day : 27/09/2012 13 results

West Seattle Crime Watch: Shooting update; stolen car found; theft reports…

We start West Seattle Crime Watch tonight with a report that there’s been a major break in connection with the drive-by shooting September 10th at 26th and Hudson. No one was hurt, but it was a close call for one driver, who wound up with a bullet hole in his windshield, as our photo shows. The announcement was made by Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Steve Paulsen at tonight’s Safe Communities meeting (separate meeting report to come); we hope to get more details tomorrow. (Update: The big break is that police have found a car linked to the incident – no arrest yet, but progress.)

Also tonight, we just got word that a stolen car reported here recently has been found – 12 blocks away from where it was taken. Karen says her CR-V was undamaged. But, she adds, “In the car I found what appears to be the remnants of stolen mail from 2 West Seattle residents.”

Another WSB’er named Karen was hit by scooter thieves – her black-and-purple Honda Elite scooter was stolen in Gatewood, 7100 block of 36th SW, yesterday or last night, license #951570.

Finally – in Sunrise Heights, HM is having a problem with what s/he calls “delivery snatchers”:

Just wanted to let neighbors know of two recent porch thefts in the Sunrise Heights neighborhood. On Friday we had two new leather dining room chairs delivered to our front porch (they were supposed to be held at the FedEx store, but there was a mixup) and they were taken off the front porch sometime that afternoon or evening. This morning we had groceries delivered and we know they arrived sometime between 3am – 6am, and when I went to the porch at 6:30am to get them all but a box of waffles had been taken.

Please be careful of what you have delivered to your house and be on the lookout for “delivery snatchers.”

4755 Fauntleroy’s first design review, report #1: Try again

After compiling a long list of concerns about the megaproject proposed for 4755 Fauntleroy Way SW – and because, in the words of Southwest Design Review Board member Layne Bennion, it’s a “humongous project” – the board decided tonight to ask the project team to come back for a second round of Early Design Guidance.

That means there will be at least two more meetings before this project clears Design Review. It was agreed that the only workable alternative was #4 – outlined in the rendering above – and the project team confirmed that was closest to what it hopes to have in the project – around 370 apartments, 570 parking spaces, a grocery store and drugstore (still unnamed) and other retail. Major concerns included what the key corner at Fauntleroy and Alaska would look like, and how the drive between the project’s two buildings would work. Much more in a separate report later; we estimate 50 or so people attended, and there were some thoughtful and thorough comments (from 13 of the attendees). We have all but five minutes of the two-and-a-half-hour meeting (camera change) on video and will upload it to include with the full-length story.

Next step: The project team goes back to the drawing board to address the issues brought up tonight, and when they’re ready, a date will be set for that second EDG meeting.

West Seattle ‘hum’ update: CalPortland ‘committed to finding a solution,’ says HPAC

With community advocates tracing the source of “The Hum” to a ship-unloading operation at CalPortland on the Duwamish River edge of West Seattle – as first reported here yesterday – the question became: So now what? We have an update from Carolyn and Billy Stauffer, co-chairs of Highland Park Action Committee, who had helped sleuth “The Hum” and led the discussion at last night’s HPAC meeting. They went back to CalPortland today/tonight and have just shared this update with WSB:

Here are the steps CalPortland is taking:

*They can’t just shut it down right now after learning about the problem, as the ship is on an international schedule and they’ve committed to having it unloaded by a certain date.

*They shut the vacuum pumps off for 6 hours today to change the direction of the discharge hoping that might help in the interim.

*They are adding soundproofing to the unit as we speak

*They have hired an outside noise consultant to help them find a solution

*Tomorrow afternoon the current shipment should be done, and they plan on dissambling the vacuums so they can inspect the mufflers and

*Noise abatement equipment within the unit

*Most importantly though- they are committed to finding a solution

We still have an inquiry out with the city to see where their investigation stands with the new discovery, but didn’t hear back before day’s end.

Fauntleroy Fall Festival 2012: Cakes and volunteers needed!

September 27, 2012 5:53 pm
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 |   Fauntleroy | West Seattle festivals | West Seattle news

The Fauntleroy Fall Festival is a little more than two weeks away – and in addition to making plans to come enjoy it, there are a few ways you can help. From Kim Petram:

It’s back! The wildly popular cake walk is back. Handmade Fauntleroy Fall Festival chef hats will again be the prizes for best decorated cakes. The festival planning committee is asking for community members to donate cakes to the cake walk. Any homemade cake will do – you don’t have to be an expert decorator, just do your best.

Please bring all donated cakes to the festival on Sunday October 14th, dropoff starting at 11:00 a.m. at The Hall at Fauntleroy. This year’s festival runs from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. throughout the Fauntleroy triangle.

Also: Volunteers are still needed. Please contact the Fauntleroy Church, UCC office at 206-932-5600 if you can volunteer a few hours at the festival.

The “Fauntleroy triangle” where the festival is held includes the schoolhouse, church, and Y, 9131 California SW and 9140 California SW (with a crossing guard on duty for the duration).

Why there’s a helicopter over White Center/Westwood

5:47 PM: We’re en route to check out a report of a crash in White Center, and that’s apparently what’s brought the chopper that we’re getting questions about. More shortly.

5:58 PM UPDATE: Our original text tip had said the crash was at the 5-corners intersection at 16th/100th – but we’re not finding anything, yet.

West Seattle’s Co-op Preschools: Welcoming a new WSB sponsor

West Seattle’s Co-op Preschools are among our newest WSB sponsors, and here’s what they want you to know:

“Kindergarten readiness! School success!” is all over the news! Kindergarten teachers consistently comment that kids who come from the Co-op Preschools are so ready to succeed. Yes, our preschools have changed with the times to make them more relevant to today’s parents and to keep up with new advances in early childhood education. But the basic formula remains: Co-op kids explore a rich curriculum, learn to think and make wise choices, practice solving problems, learn to treat others with empathy and compassion. ABC’s, 1-2-3’s—literacy, math, and science—are woven into play so children learn to approach learning with enthusiasm. And the fun and learning starts in our Parent-Infant classes through Pre-K.

Our tuition is much lower than other preschools. We can keep the tuition low because we are a nonprofit organization run by parents. Some people have heard rumors that co-op is “work,” but each parent gets to choose how much and what kind of effort they put in. Parents enjoy having their voices heard. And they enjoy getting to know other parents, seeing how their child does at school, and watching their child develop friendships with other children. Our preschool teachers follow educational guidelines established by National Association for Education of Young Children and WA State Early Learning & Development Guidelines 2012.

South Seattle Community College‘s parent-education component offers the latest in child development and guidance—someone there to share the normal joys and challenges of raising kids. Parent discussions are geared to the child’s age and the parent’s interests. We offer talks on things like: No More Diapers, Using Logical Consequences, Parenting in the Media Age, Kitchen Science, Math In The Back Yard, No More No’s, Solving Dinnertime Meltdowns.
Because parents are all learning together and have similar parenting styles they develop a community of friendships that lasts for years. As one parent says:

Both of my children were lucky to spend the first five years of their lives in the coop program. Co-op is so much more than just preschool. It is a community where both teachers and parents work together to create an environment filled with kindness, compassion, creativity, fun, and learning.

West Seattle’s Co-op Preschools have neighborhood locations in the Admiral, Alki, Lincoln Park, Arbor Heights, and SSCC campus areas, with some openings this fall (mostly for 3 and under right now and a few spaces in our Pre-K classes). Contact Judy Hall at 206-938-2278 or And find out more at our website:

We thank the Co-op Preschools for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.

Demolition work under way at DESC’s Delridge site

Last time we checked in with DESC regarding status/timetable on the 66-unit Delridge Supportive Housing project, executive director Bill Hobson said construction was expected to start in the first half of November. However, we noticed there’s work on the site now – demolition crews (you can’t see the backhoe in our photo, but it’s there). So we checked back with Hobson, who explained via e-mail:

We are demolishing the buildings on the site under a separate demolition permit. We wanted to get this done during August just to get the site cleaned up, but the general contractor encountered significant amounts of asbestos that had to be abated per code and delayed the schedule. The demolition contractor mobilized on site Wednesday and has completed the prep work … and hopefully will have the buildings down and the site cleaned of in the next 10 work days. Actual construction will not begin until sometime between Nov 1st and 10th.

Things are very busy along that section of Delridge right now; SDOT is also doing sidewalk ramp work at the Delridge/Findlay intersection.

Former Youngstown director Randy Engstrom to lead city arts office

Just in from the city – Randy Engstrom, former director of Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, will become interim director of the city Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs. Read on for the city’s news release:Read More

Metro changes: New Route 50 has a reroute from the get-go

Saturday’s the day for big Metro changes, including the addition of Route 50. But the county has just sent word there’ll be a change from the original plan. North Delridge won’t get westbound service for a few months, it seems:

Beginning Saturday, September 29, Metro Transit will launch the new, much requested east/west bus Route 50 to connect West Seattle with southeast Seattle via North Delridge and SODO.

However, due to delays in the installation of a traffic signal at SW Genesee St and SW Avalon Way – required for Route 50 to make a left turn onto Avalon – westbound Route 50 heading toward Alki, will be temporarily rerouted via SW Spokane St and SW Avalon Way.

Heading toward West Seattle, Route 50 will serve existing bus stops on SW Spokane Street and SW Avalon Way, and will not serve the North Delridge area south of Spokane St.

Routes 120 and 125 from downtown Seattle will continue to serve southbound Delridge Way SW between SW Spokane St and SW Genesee St.

Route 50 heading toward SODO and Columbia City will follow its regular route via SW Genesee St and Delridge Way SW, and will serve its regularly posted stops along that routing.

The new traffic signal is scheduled to be installed by the end of the year.

Additionally, in the Admiral District, Route 50 heading toward SODO and Columbia City will be temporarily rerouted due to a turning radius issue from eastbound SW Admiral Way onto southbound California Av SW. There are no stops affected by this minor reroute.

P.S. There were some Route 50 questions in our reader questions/Metro answers Q/A – here’s the first installment (a few more answers still to come).

ADDED 2:16 PM: Here’s the reroute map.

Leapin’ lederhosen! ‘Authentic Oktoberfest’ in West Seattle

September 27, 2012 11:20 am
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 |   Fun stuff to do | West Seattle news

Last year, when we mentioned this annual event in our daily preview, turned out it had long been sold out. So here’s an advance alert about the most festive Oktoberfest you’ll find in West Seattle – and possibly beyond – this fall. From the Austria Club of Washington, which also shared the photo:

Looking for an authentic Oktoberfest experience, but don’t have time to fly to Munich? Then come the the Alki Masonic Hall on Friday, October 19 (4736 40th Ave SW).

The Austria Club of Washington is hosting its traditional Oktoberfest with a star attraction: the 40-piece Blaskapelle Tourchester Lich returns to Seattle to blow the wanna-be ‘fests’ away. This German band last played here a dozen years ago to great acclaim. During breaks, our Enzian Schuhplattler will entertain. German food and Paulaner beer, as well as Austrian wine and soft drinks at reasonable prices. The admission fee ($25 in advance) includes dinner. Table reservations for parties of 8, please. Tickets must be paid and reservations made by October 15. Mail check, made out to ‘Austria Club of WA” to Ardis Maine-Wittmann, 15902 70th Ave W, Edmonds, WA 98026. For info, call Ardis at 425-745-0654 or visit us at

West Seattle schools: Sanislo teacher’s letter to you

The issue of school crowding is a big one in West Seattle’s public schools right now. But it’s an issue at some schools that aren’t necessarily overcrowded overall – but dealing with issues in individual classes or grades. A Sanislo Elementary teacher has a message for you, and an invitation, in this letter about what’s happening at her school:

I have twenty-eight students in my kindergarten classroom at Sanislo Elementary.

As a veteran teacher I can say that I have faced numbers like this before, back in 1984-85. But with the education standards of 2012 is this an equitable start for these 28 young children, these eager to learn, clamoring to be seen and heard, and budding students? My team teaching partner faces 29 students on her side of the room. Yes, I said ROOM. We are 102 A and B at Sanislo Elementary. Our building is designed in the open concept style.

The contractual class size limit in Seattle Public Schools is 26. For the time being, Ernie Seevers, our principal, has done his best to provide more assistance in our classrooms by assigning tutors to help us throughout the day. The tutors are incredibly kind and understanding of young children and they are very good at carrying out our quick directions to work with students on writing, reading, or cutting and gluing. But tutors are a temporary measure. Twenty-six students are the contractual number, and in all honesty, that number should be even lower. We need another classroom teacher at Sanislo to provide adequate learning opportunity for our youngest students.

In the 9-23-12 Seattle Times there was an article titled: Why Washington Kids Aren’t Going to College. The last line of the article quotes State Rep. Reuven Carlyle, D-Seattle, saying “Our kids are not getting the bug for learning.” Isn’t kindergarten where that ‘bug’ should begin? If you are a Sanislo parent, alumnus, or the parents of alumni, please join us at the community meeting with Superintendent Jose Banda on Tuesday, Oct. 2, at Concord International Elementary School, 723 S. Concord St. at 6:00 pm. The children can reach quite a volume in the classroom but they need you and I to make a din for them on the outside.

Teresa Goethe
Sanislo Kindergarten Teacher

West Seattle Thursday: ‘Safe Communities’ conversation; Design Review for 4755 Fauntleroy; WS Democratic Women; more

Thanks to Laura James for the seal-pup photo from Wednesday (it’s been a busy week for Seal Sitters, according to their website). On to today/tonight – from the WSB West Seattle Events Calendar:

TRAFFIC/WATER TAXI ALERT, HUSKIES’ GAME: The University of Washington plays at CenturyLink Field tonight, which means both extra traffic through SODO and extra West Seattle Water Taxi runs. (P.S. to WSU fans: The county is adding an extra late run on Saturday night for the Cougars/Ducks game.)

OTHER TRAFFIC ALERTS: In addition to the week’s final overnight closure of southbound 99/Alaskan Way Viaduct, SDOT crews plan repair work on the northbound Viaduct today: “They will close the northbound, right curb lane of the viaduct at Pike Street from approximately 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The crews will cut out a loose expansion joint.”

FIRST DESIGN REVIEW FOR 4755 FAUNTLEROY WAY: The biggest project yet to be proposed in West Seattle – first reported here in July – goes to the Southwest Design Review Board tonight at 6:30 pm, Senior Center of West Seattle (California/Oregon). Public comment is welcome, focusing on the size/shape of the building and other early concerns in the design process. Here’s our Monday story previewing what will be presented regarding the project, which is expected to include more than 350 apartments as well as a grocery store, drug store, and other shops.

WEST SEATTLE DEMOCRATIC WOMEN: Evening program featuring dinner and the film “Not My Life,” 6:30-9 pm at West Seattle Golf Course; reservations required – go here to find out how to check if there’s still room.

ADVISORY GROUP MEETING FOR MURRAY COMBINED-SEWER-OVERFLOW PROJECT: The community advisory group reviewing plans for the project across from Lowman Beach meets 6:30 pm at Fauntleroy Church (9140 California) – details here.

WHAT CRIME/SAFETY CONCERNS DO YOU HAVE? Be part of a new city initiative to listen to citizens’ concerns in a big-picture way – come to Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW) 7 pm tonight. This won’t be an “open mike in front of everybody” situation, we’re told, but instead, a room full of smaller conversations. Details here.

WESTSIDE BURLESQUE REVIEW: 9 pm at Skylark Café and Clubdetails in the calendar listing.

More on the calendar!

West Seattle schools: Lafayette ‘fires it up’ for fundraiser

September 27, 2012 1:57 am
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 |   How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

School-fundraiser season kicked off almost as soon as the school year did – and this week’s launches included the start of pledging for the October 19th Walk-A-Thon at West Seattle’s most populous elementary school, Lafayette in the Admiral District. The logo for this year’s Walk-A-Thon was unveiled at an assembly this week, along with the motto: “Fire It Up!” (Which keeps with the theme that debuted at the assembly we visited earlier this month, when new principal Shauna Heath entered aboard Seattle Fire Engine 29.) Lafayette’s goal this year is $65,000, to pay for student programs they would otherwise lose, and the goal will include community contributions as well as pledges collected by students. Just two more days to become a sponsor, according to Lafayette’s announcement:

This year as a courtesy to our local business’ we are doing a “one-ask” procurement process – which means we only approach a business once this school year. Business donations are due September 29th to ensure we recognize their sponsorship on our various pieces of media that will highlight their company’s involvement. For more info, contact Leslie at or visit

P.S. If you’re inviting the community to participate in YOUR school fundraiser too, let us know!