West Seattle, Washington
Just in case you wondered. Seattle Fire sent out a “full response” to 36th and Orchard, with a family reported to be evacuating their home because of smoke in the basement, but the first scene report describes it as a “furnace backfire,” so most crews are being canceled.
9:38 AM: Between 2 and 5 am today, in below-freezing weather, 800 volunteers roamed King County for the annual One-Night Count of people sleeping outdoors. The results just announced: 2,594 men, women, and children were counted, “a small increase over those found without shelter last year,” according to the official post-count announcement, which explains that volunteers “counted people trying to survive in cars, tents, all night buses, select hospitals, or curled up in blankets under bridges or in doorways.” Guidelines for public discussion of the count do not allow specific locations to be reported, so we don’t know at this point if they visited the Nickelsville encampment in Highland Park, where one WSB Forums member who is a frequent visitor told us 90 people were staying as of a recent count. Last year’s countywide total was 2,442, and organizers also say it is perennially “an undercount of people without shelter on this night. Counters can reach only a portion of the geographic area of the county, and many homeless people sleep in hard-to-reach places.”
2:59 PM UPDATE: Here’s a breakdown of this morning’s count. There is no West Seattle category, but the list does mention 55 people counted in White Center.
8:37 AM: The temperature is still below freezing and there are scattered reports of problems with icy roads, including this from Jennifer:
There is a bad patch of ice on 46th, the little street that goes down to Marine View Drive from 100th – right after you go around the corner in the right lane there are large, thick patches of ice. Myself and the car in front of me both almost slid through the intersection. Marine View drive right there is also covered in a thick frost that no one seems to suspect – saw quite a few cars and a scooter (!) go slippy-sliding for a few seconds.
And Walter e-mailed to say there is (or was) a bus blocking people from going down Manning to Admiral. We’re also checking out a crash report on California Way (the street heading down the hill from Hamilton Viewpoint to Harbor).
9:14 AM UPDATE: The crash scene on California Way is cleared – no injuries, but police are not allowing drivers to go downhill (northbound) while the shaded side of the street remains icy/frosty. Thanks to the commenters who are reporting other trouble spots.
The marketing students at West Seattle High School were recently invited to “compete in an advertising campaign by the Department of Ecology and Seattle Public Utilities for advertising materials to be used in a car oil leaks marketing campaign,” according to marketing teacher Michelle Sloan, and they came in third, winning $833 for the class. Congratulations to: Team 1, Shane Fay, Tyler Prom, Alijah Gibson; Team 2, Camara Harris-Weaver, Leanna Le, Laurie Bui; Team 3, Makenzie Harrison, Helena Sallas, Mohammed Abdulkadir. In addition to that achievement, 21 WSHS marketing students recently participated in regionals. Sloan says, “Though we did not win any of the few top spots to compete at state, we had several WSHS marketing teams score very well on their presentations.”
(Monday photo by RyAnn – onlookers young and old with the dead sea lion on the beach)
The California sea lion found dead at Lincoln Park earlier this week had been shot, reports Robin Lindsey of Seal Sitters. She had told us the sea lion would be necropsied – and late Thursday night, she sent word of results:
I am sad to report that indeed the necropsy yesterday revealed a bullet in the left lung lobe of the California sea lion at Lincoln Park. The animal’s intestines were also twisted and will be examined. Causes can range from obstruction by fishing lures and line to tumors, but could also be from trauma of the shooting. WDFW Marine Mammal Investigations will turn over the evidence and information to NOAA Office for Law Enforcement for investigation.
Robin has published more details on the Seal Sitters’ “Blubberblog” site.
What? You haven’t pulled that black-velvet Elvis painting out of the basement and taken it over to the Yen Wor yet? Till 2 am or so, Guy Olson is presiding over a showcase for “Bad Art” – because, well, why not? We stopped by early in the evening and noted a few creations on display. Particularly the one at left with Michael Jackson … who just might replace Elvis as the leading celebrity inspiration for “bad art.” (A subjective term, of course.)
10:47 PM: There are bridge closures in both directions tonight, and that means backups at a time you may not expect them. It is the previously mentioned eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct closure, starting east of the 1st Ave South exit, plus another Fauntleroy Expressway Seismic Retrofit closure, affecting the entrance to the bridge from 35th and the westbound exits (you have to get off at Harbor Island or Delridge). Both should be done by 5 a.m.
12:38 AM UPDATE: Came through about half an hour ago and it appeared the Fauntleroy Expressway closure was temporarily suspended – cars were using the westernmost stretch of the bridge going both ways – but the webcams show the detour in effect again.
A new unit at The Kenney (WSB sponsor) is now open, and was shown off at an open house tonight. The Memory Care Community was once part of a major redevelopment plan; though much of the plan was shelved, The Kenney saw a need to offer this as part of its “continuum of care” philosophy, and continued with the project.
There are 16 beds in the Memory Care Community – with residents about to start moving in – and they’re part of either private or shared apartments, as well as a dining/activity room:
Residents will have use of a courtyard, too.
As noted in The Kenney’s announcement, the design and decor were chosen for a sense of serenity. It’s not just the facility, though; The Kenney is staffing it around the clock with what they describe as “certified nursing assistants with specialized dementia training,” and special programming and activities are planned.
Inbetween regular meetings, West Seattle Chamber of Commerce members gather for “After-Hours” events at local businesses – and tonight, board member Kirk Mead (left, with president Dave Montoure) played host at the new Umpqua Bank branch of which he is general manager, next to Admiral Safeway. Here’s the smiling staff:
On the immediate horizon for the Chamber – next Tuesday is the deadline to get nominations in for this year’s Westside Awards. The nomination form and more info can be found on this page of the Chamber’s website.
Firefighters are working to find out what led to a fire call in Highland Park this past hour. The original call to a home in the 8100 block of 6th SW was “fire in a single-family residence,” but WSB contributor Deanie Schwarz says there were no flames, and crews were investigating the possibility it was a small fire in a fan.
Today, we’re welcoming a new WSB sponsor: Red 27 Engraving. Here’s what they would like you to know about their business:
Red 27 Engraving is a full-service laser-engraving company that can place any design, photograph, or text on plastic, acrylic, brass, stainless, aluminum, textiles, granite, marble, glass, wood and tile. They are usually able to turn around a product in a day – they have multiple laser machines that allow them to run many products at once. Red 27 Engraving owner Dana Perreault is based in Arbor Heights and says his family has been in the engraving business on the East Coast for the past 18 years. He works on projects ranging from pet tags and name badges, to industrial signage and custom gifts. Red 27 Engraving loves to work on new and interesting projects and is happy to talk with you about your ideas, and work with you to produce the perfect product. You’ll find Red 27 Engraving online at red27engraving.com; call 206-854-7328. The company is a member of the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce.
We thank Red 27 Engraving for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news on WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
On partner site White Center Now on Tuesday night, we reported on a “takeover”-style armed robbery at the Pawn Pros shop in WC. Today the King County Sheriff’s Office is distributing surveillance video recorded during the robbery, and asking that anyone with information about the robbers’ identities (or anything else related to the crime) please call them at (206) 296-3311.
Following the first round of community meetings about Metro‘s proposed “restructuring” plan to take effect in connection with the West Seattle RapidRide launch this fall, a new proposal is due out next week, and another round of meetings is set, to get your take on it. Two are set for West Seattle – 6-8 pm February 15 at Madison Middle School, and 6-8 pm February 16th at Chief Sealth International High School. Metro says you can watch this page for the new proposal around February 1st. (One expected change was reported here in December, when a Metro planner told the Admiral Neighborhood Association that the new version wouldn’t take away as much service in that area as first proposed.)
Four lots were for sale on the east side of Delridge, north of SW Findlay, when the Downtown Emergency Service Center bought the site of its planned 66-unit homeless-housing complex. DESC bought three of them. The fourth, south of the project site, is still for sale – and now it has a sign that shouldn’t be there: The official Department of Planning and Development sign letting the neighborhood know that the land-use-permit application for the project has been filed. (As of two days ago, according to the DPD website.) According to a conversation on the North Delridge mailing list, the city has been notified that the project site is actually further north, and says the mistake will be fixed. Meantime, we checked today with the Washington State Housing Finance Commission to see if DESC’s revised application for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits is in yet, with the January 31st deadline pending. They haven’t received it yet, according to spokesperson Bill Wortley. As first reported here in early January, the number of units in the project has been reduced from 75 to 66, since the city says data didn’t support a waiver allowing that many extra extremely-low-income-housing units in the area after all. In addition to the pending round of tax-credit funding, the project also needs at least one more Design Review Board meeting before gaining final city approval; no date set yet. And the Delridge Alliance advisory group – explained on the North Delridge Neighborhood Council website – is expected to lead a public meeting about the project soon.
3:51 PM: The sign already has been moved and is now on the north end of the site.
12:23 PM: An 85-year-old Vashon Island man with Alzheimer’s is missing, and King County Sheriff’s Office and the Alzheimer’s Association have asked media on this side of the Sound to also distribute his photo, in case he managed to get onto a ferry. His name is Jack Randles; he is described as 6’ 1”, 150 pounds, with white hair and mustache. He was last seen in the downtown Vashon area around 4:30 pm yesterday. KCSO is searching on the ground and in the air. If you see or have seen him, please call 911.
8:58 PM UPDATE: The Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber reports the search has been called off for now.
Out of the WSB inbox, from Ron:
Someone stole our White Wells Cargo Trailer last night from the Gatewood area. The license plate is 1384 TI. It was filled with wood from my remodel and cabinet-making projects. The thieves cut the locks preventing them from towing it off and removed it from our alley.
6:42 PM UPDATE: Added a photo provided by Ron.
11:45 AM: Couple of outages at the moment, just in case you’re affected and wondering if you’re alone … Seattle City Light has 22 homes without power along Beach Drive, in the Weather Watch Park vicinity (see the map); the cause is listed as “unknown,” though Melissa tells us via Twitter that it “sounded like a transformer blew.” Meantime, here in Upper Fauntleroy, our Comcast Internet service is out, and the utility tells us we’re not alone – they’re attributing it to storm-related damage.
2:59 PM UPDATE: The City Light map shows the Beach Drive outage is over.
After last Saturday’s shooting by Morgan Junction Park, some discussion centered on safety concerns in the park itself. Some of those concerns came up at last night’s quarterly meeting of the Morgan Community Association (a week later than originally scheduled, because of last week’s snow/ice).
Other major agenda items included an update on design of the Murray CSO-control project across from Lowman Beach Park, and upcoming electrical-cable work in Gatewood. Read on for details:Read More
Every shopping-center or supermarket parking lot seems to have one – a big pile of dirty snow left over from last week’s storm. Scott Ryan photographed this one, and e-mailed it to us late last night:
If anyone in West Seattle has aspirations of summiting Mt. Rainier, but would rather avoid the park fees and oxygen deprivation, there’s a limited window right now to climb a pile of snow that is impersonating Mt. Rainier in the Roxbury Safeway parking lot at 28th SW & Roxbury. At about eight feet, Mini Mt. Rainier is the largest of Safeway’s half a dozen snow piles, which are still resisting the warm front that defeated last week’s paralyzing snow attack.
From the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:
EASTBOUND SPOKANE STREET VIADUCT CLOSURE: Again tonight, this section of the West Seattle Bridge will be closed, starting east of the 1st Avenue South ramp (which will remain open, as will the ramp to northbound 99), 9 pm-5 am. Also remember it’s scheduled to be closed all weekend, 9 pm Friday-5 am Monday. Details here.
OPEN HOUSE #2: Party at Skin Butik, which has moved from Harbor Avenue to the corner of California and Graham, open house from 5-7:30 pm.
PARENTING WORKSHOP: Tonight is the rescheduled “Parenting with Courage and Connection” workshop, 6 pm, Westside Unitarian Universalist Congregation, 7141 California SW, presented by Jody McVittie, MD. Free. Questions? E-mail Jody@encouragingsolutions.net or call 206 782 1595.
ARBOR HEIGHTS WATER-MAIN WORK: Public meeting in Arbor Heights re: water-main work resulting from the reviews after last August’s fire, 7-9 pm, Arbor Heights Community Church.
FUNDRAISER FOR THE CROHN’S AND COLITIS FOUNDATION OF AMERICA: Join The Beer Church at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor) 7 pm tonight for a raffle of Pearl Jam memorabilia and more, benefiting CCFA. Details on The Feedback’s site.
FINANCIAL AID FOR COLLEGE: College Goal Sunday, assistance in filing requests for financial aid for college, Chief Sealth International High School, 7-9 pm.
BAD ART, BAD FASHION: First annual Yen Wor Bad Art and Fashion Show, 8 pm-2 am. Facebook event here.
JANUARY 26: At The Bridge: Free Poker on Thursdays (generally two games, 6:30 pm & 9 pm, check Facebook for updated info)
Big night for the Cub Scouts of Pack 793 Den 4, sponsored by Holy Rosary Parish. 14 Tiger Scouts visited Emmy Award-winning West Seattle journalist Brian Callanan, who is host of “Ask the Mayor” on the Seattle Channel. Top photo shows Brian leading the scouts on a tour of the cable channel’s HQ. Then – it was “Ask the Mayor” night, on TV, and for the scouts:
(Back row, Den Leaders left to right: Charles Guzek, Brian Christenson, Patrick Quinn. Front row, Scouts left to right: Augie Herrin, Brody Olson, Jake Beardemphl, CJ Guzek, Ben Leonardo, Charlie Bendzak, Jack Cahill, PJ Barton, Jack Christenson, Henry Ament, Kaeden Quinn, Ryder Mackay, Carter Joy)
Brian Christenson, who shared the photos, picks up the story:
After the tour of the station, Brian Callanan escorted the scouts to the mayor’s office for an in-depth interview to get answers to what the 6 and 7-year-old kids in West Seattle want to know. The mayor was extremely engaged and wanted to make sure that all scouts had their questions answered. Questions ranged from “whether the mayor was right-handed or left-handed” to “what sports he liked to play.” The mayor stated that he enjoys biking, sea kayaking and basketball. And although he is right-handed, he is adept at shooting a basketball with either hand. The most hard hitting question came from 6 year old CJ Guzek, who wanted to know if the mayor got his wife’s bike back that was stolen last year. The answer unfortunately was ‘no.’ When discussions turned to the recent storms and the mayors handling of the event, the scouts were very positive about the event. However, the 6 year old scouts were more excited about schools being closed and getting to stay at home and play in the snow.
Bottom line: Mayor McGinn is very scout-friendly and and the scouts had a great experience with Brian Callanan and Mayor McGinn. Thank you to both!
West Seattle is getting a new elementary school, starting next year, after having closed two elementary campuses in the past four years. The Seattle School Board voted unanimously tonight to spend $6 million for a “short-term capacity-management” plan that includes reopening the former Boren Junior High School on Delridge – which has long served as an interim site for schools whose permanent campuses are temporarily out of commission – as a new elementary school. The district says it will focus on STEM – science, technology, engineering, mathematics – and will be an “option” school, the second one in West Seattle (joining Pathfinder K-8), meaning that it will admit students by application only, instead of serving a specific neighborhood zone. Boren is supposed to be the school’s temporary home, but its permanent home is not stipulated in the board motion, only that it will open this fall. Though this was part of the district’s “short-term capacity-management” proposal, intended overall to deal with overcrowding at many elementaries, district staff had previously acknowledged the new school would not likely draw off enough students from jampacked campuses to avert addition of more portables elsewhere – board member Harium Martin-Morris stressed before tonight’s vote that the district will wait for this spring’s enrollment data before deciding which schools, if any, need them.
In a series of community meetings, and other discussion venues (including here), West Seattle’s new board member Marty McLaren acknowledged she heard a strong sentiment for adding a new neighborhood school, but that was not possible for next year, and a week and a half ago, she changed her mind about trying to delay the “option” school plan. Board president Michael DeBell acknowledged during tonight’s meeting that West Seattle had been “tough” to deal with during the capacity-management discussions – without elaborating.
Next step: The district’s “open enrollment” period starts February 27th, and by then, we should know more about what the new school is supposed to be like. Meantime, the board is expected to start work soon on “intermediate” and “long-term” capacity management, which would include decisions about opening more schools, and possibly building at least one with money to be raised in the future BEX IV levy.
Congratulations to Seattle Lutheran High School soccer stars who have just won big honors. At right, Ashley Shaw has been chosen Washington State B Soccer Player of the Year for the second consecutive year. She is also the Saints’ all-time soccer-scoring leader, with 94 goals and 37 assists, and led them to the state tournament every year she’s been there, including the state championship last year. At left, Emily Winter, also a key player these past four years, was elected to the All-State second team. Both girls are seniors and have made their college choices – Ashley (who says she’s been playing since she was a preschooler!) is going to Seattle Pacific University on a soccer scholarship – expecting to sign on Letter of Intent Day next Wednesday – and Emily is going to Washington State.