West Seattle, Washington
The Fauntleroy Way/West Seattle Bridge approach walkover is a must-visit on Election Eve and Election Day morning – if you’re looking for photo ops, anyway. And that’s where we found City Council candidate (and High Point resident) David Ginsberg just before sunset tonight. We’ll check back on sign-wavers at bridge approaches in the morning. Remember to get your ballot in by the end of the day tomorrow – if you have to push up right against the deadline, you can get it to a dropbox by 8 pm (visit the one in Delridge between 3 and 7 and you can check out the Voters’ Open House). [Disclosure: The Ginsberg campaign has a paid political ad on WSB.] Another sight tonight:
J. Leddy got the photo – the 74 is the giveaway as to the carrier – it’s the Bremerton-based John C. Stennis.
Announced on the SPDBlotter: The memorial service for Officer Tim Brenton, shot and killed Saturday night in Leschi, will be this Friday at 1 pm at KeyArena. Read more here. ADDED 10:05 PM: Central District News has coverage of a candlelight vigil tonight at the scene of the Halloween night shooting. (Photo added 12:56 am; Officer Brenton’s family provided photos to SPD for distribution to media.)
EXXON CLOSED: Thanks to Bruce for the photo and the news that the 35th/Barton (map) ex-Exxon station has shut down. He’s been watching the site for a while and reports, “It became an independent gas retailer (having the lowest price in this immediate area for a month or two) but then they ran out … Over the summer I saw very little traffic at this store, even though a gas price was posted to lure people into stopping. While I was taking pictures a Jetta was filling up at the Propel BioDiesel pump [elsewhere on the site], so that is still on and functioning, at least for now.” (6:22 pm – See comment from “C-Rad“ re: reported 7-11 plans.)
TONY’S SEASONAL CLOSURE: Across the street from the ex-Exxon, Tony’s Produce has shut down for its seasonal closure; during the fall hiatus from the produce business, they usually reopen with Christmas trees.
OFFICE DEPOT “TAKING LONGER”: While walking around The Junction today, we peeked into the lower level of Capco Plaza – home to the new QFC – to look for signs of progress on the future Office Depot store. The space is still truly bare-bones, and no one was working inside, so we called building owner/developer Leon Capelouto to check on its status (we’d tried directly calling Office Depot some weeks back, but got no callbacks). He says some modifications to the space have pushed back the timetable a few months, and now it’s looking more likely Office Depot will open around February. “They’re still coming,” he said. Other tenant news in the building – we noticed the signage for this physical-therapy business on the east side of the building:
Capelouto said they just opened today. And a previously mentioned tenant, Desert Sun Tanning, has just gotten permits to start working on its space. One more note: Near the newly restored bus stop in front of the QFC, a worker was installing some enhancements – which he said were structures for people to lean on while awaiting buses.
MARTIAL ARTS/YOGA: Also during our walk, we bumped into Brian Presser of TouchTech Systems, always a good tipster about new-business sightings – most recently, this one – and he directed us to 42nd just south of Alaska, where a martial-arts/yoga business is opening, listing some of its specialties on the window:
NEW ALLSTATE OFFICE: Christopher Price has just opened an Allstate Insurance office at 3862 Delridge (map) next to H&R Block. He says 4 licensed agents will be there, speaking English, Spanish and German; the phone number is 938-AUTO but they’re offering home/business/boat insurance too, plus financial services.
They’re still going to move to 7-digit license plates, as reported here and elsewhere recently, but the configuration will be a little simpler – read on for today’s announcement:Read More
There hasn’t been much news about it for a while, but a West Seattle site — West Marginal Way/Highland Park Way — remains on the list of possible sites for a regional jail to hold misdemeanor offenders from Seattle and several other north/east King County cities. And the city sends word this afternoon that the timetable for the next round of public comment has just moved back – the draft Environmental Impact Statement won’t be out till February, so public meetings aren’t expected till late February/early March. The process is laid out here; that’ll mean a full year elapsing between the last meetings and the next ones.
Some have voiced excitement – some have voiced concern. End result: The Seattle City Council voted this afternoon to allow so-called “backyard cottages,” which have been permitted in Southeast Seattle as a pilot project, to be built around the city – with one big change – they were going to issue only 50 permits per year, but now there’s no cap. Read the announcement here:Read More
Want to see more photos from Saturday’s Trick or Treat at The Junction? The Junction’s own official gallery is part of what you’ll find on the newly relaunched West Seattle Junction Association website – wsjunction.org – with added features including an event calendar. They’re on Facebook too, and just added a Twitter account – @WSJA.
Haven’t voted yet? If you drop off your ballot at the Delridge Neighborhood Service Center tomorrow afternoon/evening, you’ll find an extra touch – it’s one of six NSCs around the city offering Voters’ Open Houses. Delridge Neighborhoods District Coordinator Ron Angeles explains, “When people drop by with their ballots, we hope to provide them with some information about the role of Neighborhood District Coordinators, and other Department of Neighborhood Programs. We also hope to engage people to find out more about their areas of interest, i.e. Land Use, Transportation, Public Safety, Housing, Parks/Open Space, Human Services, Emergency Preparedness, and particularly, Citizen Participation, Involvement, and Volunteerism. We’ll have coffee, juice, and cookies.” The Delridge NSC is at 5405 Delridge (map), and tomorrow’s open house is 3-7 pm – the dropbox itself is available around the clock till the voting deadline, 8 pm tomorrow.
(Flag at half-staff today outside West Seattle High School’s historic entrance
After learning last night that murdered Seattle Police Officer Tim Brenton was a former West Seattle resident who graduated from WSHS in 1988, we asked principal Bruce Bivins this morning for permission to review yearbooks so that we could share a little more information about his time here. We are honoring the Seattle PD request not to publish photos until the family and department have approved one for release, so we did not photograph his yearbook picture (the yearbook itself is at right). In the yearbooks, the main activity in which Tim Brenton is listed as participating was the school newspaper The Chinook, which listed him as a reporter. But in the information seniors were asked to share about themselves, his interest in police work was clear: He also listed as an activity Police Explorer Post #943, listed his dad (a now-retired SPD officer) as one of his idols, and listed his own “destiny” as: “To survive 10 years on the LAPD.”
The Seattle Times (WSB partner) has more information on Officer Brenton’s background in this story; our report on Acting Police Chief John Diaz‘s City Council briefing this morning is here, and our coverage of the SPD media briefing yesterday afternoon (with video including Chief Diaz and Mayor Nickels) is here. If you have any information about the attack on Officer Brenton and Officer Britt Sweeney, who survived, tiplines are 206-684-5550 and 800-222-TIPS.
Two items regarding graffiti/tagging vandalism in West Seattle:
CLEANUP: Meredith shared that photo of a worker painting out what appeared alongside the low bridge over the weekend. If you spot graffiti/tagging vandalism on city property – bridges, parks, etc. – you can report it online (go here) or through a special hotline: 684-7587. The city website also notes that private property owners are accountable for cleanup and if they don’t, the Graffiti Nuisance Ordinance may apply (read about it here).
YET MORE ‘HOMOPHOBIC GRAFFITI’: We have reported this multiple times since early September and continue to get new reports. Over the weekend, Sarah spotted and photographed several more places in the Morgan Junction area where she saw the same profane three-word declaration/accusation — including a business door and residential garage. Last time we talked with police about this, they were looking to see if the same man arrested last spring might be involved again; the charges filed against him then were dropped because he was found incompetent to stand trial, and the official record of his status ends with an evaluation recommendation. This vandalism has turned up on a multitude of public and private spots around Morgan Junction and north Lincoln Park, so it might not be a stretch to suggest that if you see anyone who looks like they are writing on a sign in that area, call police.
9:35 AM: Live on Seattle Channel (cable 21 or online at www.seattlechannel.org) – the Seattle City Council‘s regular Monday morning “briefing” meeting, during which their spokesperson says Acting Police Chief John Diaz will brief them on the Saturday night murder of Officer Timothy Brenton (a West Seattle High School graduate, as reported last night). A tribute is also planned at the start of this afternoon’s 2 pm council meeting, which also can be seen live online and on cable. 9:51 AM: The briefing is over. Chief Diaz called the killing “a setup … This was a hit on law enforcement, this was a hit on government … it could have been anyone” and said SPD is getting tips – two major hotlines: 684-5550 to the Homicide Unit, 800-222-TIPS to CrimeStoppers. To keep officers safe, he said, “we have made some changes in our deployment” – no elaboration, for obvious reasons. Memorial plans are still in the works but will be, he said, late this week or early next week.
SOUTHWEST POOL SCHEDULED TO REOPEN THIS MORNING: What was supposed to be a 3-week project to install federally mandated drain upgrades at West Seattle’s only city-run year-round pool turned into an 2 1/2-month shutdown after problems were found – but today, it’s over, and Southwest Pool planned to reopen starting with 6 am lap swim. They’re offering some special “welcome back” pricing – read about it here. One other note:
TWO DAYS AND ONE NIGHT LEFT TO VOTE: That map compiled by West Seattle activist Brian Allen shows the announced Election Night parties for key candidates and campaigns. (Note there’s one scheduled in West Seattle – for city attorney Tom Carr, at Christo’s.) So – have you held up your end of the deal? Vote by end of day tomorrow! TONS of info here.
Thanks to David Hutchinson for that Saturday shot from Seacrest, as the King County Water Taxi‘s West Seattle-downtown runs were in their final hours of the season. The county website says simply it’ll be back in the spring – but much is in play till then – tomorrow’s election, for one, since County Executive candidate Susan Hutchison has criticized the King County Ferry District (including the Water Taxi); then there’s the district’s budget for next year – according to this notice, a public hearing is set for one week from today; see the budget here – it lays out the plan for the Water Taxi to resume service next April as a year-round operation. But first, those Seacrest dock improvements recently signed off on by the city need to be made, too.