day : 06/11/2008 13 results

Fairmount meeting: BlueStar close to another Triangle deal

Tonight’s Fairmount Community Association meeting was the first neighborhood-council gathering at which BlueStar Management has publicly discussed its plan to acquire yet another piece of Junction/Triangle real estate: the Huling Chrysler site just east of the 76 station at Fauntleroy/Alaska. It’s immediately across Fauntleroy from one of the projects BlueStar already has on the drawing board, Gateway Center (the old Huling Buick site), which in turn is across 39th from BlueStar’s Fauntleroy Place (Whole Foods). Shown in the photo above, from tonight’s meeting in the Providence Mount St. Vincent chapel, is BlueStar’s Easton Craft; read on to see what he had to say about the new proposal and the seemingly endless questions about whether the Whole Foods project is really going forward, plus other notes from the meeting (including Harbor Properties‘ presentation):Read More

Update from Seacrest diving-accident victim’s family

This information has been emerging in the comments section on our followup to last Saturday’s diver rescue near Seacrest (original WSB report here; followup here), as well as in e-mail exchanges with the diver’s sister, but since many people wouldn’t normally check back on a days-old story, we want to publish an update here: According to West Seattle resident Lila Tran, sister of the rescued diver Duy Tran (shown at left in a photo she shared), “After some tests, the doctors told us that there is zero hope for recovery. At this point, the machine is keeping him breathing but his brain is completely gone.” She added that her mother is still holding onto hope of a miracle, and so was planning to move Duy — a 30-year-old father of two — to a “long-term care facility.” We had asked Lila if there was anything the community could do to help, and after a few days’ thought she told us they may indeed need help with medical bills; we are waiting to hear information on either a fund to which people can contribute, or a PayPal link, and will let you know when we get that information. Meantime, the most recent comment on our previous update comes from a contractor for whom Duy had worked; he writes, “I would like to say that ‘Lou’ I know him by, is a very great man, and I’m DEEPLY saddened by this. I am a General Contractor and Lou is our hardwood floor installer, and is a very honorable man who I have gotten to know well over the past couple years. It hit me hard on Monday when Lou didn’t show up for the job…I knew something happened because he has never missed a deadline, and then I spoke with his brother and it broke my heart to hear this.” Seattle Police divers were investigating immediately after the accident on Saturday morning; some accounts of what happened have been posted on this Northwest Dive Club forum thread.

West Seattle Weather Watch: No major trouble so far

November 6, 2008 9:03 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle weather

In the “no news is good news” vein, we did want to let you know that so far we haven’t heard of any major problems around West Seattle, though the rain is steady and the night is young. If you have to go out, don’t just drive carefully, also walk carefully, since so many wet slippery leaves are on sidewalks, parking strips, gutters, etc. All of King County remains under an “urban and small stream flood advisory” from the National Weather Service till early tomorrow morning; that’s detailed here. Meantime, the county has activated its Flood Warning Center because of some river trouble – you can watch for alerts on that and other regional emergency-related news at We’ll keep watch on into the night and starting early for the morning commute too, since that’s when these kind of conditions can lead to the most trouble.

Huge crowd at 1st city-organized California Place Park meeting

We’re at Hiawatha Community Center for the first city-organized meeting on the proposal to add a “playscape” to California Place Park. About 100 people here – biggest turnout we’ve seen at a public meeting in a while. The “no change” crowd seems to have the most vocal representation so far. City Parks Superintendent Tim Gallagher (at left in the photo above) addressed the crowd at the start of the meeting. Full report later. 7:48 PM NOTE: It’s been contentious at times – emotional at times – this is the first of four meetings – no dates for the future meetings are set yet. We will let you know the moment they are. Full details to come.

What you won’t see when Southwest Pool reopens tomorrow

November 6, 2008 4:32 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

You’d probably have to be a real Southwest Pool devotee to notice what is NOT in that picture we took this afternoon, during a tour of the work that’s been done since the pool closed — thanks to project manager Garrett Farrell, who gave us a guided preview tour just before the mid-June shutdown (see it here), then sent word today that he could squeeze in a pre-reopening tour if we were interested. That, despite his work zone still being a hive of activity, with contractors, pool staffers, painters, and inspectors – note all the permit paperwork on the front window, shown at left. (Give up on the top photo guess yet? The pool’s old, stained waterslide is no more.) But there’s a lot more you won’t see which constitutes the infrastructure improvements and upgrades that the project was really all about. For example, take a look at the blue structure that’s been added on to the northeast side of the pool building:

Unless you are a staffer or contractor, you’ll never see the air-circulation equipment that’s inside – but we got to climb a ladder for a sneak peek (that’s Farrell, surveying the work):

We’re processing video and pix to add to this report, along with more information on the power, energy-saving, and water-treatment features that have been added (plus one effect poolgoers will notice from the new air-circulation system). But we wanted to get this first part out fast enough to let you know, it’s confirmed — after a couple delays along the way, and what turned out to be almost five months of work, Southwest Pool — West Seattle’s only city-run indoor pool — WILL reopen at noon tomorrow. ADDED THURSDAY EVENING: More on the improvements resulting from the months of work and installation of new equipment, including the energy-efficiency specifics:Read More

Junction development: Official comment time for Conner buildings

From the city’s latest semiweekly Land Use Information Bulletin: Formal applications have been deemed “complete” for for the two buildings that Conner Homes proposes in The Junction, California/Alaska and Alaska/42nd. That means the formal comment period is open — for the next 13 days. You can send those comments through Nov. 19th via the city’s online form, by clicking “comment on application” on this page for the California/Alaska building and on this page for the Alaska/42nd building. The city pages now describe both as 7-story buildings, with 72 residential units in the California building and 126 in the 42nd building, plus the 307-space underground garage (requiring a subterranean “alley vacation” that needs City Council approval). P.S. Today’s LUIB also included a reminder of the next Design Review meeting for the Admiral Safeway project; as we first told you a week ago, that meeting will be at 6:30 pm 11/20, West Seattle (Admiral) Library branch.

West Seattle Weather Watch: City crews ready for anything

Serious rain off and on so far today — forecast has updated with an alert of “heavy rainfall possible tonight through Friday morning” — and the city’s already in “urban flood response” mode, according to an alert from Seattle Public Utilities. We talked with spokesperson Andy Ryan, who says SPU is keeping close watch on known trouble spots around the city, including parts of North Delridge (who can forget what happened 11 months ago); WSB’er Chris, in fact, tweeted that he was “delighted to see the utility crew cleaning up/checking on the Delridge onramp at 5:45 this morning” and suggests we remind everyone that the Drainage Emergency Hotline is 206-386-1800. (At left, the view through the window, er, windshield, of the WSB Mobile Office. Anyone recognize the backdrop?)

West Seattle Crime Watch: Party turns “disarming”

Last night at the North Delridge Neighborhood Council meeting (full report on main topics coming up later), some attendees (good crowd BTW!) were abuzz about e-mail from handcuffs_2.jpga neighbor detailing a Halloween night scare. Before reporting it, we checked this morning with Lt. Steve Paulsen at the Southwest Precinct to confirm the basics of what happened: Just before 3 am Saturday, “officers responded to a disturbance in the 5600 blk of 26th Ave SW (map). An unwanted guest came to the party with a rifle. Party guests wrestled the gun away and secured the subject. Police took the suspect into custody.” According to the neighbor’s e-mail, it was an assault rifle (police don’t dispute this, though we haven’t yet seen the full report), and “securing” the suspect involved duct tape. 4 PM UPDATE: MB just left this as a comment – wanted to add it here too for those who don’t usually read comments:

I can’t help but comment since I was at the party and grew up just down the street, so I know the neighborhood well. My mom mentioned it to a neighbor, who then brought it up at the recent Delridge meeting. I had already gone home when this went down, but it was my brave husband who took the rifle away from this idiot…and it was an AK47. I can’t thank him and his friends enough for literally saving the day. My husband initiated, but his amazing and brave group of friends were right behind him to help. They showed GREAT restraint in not doing serious physical harm to this guy. Thanks to them the night ended with no one hurt. I want to stress that this was not a party full of drunk teenagers or bad people who brought this on in any way. We had a great night with no problems until this happened. For whatever reason this guy didn’t like being told the party was about over. Thank god for people like my husband who aren’t willing to stand by and watch a tragedy unfold without trying to stop it. I am shaking with pride as I type! I guess he learned a thing or two during his two deployments (2005 in Iraq and 2007 in Afghanistan, he just got home in May). I am a lucky lady

New WSB sponsor: Twelfth Night Productions’ “Bullshot Crummond”

Post-election and pre-(potential) weathermania, are you ready for some laughs? We’re welcoming a new sponsor – Twelfth Night Productions, opening “Bullshot Crummond” tomorrow night at Youngstown Arts Center. Here’s the official announcement: “Before there was Austin Powers, before there was James Bond, there was … Bullshot Crummond! International man of action! … well … British man of action! … well … he certainly is British. Twelfth Night Productions presents Bullshot Crummond, a parody of the British pulp hero Bulldog Drummond, written by Ron House, Diz White, John Neville-Andrews, Alan Shearman, and Derek Cunningham. Bullshot Crummond was before James Bond and before special effects, providing much of the fun in this hilarious send up of 1930s low budget “B” action movies. The action opens with Teutonic villain Otto von Brunno and his evil mistress Lenya as they crash their plane in the English countryside and kidnap Professor Fenton, who has discovered a formula for making synthetic diamonds. Bullshot Crummond is called to the rescue and hilarity insues. Come see Bullshot Crummond as he saves the world one blunder at a time. Bullshot Crummond runs for a special two-week engagement at the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (map) in West Seattle, formerly historic Cooper School. Showtimes are: November 7, 8, 14, 15 at 7:30 PM, and November 9, 16 matinees at 3 PM. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students & seniors, and are available through Brown Paper Tickets ( and at the Youngstown theater box office one hour before showtime on performance days.” We wish the Twelfth Night Productions crew a jolly good run for “Bullshot Crummond,” and thank them for sponsoring WSB to get out the word; the complete current list of sponsors is on this page along with info on how to join them!

Beato closure update: Shutdown specials; sale status

(Photo by WSB contributing photojournalist Christopher Boffoli)
We reported last night on the impending closure of Beato Food and Wine after 2 years. Owner Brandon Gillespie promised more information today, and it’s in now. For starters, he says: “Beato is currently for sale. Anyone interested should contact Laura Miller at Catalyst Commercial Partners, 206-351-3573.” (Same listing agent as Blackbird.) His official statement in an e-mail newsletter includes information on final specials:

Due to the current economic conditions, I unfortunately have no choice but to close the doors of Beato Food & Wine. I cannot express how saddened I am to have to do so, and how much I have appreciated your business and support over the last two years. I want to thank the entire staff for all of their hard work. And more importantly, I want to thank all of our wonderful customers who supported us throughout. The final day of operation for Beato will be Friday, November 14th.

In an attempt to celebrate the last week and a half of the restaurant, we have changed the menu as well as designed a four-course tasting menu with wine pairings, available Tuesday through Thursday, for a great price. In addition, from now until our closing, we will be offering a 30% discount on all bottles of wine. Once again, I want to thank everyone who supported Beato over the last two years and invite you to join us one last time to taste an exceptional wine flight as well as what I believe is our strongest menu to date.

(Here’s the info on that “wine flight.”) Beato opened in December 2006 in the space that had previously been O2, after Ovio Bistro moved to The Junction (where it closed in June 2007, in the space now held by Ama Ama). It should be noted that while Beato will be the second West Seattle restaurant to close this fall, three are still scheduled to open — Cafe Revo on Avalon (new construction photos here), Fresh Bistro at Mural across from Jefferson Square (most recent WSB coverage here), and Zeeks Pizza in Morgan Junction (WSB coverage here) — and on a smaller scale, today is opening day for the OK Corral barbecue takeout place in the Triangle area (here’s our story from last weekend).

Happening tonight: Fairmount; California Place; fashion

From the WSB Events calendar, a busy night: The first official Parks Department-organized meeting on the proposal for a “play area” at the California Place mini-park in North Admiral is at Hiawatha Community Center, 6 pm; Fairmount Community Association gets an update on the nearest Triangle developments and more, 6:30 pm at the chapel at The Mount; several fun events too including the Get Yr Fash On runway show at Mission (doors open 6 pm).

Southwest District Council: RapidRide road update, and more

November 6, 2008 1:52 am
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 |   Southwest District Council | Spokane St. Viaduct project | Transportation | West Seattle news

The Southwest District Council has new co-chairs for next year: Erica Karlovits of the Junction Neighborhood Organization and Chas Redmond from the Morgan Community Association. That was the easy part of Wednesday night’s meeting; otherwise, tough transportation talk put city reps in the hot seat — read on:Read More

West Seattle Election ’08: New story for Old Glory

November 6, 2008 12:50 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle politics

Great photo of West Seattleite Val Mallinson and her “Victory Bike” on the P-I site. Val had kindly flagged us, so to speak, of her impending ride, but we got stuck elsewhere; glad to be able to share this shot, though!