month : 01/2010 354 results

West Seattle Weekend Lineup: Longhouse birthday; more Haiti help

January 29, 2010 4:59 pm
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 |   Fun stuff to do | WS culture/arts | WS Weekend Lineup

wswllicon3.pngThe 1st birthday/anniversary (whichever you prefer) celebration for the Duwamish Longhouse is all day tomorrow – and that’s one of the weekend highlights. The West Seattle Eagles‘ concert to raise money for Haiti relief is also happening this weekend – doors open @ 8 Saturday at their aerie in The Junction – and their counterparts in White Center are having a benefit breakfast on Sunday. There are also three school open houses, a West Seattle Wildlife Habitat Project work party, the South Seattle Community College (WSB sponsor) “Gifts from the Earth” fundraiser, and TONS more: From tonight through Sunday night, more than 50 events/activities, brought to you by Skylark Cafe and Club, where you’ll find FREE live music and rockin’ food – like the special Valentine brunch and dinner deals just announced:Read More

Library changes: Party Saturday; new schedule on Wednesday

We took that photo of Karen Spiel at this month’s North Delridge Neighborhood Council meeting, as she broke the news that after two decades in West Seattle, she’s heading downtown, which’ll be her home base as manager of a bigger group of Seattle Public Library branches. Good news is, you can say goodbye to her in person tomorrow – her farewell reception is 2:30-4 pm Saturday at the West Seattle (Admiral) Branch, 2306 42nd SW, with a brief program around 3 pm. Meantime, Wednesday is when schedules change for many library branches, as first detailed here; Delridge and High Point will go to 5 days a week, West Seattle and Southwest will be 7 days a week.

Bloodmobile’s in West Seattle Saturday and asking for help

Just in from Kimberly at Puget Sound Blood Center:

Our community’s blood supply still has not recovered from the holidays and we are having a last-minute drive tomorrow with the hopes of giving it a boost.

We are currently at an Emergency Level (less than 1 day supply) for B- and a Critical Level (less than 2 day supply) for O- … However, all blood types are needed.

Saturday January 30th
Safeway Admiral West Seattle
Bus parked at 2622 California Ave SW
9:00 am- 3:00 pm
(closed 11:30 am – 12:30 pm)

If you donated on or before Dec 5th, you are eligible to donate at this drive
While walk-ins will be accommodated as best as possible, you can make an appointment by calling 800-398-7888

State House vote set for “Jason McKissack Act” – and other bills

January 29, 2010 2:09 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle police | West Seattle politics

(From left, Kim and Jason McKissack, Renee Maher, in Olympia Monday)
Just in from Renee Maher of COMPAS, a law-enforcement-advocacy group:

We’ve been told that some very important bills for law enforcement and firefighters will be voted on the House Floor on Wednesday, February 3. The House Floor session is scheduled to start at 10:00 but the bills may not be heard until closer to 10:30.

The House gallery is open to the public and we are particularly inviting families of fallen officers (both past and recent), law enforcement officers and firefighters. There will be an honor guard procession as well.

Among the bills being heard is HB 2519 (expanding benefits for the families of officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty) and EHB 1679 (the Jason McKissack Act).

Monday, we went to Olympia to cover the House Ways and Means public hearing on EHB 1679 (WSB coverage here); the next day, the committee unanimously voted to advance it to a vote in the full House. If you’re just coming in on the story – this dates back to the attack on then-Officer McKissack in summer 2008, in which he was kicked in the face while responding to a call of someone in trouble, kicked so hard he suffered brain damage from which he hasn’t recovered enough to return to any kind of work; the city has let him go, and that meant benefits ended for him and his family. Meantime, if you want to tell your State House reps what you think about EHB 1679, they are Rep. Eileen Cody (who voted for it in Ways and Means on Tuesday) and Rep. Sharon Nelson – each of their names is linked to contact info.

Followup: Driver who hit Jade West Cafe owner pleads guilty

A month and a half after the Beacon Hill crash that seriously injured Jade West Cafe owner Wah Wong and his son Jason Wong, the drunk driver who hit them has pleaded guilty. King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office spokesperson Dan Donohoe confirms that 50-year-old Rodney James pleaded guilty to two counts of vehicular assault. He is scheduled for sentencing at 1 pm February 12th before King County Superior Court Judge Julie Spector, and Donohoe says prosecutors are recommending 30 months in prison (of a possible 10 years).

According to the original charging documents, his blood-alcohol level was .16 at the scene, twice the legal limit, and beer was found inside his car. The crash happened while he was “on a suspended sentence for reckless driving (amended from driving under the influence)” in a case from 11 months earlier, and James also had a record that included escaping from a Pennsylvania maximum-security prison in 1981 (without a description of why he was there). Jason Wong lost a leg after the crash; he and his father are both now home after weeks of inpatient care, but the restaurant’s future is not yet determined.

One thing for sure; The family has a pile of medical bills; donations can be made to the Save Jade West Cafe Fund at any Wells Fargo branch.

Metro service changes: Details on new West Seattle trips

wcnconstantinesims.jpgIn that photo we took 17 months ago, King County Executive Dow Constantine stood next to the man who held the title at the time, Ron Sims, as the county announced money from the state would pay for more bus trips during Alaskan Way Viaduct-related construction. With that construction really revving up, more of those added trips are kicking in. Today – thanks to Robert for noticing and sharing the details — we know more about new Metro trips to/from West Seattle taking effect at the next “service change,” one week from tomorrow (February 6). (You can get the full list by going here and clicking Metro Schedule and Route Revisions.) West Seattle highlights include:

*21E – Northbound service to downtown Seattle will have three new trips arriving at 3rd Ave & Pike St about 7:50, 8:14 and 9:17 am. Southbound service to Arbor Heights will also have three new trips leaving 1st Ave & Union St about 4:25, 4:55 and 5:25 pm.

*54 – Service will improve to every 10 to 15 minutes during weekday peak periods.

*56E – Northbound service to downtown Seattle will have two new trips arriving at 3rd Ave & Pine St at about 7:45 and 8:14 am. Southbound service to Alki will also have two new trips leaving 1st Ave & Pike St about 5:13 and 6:09 pm.

*60 (White Center)- Service will improve to every 15 to 20 minutes between 6:30 am and 6 pm weekdays. Northbound trips will leave from a new bus stop northbound on 15th Ave SW & SW 100th St. Two new southbound trips will leave 10th Ave E & E Mercer St at 10:10 and 11:10 pm. Route 60 will also be revised to serve the Olson Pl/Meyers Way P&R on weekdays.

Traffic update: South Park Bridge closures postponed

January 29, 2010 11:29 am
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 |   South Park | West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

From King County Department of Transportation:

The King County Road Service Division is advising motorists that the previously scheduled closure of the South Park Bridge has been postponed due to a delay in obtaining a permit for the work. The bridge had originally been scheduled to close for a four-day period for testing beginning Sat. Jan 30. The testing will be rescheduled for a later date.

New West Seattle business: You’ll find wine in Bin 41

Three weeks ago, after a liquor-license application notice went up at the former Georgia Blu space in The Junction, we published this short item – noting what the license was for, and mentioning we’d reached the applicants. They told us they weren’t ready to talk at the time, but promised details when they were. Today they’ve made good on that promise, and sent this announcement to share with you:

Bin 41, the Junction’s upcoming retail wine shop which will be moving into the former Georgia Blu space, is owned by long-standing West Seattle residents, T. Frick and Jon McNamara. Both Landscape Architects by training, T. and Jon discovered a passion for wine over a decade ago that developed into an understanding of the value of wine in our everyday experiences. They are looking forward to both bringing this passion for wine to the Junction and to contributing to their local community.

Bin 41 will be collaborating with the community’s first retail wine shop, West Seattle Cellars, and other neighborhood businesses. “We want to contribute to the spirit of West Seattle through the collaboration of local business. Our goal is to work closely with our friends, Tom and Jan, of West Seattle Cellars to provide the West Seattle community with more access to fine wine. This will be a win-win for the community in that consumers will have more choice overall; in wine selection, weekly tastings and educational opportunities.”

Bin 41 will be providing retail wine sales by the bottle and wine-related merchandise. Their portfolio will have a strong focus on local wines from the Pacific Northwest as well as various labels from around the world. In their field of design, the McNamara’s have been committed to contributing to a sustainable future. We are excited to continue this commitment to reducing our environmental footprint by working in the neighborhood in which we live as well as incorporating other sustainable concepts into the shop. The proprietors hope to open for business sometime in March, with a grand opening in early April. More information will be posted as plans progress further.

We had to ask – where did the name come from? T’s reply: “Our passion for wine, winemaking and the dream to open the shop grew out of our home on 41st. So we wanted to carry the number forward. Bin represents the storage of wine.”

West Seattle Crime Watch: Strong-arm robbery/car theft

Got this report from a West Seattleite who wants to be anonymous:

I work in Westwood Village and was arriving for work when I was approached by a couple of individuals who threatened me, then took my wallet and my car. I’ve filed the proper police report but I was thinking that the more eyes that were out there looking the better chance I would have to get it back quickly. The car is a 2001 Chevy Impala lic #389-Yxx, the color is silver. I would guess it is somewhere in the Delridge/Westwood/White Center area.

We spoke to the victim by phone after reading that e-mail. He says it happened just after 4 am; he didn’t see a weapon, and wasn’t physically hurt. We will follow up this morning with police, who did report a rise in “strong-arm robberies” – this would qualify for that label, though we haven’t heard lately of one including a car – while updating crime trends at last week’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting (here’s our story). 4:12 PM UPDATE: Talked with police. No description to share at this point, but this is the first carjacking they’ve heard of in West Seattle in a long time, so it’s not – so far – part of a trend.

Traffic reminders: Weekend closures for 2 ramps, South Park Bridge

January 29, 2010 7:59 am
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 |   South Park | Spokane St. Viaduct project | Transportation | West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

11:34 AM UPDATE – The South Park Bridge closures are POSTPONED till a future date.

One more reminder about three closures this weekend that might affect your travels to and from West Seattle:

10 PM TONIGHT THROUGH 5 AM MONDAY: That’s the schedule again this weekend for closures of the northbound I-5 ramp and the westbound Columbian Way ramp to the West Seattle Bridge, both related to the Spokane Street Viaduct Widening Project. (Last weekend the work finished fast and both reopened Saturday night.) Details here.

7 AM-7 PM DAILY, SATURDAY THROUGH TUESDAY: The South Park Bridge will be closed to vehicle traffic, and will not open for marine traffic, all four days. Crews plan to do tests related to future construction of a replacement bridge; details here.

Tonight, everybody counts: One-Night Count under way

Thanks to Stacey for the reminder: The annual One-Night Count is under way right now around King County. Teams are fanning out to count how many people are sleeping outdoors; among them, according to his Facebook and Twitter pages, City Councilmember Tim Burgess. West Seattle and White Center are among the areas scheduled to be surveyed. During last year’s count, according to the stats here, almost 3,000 people were found sleeping without shelter around the county. 8:19 AM: West Seattleite Christi Stapleton, who was also among the volunteers, says other city leaders participated – she saw Mayor Mike McGinn and his wife, Peggy Lynch, “many members of the mayor’s staff,” City Attorney Pete Holmes, Council President Richard Conlin, and Councilmembers Sally Clark, Sally Bagshaw, and Mike O’Brien.

From partner site White Center Now: 2 stories of change

If you’re in western West Seattle, Officer Adonis Topacio is likely your Community Police Team officer; and now, taking over much of the Southwest Precinct‘s eastern zone, the CPT Officer is Jill Vanskike. Both were at last night’s South Delridge/White Center Community Safety Coalition meeting, along with other local law enforcers whose roles are changing; the full story’s on our partner site White Center Now. That’s also where you will find this brand-new update on a WC bar that’s changed hands, changed name and changed its atmosphere. (Any time you want to catch up on White Center news, you’ll get the latest WCN headlines by clicking on the WHITE CENTER tab below the sunset photo that’s atop every WSB page.)

Alaskan Way Viaduct future: Toll beyond the tunnel unlikely

From the Alaskan Way Viaduct/Seawall Replacement Project South Working Group meeting Wednesday:

No bombshells; group members – including Jerome Cohen, Vlad Oustimovitch and Pete Spalding from West Seattle – were shown long lists of numbers regarding travel-time and traffic-flow projections, depending on scenarios including toll or no toll, vs. tunnel toll or tunnel-plus-other stretch(es) toll. (“Meeting materials” are linked here.)

Two of the scenarios looked at the possibility of tolling the stretch of 99 between the future tunnel’s entrance and the West Seattle Bridge, and Oustimovitch expressed concern about that in end-of-meeting around-the-table Q/A, but after the meeting, WSDOT’s Ron Paananen clarified to WSB that the extra stretch is NOT being seriously considered. “We looked at (tolling beyond the tunnel), recognizing that diversion (of traffic seeking toll-free routes) would be an issue, to see if (tolling) would change diversion patterns. It had a modest effect … people diverted further upstream. So if you’re worried about diversion, (expanding the tolling) is not a great strategy.” It brought in more money, of course, he noted, but he said that it appeared they would get the $400 million they need by tolling the tunnel. Summarizing, he said, “I think we answered the question that funding this project most likely will occur through tolling of the tunnel only.” If the tunnel is tolled, it is currently expected to start in early 2016, would be collected electronically, and could range from $1 to $5 in “2015 dollars.” Other toplines from the meeting (plus an explanation of the graphic above left, added Friday morning) – read on:Read More

Happening now: Rock 4 Relief @ Showbox SODO, helping Haiti

January 28, 2010 10:17 pm
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 |   Fun stuff to do | How to help | West Seattle news

The night’s young – still time to get over to Showbox SODO for Rock 4 Relief, raising money for Red Cross work to help Haiti quake victims – with West Seattle musicians onstage, West Seattle businesses contributing to a raffle, and more. WSB photojournalist Christopher Boffoli was there in the 8 o’clock hour and says more than 100 people were there already.

If you’ve got no way to get there tonight – there’s more music to help Haiti coming up Saturday night at the West Seattle Eagles‘ HQ in The Junction – doors open 8 pm, music at 8:30, benefiting Mercy Corps – details here. Another Eagles’ aerie – in White Center – is raising money for Haiti through its weekly breakfast this Sunday, everybody welcome, 9 am-noon; details on our partner site White Center Now.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Car break-in report

From Heather:

I just thought I would send a note that my neighbor’s car was broken into last night. We’re in Highland Park on 17th between Trenton & Cloverdale (map). It seems they broke the window only to open the trunk….then threw most of the contents onto the ground. We think a camera was stolen out of the trunk but the radio was left untouched. My neighbor was waiting for the police when I left for work….not sure how long she had to wait or if there have been any other break-ins like this.

We covered tonight’s South Delridge/White Center Community Safety Coalition meeting, coverage area including Highland Park – report to come, but police didn’t report any particular spike in car break-ins.

It’s official – no West Seattle neighborhood-plan update this year

The city has just announced which neighborhoods will be the two to get official neighborhood-plan updates this year – and neither is on our peninsula: They are Rainier Beach and Broadview-Bitter Lake-Haller Lake. After the recent meeting of the Neighborhood Plan Advisory Council, speculation about a possible WS choice had cooled, but there’s hope for a future plan update, and some of the local neighborhoods that have plans have decided to start revving up for the possibility by discussing statuses and goals in venues such as the Southwest District Council meeting. Ahead, read the news release just in from the mayor’s office re: today’s announcement:Read More

West Seattle restaurant news: Phoenecia reopens tonight

Just got a call from William Khazaal, son of Hussein Khazaal, whose untimely death last summer closed Phoenecia on Alki: They are officially reopening the restaurant TONIGHT, 5 pm (till at least 10 pm). The Khazaal family discussed their plans for the restaurant in a recent interview with us – in case you missed it, here’s the story. The menu will include “small plates” as well as entrees, and a new focus on something they told us Hussein Khazaal had been experimenting with – artisan pizza.

ADDED 8:50 PM: WSB’er “grr” was among the reopening-night diners and shared these photos:

He says that’s lamb-curry ratatouille and seared arctic char. They’re also trying the vegetarian squash pizza.

Junction parking plan: 2-hour signs going up today

From WSB photojournalist Christopher Boffoli: SDOT crews are putting up 2-hour signs along a stretch of 41st SW this afternoon – part of the Junction parking plan recently finalized, almost two years after first word of the city review. (You’ll recall, the review resulted in a decision for NO pay stations, and NO “restricted parking zones” – just some new 2-hour-zone signage; see the map in our most recent story.) ADDED 6:26 PM: In e-mail this evening, SDOT project manager Dante Taylor confirms the sign installation and included a reminder that there will be a meeting later this year open to anyone who wants to hear and talk about how the changes are working.

West Seattle help for Haiti: Pre-concert update on Rock 4 Relief

January 28, 2010 2:01 pm
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 |   How to help | West Seattle businesses | West Seattle news

One more update from Jamie Chamberlin, the West Seattle-based filmmaker promoting tonight’s big Rock 4 Relief concert/raffle/etc., now 5 hours away at Showbox SODO (7 pm tonight, 21+, tickets only $15):

As a final pre-show update: Adam Gerhke from channel 13 morning news has come on board to MC tonight’s Rock 4 Relief concert and Raffle. As well, performance artist Jimmy Gersen will be in attendance to produce a wall size painting during the course of the evening and donated to the cause. I would like to thank the following people and sponsors that rallied behind this important cause to help make the Rock 4 Relief concert possible. The idea for a benefit show for the people of Haiti started two weeks ago through a casual conversation I had with Charlie Beck of The Memphis Radio Kings. In that short period of time this effort has become larger than any of us imagined. Between 3 events happening tonight, there will be between 16-18 bands playing within a 5 hour window, all donating their proceeds to the American Red Cross. Seattle is without a doubt home to some of the most talented musicians and individuals with the biggest hearts. I’d like to commend all the bands and volunteers donating their time and talents throughout the city this evening. If you are looking for something to do tonight, go out and catch one of these amazing benefit shows.

Jamie Chamberlin/Rock 4 Relief Event Producer

The West Seattle businesses listed in Jamie’s note as contributing to the concert/raffle include three WSB sponsors – Cafe Revo, Feedback Lounge, Hotwire Coffee – and also Admiral Tattoo, Admiral Theater, Alki Lumber and Hardware, Allstar Fitness, Easy Street Records, Locol (future 35th SW establishment profiled here), Luna Park Cafe, Shadowland, Stacey Riley Interiors, Sugar Rush Baking Company, Talarico’s, West 5, Zebra Print and Copy. If you haven’t been to Showbox SODO before, it’s at 1426 1st Avenue South; here’s a map.

Followup: Westwood man pleads guilty to possessing child porn

January 28, 2010 1:27 pm
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 |   Crime | West Seattle news | Westwood

gavel.jpgLast August, we reported on charges filed against a 23-year-old Westwood man, 10 months after police found child pornography on his computer. Documents said Chas Voelckel was not believed to have taken any of the photos, but some of them contained what police described as “known victims” as young as 8. We’ve been checking the online court file in the case against Voelckel from time to time, and our latest check showed a major development: He pleaded guilty last week to a felony charge of “possessing depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.” He could face up to 10 years in prison, but the documents note the standard sentencing range is about a year, and indicate that’s what will be recommended when he is sentenced – currently set for March.

Delridge Skatepark: Construction expected to start in summer

Now that the $750,000 needed for Delridge Skatepark is a done deal after Monday’s City Council vote, some are wondering – how soon will construction crews dig in? We checked with Parks Department project manager Kelly Davidson after Pigeon Point’s Pete Spalding, one of the West Seattle reps on the Parks and Green Spaces Levy Oversight Committee, shared word that the department’s internal review was about to hit a major milepost. Davidson confirmed late yesterday that the project has just had its “65 percent construction document review” – dealing with a whole lot of technical comments, “water lines and all that,” as she put it. Consultants now have to address the technical comments offered at the review, which Davidson says should take a few weeks; none of this is expected to change the final design, though – “The pictures on the web page ARE our design,” she says. But they also have to go through the city Department of Planning and Development for permits, like any other construction project, and that’s the wild card – so she’s thinking groundbreaking isn’t likely till July. “But we know Delridge Day is June 5th, so if there’s any way we can do it sooner …” Whenever they start, the project should take about four months, so it could be done by Halloween.

Keep your eyes on the sky: Crane installation for Link

Last week, the crane base rolled in; today, it’s time for the rest of the crane to show up at the site (38th/Alaska) where crews are building Harbor Properties‘ 200-apartment, 14,000-square-feet=of-retail Link in The Triangle. The crew told WSB’s Christopher Boffoli last week the crane will rise to 118 feet. Work on Link began in November, when the auto and school buildings on the site were torn down. (Thanks to Sharonn for pre-dawn word the crane had arrived as scheduled.) P.S. Just noticed Link finally has the stirrings of its own website. 1:04 PM UPDATE: Update from Emi Baldowin at Harbor: The installation won’t be completed till more of the crane arrives Monday.

Today/tonight: Helping Haiti; combating crime; school open houses

January 28, 2010 6:43 am
|    Comments Off on Today/tonight: Helping Haiti; combating crime; school open houses
 |   How to help | West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(Wednesday afternoon photo by Chas Redmond, from 7100 block of Beach Drive)
Highlights from the WSB Events page:

WEST SEATTLE HELPS HAITI – CONCERT AND PIZZA: Tonight’s the Rock 4 Relief benefit concert at Showbox SODO – lots of West Seattleites involved, onstage and behind the scenes, including the businesses who’ve donated for a raffle. Doors open at 7 pm; buy your tickets online. And all day long, all Pagliacci Pizza outlets are donating profits to Haiti relief – West Seattle’s Pagliacci is in The Junction, opening tonight at 4 for pickup, 5 for delivery.

COMBATING CRIME: The South Delridge/White Center Community Safety Coalition meets at 6 tonight at 9650 15th SW.

SCHOOL OPEN HOUSES: 2 more tonight – Pathfinder K-8‘s open house and Culture Night starts at 6:30 pm (more info here), 1901 SW Genesee (map); same start time for the open house at Hope Lutheran and Seattle Lutheran High School (more info here), enter through the Hope Church lobby at 4456 42nd SW.

WEST SEATTLE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT-DIRECTED PRODUCTION: “Jumpin’ Jupiter” opens its three-night run at 7:30 pm. Tickets $5 at the door.

PARKS BOARD HEARING ON “CODE OF CONDUCT”: As reported here Tuesday afternoon, the proposed Code of Conduct for Seattle city parks has been tweaked since the controversy following its unveiling earlier this month. Tonight, you can tell board members what you think about the new version, 7 pm at City Hall (council chambers).