance of park space already, but not of open space. Most other commercial properties in HP are scattered in one-off sites, until you reach the South Delridge business area.

The 10,000-square-foot site is officially zoned for potential single-family home (5,000-sf parcel) development.

Wednesday’s public hearing is at 6:30 pm at High Point Community Center (6920 34th SW); you can also comment online – as explained here. City Light says it’s not expecting a final decision on this and the other surplus sites before next year.

3 1/2-year sentence for mail/identity thief with West Seattle victims

September 27, 2013 at 2:56 pm | In Crime, Highland Park, West Seattle news | 6 Comments

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has sent word of sentencing today for a mail thief whose three-county spree included, we are told, West Seattle crimes. Here’s the announcement:

A mail thief who broke into locked mailboxes to steal checks and identities was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 44 months in prison and four years of supervised release, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. WILFREDO BERMUDEZ, 40, of Seattle, was arrested in November 2012 after 13 months of breaking into mailboxes in the Puget Sound region. BERMUDEZ stole mail in three different counties, including checks, driver’s licenses, and other items by breaking into victims’ mailboxes. He often threw away or destroyed the remainder of victims’ mail, and left the mailbox damaged or unusable in the process.

Click to read the rest of 3 1/2-year sentence for mail/identity thief with West Seattle victims…

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