West Seattle, Washington
Several texters asked about the police response across from the northwest corner of Roxhill Park, at 29th/Barton. We went over to check it out, and here is what we have found out from SPD: Two men were working on the vehicle in the photo; a passerby called 911 to say they thought they had seen one in possession of a gun. Police converged on the area but found no evidence of a gun. They did discover that one of the men appeared to be seriously under the influence and in need of medical attention as a result, so thats why Seattle Fire was called in.
3:59 PM: Police are investigating a bizarre crash right now – a Seattle Parks pickup truck into the side of the restroom building at Roxhill Park, with one person hurt before he could get out of the way. Police tell us they’re trying to find out whether the driver had fallen asleep in the truck or hit the accelerator without realizing it was in “drive,” but whatever the case, the truck hit a man who suffered an arm injury, and then hit the building’s brick wall before stopping. Along with that man, the Parks driver is being evaluated, as is a child, our photographer reports. The building damage does not appear major, but we’ll check with Parks tomorrow.
SUNDAY NIGHT: A commenter says her husband and 2-year-old child are the ones injured at Roxhill Park and that both are seriously hurt, with her child being transferred to Harborview with a skull fracture.
ADDED MONDAY AFTERNOON: SPD tells us the report isn’t available in its system yet; meantime, here’s the statement Parks sent us when we asked several questions about the incident, the driver’s status, and the building’s condition:
On Sunday, August 20, at approximately 3:20 pm, a Seattle Parks and Recreation vehicle, driven by an SPR staff member, unintentionally collided with the Roxhill Park restroom. In process, two citizens were injured.
The Seattle Fire Department and the Seattle Police Department responded to scene, and a 2-year old child and a 47-year old man were transported to the hospital in stable condition.
Currently, the Seattle Parks and Recreation safety staff are conducting an investigation.
At this time, we believe that the injured child has been transferred to Harborview and that the injured adult is still in recovery as well. We are wishing a speedy recovery to those injured in this incident.
The men’s-restroom side of the building, where this happened, was closed off when we went by to look earlier today.
(WSB file photo: ‘Wall of buses’ along Roxhill Park, across from Westwood Village)
Another “years in the making” project is about to get going. Even before the south side of SW Barton across from Westwood Village became a major transit hub, there was talk of more lighting – it’s mentioned in this WSB story from 2009. Four years later, the lack of lighting was still an issue when the then-new Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council led various government reps on a walking tour including the transit hub. In early 2015, Metro promised the lighting, and sidewalk improvements, would happen that year. Then the time-frame estimate shifted to mid-2016.
Now here we are in the second half of 2017 … and the work is apparently finally about to begin. Metro’s Paul Roybal responded to an inquiry from former WWRHAH leader Amanda Kay by saying, “Currently the construction work is scheduled to begin on August 28th, but subject to slight modifications (contractor is finishing up other work for Metro elsewhere, so the start date may be a few days later).” We subsequently checked with Metro spokesperson Scott Gutierrez about the planned scope of the work; he says it’s “to repair the sidewalk along the south side of SW Barton … and to add 4 pedestrian-scaled light fixtures to improve visibility and safety from the layover [area] to the existing RapidRide bus stop.”
One night after the Southwest Design Review Board looked at 8854 Delridge Way SW (WSB coverage here), its next meeting is set, and it involves another project in the same area: 2222 SW Barton, just southeast of Westwood Village. Last September, the board OK’d the Early Design Guidance version of the proposal (WSB coverage here), during which they were told the site might hold up to 80 apartments. For phase 2 of Design Review, the plan now is described as “a four-story apartment building containing 27 small efficiency dwelling units and 39 apartment units in an environmentally critical area.” The review is penciled onto the schedule for 6:30 pm Thursday, September 7th, at the Sisson Building/Senior Center (4217 SW Oregon). The design packet isn’t online yet, but should be by the end of the month.
You saw their grand-prize-winning performance in Saturday’s West Seattle Grand Parade … you might have seen their practice and photo shoot at Seacrest five days earlier … and now, the All-City Band has one more West Seattle performance, at this year’s Band Jam on Friday night. ACB director Marcus Pimpleton shares the full lineup in this invitation to you:
The Seattle All-City Band will once again be hosting the annual Band Jam event at the Southwest Athletic Complex in West Seattle.
This year’s event will take place this coming Friday, July 28th, from 7:00-9:00 pm and feature musical performances by the Junior All-City Band, the Gents Drumline, the John F. Kennedy Catholic High School Marching Band, the Rainbow City Band, the Sumner High School Spartan Marching Band, and the Seattle Schools All-City Band.
Stadium concessions will be available beginning at 6:00 pm and pre-show entertainment by the Ten Man Brass Band will begin at 6:30. This family-friendly event celebrating young people and music is free to the public.
Two reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch this afternoon:
BURGLARS TAKE BIKE AND MORE: Rebecca reports her home in the 8800 block of Delridge Way SW [map] was burglarized late last night, with the burglar(s) stealing a bicycle, video-game consoles, and laptops. Since abandoned/likely stolen bicycles turn up often, we asked her to describe the one the burglar(s) took: A black women’s Sportster Comfort 10, serial number starting with 513. If you have any information or might have found any of the stolen items, the police report number is 2017-238353.
ILLEGAL DUMPING: A commercial dumpster temporarily in place for a roofing job on SW Thistle proved attractive to someone looking for a place to unload a couch, JW reports. His cameras caught it around 12:30 am today:
12:20 AM: If you’re hearing sirens, it’s a “full response” for a possible fire in a multifamily building in the 2400 block of SW Trenton. First crew to arrive isn’t seeing anything, so far. More to come.
12:23 AM: Now they’re finding “light smoke” from a third-floor unit. Suspected “wall fire.” The address checks to the Westwood Plaza complex.
12:45 AM: What’s described as a “small wall fire” that did not spread is tapped and some units are being dismissed. No injuries reported. Adding a photo of Ladder 7 just before it pulled back.
Toplines from tonight’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council meeting:
HALA REZONING: The draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Mandatory Housing Affordability component of the city’s Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda is expected to be published Thursday. That’s what WWRHAH heard tonight from Morgan Community Association‘s Cindi Barker, who was on the original city-appointed HALA focus group and has been helping educate other community advocates about land-use issues including this one. With the draft EIS coming out this week, the comment period will continue into late June. She was asked if there’s talk of a District 1-wide response to HALA MHA, but so far individual groups are pursuing individual responses related to how it might affect their neighborhoods – MoCA for example is pursuing a comprehensive-plan amendment and is asking the city to engage in a full neighborhood-planning process, given the conflicts between MHA and the MJ neighborhood plan.
ROXHILL BOG: WWRHAH continues trying to get the city to address hydrology issues that have compromised the bog. Rory Denovan wrote to Seattle Parks but said the response so far wasn’t helpful. Meantime, a celebration of Roxhill Bog is planned 11 am-3 pm June 17th, with information and activities.
ROXBURY RECHANNELIZATION: As reported here earlier in the day, SDOT is floating further rechannelization options for SW Roxbury in connection with the 2019-or-so repaving between 16th SW and 35th SW. WWRHAH is concerned about the possibility that most of the center turn lane will be removed. They’re considering asking SDOT for data on the lane’s usage.
CRIME TRENDS: Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith said car prowls in the WWRHAH-covered area are down by about 50 percent from this time last year. Residential burglaries are down too. Shoplifting is up, and that figures heavily into stats for the area, because of Westwood Village.
WHAT’S NEXT: While WWRHAH won’t have its regular first-Tuesday meeting in July, since that’s Independence Day this year, they’ll likely have a special meeting just before or after that to talk about a response to the forthcoming HALA draft EIS.
The big news from last night’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council meeting goes with the notebook pictured above: It’s full of contacts, cards, agendas, and other documents gathered by Amanda Kay Helmick, who has stepped down after four years of leadership with the group. Mat McBride is with her in our next photo – the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council chair who helped shepherd WWRHAH into existence:
(Here’s our report on WWRHAH’s first meeting in February 2013.) Eric Iwamoto has co-chaired WWRHAH with Helmick recently, and Kim Barnes has taken on a major role, especially regarding the Westwood-Highland Park Urban Village’s destiny with HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability upzoning, and other land-use issues, but the group hasn’t yet decided its leadership path forward. They’ll talk about it next month – when the major topic is expected to be the HALA MHA draft Environmental Impact Statement, due out soon – and they’re also planning a door-to-door campaign to reach people who might not have heard about WWRHAH.
Along with HALA, another major issue is how – whether – the future Delridge RapidRide H (Route 120 is converting in 2020) will relate to/engage with the area. Helmick said she had been trying to reach Councilmember Lisa Herbold‘s office and SDOT to get some key questions answered and so far had nothing but what she called “radio silence.” Here’s what she had sent:
At the WWRHAH meeting on Tuesday, our group made it very clear to SDOT that they needed to clarify their role in upgrading the 120. Specifically, SDOT needs to clarify whether it is planning the route, ie; removing / consolidating stops, or working on the pavement, roadway and pedestrian improvements.
Therese Casper from SDOT acknowledged the need for collaboration between SDOT and Metro on the routing issue. Metro has a known process for surveying their riders to find out where they are going, how far they have to walk, etc. Doug Johnson of Metro, who was at the meeting, acknowledged that is has been several years since a 120 survey was taken. We would like see SDOT start the collaboration by requesting Metro have the survey done before the design phase begins.
We also cannot stress enough the need for SDOT to consider the HALA/MHA upzone proposals in the Westwood Highland Park Urban Village. Currently, the 120 does not run through the heart of the Westwood Highland Park Urban Village. The folks in the Highland Park are cut off from bus service because of this, and the upgrade does nothing to rectify that. Comparably, the C Line, runs along California Ave SW specifically because of the Urban Village instead of taking the faster route along Fauntleroy Way.
Lastly, without significant attention paid to improving the ingress/egress to the peninsula, it doesn’t matter how fast you can get from Roxbury to the bridge. The City must find a way to improve this situation.
WWRHAH has been working on issues surrounding Metro and the impacts of bus service to the community for 4 years. We have seen very little in the way of solutions for our area, but we see the Move Seattle Levy as an opportunity to do something amazing that will improve mobility, connectivity and livability for an area that is under served.
Also at last night’s WWRHAH meeting:
CRIME UPDATE: Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith said Westwood Village is still having shoplifting issues, and the precinct continues to work with management to get some structure in place that will allow police and businesses to work more efficiently in tackling the project.
COUNCIL CANDIDATE: City Council Position 8 candidate Dr. Hisam Goueli came to the WWRHAH meeting, mostly to listen to and learn about the area’s issues.
Transportation was front and center. Among other topics – Dr. Goueli mentioned he’s a doctor, and promptly was informed that West Seattle is without a hospital. He’s one of 10 candidates currently in the running for the citywide position that Councilmember Tim Burgess currently holds but is not seeking to keep.
WWRHAH needs you more than ever – and you’ll find them at 6:15 pm first Tuesdays in the upstairs meeting room at Southwest Library, 35th SW/SW Henderson.
In case you haven’t already seen it on the calendar already – tomorrow (Saturday) morning brings the annual fun, free, potentially life-saving April Pools Day event at Southwest Pool (2801 SW Thistle), which invites kids and their families into the water to learn about:
Preventing open-water drowning
Life-jacket use and promotion
Basic water rescue for children
No pre-registration necessary – just show up at SW Pool, 10:30 am-noon. (It’s one of seven Seattle city-run pools participating.) That’s conveniently right after the 10 am egg hunt at adjacent Southwest Teen Life Center!
While the transformation of Metro Route 120 into the RapidRide H Line is three years away, major decisions are being made now, and this is the time to bring up concerns to SDOT and Metro, both leading the project because city dollars are helping pay for it. Since the new planning phase revved up last month, the West Seattle Transportation Coalition (WSB coverage here) and Delridge Neighborhoods District Council (WSB coverage here) have hosted discussions/briefings. And this week, it’s the centerpiece of the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council agenda (6:15 pm Tuesday, Southwest Library). The WWRHAH agenda says the discussion with SDOT/Metro reps will include “mobility issues surrounding the Westwood Village ‘transit hub’ and the Westwood/Highland Park Urban Village.” All are welcome; the library’s on the southeast corner of 35th SW and SW Henderson.
It’s the new-business question we’ve been asked the most in recent weeks – when is the Westwood Village Ulta Beauty store opening? Today, we finally have the answer. We first reported back in June that Ulta would be taking over the former Pier 1 Imports space, after we found the information in the city permit files; the company wouldn’t confirm at the time, but the store has taken shape in recent months. Finally, they’ve announced the grand opening weekend as Friday, April 14th, through Sunday, April 16th. This is one of about 100 stores the chain expects to open this fiscal year; it has almost 1,000 stores nationwide.
(Southwestern side of Roxhill Bog – WSB photo from March 2014)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
It’s been three years since the then-fledgling Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council put out a call for help with the issues threatening Roxhill Bog, historic headwaters for Longfellow Creek. The bog had been a community concern for years before that, and underwent some restoration, but needs help beyond what community stewardship and work parties can offer. That was one of the topics brought up at WWRHAH’s meeting last night when City Councilmember Lisa Herbold – in her second year in office – sat down for a conversation, the centerpiece of a meeting that touched on other topics too: Read More
As announced at this month’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council meeting (WSB coverage here), West Seattle/South Park City Councilmember Lisa Herbold will be the guest at March’s meeting, the just-released agenda confirms. All are welcome at the meeting, which is one week from tonight – Tuesday, March 7th, 6:15 pm at Southwest Library (35th SW/SW Henderson).
Another followup on the 24th SW/SW Kenyon sinkhole that got a Waste Management truck stuck for a while back on Monday afternoon: More about the cause, and the repairs, from Seattle Public Utilities spokesperson Rachel Ramey:
SPU located a damaged 15-inch drainage pipe under the street that was clogged with debris and tree roots. Crew members cleaned the downstream pipe to remove debris. Repair crews will be onsite Sunday 7:30 am to 8 pm and Monday 7:30-5 pm for repairs. SPU expects to complete pipe repairs and a temporary patch on the roadway by mid-week, next week. SDOT permanent street repair will follow.
We had already reported Tuesday that a stormwater pipe was to blame, but this adds information about the size and scope of that problem.
Everybody got out OK after this car went off 34th SW near SW Cloverdale and onto its side on the sidewalk. Often these types of crashes are dispatched as “heavy rescues” but the people in the car were out before SFD and SPD arrived so it was a smaller, short-lived response. Police were still talking with them to determine what happened and said everyone was being “cooperative.”
While the Westwood-Highland Park Urban Village was the first of West Seattle’s four urban villages to get a city-coordinated Community Design Workshop about its HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability rezoning proposals, that November 9th event was so soon after those proposals were released that it was little-publicized and lightly attended. But community volunteers have continued to review the WW-HP proposals (see the official “draft rezoning map” above) and are inviting you to a meeting one week from tonight to collaborate on a community response while the comment period remains open. Here are the details, from Kim Barnes:
The Westwood-Highland Park Urban Village community volunteers will hold a followup short presentation and discussion centered around the city workshop held on November 9th, and community led workshop held on November 30th, 2016.
All members of the public interested in collaborating a full response to the MHA legislation and upcoming EIS (Environmental Impact Statement) that will provide the rezoning proposal of Westwood Highland Park are invited to attend.
Please note that this is a community led meeting and city employees will not be in attendance.
Please join us Wednesday, March 1st to get in the loop and collaborate. Topics covered in this tight
90 minute meeting will include:
o A very brief overview of the MHA Principles. Brief overview of the proposed up-zoning for the Westwood Highland Park Residential Urban Village.
o Where is the City information? Where to find the resources to learn more.
o Overview of the Revised Timeline for public input on the draft EIS.
o Review and discuss the Community Feedback gathered on November 9..What’s missing and why.
o Discuss what other neighborhoods across the city are doing—how they are formulating their own community response.
o Agree to a next-steps plan to collaborate knowledge and resources to develop a full response to the EIS in the coming months.
o Formulate a request to the City to present the draft EIS for our urban village as soon as it’s published.
o If time allows: Review the Urban Village up-zone map and 3D model presented in late November at HPIC.
What this meeting is not:
o A city-sponsored meeting with experts in the areas of MHA legislation, zoning, etc.
o A forum for comments or complaints regarding MHA and HALA to be conveyed by the volunteers to the city.
Date/Time: March 1, from 7 pm-8:30 pm, doors open 6:45 pm
Please rsvp for an anticipated head count to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Location: Highland Park Improvement Club, 1116 SW Holden Street
The city’s official notes from the November 9th meeting, by the way, were finally posted online about a week ago, and you can find them linked from this page (where the Junction and Admiral notes will apparently eventually appear, too).
Seattle Public Utilities was back today at the 24th SW/SW Kenyon intersection where a Waste Management truck got stuck (as first reported here Monday afternoon, thanks to a reader tip, and updated until the truck was taken away three-plus hours later).
SPU spokesperson Marieke Rake tells WSB that they found a damaged stormwater pipe beneath the street, and that’s what they believe caused the sinkhole (their term, “void”). She added that an SPU maintenance team is cleaning the downstream pipe to remove debris,” and within a few days they’ll “have an estimated pipe-repair timeframe.”
FIRST REPORT, 1:48 PM: Thanks for the tip! After a call (206-293-6302 any time!) about a Waste Management truck “stuck in a sinkhole” at 24th SW/SW Kenyon – a short distance east of Denny International Middle School – we went over to look, and that’s indeed what happened.
The front end, as our photos show, is almost wheel-deep, and the truck driver was working to get absorbent material into the hole to sop up any fluid spills – this is not far from Longfellow Creek, which runs along the east side of the Denny/Sealth campus. More help was being summoned, and we’ll check back later. Side note: This is the second Monday in a row that a WM truck got into trouble in West Seattle – you’ll recall Ann Anderson‘s reader report from Admiral last week.
2:20 PM UPDATE: Via the scanner, we’re hearing that SPD is now blocking off the area – 24th SW southbound from Holden and eastbound from Kenyon. (Here’s a map of the scene, which shows why.)
3:06 PM: We just went over to check on how things are going. In the upper left of the photo above is a tow truck that has arrived on scene. Other logistics are still being worked out.
5:20 PM: The truck has been pulled out of the hole and was towed away a short time ago. We arrived back at the scene in time for a look at it – the damage doesn’t look as bad as you might expect.
We talked briefly with an SPU rep at the scene. They have used video equipment to look under the street; water and sewer lines are not affected. They are using a vactor truck to clear water out of storm drainage just east of the sinkhole. (Added: Closer look at the hole, after the truck was pulled out.)
We’ll be checking with SDOT tomorrow about repair plans.
Thanks to Chief Sealth International High School Black Student Union senator Khaim Vassar for sharing the photo and invitation:
The Chief Sealth International High School Black Student Union will be hosting our 2nd Annual Black History Month Community Dinner at Southwest Teen Life Center on Saturday, February 18th, 2017 from 5:00 pm-7:00 pm (doors will be opening at 4:45 pm). All are welcome. Free to attend.
We encourage our community to come together and celebrate the accomplishments of Black People locally, nationally, and globally.
“Unity is Strength, Division is weakness” ~ Swahili Proverb
Southwest TLC is in the same building as Southwest Pool – 2801 SW Thistle.
Tuesday night was not much of a night for meeting-going, with slush and ice still on the roads, but hardy executive-board members Amanda Kay Helmick, Eric Iwamoto, and Kim Barnes were at the Southwest Library for February’s meeting of the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council, as were guests Lt. Ron Smith of the Southwest Precinct and Jordan Lowe from startup Josephine.com. Over the course of an hour, here are the toplines of what they talked about:
SOUTHWEST PRECINCT UPDATES: Lt. Smith said the Parks Department was cutting more vegetation by the Roxhill Park bus stop earlier in the day, to increase visibility to reduce crime and other problems. (Helmick mentioned that Metro is getting close to permits for the long-requested lighting alongside the park and is now projecting installation in March.) Businesses in the area are contacting police more often about problems. Then, area crime stats – “a huge increase in vehicle thefts” lately, especially Arbor Heights, Lt. Smith said. Six more than the area had seen by this time last year. But they’ve been making arrests, too. And car prowls are down, as are residential burglaries and robberies. So far this year, there’s been one non-residential burglary in the area, compared to none last year.
HALA REZONING: Barnes has been birddogging this and says that because turnout was low for November’s little-publicized Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda-related Community Design Workshop for the Westwood-Highland Park Urban Village meeting was so anemic, the city Office of Planning and Community Development has offered to have another meeting for this area. It’ll be March 1st at Highland Park Improvement Club, start time TBA. They’ll go over notes from the November meeting and get into more details about how to provide community feedback on the proposed rezoning.
JOSEPHINE.COM: Jordan Lowe from Mount Baker was an invited guest to talk about this startup, which “allows home cooks to sell food to their neighbors.” He is one of those cooks and said he uses it as supplementary income. “I pick what I want to cook, how much I want to charge, put it on the website, people come and pick it up. … Over the last couple months we’ve been growing a lot in Seattle.” All cooks need to have a food handler’s permit, he said, and the company pays for it if necessary; they also check out the cooks’ kitchens. He went into some of the details. So far, West Seattle has “three or four people” who are going through the application process. Yes, there’s a catch – “we operate in a gray area,” as Lowe put it when we asked – the meals have to technically be considered “events” by health authorities rather than people making and selling food for purchase. The company started in California and expanded to Portland and Seattle.
NEXT WWRHAH MEETING: Councilmember Lisa Herbold is scheduled to be at the March WWRHAH meeting. The discussion of the group’s direction also has been moved to that meeting (6:15 pm, Tuesday, March 7th, Southwest Library, 35th SW/SW Henderson).
After a question about work under way now at currently vacant EC Hughes Elementary (7740 34th SW) – likely to be the new home of Roxhill Elementary starting in fall 2018 – we followed up today with Seattle Public Schools.
As we reported back in October, the district planned to take the ~$14 million Hughes renovation project to bid early this year, and district capital-project manager Paul Wight tells WSB today that’s still the plan: “The Capital Department is preparing the documents for bidding. We will advertise this project on February 7th, open bids on March 8th, award the contract in April and start construction in May.”
Our photo above, taken this morning, shows some signs of work there now. Wight says it’s “critical maintenance” that must be done before the renovation work:
The Seattle Public Schools Facility Department has cleaned up the front landscape, removing some unhealthy vegetation and trimming up heathy trees and plants. They are also repairing the historic wood windows from the interior of the building. Our Masons are working on the brick repairing mortar by tuck pointing the brick as well as installing seismic ties around the egress points of the building. The brick will be cleaned, resealed, and anti-graffiti coating installed.
The city Department of Construction and Inspections, Wight adds, is reviewing the permit drawings and is expected to issue the permit “within the next month or two.”
One more thing: The public is welcome to the district’s next meeting with the Roxhill Elementary PTSA, which Wight says is set for 6 pm February 13th at
Roxhill EC Hughes. (Our report on the district’s briefing with the PTSA last fall is here.)
Though many government offices/facilities are closed today, Seattle Public Library branches are open! In West Seattle, the Southwest and WS (Admiral) branches are open now, closing at 8 pm; the Delridge branch is open 1-8 pm; the High Point branch remains closed for renovations (reopening January 9th).
No special events at the branches today, but tomorrow, if you have kid(s) home from school for winter break, check this out: Southwest Library (35th SW/SW Henderson) has an event that children’s librarian Dave Eicke wants to make sure you know about – Lego Space Wars, 2-4 pm Tuesday. As Eicke points out, “Play and use of Legos have been shown to show real benefits in STEM education. The planning and building helps with communicating ideas with physical objects.” Free, no registration required, just show up!