Update: 1 hurt in crash at West Marginal Way/Puget

March 21, 2015 at 5:35 pm | In West Seattle news, WS breaking news | 10 Comments

(WSB photo)
5:35 PM: Crash at West Marginal Way SW/Puget (map), and SFD has dispatched a sizable “automobile rescue” response. Avoid the area; we’re on our way to find out more.

6 PM UPDATE: Southbound W. Marginal is blocked off at the Duwamish Longhouse; NB has a lane open. Police tell us one person was taken to the hospital, in stable condition. SFD says the victim was a female passenger and had to be cut out of the car; two others didn’t need medical attention. NB lanes open now, SB not likely to be long.

6:49 PM UPDATE: Commenters say the road has reopened both ways. We’re back at HQ and adding photos.

ADDED: The photo above this line is by Amy, who adds, “I live off of West Marginal and Puget Way and have seen several accidents at this spot. For your sake, and ours, please slow down on West Marginal!”

SUNDAY UPDATE: We’ve confirmed with police that the driver was arrested for suspected DUI. He and the other two people in the car were all in their early 20s and speed is believed to have been a factor as well.

More West Seattle homes are getting RainWise, and you can too

March 21, 2015 at 5:33 pm | In Environment, Gardening, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

That’s Max, and he’s helping keep Puget Sound cleaner by building a raingarden at one of five homes just east of the Southwest Branch Library that are getting RainWise. That’s the Seattle/King County program offering incentives to eligible households to get off the storm-drain grid, so to speak, by installing raingardens and cisterns – at little to no cost, because of rebates.

This morning, RainWise team members invited neighbors and media to the 9000 block of 34th SW for a celebration as those five households ceremonially broke ground for their new stormwater-diverting setups. Fittingly, cloudbursts graced the gathering – but held off at photo-op time.

At left in that photo (with Lucy, Izzy, and Max) is John, whose company Home Grown Organics is one of many contractors working on the program. You can find out by going here whether you’re eligible for RainWise. Even if you’re not, the team would love to talk to you. You will find them at three upcoming public events:

APRIL 11: 11 am-2 pm, RainWise contractors’ open house at West Seattle Nursery (California/Brandon)

APRIL 25-26: 10 am-4 pm, RainWise info table at the Seattle Chinese Garden‘s Peony/Bamboo Festival (6000 16th SW)

MAY 9: 10 am-noon, RainWise Fair at Highland Park Improvement Club – see HPIC’s cistern, pervious-paver patio, raingardens, and art (12th/Holden)

Disclosure: RainWise is advertising on WSB to help get out the word about the program.

Followup: Troop 282′s 2015 ‘Scouting For Food’ success! Pack 793, too

March 21, 2015 at 4:23 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | No Comments

4:23 PM: Another successful “Scouting for Food” drive – on behalf of Troop 282, Regina Arceo-Schulz shares photos and a wrapup of what they delivered to the West Seattle Food Bank today after circling back around to neighborhoods where they had left doorhangers last weekend:

We collected close to 300 pounds in the area we covered from SW Genesee St and SW Charlestown St, 44th Ave SW and 55th Ave SW. Thank you, West Seattle!

Regardless of whether you donated to SFF, other opportunities to donate are coming up – a big day of donations at local supermarkets, for example, is set for April 11th. You can also support the WSFB by buying tickets to the Instruments of Change Dinner/Auction in May – here’s how.

ADDED 10:21 AM SUNDAY: And thanks to Brian Christenson for sharing the news and a photo from Pack 793:

Pack 793 Cub Scouts would like to thank the North Admiral residents for their extremely kind support of Scouting for Food. This small band of scouts braved the wind and rain Saturday morning to collect 496 pounds of food for the West Seattle Food Bank! The Pack would also like to thank the Admiral Congregational United Church of Christ for allowing us to use their space for a meeting place since the grassy triangle is occupied with the temporary Fire Station.

High-school baseball: West Seattle shuts out Rainier Beach. P.S. – Boosters still selling M’s tickets!

March 21, 2015 at 1:54 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 3 Comments

The West Seattle High School baseball team won its first conference game of the season on Friday in a big shutout, 12-0 over Rainier Beach. Thanks to Caryn Johnson for the photo and report:

Jamie Maples #6 pitched the entire game. He struck out 12 and only gave up 1 hit. The West Seattle defense was able to keep Rainier Beach off the bases for the most part, only allowing one runner to reach as far as 2nd base. Lots of offense for the game by West Seattle. In the 2nd inning, they sent 11 batters to the plate.

Next game is Monday against O’Dea, at Hiawatha at 3:30.

Also coming up, the team’s game vs. Sedro Woolley at Safeco Field, one week from today, 12:30 pm on March 28th, admission free! To qualify for the High School Baseball Classic at Safeco again NEXT year, as well as to raise money for the Wildcats’ team, boosters are selling tickets for a Mariners game THIS season – 7:10 pm Monday, June 22nd, vs. Kansas City. You can buy one or more $12 tickets by e-mailing wshsmarinerstickets@gmail.com. (You’ll get a reply with info on what to do from there.)

Memorial on Monday for Roger Osman Loken, 1920-2015

March 21, 2015 at 11:34 am | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 1 Comment

Memorial services are planned on Monday for Roger O. Loken, a U.S. Army veteran whose long and storied life also included careers in teaching and real estate. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

It is with deep sadness that we announce our dad, Roger Osman Loken, passed away on March 15, 2015 at the age of 94. He was born on November 26, 1920, in Seattle to Gilbert and Maud Loken. He grew up in Ballard, where he met his wife of 69 years at a dancing school. He graduated from Ballard High School in 1939 and shortly thereafter enlisted in the Army at the age of 18, serving as a First Lieutenant in WWII in the Army Signal Corps in North Africa and Italy.

In 1948 Roger graduated from the University of WA with a BS in Zoology and earned his degree in teaching. He was awarded a full scholarship to Oregon State University, earning a Masters Degree in Biology in 1962; he learned to write and speak German in order to research his thesis on tardigrades.

His teaching career began in 1949 at Kettle Falls High School, where he taught science and was Principal until 1954. For over 60 years, his beloved Kettle Falls students kept in touch with him through annual reunions and correspondence. After leaving Kettle Falls, he returned to his native Seattle, where he taught science at Denny Middle School from 1954-1957. He finished his teaching career at West Seattle High School from 1957-1967 where he taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

Click to read the rest of Memorial on Monday for Roger Osman Loken, 1920-2015…

UPDATE: Pole problem outside West Seattle PCC fixed, store open

March 21, 2015 at 10:25 am | In Safety, West Seattle news, WS breaking news | 10 Comments

(SATURDAY NIGHT UPDATE: Pole fixed, store open)

10:25 AM: Thanks for all the tips (and the photo!). Police and firefighters are at PCC Natural Markets-West Seattle (WSB sponsor) because, we’re told, a utility pole was hit by a truck and is in danger of toppling. The store is still open, we’re told, but Stevens is closed off at California on the south side of the store’s parking lot. We’re en route to find out more.

10:47 AM: Here’s what our crew found out: Until the pole problem (which is on the alley off the west side of the store and its lot) is fixed, much of the parking lot is blocked off, as is Stevens from the alley to 44th SW. Thanks to David Whiting from the Admiral Neighborhood Association for this photo:

The parking that remains open is on the east side (along California). The store itself is not affected otherwise. (Added: Here’s a photo from our crew, showing the entirety of the pole:)

We’ll check back again later.

1:20 PM UPDATE: The store confirmed, when we stopped by a short time ago, what commenter OVR said – they’ll have to close temporarily when the repairs are under way, because power will have to be cut. No ETA for that so far. More of the parking lot is open (about half), in the meantime.

6:23 PM: Went back to check. Store is temporarily closed while pole repair is under way.

6:59 PM: Back at HQ, added the photo of repairs under way. No ETA on reopening but we’re told the store does hope to reopen sometime this evening (midnight is the usual closing time), so we’ll update when there’s word.

8:23 PM: Now that the pole repairs are over, the store’s open, says Melissa via Twitter, but no hot bar/soup for the rest of the night.

West Seattle Saturday: Raingardens, marionette shows, food drives, Zumba-thon, bowling, music, more!

March 21, 2015 at 6:30 am | In West Seattle news, WS miscellaneous | No Comments

(Tulip photographed last weekend by Flickr member Yel0Rose, shared via the WSB Flickr group)
Happy Saturday! From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

SCOUTING FOR FOOD PICKUP: If you received a tag or scheduled a pickup as part of local Scouts’ door-to-door food drive, get your donation outside ASAP today.

RAINGARDENS’ GROUNDBREAKING: Five new raingardens are getting started today with a groundbreaking celebration as part of the RainWise program. 10 am-11 am, come join the party and find out how you might benefit from the same program – celebratory toasts and kids’ activities. (9009 34th SW)

SEAFAIR COMMODORES BOWL-A-THON: 9:30 am at West Seattle Bowl, get rolling with the Seattle Seafair Commodores, benefiting the Seafair Scholarship Program for Women. All the info’s here. (39th/Oregon)

TWO MARIONETTE SHOWS! 10 or 11 am at Tibbetts United Methodist Church (WSB sponsor), catch a performance by Puppets Please Marionettes, to benefit the scholarship fund of the West Seattle Cooperative Preschool program. More info here. (3940 41st SW)

CUB SCOUT PACK 282 FOOD DRIVE @ THRIFTWAY: Another way to donate food and help fight hunger today – 11 am-4 pm with Pack 282 at West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) – more info here.

PINE LAKE CELLARS: Noon-5 pm, visit the West Seattle tasting room of Pine Lake Cellars (WSB sponsor) and try what this family-owned winery has to offer. (3400 Harbor SW)

ZUMBA-THON FOR Y’S ANNUAL CAMPAIGN: Party from 4:30-6:30 pm in the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor) gymnasium, to boost the Y’s Annual Campaign – details in our listing. (4515 36th SW)

‘STARRY NIGHT’ FOR PATHFINDER: The annual dinner/auction is tonight, 5 pm, at The Hall at Fauntleroy, as previewed here. If you’re going – browse the auction catalog here. (9131 California SW)

SLHS SPRING BINGO: 6 pm at the Seattle Lutheran High School Gymticket info here. (41st/Genesee)

COFFEE AND MUSIC: Roo Forrest and Friends are live tonight at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), 7-9 pm. (5612 California SW)

‘CHINGLISH,’ 2ND-TO-LAST WEEKEND: If you haven’t been to see this comedy at ArtsWest (WSB sponsor), consider that since its last performance is a week from tomorrow, why not check out the 7:30 pm show tonight? (4711 California SW)

MATT BAKER AT KENYON HALL, AFTERNOON & EVENING: “A high-energy, one-man variety show” is what you’ll see at Kenyon Hall at 3 pm today (family-oriented) or 7:30 tonight. (7904 35th SW)

BLACK VINYL ALL-STARS: 9 pm, live at Feedback Lounge in Morgan Junction. (6451 California SW)

LOOKING AHEAD 2 WEEKS … we’re putting together our customary Easter/Passover event page right now, so if you have anything special (brunch? egg hunt? services?) to share with the community, please e-mail us ASAP – editor@westseattleblog.com - thank you!

West Seattle scenes: Mini Pow-Wow at Highland Park Elementary

March 21, 2015 at 1:46 am | In Highland Park, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS culture/arts | 6 Comments

Dancing, drumming, and dinner were part of the festivities last night at Highland Park Elementary, as Native community members, family, and friends gathered for a Traditional Mini Pow Wow. We photographed Duwamish Tribe chair Cecile Hansen after the blessing she gave to open the event:

This was the second year of the event.

The group Niksokowaak – “all my children, all my relatives” – organized the Pow Wow.

Early alert: Aircraft carrier John C. Stennis to sail by on Monday

March 20, 2015 at 9:59 pm | In Seen at sea, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

FRIDAY NIGHT, 9:59 PM: For West Seattle water watchers who appreciate advance notice of significant sail-bys – the U.S. Navy sent word today that the carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) will be heading back out from Bremerton on Monday (March 23rd), for at-sea training exercises. No specific time yet.

MONDAY MORNING, 9:19 AM: The Stennis may already have gone by – we checked MarineTraffic.com a few minutes ago and there is an unspecified “Navy unit” already north of Elliott Bay. (9:45 note – yes, it’s passed, and we’re publishing reader photos.)

Update: Semi-soggy spring equinox sunset watch with Alice

March 20, 2015 at 6:26 pm | In Skies Over West Seattle, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

6:26 PM: If you were wondering – yes, the spring equinox sunset watch is on, says Alice – Solstice Park, starting around 6:45 pm.

(WSB photos by Torin Record-Sand)
8:32 PM: No sunset, but, as promised, Alice was there for a handful of skywatchers.

Those two were the youngest attendees – Alice’s daughter Vera (left), and Cameron.

If you’re new here, by the way, Alice (Enevoldsen) is a NASA Solar System Ambassador and, among other things promoting astronomy and sky-watching (such as writing Skies Over West Seattle for us, and publishing info at Alice’s Astro Info), has been hosting educational sunset viewings on equinox and solstice dates for going on six years! (Last year, the sun DID make a welcome-to-spring appearance.)

VIDEO: Crane-cam view as 1st tunnel-machine piece is lifted, moved

March 20, 2015 at 4:17 pm | In West Seattle news | 7 Comments

You paid for it, you might as well get to see it: WSDOT has just put together that time-lapse video of the action on Thursday lifting the first big piece of the Highway 99 tunneling machine, plus some activity involving that piece today (with a West Seattle cameo in the background). WSDOT says it was taken “from the view of the cab operator of the crane that lifted the segment.” Two more pieces will be lifted before the mega-lift of the huge cutterhead.

West Seattle food/drink notes: Alki Starbucks, Blue Moon Burgers, Mioposto in Admiral, Terra Cole Butchery, WS Brewing, and …

March 20, 2015 at 2:52 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle restaurants, WS beverages | 40 Comments

Updates and mysteries from the world of West Seattle food and beverages:

ALKI STARBUCKS REOPENS AFTER REMODELING: This morning’s reopening was confirmed by one of the 2742 Alki SW store’s biggest fans, Cami MacNamara of WebCami, who also sent the photo. The store shut down for just over a month for upgrades explained in this February report.

ALKI BLUE MOON BURGERS – ALMOST THERE: Also on Alki, you’ve probably noticed the new Blue Moon Burgers location at 2504 Alki SW has finally undergone major exterior transformation:

As happens with so many restaurant projects, it’s taken lots longer than expected, but a spokesperson tells us it’s no more than a few weeks away. It’s been exactly a year since we reported first word of the plan, confirmed in this followup. We’ll report the official opening date as soon as we get it.

MIOPOSTO ADMIRAL UPDATES: Speaking of taking longer than expected, some permit delays for the new Mioposto restaurant at 2141 California SW in The Admiral District kept work from starting in earnest before this week.

We checked in this week with proprietor Jeremy Hardy, who says that now that the work is under way, he’s guessing “mid-summer.” And there’s other news: “We have changed plans, however, and, due to requests and hungry looking people in the afternoons that we’ve been in Admiral, we will be opening for lunch as well.”

Now, two mysteries:

MYSTERY #1 – TERRA COLE BUTCHERY: We’ve received numerous inquiries about the status of Terra Cole Butchery in The Junction, which has been closed for at least a few days, and appears to be devoid of inventory. No note on the door nor any updates online, but the shop has been up for sale for four months and the online listing is still open. We have voicemail and e-mail messages out in hopes of hearing something about the store’s status. It opened a year and a half ago.

MYSTERY #2 – WEST SEATTLE BREWING: Questions have also come in over the past few days about the status of West Seattle Brewing at 4415 Fauntleroy Way SW in The Triangle, which too hasn’t opened for at least several days. Its website is offline, but it still has a Facebook page, on which the “what’s going on?” question has gone unanswered. As with Terra Cole, we’ve gone by, left voicemail, and sent e-mail, but have not heard anything definitive. (MONDAY 3/23 UPDATE: WS Brewing’s Drew has replied and says they will reopen. Look for a separate update in biznotes later today.)

One more note – just discovered while writing this story:

ANOTHER BEACH DRIVE RESTAURANT? No details yet but an early-stage DPD permit application says 4029 Beach Drive SW, the waterfront brick building north of Weather Watch Park, is seeking a change of use to first floor restaurant, second-floor residential. It’s right across the street from what’s currently the only restaurant on Beach Drive, La Rustica. We’re working to find out more.

SPEAKING OF LA RUSTICA … ABOUT THE FORMER LA ROMANZA: The new mosaic tilework in front of the former La Romanza Bistro in The Junction keeps catching eyes, and inspiring questions. When we went by one day to ask, we encountered La Romanza’s Aimee Pellegrini (whose family runs La Rustica, if you weren’t already aware), who declined comment at the time, but has since told us that whatever they’re working on is “a family project” and being pursued at a leisurely pace – details when they are ready to announce them.

Followup: Judge allows legal action challenging Terminal 5 lease to proceed; Port, Foss reaction

March 20, 2015 at 1:02 pm | In Port of Seattle, West Seattle news | 10 Comments

1:02 PM: King County Superior Court Judge Mariane Spearman has ruled that the environmental-coalition lawsuit challenging the Port of Seattle‘s interim lease for Terminal 5 can proceed, one week after hearing arguments on a motion in the case. We’re still reading the ruling, but for starters, here’s what the coalition says in a news release this afternoon:

Seattle-area groups are challenging the Port of Seattle’s lack of public process and failure to assess the environmental repercussions of becoming Shell’s Arctic drilling homeport.

On March 2, 2015, the environmental groups pushed for swift review of their legal challenge in King County Superior Court.

Today Judge Mariane Spearman ruled that the case can be heard and directed the parties to negotiate the record for her review. The coalition is asking that the court vacate the Port of Seattle’s lease based on violations of the State Environmental Policy Act and the Shoreline Management Act. The Earthjustice lawsuit explains that the Port violated its long-range sustainability plans and its shoreline permit, which designate Terminal 5 as a cargo terminal and not a homeport for a drilling fleet. Both Shell and the Port were not forthcoming in specifying when the oil giant’s drilling fleet is expected to arrive in Seattle’s waters.

IN RELATED NEWS: A new public records release shows an intensive industry and labor lobbying effort to urge the Port of Seattle to enter into the lease. The Port lease was made known to industry long before any public disclosure. See document here.

The first public disclosure of the lease was in the agenda released days before the January 13th Port Commission meeting at which it was first publicly discussed and at which three of five commissioners affirmed letting staff proceed with it. On February 11th, in a letter to the environmental coalition, Port CEO Ted Fick announced he had signed the lease on February 9th. At the commission’s March 10th meeting, the open-public-comment period spanned more than three hours, with most of the speakers expressing opposition to the lease (WSB as-it-happened coverage here). The commission’s next meeting is next Tuesday (March 24th), with a semi-related item on the agenda.

ADDED 1:21 PM: We’ve just read the ruling. Among key points related to what was argued in court last Friday, Judge Spearman says the “Washington State Constitution recognizes the right to seek discretionary review of an administrative agency decision under the court’s inherent constitutional power” – so the decision to enter into the lease without a separate environmental review is in her jurisdiction. While the port contends that Foss hosting vessels from the Shell Arctic-drilling fleet would not be a change from the long-permitted use of Terminal 5 as a “cargo terminal,” the judge noted the coalition’s quoting of “Vessel Berth Moorage and Provisioning” in the port briefing memo for the aforementioned January 13th commission meeting, and wrote in today’s ruling, “These activities appear to be qualitatively different than Eagle Marine Services’ previous use of Terminal 5 as a marine container terminal.” (That was the terminal’s tenant before T-5 was shut down last summer in anticipation of the modernization project.) So the judge has granted the coalition’s request for a “writ of review” – a type of legal procedure explained here.

ADDED 4:36 PM: We’ve received comments from the Port and from Foss. First, from the Port via spokesperson Peter McGraw:

The ruling today is only a preliminary step in this matter. The judge’s ruling does not prevent Foss Maritime from continuing to use the terminal as described in the lease. Nor does it conclude that the port or Foss have failed to comply with any law. It does direct the parties to prepare a record so that the court can review the port’s compliance with SEPA. We look forward to providing this information to the court. The port continues to be committed to fully comply with any and all requirements and regulations.

And from Foss via spokesperson Paul Queary:

We are confident that our use of Terminal 5 will be in compliance with its current permit, and we will show that in court.

According to Foss, 101 people are currently working “on various jobs” at T-5, and 63 more are doing related work at Vigor Shipyard. (We noted the latter in our coverage of last week’s Port Commission hearing.)

Traffic alerts for NEXT weekend: Alaskan Way Viaduct inspection closures, Highway 99 to the north, I-90

March 20, 2015 at 12:00 pm | In Alaskan Way Viaduct, West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | 1 Comment

A week and a half after first mention, the official alert about next weekend’s Alaskan Way Viaduct inspection closures is out, including details of other Highway 99 work PLUS another westbound I-90 constriction (a similar closure a few weeks ago backed up I-5 just north of the bridge, so beware). Read on for details from WSDOT:

Click to read the rest of Traffic alerts for NEXT weekend: Alaskan Way Viaduct inspection closures, Highway 99 to the north, I-90…

You name the school! Community suggestions sought for new elementary on Genesee Hill

March 20, 2015 at 11:19 am | In Genesee Hill, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 20 Comments

(Rendering envisioning the new school’s interior)

As construction continues on the new elementary school at the site of the former Genesee Hill Elementary, the process of deciding what to call it has just expanded to include you! Here’s the announcement:

The West Seattle community, along with Schmitz Park Elementary families, staff and Genesee Hill School alumni, are being invited to submit suggestions for the name of the new school building being constructed to replace the old building on the Genesee Hill school site.

This Seattle Public Schools Building Excellence IV (BEX IV) project was approved by Seattle voters in February 2013. The Schmitz Park Elementary program is scheduled to move into the new building at the Genesee Hill site in September, 2016.

“We hope to select a name that honors our legacy as Schmitz Park Elementary, while building a new tradition, in a new location, on Genesee Hill,” said Gerrit Kischner, Principal, Schmitz Park Elementary.

If you wish to nominate a name, including the current Genesee Hill School name, please email it
to communications@schmitzparkpta.org. All nominations need to be received by March 31, 2015. Please include the criteria for why the name should be selected. Seattle Public Schools’ School Board naming procedure states that the naming of new buildings should be selected based upon: (a) geographical location or local community name; or (b) distinguished individuals who have served the local community, state, or nation, whether in education or other fields.

Once names have been received, a committee that includes a representative from the Southwest Seattle Historical Society will compile the names. The community will then be asked to vote for their preferred name. The results of the poll, along with other submitted information, will be used to make a recommendation that will be sent to the Seattle Public Schools superintendent for review and consideration. The superintendent would then make a recommendation to the School Board for approval. For more information, please visit schmitzparkpta.org.

No significant environmental impacts from Terminal 5 upgrades? Days left to comment on decision related to long-term plan

March 20, 2015 at 10:36 am | In Port of Seattle, West Seattle news | 11 Comments

(From Port presentation last year regarding T-5 modernization)
While the Port of Seattle‘s interim lease for West Seattle’s Terminal 5 has been in the spotlight lately, a comment period quietly opened for your chance to have a say on a decision related to its future beyond that or any interim use. A nearby neighbor flagged us on this, wanting to make sure you know before it’s too late to comment.

Here’s what’s happening:

The Port says it has decided that its modernization plan for Terminal 5 (first covered here last June) does not need an environmental-impact statement, and for those who have something to say about that, it’s accepting comments until 4 pm Monday (March 23rd). Read the Determination of Non-Significance notice that neighbors received, here or below:

This 42-page Port document, the State Environmental Policy Act “checklist,” explains why they don’t believe a full environmental review is needed. It also says the work is expected to start early next year.

Some neighbors say they plan to comment about expected impacts including increased carbon emissions and noise, especially the long-running issue of train noise, which they expect will increase as “more trains will be needed to offload the super-container ships.”

As noted in the document embedded above, you can comment by e-mailing SEPA.p@portseattle.org by the Monday afternoon deadline – but be sure to include a postal-mail address. Again, this is separate from and not related to the “interim lease” for part of T-5, except that some of this work – which could cost up to a quarter-billion dollars, the port says – would overlap with that lease, which covers a third of T-5.

West Seattle schools: Best-selling author coming to Madison MS

March 20, 2015 at 9:48 am | In West Seattle books, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | No Comments

From Madison Middle School librarian Stacia Bell, word of a big event next week:

Next Tuesday, March 24th, popular young-adult author Marissa Meyer will be visiting Madison Middle School to talk with students about her Lunar Chronicles dystopian series and her experience being an author. There will be two author talk assemblies in the Madison cafeteria—one at 9:40 and the other at 1:30 — and parents and families are welcome to attend. Marissa will also be selling and signing her books after each assembly for interested students. Paperback copies of the books will be on sale for $10.95 and hardback copies for $19.70. Students and families can pay with cash or check (make checks out to University Book Store). Students are also welcome to bring previously purchased copies of her books to get them personally signed by Marissa. And as always, all of the books in this series will be available for checkout in our Madison Library. Contact Madison Librarian Stacia Bell at smbell@seattleschools.org if you have questions. Hope to see you out!

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Friday, with spring just hours away

March 20, 2015 at 6:12 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | 1 Comment

(Four WS-relevant views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
Happy end of winter! Spring arrives at 3:45 this afternoon (and Spring Equinox Sunset Watch with Alice Enevoldsen is three hours later). One weekend note: Washington State Ferries starts its spring/summer schedule on Sunday.

UP, UP, AND AWAY: The first big piece of the Highway 99 tunnel machine to come out of the repair-access pit achieved liftoff on Thursday – see it here.

TWO SURVEYS FOR YOU: Both about transportation – the West Seattle Transportation Coalition is focusing on parking, and the truth of what we do and don’t use and why; take that survey here. And the city is asking your thoughts related to its big levy plan – take that survey here.

West Seattle Thriftway anniversary party revs up with Ladies Night

March 20, 2015 at 2:57 am | In Fun stuff to do, West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

As West Seattle Thriftway kicked off its 27th anniversary celebration this week, it brought back an event that was a huge hit last year – Ladies Night. Above, Thriftway’s Kolleen, Michele, and Gina played host for the throng who came to shop, sip, taste, and otherwise have fun:

Other local businesses and organizations were part of the party – below, Heather and Nancy from Illusions Hair Design:

Chris and Shelly from Sound Yoga:

Sandy and Danielle from ArtsWest:

The big basket of eggs was a reminder that Easter is just two weeks away – preceded as always by the big egg hunt at Thriftway:

This year, that’ll be Saturday, April 4th. Meantime, Thriftway’s anniversary sale continues through the end of March.

*West Seattle Thriftway, Illusions Hair Design, Sound Yoga, and ArtsWest are all current WSB sponsors.

Southwest Design Review Board doubleheader, report #2: 44th SW Studios advances to 2nd round

March 20, 2015 at 2:11 am | In Development, West Seattle news | No Comments

(‘Character rendering’ of design option 3 – in the full-size version, the red lines point to text boxes)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The first West Seattle microhousing project to go through Design Review made it out of the first stage of the process in its first try on Thursday night.

Most of the concerns voiced about the 44th SW Studios project at 4528 44th SW in The Junction had to do with whether the building could be shrunk a bit in order to more creatively inhabit its site. (See the design “packet” here.)

In the end, the board voted unanimously to let it advance out of the Early Design Guidance stage:

Click to read the rest of Southwest Design Review Board doubleheader, report #2: 44th SW Studios advances to 2nd round…

West Seattle Crime Watch: Arbor Heights exposer reported

March 19, 2015 at 10:25 pm | In Arbor Heights, Crime, West Seattle news | 6 Comments

Reader report with an alert from an Arbor Heights resident who encountered an exposer this afternoon:

In the alley behind 100th between 37th and 39th, a 20-30-year-old white male (was) masturbating, watching me mow my lawn. I contacted SPD. Be aware of your surroundings!

That’s the only description given.

Design Review Board doubleheader, report #1: West Seattle CVS sent back for second round of Early Design Guidance

March 19, 2015 at 8:11 pm | In Development, West Seattle news | 13 Comments

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

In the first of two Southwest Design Review Board sessions tonight, the early-stage plan for the proposed West Seattle CVS drugstore at 4722 Fauntleroy Way SW was sent back, with the project team told to try again.

Key concerns included the fact that the project team hadn’t brought three truly distinct shape/size/siting options for the board to review, as required, and the fact that the one siting option would appear from the Fauntleroy/Alaska gateway nearby as if it were floating in “a sea of parking.” The entirety of the discussion, from public comment to board discussion, was underscored by the awkwardness of this 1-story building being on the drawing board for an urban, rapidly densifying area and a site zoned for much more than this project would bring – even though the early design does include some “plaza” area and could accommodate a food truck as community members had hoped. Pedestrian safety all around the site was also a key concern. (See the design proposal in the “packet,” here.)

Here’s how the meeting unfolded on the way to the “try again” decision:

Click to read the rest of Design Review Board doubleheader, report #1: West Seattle CVS sent back for second round of Early Design Guidance…

Safety alert: Tree topples near bus stop south of The Junction

March 19, 2015 at 5:13 pm | In Safety, West Seattle news | 8 Comments

Thanks to Cindi for the photo – that tree along the west side of California SW toppled this afternoon, taking some of the surrounding pavement with it, so if you are walking along that part of the street south of The Junction this evening, be careful. Since her photo, a tree crew has been on the scene and, we confirmed with a quick trip that way, turned the branches and trunk into chunks, currently piled between the surviving trees. The pavement in this tree’s vicinity still looks a little precarious.

Neighborhood Conservation Districts to honor history? Next step includes 3 meetings, one in West Seattle

March 19, 2015 at 4:32 pm | In Development, West Seattle history, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

(From the Seattle Municipal Archives, 1900 photo of store in 1600 block 44th SW)
Last fall, we reported on Councilmember Tom Rasmussen‘s study of whether Neighborhood Conservation Districts might help some areas work to keep some of their character, even in a time of growth and change. Now, he’s taking the next step – public meetings to find out if neighborhoods are interested in the idea. One of those meetings will be in West Seattle next month. Here’s the announcement:

Does your neighborhood have strong character that should be preserved, but isn’t eligible or appropriate for historic district status?

Councilmember Tom Rasmussen is holding a series of Neighborhood Conservation District (NCD) public meetings to gather resident input about establishing a program in Seattle. NCDs can be best described as a hybrid between Seattle’s Landmark Review Districts and our Design Review Program where unique neighborhoods can help dictate architectural style, square footage requirements, or other design elements.

Learn more & share your perspective:

· West Seattle, April 7, 6:00 p.m., High Point Center, 6920 34th Ave SW

Wondering how this relates to yesterday’s announcement about a “historical character survey” of The Junction? That *could* be a preface to a special district, although, as Southwest Seattle Historical Society executive director Clay Eals replied when we asked a related question during yesterday’s briefing, creating a district would mean going through a “political” process – while the survey, for starters, has no strings attached.

Speaking of stolen vehicles … minivan taken, ‘car seats & all’

March 19, 2015 at 3:13 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

West Seattle Crime Watch reader report from JW:

Our dark blue 2009 Toyota Sienna minivan was stolen last night from Fauntlee Hills at 3:15 am, car seats and all! WA plates 909YUE. Please call 911 if you see it.

We woke up to the alarm and watched the taillights disappearing up the street. At least one other neighbor’s car alarm had gone off at around 2.30am as well. Prowlers?

P.S. If you missed our report on this week’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, published very early today – lots of quick updates on local police/crime.

Did someone steal your bike? Check out these photos

March 19, 2015 at 2:12 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | No Comments

After a bike-theft bust downtown, Seattle Police have photographed the dozens of bicycles they recovered, and posted photos on SPD Blotter. If you’re a bike-theft victim, check it out in case yours is among them.

Five years after last try, Seattle Parks smoking ban proposed again

March 19, 2015 at 11:57 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle parks | 55 Comments

Five years ago, Seattle Parks‘ then-Superintendent Tim Gallagher decided to ban smoking in all city parks. But instead, as recommended by the Parks Board, the system ended up with a rule banning tobacco use “within 25 feet of other park patrons and in play areas, beaches, or playgrounds.” Today, there’s a new proposal to ban smoking in parks – here’s the memo spelling it out. Mayor Murray has already issued a statement saying he’s for it. Next step: The Parks Board will have a public hearing at 6:30 pm April 16th at Parks HQ downtown. (WSB file photo: Container of cigarette butts found on beaches, shown at Alki last year)

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