“Street vacation” action in progress for ex-Soundway property

When we hiked part of the West Duwamish Greenbelt last year with Nancy Whitlock of the Youngstown Arts Center-based Nature Consortium, we recorded that video as she explained what she jokingly called a “native street-pole” along the way, telling the story of how part of the greenbelt almost became a highway. It’s still technically city right of way, but a “street vacation petition” detailed in today’s Land Use Information Bulletin seeks to transfer it to the Parks Department to recognize the fact that it will never be used for that purpose. As the online notice explains:

The City purchased the Soundway property in the 1950s and 1960s for a bridge and roadway project linking Seattle to Vashon Island. The property was “laid off” for street purposes but the project was cancelled. Since then a number of options were considered for the use of the property and the City Council decided it should be converted to protected open space under the jurisdiction of Parks. Parks is seeking the vacation in order to manage the property as a part of the adjacent West Duwamish Greenbelt. The vacation will allow the department to provide management of the property consistent with Park policies and allow Parks to seek State grants from the Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development for open space preservation. There is no development project associated with this petition. The property will remain in a natural and undeveloped state and the land will be incorporated into the existing West Duwamish Greenbelt.

The city says you’re encouraged to comment on the “street vacation” petition; the online notice explains how.

3 Replies to ""Street vacation" action in progress for ex-Soundway property"

  • Pete May 7, 2009 (1:43 pm)

    There is a whole story behind this street vacation. This has been a long time coming. The Delridge community is responsible for preserving the “Soundways” property. Several years ago the mayor wanted to sell this piece of property to developers for single family homes to be built on this site. A number of us in the commmunity held a series of community meetings, threatened a lawsuit, began a fundraising drive to buy the property from the city. We even got $500,000 from the state legislature for this cause. It was also discovered that what the city wanted to do with the proceeds of the sale could not be done since it was in direct conflict with a long forgotten city ordiance. So there are a whole lot of folks in the Delridge and Highland Park communities that are responsible for this street vacation action that is just now coming about. This Soundways issue also was the impetus for Tom Rasmussen to introduce legislation a couple of years ago around how the city goes about selling assets, speciafically around proper notices to nearby neighbors that could potentially be impacted by the city’s actions.

  • Video error May 7, 2009 (1:47 pm)

    “This is a private video. If you have been sent this video, please make sure you accept the sender’s friend request.”

  • WSB May 7, 2009 (2:17 pm)

    Yikes. I’ll sort that one out asap (added – fixed now) … TR

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