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WEST SEATTLE HALLOWEEN: Teens’ haunted house starts season


The first big event of the season happened tonight at High Point Community Center: About 40 teens worked to plan, set up, and perform in this year’s Haunted House.


Four more photos from WSB’s Leda Costa, ahead: Read More

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VIDEO: Chief Sealth musicians open for Seattle Symphony and West Seattle Community Orchestra

Our video is from the pre-concert performance at Chief Sealth International High School tonight, as CSIHS musicians played a selection by Vivaldi, opening for the free “Side by Side” community concert featuring the Seattle Symphony and West Seattle Community Orchestras. The student musicians are introduced in the clip by Sealth principal Aida Fraser-Hammer and by teacher Jorge Morales, who conducted them.

P.S. Two upcoming galas offer you the chance to support local music and more – flyers were circulated at tonight’s concert:

-Annual Fall Gala and Auction for WSCO, November 12th, 6 pm, @ Alki Masonic Hall – get tickets here

-8th annual Seahawk Spirit Dinner and Auction, November 19th, 5:30 pm @ Brockey Center (South Seattle College), with proceeds benefiting CSIHS PTSA and Athletics and Denny-Sealth Performing Arts – get tickets here

ALSO: WSCO has three concerts coming up in December; we’ll add to the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, but in case you want to set calendar reminders now:

-6 pm December 6th, Debut Orchestra & Brass Sextet
-7:30 pm December 9th, West Seattle Symphony Orchestra
-7 pm December 13th, Intermediate Orchestra & Wind Symphony

All are free (donations appreciated), in the CSIHS Auditorium.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Arrests linked to robbery investigations; package thief on camera; graffiti vandalism

First, a developing story:

Southwest Precinct police “may have cleared seven robberies” from the past month after taking seven people into custody south of South Park late today. We’re expecting more details tomorrow, but here’s what we know, after asking SW Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith about it at the start of tonight’s Alki Community Council meeting:

While SPD has a “limited pursuit” policy, they had been looking for suspects in connection with more than half a dozen recent robberies, including some in West Seattle. One of the precinct’s newest officers, he said, spotted a stolen car that they had linked to suspects through video footage. According to SPD’s Twitter feed, the sighting was made near Marginal/Cloverdale (in the South Park area). Via scanner, we heard the pursuit that ensued (a West Seattleite also reported to us that he saw it); it ended south of South Park when the vehicle crashed, according to Lt. Smith, who said no one was seriously hurt but one person was taken to Harborview per department policy in situations like this. Most of those taken into custody, he said, were juveniles. Again, Lt. Smith stressed that this is early information; we expect to find out more about this tomorrow (if it doesn’t appear on SPD Blotter sooner).

Also in West Seattle Crime Watch tonight, two reader reports:

PACKAGE THIEF ON CAM: Chad sent these images and a report:

I had a package theft today at 1:04 PM. My home is on the 4000 block of Myrtle ST. at the end of a dead-end street. Fed-Ex package delivered to my front porch this afternoon at 10:30. At approximately 1:00, a couple (male and female) prowled our street. As my neighbor was leaving his house by car, he noticed their Black Nissan in our dead-end and made sure they took note of his presence. They left the street. Apparently they stopped at the bottom of the street at California and pretended to be lost. My neighbor went about his business. The couple must have noticed that a) there was a package on my doorstep, and b) my neighbor had left as they returned and at 1:04 stole the package from my stoop. (Above and below) are the images of the woman stealing my item.

If you recognize this car, or this woman, please do call the police to let them know. I have reported this information to the police (Reference report T16010551).

The vehicle is a black (updated) Kia Optima.

GRAFFITI VANDALISM: We’ve received two reports in two days of extensive graffiti/tagging vandalism – which unfortunately isn’t rare, but we’re told a church is among the targets, and Lincoln Park was hit too, according to one tipster. Please report to police to help them potentially zero in on the vandal(s) – and, they advise, take photos of it and then paint it over.

ZONING CHANGES: First look at draft maps for West Seattle’s 4 ‘urban villages’ with Mandatory Housing Affordability

A long-awaited set of maps is public this afternoon. They show zoning changes proposed for the city’s Urban Villages to meet one of the mayor’s Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda (HALA) goals, Mandatory Housing Affordability, in which developers either commit to building a certain percentage of what’s considered “affordable housing,” or pay fees to a city fund that will bankroll some of it. West Seattle has 4 official Urban Village areas – The Junction, Morgan Junction, Admiral, and Westwood-Highland Park. Here are the draft maps:

(Direct link to West Seattle Junction map)

(Direct link to Morgan Junction map)

(Direct link to Admiral map)

(Direct link to Westwood-Highland Park map)

The draft maps quietly appeared on a HALA feedback website – no formal city announcement yet, but they were due out this week, and that’s why last night’s Morgan Community Association meeting offered a primer on how to read them, once they’re out. MoCA board member Cindi Barker has been on one of the “focus groups” that have been working on the principles to shape the maps. Here’s what she explained to the group last night – these key points:

-Some urban villages were proposed for expanded boundaries – in this area, The (West Seattle/Alaska) Junction is the only one.

-Whichever areas on a map are colored in, that’s where a zoning change is proposed. Single-family zoning inside urban villages is orange on the maps and proposed for changing to “residential small lot.” Also when reading the maps for a change, look for a white zoning label (like SF 5000, single-family 5,000 square feet, followed by a slash, to RSL).

-The solid-color change areas will be getting a “typical” amount of upzoning via Mandatory Housing Affordability, such as one story. If a change area has diagonal lines through it, it’ll be more.

The meetings, Cindi Barker explained, focused on what principles should be applied, in order to make this work around the city. The text boxes on the maps feature some of these principles.

Solid-color change areas will be getting a “typical” amount of upzoning, likely one more story. With diagonal lines, it’ll be more.

-Multi-family-zoned property will see changes, even outside Urban Villages.

-Single-family-zoned property will NOT see changes outside Urban Villages.

Barker says the city will be having open houses and workshops around the city in the months ahead to explain and answer questions about all this. MoCA will also have its own meeting to help Morgan Junction residents. No date for any of this yet;

And the focus groups that have been meeting for several months will also be going over the draft maps at their upcoming sessions, which are all on this page.

West Seattle development: The Kenney’s rezone; new apartments near 35th/Roxbury; South Delridge townhouses; 2 more notes

Development notes:


THE KENNEY REZONE PROPOSAL: We first reported two weeks ago on retirement-housing complex The Kenney‘s plan to expand via rezoning to add an apartment building with about 40 units on the southwest side of its property, and possibly townhomes on the southeast corner (rendering above). A “contract rezone” will be required, and city online files now show that the process has begun. The official notice isn’t out yet but it’ll be at Land Use Permit #3026106.

20 APARTMENTS @ 9447 35TH SW: This early-stage proposal just appeared in city files today – 9447 35th SW (map). It would replace a small commercial building with a 20-unit apartment building including 1,200 feet of commercial space.

8 TOWNHOUSES @ 9225-9229 16TH SW: An early-stage proposal for this South Delridge site (map) calls for four 2-unit townhouse buildings, two fronting 16th, two right behind them, replacing a duplex.

SW HOLDEN SUBDIVISION SITE CLEARING: Thanks to the neighbor who pointed out site-clearing for the 18-house subdivision at 2768 SW Holden (map):


The project has been in the works for at least four years (backstory here) and finally moved toward construction earlier this year after Jabooda Homes bought it for $2.2 million.

COMMENT PERIOD FOR 4754 FAUNTLEROY: Today’s edition of the city-circulated Land Use Information Bulletin includes official word of the land-use-permit application for 4754 Fauntleroy Way SW, the 7-story project with 108 apartments and 10 live-work units proposed for the former Capitol Loans site (and the parking lot north of it) at Fauntleroy/Edmunds. You have until November 2nd to comment; the notice explains how. The project still has at least one more Southwest Design Review Board meeting ahead (no date yet); it passed Early Design Guidance in August.

HIGHWAY 99 TUNNEL: Approaching 5,000-foot mark

WSDOT is out with its latest twice-weekly progress report on the Highway 99 tunneling machine. As of today, it’s dug 4,955 feet of the 9,270-foot tunnel route, and could pass the 5,000-foot mark within days. The most-recent maintenance stop turned out to be a short one, and it’s been tunneling again since October 12th, currently toward the north end of the Union-to-Stewart-Street zone.

West Seattle whale-watching: Orcas in the area

12:03 PM: Thanks for the text – orcas are reported in the area! Southbound and possibly along or near West Seattle shores by now, according to Orca Network spotters, who say these are Southern Resident Killer Whales. Let us know if you see them!

12:24 PM: Another texter says they’re off Alki. We’re en route to look.

12:39 PM: Not seeing any unassisted from the Alki Point vicinity but some hardy spotters are out looking. Take binoculars.

12:55 PM: Just heard from Jeff Hogan of Killer Whale Tales. He says some are visible in the Vashon ferry lane, one here, two there, southbound, but not close to the WS side.

1:54 PM: From above Lincoln Park, we’re seeing a few headed along the north end of Vashon, continuing SB.

2:07 PM: And we just received a call from someone seeing more pass by Constellation Park. Thanks – 206-293-6302 voice or text, any time!

Live or work in The Junction? New Emergency Communication Hub ‘opens’ this Sunday

With an earthquake drill this morning, and what you might consider a “storm drill” last weekend, preparedness may well be on your mind. Today, we have news about West Seattle’s Emergency Communication Hubs:

The newest Hub, in The Junction, will be set up for an “opening” event this Sunday, noon-3 pm, so you can visit and get familiar with the concept. It’s in the Hope Lutheran Church parking lot, off SW Oregon just east of 42nd SW [map]. Even if that’s not the one closest to you, if you don’t know about the Hubs, now’s as good a time as ever. From the explanation on westseattlebeprepared.org (an awesome overall preparedness resource):

The Emergency Communication Hubs are locations around West Seattle which have been designated by neighborhood leaders and volunteers as community gathering sites if a major disaster makes it impossible to get information and help in the usual ways. These are locations that are easy to find and familiar to most people in each of these neighborhoods.

We’ve chosen outdoor locations because many buildings may be unsafe following an earthquake or similar type of disaster. After buildings have been checked for damage and deemed safe/usable, they will very likely be used as shelters. The Emergency Communication Hubs will be the initial gathering locations, since they can be predetermined for each neighborhood.

If you don’t see one close to you on the map – it’s because nobody has stepped up to get one going! Here’s information on how to get started.

P.S. The new Junction Hub had a preview event back in June, during a quake-scenario drill for which hubs were “activated” around the city.

What’s up for your busy West Seattle Thursday

(Male pileated woodpecker @ Fauntleroy Park – photographed by Mark Wangerin)

Lots going on! From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar and Halloween (etc.) Guide:

MONSTER DASH FUNDRAISER AT ZIPPY’S: All day/night at Zippy’s Giant Burgers in White Center, a percentage of proceeds will go to the West Seattle Monster Dash – the benefit for local Cooperative Preschools, coming up October 29th. More info on today’s benefit is in our calendar listing. (9614 14th SW)

EARTHQUAKE DRILL: You should already know whether your workplace, school, etc. is participating in today’s 10:20 am nationwide drill – but just in case it’s news to you and you see/hear something worrisome, it’s only a drill!

HAUNTED HOUSE: From the WSB West Seattle Halloween Guide – Haunted House at High Point Community Center: “Enter and get ready to be scared in this amazing High Point Community Center Haunted House built by the neighborhood teens. All proceeds help fund High Point Teen programming.” 5:30-7 pm, ages 8 and up, $2. (6920 34th SW)

CIRCLE OF SINGLES: For singles 60+, at Copper Coin in The Admiral District, 5 pm. (2329 California SW)

WEST SEATTLE TIMEBANK: 6 pm orientation, 6:30 pm potluck, 7 pm presentation by the Urban Homestead Foundation. More info in our calendar listing; all welcome. At the Sisson Building/Senior Center. (SW Oregon/California SW)

SEATTLE SYMPHONY SIDE-BY-SIDE WITH WEST SEATTLE COMMUNITY ORCHESTRAS: Come early to see the Chief Sealth IHS String Ensemble at 6:30 pm; Seattle Symphony and WSCO play at 7 pm. CSIHS Auditorium. Free! (2600 SW Thistle)

SEATTLE LUTHERAN HIGH SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE: 7-8:30 pm, prospective families are welcome to visit Seattle Lutheran HS. The open house starts in the gym. (4100 SW Genesee)

ALKI COMMUNITY COUNCIL: 7 pm at Alki UCC. Announced agenda toplines: City Council’s encampment-ordinance proposals; Westside Neighbors Network; new public-safety survey. (6115 SW Hinds)

NOT DEAD YET: They’re back! Live tonight at Whisky West in Morgan Junction, 7:30 pm. (6451 California SW)

KO ELECTRIC: Live “electric jazz” at Parliament Tavern, 8 pm. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

FIND MORE … on our complete calendar page.

UPDATE: Bicycle rider taken to hospital after 47th/Genesee incident


8:30 AM: We’re breaking this out of the morning traffic report: An incident involving a bicycle and car has sent a woman to the hospital. It happened near 46th/47th and Genesee [map]; police tell us the woman was riding a cargo/family bicycle with a child, and that the child was not hurt. Westbound Genesee is closed; eastbound is open. We’re still working to get more details but at this point police are not expecting the Traffic Collision Investigation Squad, which indicates that the woman’s injuries are not life-threatening. Officers are talking with the driver at the scene.

8:39 AM: Police say the street will reopen shortly.


9:11 AM: Seattle Fire spokesperson Capt. Shata Stephenson tells us that this was a “low-speed” collision and the rider, 41, was taken to the hospital mostly for evaluation purposes. We have an inquiry out with Harborview too.


(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

7:02 AM: Good morning. No incidents reported in or from West Seattle so far, but it’s a rainy morning following a rainy night, so please watch out for puddling (or worse) in some of the usual spots. (Via Twitter, Meg mentions Fauntleroy/Raymond.)

7:26 AM: If you’re at or near 35th/Avalon, you might be noticing multiple fire units on the west side of 35th. It’s an “automatic fire alarm” call at 4435 35th SW (Aura).

8 AM: Thanks for the tips. Emergency response at 47th and Genesee, possibly involving a bicycle rider. We are on our way to find out more.

8:25 AM: We’re at the scene. Westbound Genesee is closed at 46th. Eastbound is open. We’ll be writing about the incident separately shortly. (Here’s the link.)

8:38 AM: Police say Genesee will reopen shortly.

8:45 AM: If you haven’t headed out yet – it’s now raining very hard, so be ready to travel slowly to stay safe.

Why there’s a car inside West Seattle Thriftway, and how it can steer you toward a good deed

Something new at West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) – a race car.


It’s not a new product line but rather part of the store’s tradition of community giving.

The Porsche GT 911, which won the GT class at Sebring 2015, is a centerpiece for the store’s fundraiser for Team Seattle, a professional racing guild that supports the Cardiac Center at Children’s Hospital. Since its debut in 1996, Team Seattle hasraised more than $5 million for the center. Thriftway will match up to $10,000 in donations made for the next week. (Its support for Team Seattle included the last benefit barbecue of the year earlier this month.) You can see the car during Thriftway’s regular hours, 5 am-midnight daily (California/Fauntleroy/Morgan).

West Seattle Crime Watch: Garage burglars on cam, & more

In West Seattle Crime Watch tonight:

CONDO GARAGE BURGLARS ON CAM: A condo resident at Alki and Bonair [map] shares the report and images:

After using bolt cutters to steal a key storage lockbox, burglars repeatedly gained access to the Alki Bonair Condominium parking garage over 4 days before we became aware and were able to change the entry locks. This resulted in the theft of several items. One of the thefts was recorded on video at 11:45 pm Sunday 10/16 and photos are attached.

Please be on the lookout for two white males mid-20’s with reddish brown hair and beards. One was photographed with bolt cutters clearly protruding from the top of his backpack and wearing an oversized letterman’s jacket.

CAR BREAK-INS: If you’re looking for more proof of the police declaration that car prowls remain the top problem around here – Keri e-mailed tonight to warn people that the area around the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor) in The Triangle is still getting hit. She mentioned at least two recent incidents, one that police were investigating when she left tonight, plus “last Friday, a friend of mine had her window broken and a bag with personal information, etc. taken.” Police reiterated again just last night at the WS Crime Prevention Council, don’t leave anything in your car, anywhere. Busy parking lots are far from immune from car prowlers, who manage to do what they do without much notice.

Meantime, partly good news (though it would be better if the thefts had never happened) – a stolen boat and stolen car, both found:

STOLEN BOAT FOUND, ONE MONTH LATER: Last month, we published this report of a boat stolen near 14th and Elmgrove. Last night, we heard from Alyssa, who reported that “our boat was found on Delridge. Both motors and battery were gone… but thankful to have it home. Hitch was still locked when it was recovered.”

STOLEN CAR FOUND TWO BLOCKS AWAY: Tuesday morning, we received an e-mail report about a car stolen in Sunrise Heights. Before we got the chance to publish it, we found out the owner located her own stolen car – spotted two blocks away while she was out walking her dog.

We hope crime doesn’t happen to you … but if it does, after you’ve reported it to police, please let us know so we can share a community alert – editor@westseattleblog.com (if urgent, text/voice 206-293-6302).

@ West Seattle Crime Prevention Council: Trends & training

From last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting:

(Past week of reported car prowls, from SPD police-report map)

SOUTHWEST PRECINCT UPDATE: Car prowls remain “the crime of the day,” and “we attribute it to the drug use that’s out there,” began Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis. A resident of an apartment building north of Morgan Junction said that they’ve had two car prowls in the past month and have found needles in the alley – “what are we supposed to do?” A discussion ensued about whether, if spotting a car prowl in progress, residents should try to detain the prowler themselves. With the caveat that “we’re not your lawyer,” the general advice was no – “you never know who you’re dealing with,” Capt. Davis observed.

Another attendee said her area of Puget Ridge has been hit “19 times in two weeks,” including bicycle thefts, emergency kits stolen from porches. But she said most probably hadn’t been reported.

Read More

YOU CAN HELP: Clothing/textiles you don’t need? Donate!

Though basketball season is still more than a month away, the West Seattle High School girls are busy with something else – this donation drive:

West Seattle HS Girls Basketball is holding a clothing/textile drive through November 29th. We are filling garbage bags with gently used clothing, shoes, belts, drapes, towels, and bedding.

If interested in donating, please text/call Jaci at 206-909-7669 or Izzy at 206-947-4131 or email jacit@workhouse.cc. We are happy to come pick up the bags!

ELECTION 2016: If you can’t wait to vote …


… the marquee at The Admiral is already reminding you that the waiting is almost over: King County Elections says it has sent ballots on their way today, so as soon as you get yours, you can vote. You can mail your ballot OR drop it in West Seattle’s new permanent ballot drop box at High Point Library (SW Raymond just east of 35th SW) – deadline is Tuesday night, November 8th. If you don’t see your ballot by next Monday (October 24th), KC Elections says, call them at 206-296-VOTE. In the meantime, you can see exactly what and who is on your ballot by setting up the customized voter guide via the KC Elections website.

P.S. The county has accessible voting centers to help voters with disabilities. Locations and dates are here – the one in Renton opened today.

FOLLOWUP: Appeals filed in ‘tree or house?’ at 3038 39th SW

(June WSB photo of Ponderosa Pine at 3038 39th SW)

Two weeks after the city announced it would grant a “special exception” permit for a house to be built on a 3,166-sf lot at 3038 39th SW [map], taking out a Ponderosa Pine acknowledged as an “exceptional tree,” two appeals have just been filed with the city Hearing Examiner. This one is from a neighbor, making the argument that the lot previously used as a “side yard” had not been established as a buildable lot:

(If you can’t see the Scribd embedded version, here’s a direct link to that document on the city website.) And this one is from the Seattle Green Spaces Coalition:

The online file for that one is here.

We first reported in June about the neighborhood’s campaign to save the tree. Since the appeals have just gone into the system, no hearing date is set yet.

SIDE NOTE: While working on this, neighborhood advocates have been talking with Councilmember Lisa Herbold about a larger issue – the city’s requirement of a minimum payment for staff time to work on requests for interpretations, saying the resulting multi-thousand-dollar minimum can be onerous; as discussed briefly in today’s morning session of the Budget Committee, her proposal for a rule to require that requesters are charged only for the time needed:

Accompanying the budget, SDCI has submitted a bill that would adjust fees and charges (see the introduction for more details). This action would amend the bill to reduce the minimum number of hours charged for a code interpretation letter. A code interpretation is a process whereby someone can request a formal decision on the meaning, application, or intent of any development regulation in the Land Use or Environmentally Critical Area code. Examples include questions of how structure height or setback is properly measured, or how a proposed use should be categorized. Failure to request an interpretation can preclude raising the issue on appeal. Today, a request for a code interpretation letter is charged, at minimum, for 10 hours of work; hours worked beyond the minimum are charged the Land Use hourly rate (currently $280/hour; proposed to increase to $315/hour). The average number of hours charged for interpretations is 31.25 hours, however, in the rare case where the number of hours is less than 10, this change would ensure that the requesting party is only charged for time needed to produce the letter.

The proposal is not specific to this case; its fate will be determined when the budget is finalized in November.

West Seattle Wednesday: Debate-watching; Morgan Community Association; Delridge District Council; WordsWest; more…

(Fishing at Seacrest on Tuesday – photo by Don Brubeck)

Much happening today/tonight. From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

COWORKING MEETUP: Wednesday means it’s the weekly 12 pm-1:15 pm meetup at West Seattle’s only coworking center, WS Office Junction (WSB sponsor) – drop by, bring your lunch, meet new people! (6040 California SW)

(added) DINE-OUT BENEFIT: Shelby’s Bistro and Ice Creamery in The Junction is hosting “a fundraiser for Holy Rosary today from 2-9 pm and donating 10 % of sales back to the school (excluding gift cards, gratuities and taxes).” Shelby’s adds that they “would love to assist other schools or school organizations raise funds as well.” (California/Edmunds)

DEBATE WATCHING: Don’t want to watch the third and final presidential debate (6 pm our time, live from Las Vegas) at home? You have at least four options in West Seattle:

Parliament Tavern (4210 SW Admiral Way) – they advise arriving early (5:30ish) to get a seat – Happy Hour prices throughout the debate
Sound & Fog (4735 40th SW) – Coffee, beer, wine, pizza.
OutWest (California/Brandon) – Happy Hour until the debate is over
Admiral Bird (California/Admiral) –
Anyone else? Please let us know so we can add to the list!

DEBATE ALTERNATIVE AT WORDSWEST: As previewed here earlier this week, WordsWest Literary Series offers you a night of “Literary Citizenship” at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), 7 pm. (5612 California SW)

DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOODS DISTRICT COUNCIL: The City Council hasn’t yet finalized the mayor’s plan to cut ties with, recognition of, and support for neighborhood district councils – it got some discussion in Tuesday afternoon’s budget deliberations. But the DNDC is going forward. What’s the plan for next year? That’s on the agenda tonight, 7 pm, Youngstown Cultural Arts Center. (4408 Delridge Way SW)

MORGAN COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION: MoCA’s quarterly meeting has a BIG agenda. In the downstairs community rooms at The Kenney:

If you own property inside the Morgan Junction Urban Village, your land is proposed to be rezoned. Please come to the meeting for more details, or watch for the posting of the maps and additional information on the City’s HALA page.

2016 NSF applications – what’s next
California at Juneau – pedestrian and bike safety project
Morgan Junction Mural status
35th Ave SW – Phase II update
New Web Host

Lowman Beach Seawall
SW District Council updates
Murray CSO Update
HALA Focus Group Update
SW Precinct Advisory Group

Westside Neighbors Network
Survey results for 37th Ave SW Greenway
Morgan Park Expansion Planning Committee
Morgan Festival 2017
Beyond MoCA Boundaries
New secretary

(7125 Fauntleroy Way SW)

SIGGIE THE VINTAGE MAN: Live music! Now at 7 pm Wednesday nights at Whisky West. (6451 California SW)

THE TIKIGRAPHS: 8 pm, right after presidential-debate viewing, at Parliament Tavern. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

MUCH MORE … for today/tonight; just check our complete calendar page.

VIDEO, PHOTOS: #BlackLivesMatterAtSchool + #CloseTheGaps on local campuses

ORIGINAL REPORT, 9:16 AM: Our Instagram video is from outside Chief Sealth International High School this morning. Sealth is just one of the schools around the district where there’s a show of solidarity today – as described in a message from the CSIHS Black Student Union: “Educators and Students across the city will be wearing ‘Black Lives Matter’ T-shirts to Support the struggle to affirm the lives of Black students in Seattle Public Schools.” The CSIHS Race and Equity Team‘s message, “We are committed to the ongoing work of calling attention to and addressing the injustices experienced every day by people of color – in our society and in our schools.” That message also noted related social-studies lessons are planned this afternoon – it’s a differently configured school day at Sealth today because of PSAT testing in the morning. (added photo) Here are the students who participated:


Today’s district-wide action also coincides with the district’s week of conversations about eliminating opportunity/achievement gaps. SPS Superintendent Dr. Larry Nyland‘s announcement of that focus included a note about today:

During our #CloseTheGaps kick-off week, Seattle Education Association is promoting October 19 as a day of solidarity to bring focus to racial equity and affirming the lives of our students –specifically our students of color. In support of this focus, members are choosing to wear Black Lives Matter t-shirts, stickers or other symbols of their commitment to students in a coordinated effort. SEA is leading this effort and working to promote transformational conversations with staff, families and students on this issue.

(Added) Scholars from adjacent Denny International Middle School and joined in adding their thoughts/names to one of the banners:


It’s the only #BlackLivesMatterAtSchool gathering we got advance word of, but if others happened at school(s) in West Seattle and you have a photo, please consider sharing – editor@westseattleblog.com.

11:02 AM: Thanks to the texter who sent this photo from Sanislo Elementary:


And, just south of West Seattle, Sarah Fox sent this photo from White Center Heights Elementary:


We’ve also added photos to our Sealth coverage above.

ADDED 12:35 PM: Thanks to Jennifer Hall for this photo from West Seattle High School:


ADDED 3:12 PM: Thanks to the PTSA at Louisa Boren STEM K-8 for sending this photo from their before-school resource table:


ADDED 3:59 PM: And we’ve received a photo from Gatewood Elementary:


Teacher Mason Skeffington explains, “I wanted to let you know that Gatewood Teachers were also united today in the #SPS #Closethegaps #EOG movement going on this week. Here is the Gatewood Staff, T-Shirts reading Change is Possible, which aligns with the last sentence of our School Vision Statement ‘At Gatewood we believe changing the world is possible’.”


(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

7:06 AM: Good morning! No incidents in/from West Seattle so far.

7:44 AM: Still nothing out of the ordinary. The low bridge has been closed to surface traffic for about 10 minutes – remember we have a link atop traffic coverage every weekday morning that you can use to check its status (@SDOTbridges tweets when it closes & when it reopens). @KevinFreitas just tweeted this photo from the bicycle queue awaiting its reopening:


7:47 AM: Back open to non-marine traffic.

MORE CITY COUNCIL NOTES: Wednesday’s budget reviews; Herbold office hours in West Seattle on Friday

(Added Wednesday morning: Live feed from Seattle City Council budget meeting)

Two more City Council notes:

TOMORROW’S BUDGET REVIEWS: The City Council reconvenes as the Budget Committee at 9:30 Wednesday morning. We tracked today’s 9:30 am and 2 pm review sessions here; four more departments are up tomorrow during sessions at those same times. Each department name below is linked to the newest briefing memo we found in the system :

*Department of Construction and Inspections (most of what used to be known as DPD)
*Human Services Department
*Department of Transportation (SDOT)
*Parks and Recreation

The documents include changes proposed by councilmembers. One West Seattle-specific proposal from our area’s Councilmember Lisa Herbold is in the SDOT budget memo:

Add $100,000 for West Seattle Bridge studies – Councilmember Herbold

This proposal would provide one-time funding for two traffic management studies including:

(1) evaluate the feasibility of traffic management modifications to improve the eastbound Spokane St Viaduct connection to I-5; and (2) evaluate the City’s ability to share data with the Federal Railroad Administration to better manage and enforce rules regulating the blockage of public grade crossings by trains.

And from the Parks memo:

Community Planning Process for Myers Way Properties, Statement of Legislative Intent (SLI) – Councilmember Herbold

This proposal would request the executive to conduct a community planning process to determine the future uses of the Myers Way Properties. Such uses/purposes would include: green space that can serve to clean the air and water near an environmentally degraded area; protection of wetlands and Hamm Creek Watershed; hill stabilization; natural park space in an under-served area; preschool; expansion of the Joint Training Facility for firefighters to include training for police. In July, the Mayor announced the Myers Way Properties would be retained in City ownership, and that the northernmost portion be used for expansion of the Joint Training Facility. The remainder of the property would be retained and designated for open space and/or recreation purposes, consistent with community input. The Mayor indicated that DPR will conduct further public outreach to determine how best to use the properties.

She and other councilmembers have many other proposed changes you can see in each of the linked memos (usually toward the end), but we’re highlighting those as WS-specific. The budget-review process continues until a final version is passed in November.

COUNCILMEMBER’S ‘OFFICE HOURS’: Herbold announced today that she’ll be at the Senior Center of West Seattle this Friday (October 21st) for “in-district office hours,” noon-7 pm. Walk-ins welcome, but she says you are also welcome to make an appointment via her scheduler Alex Clardy (alex.clardy@seattle.gov).

Driver cited in school-bus crash near South Transfer Station

(Seattle Fire Department photo)

We’ve learned that this crash near the South Transfer Station between West Seattle and South Park today resulted in a citation for the school-bus driver involved. Seattle Public Schools, which contracts with the bus company, didn’t have information on what the citation was for, but did confirm to WSB that the driver was cited. Seattle Fire reported that no one was hurt in the midday crash at West Marginal Way South and South Holden; the bus was carrying two preschoolers, and one child’s dad tells WSB they were being transported from a preschool program at Fairmount Park Elementary.

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