West Seattle, Washington
See the orange and blue on that map? It marks all the West Seattle streets where Seattle City Light crews will work over the next few months to clear tree branches from power lines. This was one of several maps shown at City Light’s open house at Hiawatha Community Center tonight. Only a trickle of turnout, but if you’re in the targeted area, City Light spokesperson Scott Thomsen says you will get direct notification — City Light workers have already started going door-to-door to tell residents what’s going on and what they can expect to happen; if you’re not home when they stop by, they’ll leave an info-card hanging on your door. The “blue” area will be tackled first, starting within the next couple weeks (loosely described, this includes parts of Seaview, Morgan Junction, Genesee Hill, and most of Beach Drive); City Light managers say the work will last about two months before they move on to the areas on the map in orange. The only significant section stretching east of California Ave is south of Fairmount Park; one spur that travels almost all the way to the eastern edge of West Seattle is along Brandon. If you have a tree that’s within 10 feet of a power line, you will be offered the option of pruning (which in most cases will entail fairly dramatic branch removal) or taking out the tree entirely (and replacing it with something unlikely to grow into the line). And it’s all in the interest of preventing further power-outage catastrophes like what happened around West Seattle in the December 2006 windstorm; trees too close to power lines, City Light says, are the number one cause.
Housing is a popular theme around here this week (and many weeks). Tonight we welcome a real-estate agent listing a West Seattle home, and we welcome an ad for new apartment homes in The Junction. First, the home: Jayson Cantu from Windermere R/E Wall Street has listed a home at 4415 SW Stevens — a sketch of it is part of his ad in our right sidebar. You can see a photo gallery at Jayson’s website (click here); you can call him at 206/851-1147. Now, the apartments — The MD is a brand-new apartment building “in the heart of The Junction,” now leasing 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units; The MD too has lots of info online (click here). Thanks to Jayson and The MD Apartments for supporting WSB; if you’re interested in finding out how to join them and our other sponsors, here’s the page to see.
At least one community-group mailing list that we are on has just received a letter from the principal of Chief Sealth High School, John Boyd, in which he writes, “I feel like I cannot remain silent regarding my feelings about this issue any longer,” adding that he is “weighing the merits of options two and three” — two is the current project plus at least $5 million additional improvements to CSHS, three is a Denny rebuild on its existing site, with Sealth still getting some improvements. Here’s the letter as it was distributed; or if you have trouble with PDFs, here’s the text:Read More
Lora Lewis from Hotwire Coffee, WSB’s inaugural sponsor, just e-mailed to say: “Weâ€™ve just finalized a purchase of a coffee shop at the Pike Place Market; opening of the new Hotwire Pike Place Market will be the first week of March. My manager, Rena Poppell, has decided to jump into the world of small business ownership and will be opening this shop under the Hotwire name. This new location actually eclipses other Internet Cafes in the area and will make Hotwire the largest line of Internet coffee shops in the region. Also, by the middle of 2008 weâ€™ll be set to offer Hotwire as a micro-franchise to people who are interested in opening their own Hotwire Online Coffeehouse.” Lora says you can find out more about franchising by checking the links on the lower-right side of the Hotwire home page (higher up the page, by the way, is the latest on the Hotwire Valentine matchmaking event).
The jury is now deciding the case of the two former Huling Brothers sales staffers. A court clerk says they got the case just after 2pm. That means defense testimony lasted just one day.
4PM UPDATE: The jury has gone home; they’ll be back in the morning.
For those following this internationally publicized case — according to the P-I’s Big Blog, Arbor Heights resident Edda Mellas, mother of tabloid-featured Italy murder suspect Amanda Knox, gave her first major interview to ABCNEWS, airing this Friday night.
In addition to the Seattle City Light tree-trimming meeting mentioned earlier, there’s another major event in West Seattle tonight — the second “open house” about the forthcoming RapidRide bus service, to replace route 54 in 2011. Though it’s three years out, several key decisions are being made now — with your input — including the route it will follow through and near The Junction, where its “terminals” (more than just bus stops, as shown above) will be, and where it will end (Morgan Junction? Fauntleroy? Westwood Village?) — and you can tell Metro what you think, as well as voice other opinions and ask questions, when you drop by the “open house” at the West Seattle Senior Center tonight, any time between 5:30 and 8:30. (Detailed WSB coverage of the RapidRide presentation at the last JuNO meeting is here; our brief writeup of last week’s RapidRide open house in Fauntleroy is here. If you miss tonight, you have two more chances — an “information table” at the Senior Center noon-3 pm tomorrow, and a meeting at the Southwest Library on Feb. 19th. You can also have a say by completing an online questionnaire here; deadline is this Friday.)
We checked with Lt. Steve Paulsen @ the Southwest Precinct this morning regarding two things around midnight last night — one that we heard on the scanner, one that a reader asked about. First, a report of possible gunshots heard in the California/Stevens vicinity (map) — he says police got a couple calls, checked it out; couldn’t find any evidence of what it was (could have been fireworks, hard to tell). Second, police recovered a stolen car after an operation that was quite interesting to listen to on the scanner: a Mercedes originally stolen from Tukwila was spotted in High Point, then at the 7-11 at 35th/Avalon, then Lt. Paulsen himself — out on late-night patrol — spotted it on Sylvan Way — after setting up “containment,” officers caught one suspect near 42nd/Fauntleroy, then recovered the car near 36th/Graham.
UPDATED 9:50 AM: Better photo from Bob Bollen (thank you!), followed by 40 seconds of video we went back to get right around the peak tide (about quarter past nine).
This photo’s from just after 8 o’clock, and the high tide won’t even peak till just after 9 o’clock. But if you go out to gawk, wear something waterproof – the spray will get you all the way across the street from the water!
No snow, but there’s a strong breeze buffeting trees around, at least where we are — and that, according to Seattle City Light, is the number one cause of power outages: trees vs. power lines. As first reported here last month, City Light crews are coming to West Seattle soon for what the utility says is the first extensive round of tree-trimming here in almost a decade – and if you have a tree that’s in the way, NOT cutting is NOT an option — so SCL really wants to make sure everyone understands what’s going on here, before the trucks show up, and why the cuts tend to be big and dramatic, not just a snip here and a snip there. Best place to find out exactly what will happen and when – and to see if your specific neighborhood is included in what City Light’s announcement two weeks ago described as “Alki and North Admiral west of California Avenue in the north end of West Seattle and Genesee, Gatewood and Fairmount Park neighborhoods in the south end of West Seattle” – is to go to tonight’s meeting, 6:30 pm, Hiawatha Community Center.