West Seattle, Washington
On the 4th night of Disaster Preparedness Month, we talked about earthquake readiness, in the wake of the Mexicali/Calexico quake. On this 13th night, there’s news of another strong quake, this time in western China, with hundreds reported dead. Wondering how to increase your survivability? One thing to consider: Home retrofitting, if you live in an older house. This page on the city website is a jumping-off spot for information, including an outline of city-offered classes about retrofitting. Just so happens (as briefly mentioned on Night 6) that one of these classes is coming up in West Seattle in about a month and a half, June 1st at the West Seattle (Admiral) Library, 11 am-1 pm. It’s free, but call now to register (all the info’s here). If you don’t want to wait for the class, the city site also has information on hiring contractors for retrofit work, and there’s information on permits and plans here.
Now, our nightly reminders:
–West Seattle Be Prepared (resource-laden, WS-specific website here; Facebook group for more discussion here)
-City’s 3 To Get Ready challenge (register for prizes!), which is being advertised on WSB this month
-Your Emergency Communications Hub – know it, know multiple routes to it.
Toplines from a short North Delridge Neighborhood Council meeting at Youngstown Arts Center: The Brandon Street Natural Area is part of the Duwamish Alive! series of Earth Day cleanups this Saturday, 10 am-2 pm; volunteers welcome, and here’s the flyer NDNC co-chair Jay Mirro has sent around … A big cleanup is being organized as part of Delridge Day on June 5th, and Delridge Neighborhood District Coordinator Ron Angeles is taking ideas on potential cleanup spots that are not the “usual” locations; Angeles and Nancy Folsom are taking suggestions … Folsom also is continuing to work on the project for public art by the to-be-built-soon Delridge Skatepark, but needs help overcoming the latest bump in the road, a grant requirement for volunteer-work hours or monetary donations from residents … A deputy mayor is expected in North Delridge for a tour next month; Angeles is organizing a list of suggested stops. If you’ve got ideas to help with any of what’s mentioned above, the NDNC e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The North Delridge Neighborhood Council meets at 6:30 pm, 2nd Tuesday of the month, at Youngstown.
The first of three sets of notes from community-council meetings we covered tonight: The Fauntleroy Community Association board, meeting at the Fauntleroy Schoolhouse, was happy about the outcome of this year’s Food Fest/Membership Meeting. Not only was the March 23rd event’s turnout big (as shown in our coverage), board members were heartened by the night’s new memberships and renewals – overall, one of the best in a long time, they said. Also discussed: The county’s controversial list of three options (shown here) for controlling Combined Sewer Overflows at the Barton pump station by the ferry dock (here’s our March 19th report from the first major discussion of the proposals). The county’s still taking feedback; go here. Looking ahead: An update on The Kenney‘s redevelopment plan is expected to be on the May 11th agenda; before then, Endolyne Joe’s hosts a Fauntleroy Fall Festival fundraiser April 27, dinner 5-8 pm and live music/happy hour afterward.
Jim Sander and Theresa Hoy led the Pigeon Point Neighborhood Council meeting last night as co-chairs for the first time. Before the meeting was too far along, all 20 or so chairs set up in a circle inside the Pathfinder K-8 cafeteria were filled, one by the night’s special guest, Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Benjamin Kinlow. He’s always busy but has been on an extra-intense tour of neighborhood councils recently, as more groups show interest in helping facilitate the growth of Block Watch activism in their respective areas. Kinlow (who is a civilian SPD employee) stressed, “Get your entire block involved in watching out for each other’s homes. … When you see somebody out on the street or the sidewalks (who looks unfamiliar or out of place), think about them being in your back yard … call your neighbors, have everybody stand in the window and watch … if they see that (and are up to no good), they will leave your neighborhood.” More crime-prevention advice and other Pigeon Point notes, ahead:Read More
(2009 photo by Greg Whittaker of Alki Kayak Tours & Mountain to Sound Outfitters[WSB sponsor])
One day after reporting that a renowned raft was missing off northwest Alki, we just got an update from Guy (and Joy D.) Smith –
We got a call today from Daniel … who lives just around the corner on the beach close to the lighthouse property. He said a raft had washed up on the beach and wondered if it was ours. We checked there yesterday and didn’t see it. But it is ours. We’ll try to tow it back to our beach tomorrow, weather permitting. We can’t believe our good luck in finding this raft 3 times after the bad luck of losing it 3 times.
Three generations of the Smiths’ family collaborated a year and a half ago to build the raft, whose story you can read here.
We first told you last Thursday about the Southwest District Council‘s plan to send a letter about The Hole – aka the stalled development site originally known as Fauntleroy Place – pending some final tweaks, as well as a determination of who should receive the letter. Late today, the original drafter, Susan Melrose from the West Seattle Junction Association, sent around the final version, which has been sent by e-mail and postal mail to site owner Seattle Capital Corporation, and cc’d to 22 people including Mayor McGinn, members of the Seattle City Council, and various city department heads. As per the intent expressed during discussion at last week’s SWDC meeting, the letter voices concern about “over the condition, esthetics and most importantly the safety” of the chain-link-ringed, 4-story deep excavation. We’ll check tomorrow with Seattle Capital regarding any response that they plan to make; meantime, read on for the full final text of the letter:Read More
Teddy bears, balloons, flowers, and handwritten tributes are part of that memorial outside Twilight Artist Collective, at the spot along SW Alaska in The Junction where a man was found dead yesterday morning. The King County Medical Examiner’s Office has identified him as 29-year-old Jeffery Kukkonen, hometown listed as Seattle, but an ME investigator told WSB they don’t yet know why he died, “pending toxicology results.” We reported yesterday morning on the discovery, which brought first fire, then police to the block between California and 44th, during the busy early-commute hours when many passersby wondered what was going on. So far, we haven’t found any other information about Kukkonen or the circumstances surrounding his death.
(WSB photo from July 2009)
On the hottest day in Seattle history last July, the group in that photo talked about the West Seattle Junction Neighborhood Plan, as part of a West Seattle-wide meeting at Youngstown Arts Center (WSB coverage here), with breakout groups discussing all five of our peninsula’s neighborhood plans. The Seattle Planning Commission co-sponsored that gathering and others like it around the city, as a series of Neighborhood Plan Status Checks; now the commission is out with a report suggesting which neighborhood plans it believes should be updated next, and the Junction plan is among those at the top of the list. The “white paper” sent a few days ago to Mayor McGinn and other elected officials (see it here) lists five neighborhood plans as in “urgent” need of updating – and the Junction plan is the only one from West Seattle that’s in the group. The document explains:
An unanticipated, significant development opportunity exists in this neighborhood planning area because Huling Brothers Automobile has vacated/sold several acres of land. The redevelopment opportunity at the “gateway” to West Seattle, in combination with the future RapidRide stations, warrants a precisely focused subarea plan and urban design effort that would implement goals already outlined in the neighborhood plan; the current neighborhood plan calls for redeveloping this area and improving the gateway. We understand that DPD’s City Planning office has begun a small planning effort here and would encourage more resources for an interdisciplinary approach that includes transportation, housing, parks and economic development in addition to land use and urban design that will result in right of way improvements, urban design, zoning and land use. We also strongly recommend enhanced efforts designed to create transitions between the new development and the retail core on California Avenue that serves as West Seattle’s downtown heart.
The “small planning effort” refers to the Triangle planning process, which launched with an advisory-group’s first meeting two weeks ago (WSB coverage here) and continues when they meet again tomorrow night, 6 pm, Senior Center of West Seattle. Meantime, this same “white paper” also has a group of neighborhood plans around the city listed as “important” to update – those 6 plans include Delridge (see the plan here), with this explanation:
Recent assessments have shown that current infrastructure exists to support additional jobs and housing growth in this neighborhood. A neighborhood plan update would look fully at the opportunity this presents and also allow for planning that considers whether, where and how additional growth should occur.
The city’s neighborhood plans were developed more than a decade ago; an updating process has begun, but because of budget constraints, only a few are expected to be tackled each year for the foreseeable future. West Seattle’s other three neighborhood plans are Admiral, Morgan Junction, and Westwood/Highland Park, but the Planning Commission did not rate any of those three as either “urgent” or “important” to update soon.
If you drive through The Triangle, you might notice that major progress is being made on Link, the mixed-use project that Harbor Properties is building along 38th SW between Fauntleroy Way and SW Alaska (map). Harbor’s Emi Baldowin tells WSB that a vegetarian restaurant, Chaco Canyon Organic Café, is considering leasing part of Link’s ground-floor retail space and wondering what you think about their potential prospects here – so we said we’d be glad to put this out for your opinion. Chaco Canyon says it’s the first certified organic restaurant/café in the state; right now they have one location, in the University District (map). Sound like something you’d be interested in (or not)? Post a comment!
The agenda for this Thursday’s Seattle Design Commission meeting just arrived, and a West Seattle project is on the schedule: The West Seattle (Westcrest) Reservoir Park “concept design” is scheduled for review at 10:30 am Thursday. This will come nine days before the next scheduled public meeting on the project (that’s set for 10 am April 24 at Southwest Community Center). The new park is being built on what is in essence new land, created by the undergrounding of what was an open reservoir. Thursday’s Design Commission meeting is open to the public and will be in the Boards and Commissions Room at City Hall downtown.
Maybe you saw that pile of bags by Walking On Logs at the southwest end of The Bridge, and noticed the landscaping around it is suddenly a lot neater? Fairmount Community Association‘s Nancy Driver says it’s the work of a Department of Corrections crew that just came out to cut back the blackberry vines and other overgrowth in the area. They have helped in the past but weren’t originally scheduled to do that kind of work this year; however, the Department of Neighborhoods‘ Southwest District coordinator Stan Lock worked with them to see if it was possible, and DOC’s Jim Thorburn brought a crew out to get it done. So Nancy wanted to send them both a public thank-you, along with one more reminder for you: Anyone interested in involvement with the ongoing citizen effort to keep the area around the structures trimmed and trashless is welcome to come to another meeting about it tonight, 5:30 pm at the High Point Library (here’s our coverage of the 1st meeting).
At King County Juvenile Court, the 14-year-old who beat an Alki woman unconscious as she worked as a Metro bus driver has just been sentenced to a year in juvenile custody – Judge Chris Washington decided to impose the extra-long sentence the prosecution had requested, rather than the standard sentence (at least a third less) that his lawyer had asked for.
Before announcing his decision, Judge Washington heard from the attacker’s mother – late to the hearing, reportedly because she was working as a school-bus driver – and very briefly from the 14-year-old himself. The mother insisted her son is “a good kid” and could “never hit anyone” and started to blame the victim for what happened the January night her son lashed out while the bus stopped in Tukwila. But she was interrupted by the judge and prosecutor and told not to address the victim again. Her son briefly addressed the victim at the judge’s suggestion – saying only “Sorry for assaulting you.” The victim asked that he say it again while looking at her; the judge said he could not order the boy to do so, but he did it voluntarily. She said, “Thank you.” She had said yesterday – when she made her statement (read it in our previous report), though the sentencing itself was not concluded because of a delay requested by the defense lawyer – that she wasn’t sure she’d be here today; but this morning, she told WSB, “I needed the closure” that being here for the duration would provide.
The attacker has already spent 11 weeks in juvenile detention, which will be credited toward his one-year sentence; he also was ordered not to ride Metro buses between 8 pm and 6 am until he is 21, and will have to pay restitution for any costs the victim has incurred because of what happened. The judge explained his decision by citing “the severity” of the attack and saying he would not accept any attempt to blame it on the fact the 14-year-old wasunder the influence of alcohol at the time. ADDED 10:53 AM: More details from the hearing, including more of what the judge and the teen’s mother said – read on:Read More
(Bushtit that’s been working on its hanging nest in Lincoln Park, observed/photographed by Trileigh)
‘NEIGHBORHOOD NIGHT’: The second Tuesday of each month could easily carry that title, as it’s the night when multiple community councils meet around West Seattle. Some don’t meet every month, so tonight we have “only” three – North Delridge Neighborhood Council, 6:30 pm, Youngstown Arts Center; Admiral Neighborhood Association, 7 pm at Admiral UCC Church; that’s also when Fauntleroy Community Association meets at Fauntleroy Schoolhouse. One other note of interest to multiple neighborhoods: The newly formed group working on a longterm plan for volunteer help to care for the Walking On Logs area has its second meeting at 5:30 pm, High Point Library; not too late to join in.
BOOK SIGNING: 6 pm at Easy Street Records in The Junction, meet Sam Cutler, described on the ESR website as “the only man ever to work as tour manager of both the Rolling Stones and Grateful Dead.” He tells the tales in his book “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.”
ROCK ‘N’ ROLL TRIVIA: Ready to keep rocking after that event? Move south on California SW to the Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor) for the weekly 8 pm rock ‘n’ roll trivia faceoff. (Also check The Feedback’s home page for new details on specials and events for next week’s 1st-birthday celebration.)
YOU BE THE DJ: Tuesdays are also open turntables night at Skylark Cafe and Club (WSB sponsor), 6 pm – dust off your old (or not-so-old) vinyl and come in to share your music.
RATHER DANCE? The spring sessions of Irish dance classes are starting this week at the West Seattle VFW Hall; info and schedules at tonycomerford.com.
RATHER CHANT? Free workshop tonight at SoundYoga (WSB sponsor) – Intro to Vedic Chant with Chris Dormaier, 7 pm,
GET YOUR SALE ON: It’s the thirteenth day of registration for the 6th annual West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day, coming up on May 8 – the ultimate form of person-to-person recycling, with sales large and small all over the peninsula, and time left to register yours (start here)!