West Seattle, Washington
After tonight’s meeting (first of two) about the upcoming Delridge Playfield improvements – to be paid for by $3 million in Parks and Green Spaces Levy money – we know a little more about where the project goes from here. Most of the 30-plus people gathered at playfield-neighboring Delridge Community Center tonight had concerns about how the field will be used once its artificial turf and new lighting are in. Per the presentation, it is designed with two baseball fields and two soccer fields, with a 360-foot disc run. Some on hand tonight asked if specially colored circles could be added to the turf for lacrosse play as well. Project manager Ted Holden, a landscape architect with Seattle Parks, said he could bring plans with that option to the next meeting (7:30 pm November 23, also at Delridge CC). The field’s new lighting also was discussed; most questions centered on when they would be turned off at night – 11 pm, according to Holden, who also said that any concerns residents have once they’re installed can be addressed by Parks staffers making adjustments as needed. As for the timetable, if all goes according to plan, construction would start next May, with completion in September. (The official project page is here.) ADDED TUESDAY NIGHT: Nancy Folsom has published her comprehensive notes from the meeting at the Delridge Leadership website; you can read them here.
Just back from a meeting tonight involving neighbors banding together to fight crime – not a regularly scheduled meeting, but one called by the Fairmount Springs neighborhood, and held at West Seattle Church of the Nazarene (42nd/Juneau). We’ll publish a separate story about crimefighting tips and questions, including answers by Block Watch leaders as well as Community Police Team Officer Ken Mazzuca, but first a short story with a separate topic that came up – always a hot topic here: Door-to-door solicitors. When a meeting attendee asked, “So what’s legal?” deputy city attorney Beth Gappert, who is liaison to the Southwest Precinct and therefore based here in West Seattle, jumped up.
“Residential selling IS legal,” she began, but then went on to very clearly explain the rules that we’ve linked to here, time and time again, though without quite as vivid an explanation. “The company that’s selling is required to have a license. Each employee must have a residential agent’s license. It must be displayed prominently on their clothing. And each employee must have a copy of the company’s business license.”
Sounds easy enough, but Gappert went on to say that she’s checked the records and “only about half a dozen businesses have residential sellers’ licenses in the city – so the vast majority of sellers do NOT have licenses.” That means they’re operating illegally – as is the case if a solicitor of any kind knocks on a door despite a “no soliciting” sign – and, she added, “It is illegal if you ask them to leave and they refuse.” If ANY of those circumstances happen, Gappert stressed – with Officer Mazzuca at her side – “I highly encourage people to call the police over this issue. We know this precinct is going crazy over solicitors. I see the reports. I read about it on (WSB). … Make a report, be willing to testify, so we can prosecute. … Officers in this area are ready to go after them.”
Still got questions/concerns? Come to tomorrow night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting — Gappert is almost always there, as are CPT officers and leaders — 7 pm Tuesday, Southwest Precinct (Delridge/Webster). Meantime, watch for our second story from the meeting, with advice from the police, and neighbor-to-neighbor, on fighting and deterring the crimes we hear about the most these days – burglaries and car prowls.
Two cars were in a rollover accident in the 7700 block of 16th SW just before 7 pm tonight. Police said there were no injuries; the street was shut down for about 45 minutes.
This Thursday, the newest design proposal for the redeveloped Admiral Safeway site goes before the Southwest Design Review Board (8 pm, Youngstown Arts Center, after The Kenney‘s presentation at 6:30). Last week, we brought you a sneak peek at the latest plan, with photos of drawings shown at the Admiral Neighborhood Association‘s monthly meeting. Company and architect reps told us at the time that electronic copies would be available within days, since they had to get the design-proposal presentation to the city – and in fact, it’s available online tonight – you can download it here – warning, big file (17MB PDF), which includes the drawing you see above, and much more.
VENTANA CONSTRUCTION WINS AWARD: Longtime WSB sponsor Ventana Construction announced it’s made the annual Top 500 List published this fall by Qualified Remodeler Magazine, which has been putting together the list for more than 30 years, with data compiled by Harvard’s Center for Joint Housing Studies. Ventana owner Clarence Higuera says, “To be recognized at the national level is a real honor for us. It’s confirmation that our focus on exceptional quality and customer service sets our company apart.” (Above, one of Ventana’s most recent projects.)
Meantime, maybe you’ve seen this new sight while driving southbound on 35th:
RED STAR MURAL: Red Star Pizza, the new name, under new owners, for what was Pizza Time (7514 35th SW), has acquired a sort of alien theme, its owners smilingly admit, after one of its workers started sketching whimsical aliens on a board inside the store. Those drawings cleared the way for the mural that’s now on the north side of the building. Red Star, by the way, has finally updated its website to reflect the new location/name.
In case you want to watch as it happens, we’re noting this here before the vote: At the Seattle City Council meeting that’s under way now, councilmembers will vote on the Memorandum of Understanding that solidifies the city’s support for the deep-bore tunnel planned to replace the Central Waterfront section of the Alaskan Way Viaduct. You can watch live here. Public comment at the start of the meeting included one person suggesting that the item should be tabled until after the election, since, in that person’s view, the Joe Mallahan-Mike McGinn mayoral race equals a referendum vote on yes/tunnel vs. no/tunnel. 3:19 PM UPDATE: Councilmembers have just voted unanimously in favor of the memorandum of agreement supporting The Tunnel, though there were a few sharp exchanges when Councilmember Bruce Harrell said he wasn’t sure why they were voting on this now, wondering whether they’re trying to “beat people over the head with our support for the tunnel” when, he noted, they’d expressed their support before. He also expressed hope that greater discussions is ahead for details of how the city will pay its share of the tunnel costs. ADDED 3:51 PM: Here’s the official City Council news release about this afternoon’s vote: (added 6:03 pm, other statements including that of mayoral candidate and tunnel opponent Mike McGinn)Read More
Alki resident Rich Medved stepped up as acting county assessor after former assessor Scott Noble‘s drunk-driving arrest came to light – but his time in that role was cut short by a stroke suffered in mid-July. Three months later, he has lost his battle to recover, according to an announcement today from King County Council Chair Dow Constantine, who added, “Rich was well-liked within the Assessor’s Office and throughout county government and he will be greatly missed.” Until the stroke, Mr. Medved, 56, had been campaigning for the job in this fall’s election (five people are running now). He is survived by wife Teresa, four children and six grandchildren; no word yet on services.
Riverhouse Creperie, the coffee/crepes/gelato spot on the ground floor of ActivSpace on Harbor by The Bridge, just announced to its mailing list that it’s closing as of October 31st. Owner Kathaleen writes:
We regret to announce that, due to health concerns, Riverhouse will be closing its doors on October 31st, 2009. It has been a wonderful experience and I will always remember and be grateful for the fantastic people I met through this journey. I hope you have a chance to come in before we close our doors for good and that I will have a chance to say goodbye to some of you on October 31st.
Thank you for all of your support over the last two years and especially your support, good wishes and prayers that I have received over the last month. I am truly grateful and blessed to have had this experience.
Kathleen has written about her cancer battle on Riverhouse’s Facebook “fan page.” (Thanks to Chas Redmond for forwarding the e-mail announcement.)
We reported last week on Alki Elementary student Vanessa Radke‘s trip to New York as a semifinalist in the TODAY show’s Kid Reporter contest. Today, her video was shown, and voting began – you can watch her video above; you can go to this page on the TODAY site to vote for her. (There’s also a cell-phone-text-voting option listed on that page.) Voting runs till 2 pm our time tomorrow afternoon, and then Vanessa will find out Wednesday if she’s moving on to the finals.
We’ve had a slew of Halloween-related events on the Events Calendar page for a while but have finally organized them onto one special West Seattle Halloween page. The events start this week and run through the day after Halloween; we’ve grouped them by type (trick-or-treat events, etc.). Besides including the ones we’ve received notes about, we’ve looked around online, but realize we may not have found everything, so if yours is missing, we appreciate a note (e-mail, Facebook, whatever works for you) with a bit of information, even if it’s just a weblink – we’ll continue updating this as the listings come in. Now through Halloween, you can find the list any time by clicking the Halloween tab in the navigation bar below our header.
$3 million worth of improvements are on the way for Delridge Playfield, thanks to the Parks and Green Spaces Levy passed last year. Tonight you can get details, ask questions and offer comments at a Parks-led meeting at Delridge Community Center, 7:30 pm, first of two about the project (2nd one is 11/23).
Two reminders: Starting today (Monday), westbound South Spokane Street closes between 4th and 1st Avenues, TFN for the Spokane St. Viaduct Widening Project – that’s the side where the actual “widening” is happening, with a new structure being built on the north side of the old one. Here’s the detour map for both sides, the westbound closure starting today and the eastbound closure that’s been in effect a while:
Read more about the project here; here’s our original report on the closure that starts today; our coverage archive for this project is here. We’re also taking the occasion to remind you that next weekend (Oct. 24-25), the Alaskan Way Viaduct closes all day Saturday and Sunday for its semiannual inspection – scheduled for 6 am-5:30 pm Saturday, 6 am-6 pm Sunday.