That’s the overgrown and undermaintained “Gateway to West Seattle,” along the Fauntleroy end of The Bridge. Just a month is left now till the September 13th event that pretty much needs to be the volunteer effort of the century to get this cleaned up — all the way from Walking on Logs to 35th/Fauntleroy — and all you have to do is commit two hours to be part of it – but organizers REALLY need to hear from you NOW. Here’s the latest from Nancy Driver, who’s not only coordinating volunteer help but also the massive preparation work that’s going into maximizing what those volunteers will be able to do that day (with free coffee! snacks! warm feeling of having accomplished something!) as well as soliciting sponsors for some of the costs the city doesn’t cover (like blackberry-munching goats!):
Stan Lock and I met this morning with the City of Seattle’s Clean & Green Interdepartmental team and did a reconnaissance of the cleanup area. The plan is that the City (SDOT) will be trimming up the bottoms of the trees so that Wa. Dept of Corrections can get in and clear out underbrush under the trees. The City will also be blocking off the lane of traffic adjacent to the clean up site for the 6 hours of the cleanup. Additionally, the City is providing three trucks to haul off green debris and bagged litter, as well as providing rakes and garbage bags.
The City is firmly behind the project and has made a substantial commitment to the project but it’s a huge area to clean up and they can’t provide all the resources to do everything that needs to be done to do a complete cleanup. The community needs to show its support, not only through volunteering the day of the project but by donating funding to get the additional needed work done. There’s probably a half acre or more of blackberries to contend with so we hope to raise money to get in a herd of goats for two to three days to clean out the blackberries. This will cost $825 per day. We are also hoping to raise money to have a tree company come in and finish trimming up the trees and take out any trees that need to be removed. There is substantial tree work that needs to be done and based on the estimates received, this will cost around $10,000 to $12,000. We hope that West Seattle merchants and companies developing properties in West Seattle will step forward to cover the costs for this work. Of course, we would welcome donations from individuals too.
Beyond the actual cleanup, we also need local groups and businesses to step up and “adopt” a portion of the gateway area. The City wants to know that once we get this area cleaned up, it will be maintained. Adopting a portion of the area would mean a commitment similar to one you’d have with the “Adopt a Street” program.
We need to pull together 200 or more volunteers for the cleanup day to donate 2 hours of their time. We will need groups of volunteers of 60 to 70 at two-hour intervals starting at 9 am. Volunteers will be asked to do some hand weeding, rake up green debris and pick up and bag litter. Tools and safety vests will be provided by the City, and gloves have been donated by the West Seattle Garden Tour Committee. Diva Espresso is providing coffee and we are talking to other merchants to chip in with some light snacks.
Some of the groups that have committed to pulling together teams of volunteers are: Mars Hill Church, Karen Lavalle/Windermere Realty, West Seattle Garden Tour, Democrats Work, and Harbor Properties.
Because this is such a big undertaking, we have to be well organized on the day of the cleanup to get everything done. This means we need to line up as many volunteers as possible prior to the cleanup (the earlier the better) so that we can have more or less equal numbers of volunteers showing up for the 9 am group, the 11 am group and the 1 pm group.
Anyone interested in volunteering, helping pull together volunteers, or helping with fundraising should contact me at email@example.com.
Thanks to all who have already volunteered.
Nancy Driver/Fairmount Community Association