month : 11/2013 309 results

West Seattle holidays: Advice for staying safe, preventing crime

Southwest Precinct police have begun the holiday-safety plan they previewed at recent community meetings, starting with the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council in October. We talked this week with Community Police Team Officer Jon Flores about the plan; he said you can expect to see stepped-up presence, including foot patrols, in areas that are busier than ever this time of year, particularly The Junction and Westwood Village.

As always, taking safety precautions is a vital part of the equation, too, and toward that end, the precinct has shared advice from Crime Prevention Coordinator Mark Solomon:

Seattle Police Safety Advice for Holiday Season

Even if you think you’ve heard it all before – take a few minutes to read it. Make sure other members of your family know.

P.S. While the document touches only briefly on preventing package theft, Officer Flores said the most important thing is to avoid having a package left in plain view from the street. So if you have to have something delivered, they recommend:

-Signature required on delivery
-Pick up from local carrier hub
-Leave the package with a trusted neighbor if delivery window is within time you know the neighbor will be home

And if all the above fail, at the very least:

-Placement of the package in as a discreet a location as possible

We’d add – if crime DOES happen, even if it seems “minor,” please report it to police so they can track trends and redeploy the “emphasis patrols” as needed. (And once you do, consider letting us know, so we can share it in West Seattle Crime Watch reports and keep others informed – police reports take up to a week to get through the system, so unless we hear directly, we don’t necessarily get the information in a timely manner.)

Tips sought in White Center murder: ‘You took the life of an innocent young man for no reason’

King County Sheriff’s Office investigators are pleading for the public’s help in solving an early-morning murder in White Center. We reported the deadly shooting earlier on partner site White Center Now, but now, KCSO is casting a net far and wide in hopes of getting tips, so we’re publishing the latest update here too:

The King County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the shooting and killing of a man in the White Center area … and is asking for the public’s help.

On 11/27/13 at about 2:15 AM, deputies were dispatched to the area of SW 108 St and 2nd Ave SW after a caller reported hearing at least one gunshot and said there was a man down in the middle of the street. Deputies arrived at the scene to find a young adult male lying in the street suffering from at least one gunshot wound. They attempted life-saving measures but the man was pronounced dead at the scene.

Detective Sergeant Tony McNabb said, “Two young men were walking along SW 108 St. minding their own business when they were confronted by the two suspects. The suspects accused the innocent victim and his friend of being in a rival gang to which they both denied. As the victim and his friend began walking away, one of the suspects pulled out a handgun and began firing at the two, hitting and killing one of them.”

Deputy Charlie Akers is asking for the public to “Put themselves in the shoes of this innocent young man’s family. As we are entering the holiday season, this family is grieving the senseless loss of this young man. If this was one of your loved ones, you would want answers, you would want justice. A young man has lost his life because he was mistaken to be in a gang.”. Deputy Akers added a message to the suspects: “You took the life of an innocent young man for no reason; turn yourself in.”

If you know anything about this senseless crime, please call 206-296-3311.

West Seattle scene: Helmstetler Family Spectacular lights up Saturday

Way up on a steeply pitched roof across from the Charlestown water tower, Jim Winder was hard at work today with finishing touches on the 5th edition of West Seattle Lights / Helmstetler Family Christmas Spectacular, which debuts with a ceremony Saturday night.

We dropped by to catch him in action after he sent the official announcement about what’s new this year:

On Saturday, November 30th, West Seattle Lights will have their 5th Annual Lighting Ceremony at the home of Corey and Taylor Helmstetler at 3908 SW Charlestown. The public is invited free of charge, but attendees are asked to bring a food or cash donation for either West Seattle Food Bank or The Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation.

This year the Helmstetler Christmas Spectacular will have a NEW Master Of Ceremonies … a talking and singing 8 Foot Tall Snowman!!! Along with his two talking/singing Christmas Trees, Jaeley and Jaxton!

Earlier in the year we had a Name The Snowman Contest and we will be announcing the winner and the Snowman’s new name!

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Every-other-week trash pickup everywhere? City Council to decide

2:02 PM: After a pilot project that included part of Highland Park, the Seattle City Council is now ready to talk about whether to extend every-other-week trash pickup to single-family homes citywide. That’s according to the text of this proposed council bill on the council’s next Introduction/Referral Calendar; it seeks to amend the Waste Management and CleanScapes contracts to permit the “option,” and it declares that the council will decide by March 1st of next year whether to “exercise its earliest option” for every-other-week service. Text further into the bill appears to indicate that “earliest option” would be April 1st, 2015, but a separate bill would have to be passed.

ADDED 6:47 PM: In comments, Admiral Neighborhood Association president David Whiting says a Seattle Public Utilities rep is booked for ANA’s January 14th meeting (7 pm, Admiral Congregational Church, California/Hill) to talk about this.

ADDED THURSDAY MORNING: The city’s report on last year’s pilot every-other-week-pickup project is here. It says that while 89 percent of people reported satisfaction with weekly service, 63 percent reported they were satisfied with every-other-weekly service (52 percent in the Highland Park test zone).

DESC sets date for Cottage Grove Commons opening on Delridge

November 27, 2013 1:48 pm
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 |   Delridge | DESC Delridge project | West Seattle news

Just out of the WSB inboxDESC has announced the public grand-opening event for its almost-done Cottage Grove Commons at 5444 Delridge Way SW:

Tuesday, December 17th – 2:30 pm – 4:00 pm

Enjoy self-guided tours, light refreshments, and a 3:00 pm Welcome Ceremony

4:30 pm – 7:00 pm: A community open house to provide neighbors the opportunity to see the building and meet the staff …

Cottage Grove Commons will provide 66 studio apartments with 24-hour on-site staff support for men and women who have been chronically homeless, disabled, and highly vulnerable.

Here’s video from the advisory committee’s recent tour. The $14 million project has been under construction for about a year.

West Seattle Junction Hometown Holidays: Santa on Sunday!

November 27, 2013 1:01 pm
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 |   Holidays | West Seattle news

If you’re planning on a Santa photo with your kid(s) this season – note that the plan for West Seattle Junction Hometown Holidays (co-sponsored by WSB) is different this year:

The West Seattle Junction Association is hosting ONE Santa Photo fundraiser for WestSide Baby this year. On Sunday, December 1, from 11 am – 3 pm, Junction Plaza Park will be transformed into Santa’s Workshop. With professional photography by Donna Ryan of City Mouse Studio, a suggested donation of $15 will go directly to WestSide Baby and help local families. Digital photos will be available and perfect for your holiday cards or calendars. Additionally, neighborhood businesses will host arts and crafts booths. Thank you to Curious Kidstuff, Hotwire Coffee, and Young at Art for being Santa Helpers!

Santa will also be in The Junction on December 21 and 22 for a casual meet and greet at City Mouse Store from 11 am – 3 pm. There will NOT be a photographer on site, but a special Santa moment awaits your child. WestSide Baby elves will be hosting a diaper drive, so come prepared to receive holiday cheer and give holiday help.

See the complete Hometown Holidays calendar by going here; you’ll also find it in the WSB West Seattle Holiday Events and Info Guide, along with other local Santa photo ops around West Seattle this season, and a sleighful of other holiday info to help you plan (and enjoy!).

West Seattle Weather Watch: Burn ban canceled; forecast update

Two quick weather-related notes: First, Puget Sound Clean Air Agency has canceled the burn ban in King County. Second, the National Weather Service is still predicting much-colder weather to sweep in toward the end of the weekend, and the Special Weather Statement alert remains in effect, but they’re still being cautious about any possible lowland snow. Mountain snow, however, does seem like a sure thing for Sunday, so if you are eastbound for the holiday weekend, an early return might be in order.

West Seattle Wednesday: First night of Hanukkah; Thanksgiving Eve; more

Camp Long is always beautiful and close to home

(Photo credit added! By Flickr member old desolate, via the WSB Flickr group)
Hours until Hanukkah (starting at sunset tonight), one day until Thanksgiving, exactly four weeks until Christmas, five weeks until New Year’s Day … but before we get too much further into this sunny Wednesday, a few quick notes from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar and our Holiday Events and Info Guide:

SCHOOL’S OUT EARLY: Seattle Public Schools get out one hour early today, with the four-day holiday weekend to follow, back in session Monday.

DONATE TURKEYS TODAY, DESSERT AND WARM CLOTHES TOMORROW: Last call for last-minute turkey donations to local food banks – and a reminder about dessert and warm clothes donations welcomed for tomorrow’s free community dinner in Fauntleroy. Details on all of the above are here.

THANKSGIVING EVE PARTY: Special event just getting under way at The Beer Junction:

Before you stuff yourselves with turkey, come join us as we tap on the bartop a firkin of Sierra Nevada’s Celebration Ale (one of only a few sent to the state). We’ll also be tapping our very last keg of the year of Southern Tier’s Pumking, as well as their Warlock Imperial Pumpkin Stout. In addition we’ll be tapping our last keg of the custom beer blend Elliot Bay Brewing Companydid for our Pumpkin Junction fest (a blend of 50% of their 2013 Smashing Pumpkin, 35% 2012 Bourbon Aged Imperial Stout, and 15% 2012 Bourbon Aged Barleywine). The 3 pumpkin beers (Pumking, Warlock, Pumpkin Junction) go on tap at 11 AM. The Sierra Nevada firkin will be tapped at 4 pm.

(4511 California SW)

THANKSGIVING EVE MUSIC: 9:30 tonight at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor):

Jonny Smokes’ annual Thanksgiving Eve show is one of the more popular live music events we do here. A one man band, Jonny brings an entire production built around his bottomless catalogue of old and new classic rock, the Seattle sound and a few surprises.

(6451 California SW)

AND AS FOR TOMORROW … The WSB Holiday Guide includes, for Thanksgiving Day:
*Where to get coffee
*Special morning charity-benefit workouts
*What hours the grocery stores are open
*Which restaurants are open if you’re not cooking
*Holiday church services (for tonight, too)

The Thanksgiving information is right at the top of the Holiday Guide page. Not too late to let us know about changes/additions for tomorrow – but please send to ASAP! Thanks!

West Seattle scene: Sign time for The Bridge’s new location

10:27 AM: Perfect day to put up a sign! That’s what a crew from City Lights Sign Company is doing this morning at the new location of The Bridge at California/Graham, where six months of renovation work have made the old Chuck and Sally’s exterior a distant memory. Next Monday (December 2nd) – featuring the Seahawks on Monday Night Football – is the final day/night of operation at The Bridge’s current location at 4439 35th SW, making way for a 150+-apartment mixed-use development, and they’re inviting patrons and friends present and past to commemorate the closure with a group photo, set for 3 pm Sunday (December 1st). No exact date set for opening the new location but The Bridge’s Jenny Almukhtar describes it as “shortly after” the old one closes.

12:37 PM UPDATE: Went back for an “after” shot:

P.S. Back at the current location, per Jenny: “Starting today, we are offering an Open-Faced Turkey Sandwich with cranberry cream cheese, piled high with mashed potatoes, stuffing & gravy. Served with a side of green-bean casserole or a traditional Turkey Dinner with all the aforementioned sides, gobble, gobble. While supplies last!”

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Pre-holiday Wednesday watch

November 27, 2013 6:03 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

(East-facing camera on the West Seattle Bridge; see other cams on the WSB Traffic page)
It’s not only Thanksgiving Eve and, at sunset, the first night of Hanukkah, but we’re also looking ahead to a POSSIBLE blast of wintry weather by weekend’s end – so if you’re leaving town on a holiday getaway, be sure to check on conditions before you come back! We are here 24/7/365 and will be updating with whatever’s happening weather-wise. Also looking ahead:

HOLIDAY TRANSIT CHANGES THURSDAY/FRIDAY: For Metro, it’s a Sunday schedule on Thanksgiving Day, “reduced weekday/no UW” on Friday. No West Seattle or Vashon Water Taxi either day. If you have to go downtown Friday morning, remember the holiday parade, which closes off a chunk of central downtown until about 10 am, and features local participants. Washington State Ferries will be on its normal weekday schedule for the holiday.

OTHER HOLIDAY INFO: If you’re looking for Thanksgiving info – including which grocery stores, restaurants, coffee shops are open on the holiday – that’s part of what you’ll find in the WSB West Seattle Holiday Events and Info Guide. (Plus lots of Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve/Day info too.)

10:35 AM: RapidRide C Line might be experiencing delays because of a D Line reroute following a car crash in the lower Queen Anne area, Metro warns.

4:43 PM: Update on those downtown bus stops that were closed for a while:

The bus stops eastbound on Seneca St just west of 3rd Av and westbound on Columbia St just east of 2nd Av have reopened after being closed due to earlier construction.

The RapidRide C Line, routes 21 Express, 55, 56, 57 & 120 to downtown Seattle, the RapidRide D Line to Ballard and routes 16 & 66 to Northgate have resumed normal operation on eastbound Seneca St and will serve the stop on Seneca St just west of 3rd Av.

The C Line and Route 125 to Westwood Village, and routes 21 Express to Arbor Heights, 55 to the Admiral District, 56 to Alki, 57 to the Alaska Junction and 120 to Burien have resumed service at the stop westbound on Columbia St just east of 2nd Av.

Followup: What Aegis Living plans for ex-Life Care Center spot

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The CEO of Aegis Living tells WSB that the new senior-living center his company plans to build at 47th/Admiral will be “something that West Seattle has not seen before.”

We talked with Redmond-headquartered Aegis’s CEO Dwayne Clark on Monday, the first opportunity he’d had for a conversation since we made the request upon discovering earlier this month that Aegis is buying the 1 1/2-acre site vacated by Life Care Centers of America almost a year ago.

Full plans for that “something” are still under development, says Clark. The deal isn’t set to close until year’s end, but they have a size and concept in mind:

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West Seattle community centers’ winter brochure available online

November 26, 2013 9:02 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

It might be the most fun-packed publication in West Seattle – the quarterly combined brochure for Alki, Delridge, Hiawatha, and High Point Community Centers, Southwest Teen Life Center, and Southwest Pool. And Seattle Parks says the brand-new one, for winter quarter, is now available online – browse it here, and if you’re interested in events/classes/etc. requiring pre-registration, get ready to sign up starting at noon next Tuesday (December 3rd)!

Basketball time! Chief Sealth Jamboree, alumni game days away

November 26, 2013 6:30 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

Chief Sealth International High School is hosting two big basketball events: Friday night (November 29th), it’s the second annual Nels Enquist Alumni Game, 6 pm at the Sealth gym, admission $5 (12 and under/free). Then on Saturday (November 30th), the 13th annual Sealth Jamboree features 13 varsity and JV teams, including West Seattle High School as well as Sealth. Here’s the full lineup:

Admission for the Jamboree is the same as regular-season admission – $6/adults, $4 students. Varsity games are in the Sealth gym on the southeast side of the campus, 2600 SW Thistle; JV games are in the Denny gym on the north side of the two schools’ shared campus, 2601 SW Kenyon.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Outgunned Highland Park suspects nabbed

Remember the Saturday night Highland Park robbery attempt thwarted by a clerk who said he had a bigger gun? Tonight Seattle Police say suspects are now in custody, after the distinctive getaway car was spotted following a street robbery in South King County. This is all explained on SPD Blotter.

West Seattle Weather Watch: New alert for potential wintry weather

4:09 PM: Remember our note yesterday about the possible, potential, maybe, might-happen really cold weather? The National Weather Service has now published a “special weather statement” about it. NWS says the temperatures are expected to drop big time starting Sunday night and says that – while it’s still too early to be certain – “lowland snow” is a possibility. Again, if you’re heading out for the long holiday weekend, check in before you come back!

10:48 PM UPDATE: Renowned weather analyst Cliff Mass has weighed in. He sees the same POTENTIAL – but cautions it’s early.

Followup: $350,000 bail for West Seattle bus-robberies suspect

(WSB photo from Monday night, near California/Raymond)
In a jailhouse courtroom, a King County Superior Court judge has just set bail at $350,000 for the 19-year-old man accused of robbing people on board a RapidRide bus north of Morgan Junction last night until passengers fought back, with one grabbing his gun and others sitting on him until police arrived. (Here’s our Monday night coverage.) The suspect waived his right to be present for the hearing, but a woman identifying herself as his mother cried out in the courtroom, “No! That’s not my son!” and told reporters (including WSB co-publisher Patrick Sand) afterward that she apologizes to Metro and the passengers, that her son is not like that, and she doesn’t understand what happened.

5:38 PM UPDATE: A statement from Metro, via spokesperson Jeff Switzer:

We’re cooperating with Seattle Police in this ongoing investigation. When the fight erupted, our driver followed longstanding procedures designed to keep our riders as safe as possible during a serious incident – he hit his emergency alarm, pulled over the bus and opened the doors to let passengers escape. We’re extremely relieved no one was seriously injured.

The suspect is due back in court next Monday morning.

Not just for recreation: Seattle Parks facilities offer help to teens in crisis

Five of our area’s city-run community center, Teen Life Center, and pool facilities now have a new alter-ego: Safe Place for teens in crisis. This announcement from the city explains:

Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities are the first City of Seattle agencies to become part of the Safe Place network in King County. As of November 1, the start of Runaway and Homeless Youth Prevention Month, 37 Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities, are a Safe Place where youth ages 12-17 can ask for help when in crisis. These facilities include Seattle Parks and Recreation’s 26 community centers, eight indoor pools and three teen life centers.

“We are excited to be part of the Safe Place program. This program is in line with our mission to provide safe, welcoming places for the public,” said Christopher Williams, Seattle Parks and Recreation Acting Superintendent. “Being a Safe Place expands our ability to help youth in our centers.”

Community center doors now bear the distinctive yellow decal that signals to young people that they can find help and safety inside. Facility staff have been trained in the protocol to follow when a young person asks for help: offer the young person a safe and quiet place to wait and rest, and call the Safe Place hotline to notify the Safe Place coordinator of the situation. Within 45 minutes, a Safe Place coordinator will arrive to assess the teen’s needs, helping them either return home or go to a youth shelter, as appropriate.

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West Seattle holidays: WSHS, Sealth bands in Friday’s parade downtown

1:04 PM TUESDAY: Three days until the My Macy’s Holiday Parade downtown – and we have word of at least three local participants to watch for: The Chief Sealth International High School and West Seattle High School marching bands, plus the Salty’s nutcrackers (which are teamed with the WSHS band, according to an announcement from Salty’s [WSB sponsor]). We’re hoping to get the official parade lineup so we can check for other local participants – in the meantime, please let us know if you’re part of it, or know someone from West Seattle who is. The parade starts at 9 am Friday, and runs along the route shown above, from 7th and Pine down to 5th, south on 5th to University, then turning back north on 4th until it ends at, of course, Macy’s.

10:47 AM WEDNESDAY: Thanks to Trisha for this update: “Just wanted to add that Evergreen City Ballet will also be participating with Salty’s and the bands. The ballerinas will be wearing Nutcracker costumes and marching in the parade. My daughter is a sophomore at CSIHS and will be one of them!” (Added) Also from comments, at least one West Seattle girl, a WSHS student, will be marching with the La Señoritas Sabers drill team.

Who wants a marijuana license in West Seattle? State’s first applicant list

As the state gets closer to granting its first marijuana-selling licenses, it’s just published its first list of who’s seeking them. Reviewing the list for local applicants, here’s what we found: So far, no West Seattle applicants for a marijuana-retailer license; no West Seattle applicants for a marijuana-processor license, though there’s one in nearby Shorewood (Going Green, 2525 SW 102nd Lane); one West Seattle applicant for a marijuana-producer license, Evergreen Herbal, in the Riverside area at 3601 W. Marginal Way SW, seeking a Tier 3 license – described as “10,000 to 30,000 square feet of plant canopy.” The state says it will update this list weekly during the one-month application period, which ends on December 19th (more info here).

Light rail for West Seattle? Sound Transit plan-comment updates

The comment period has just closed for Sound Transit‘s Long-Range Plan update – hope you got the chance to answer ST’s survey, mentioned here several times. Today, a quick update on two loud voices of support for light rail to West Seattle: First, Joe Szilagyi of the West Seattle Transportation Coalition just sent word of the letter the coalition sent; see it in this update on the WSTC website (which also includes the newest information on what YOU can do to advocate for solutions to WS transportation challenges). Second, the City Council has unanimously approved its own official comments for Sound Transit, and they include a request “to consider additional … corridors in Seattle, such as University District/Ballard/Downtown and West Seattle/Burien.” Next step: ST works on a “supplemental environmental impact statement” for its plan update, and somewhere down the line, maybe a new ballot measure to fund light-rail expansion.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Suspected flasher arrested

In West Seattle Crime Watch this morning: Besides more followup on last night’s RapidRide-robber-rousting (updated coverage here), we’ve obtained another noteworthy report from Seattle Police: The arrest of an indecent-exposure suspect in The Triangle.

Two WSB readers messaged us about the incident, which happened early yesterday outside Link at 38th/Alaska. Two women using the on-site gym on the east side of the building called police after seeing a man standing in the alley outside, looking into its window while exposing himself and masturbating. Police found the 38-year-old suspect “in a doorway alcove just south of the apartment gym” and say they “smell(ed) a strong odor of intoxicants on (his) breath.” He was booked into King County Jail, where the register shows he is still being held, in lieu of $500 bail.

In case you wondered, this suspect is NOT the one arrested in the similar Westwood Village case a month ago. Municipal Court records show this suspect, however, was arrested for indecent exposure in August of 2012, but the charge eventually was dropped for “lack of a prosecuting witness.” (We haven’t yet found details of that incident.) He’s due in court shortly; we’ll update the story later with information on his status.

Quick calendar notes for your West Seattle Tuesday

Sunset on the Duwamish (5015)

(Sunday’s sunset over the Duwamish, shared in the WSB Flickr group by Ilona Berzups)
News is stacking up fast, so this morning we have to be really quick with the calendar previews:

TURKEY DONATIONS: Can you get a turkey or two (or …) to one or both local food banks? Times/locations here.

OTHER HOLIDAY INFO: We’re updating the WSB West Seattle Holiday Events and Info Guide again this morning. Right now, it starts with a long list of Thanksgiving information – including free community dinners and which restaurants/grocery stores/coffee shops are open on the holiday itself – and holiday info all the way through New Year’s follows. (Find it any time from its tab under the header on all WSB pages, the one lettered in red as HOLIDAYS.)

OWLING/TOURING LINCOLN PARK AT DUSK: A non-holiday highlight on the calendar for tonight – 6:30 pm, go owling and touring with naturalist Stewart Wechsler at Lincoln Park; more details here.

OTHER NON-HOLIDAY EVENTS TODAY/TONIGHT (AND BEYOND): Browse the frequently updated WSB West Seattle Event Calendar whenever you have a minute to spare. Mouse over the right side of any line and click the plus sign to open a preview, then click “read more” for the full entry, usually including a map.


(East-facing camera on the West Seattle Bridge; see other cams on the WSB Traffic page)
Foggier this morning than Monday … be extra-careful out there, whether you’re driving, walking, or bicycling on slick roads/sidewalks. No other advisories at the moment. But here again is our holiday reminder:

HOLIDAY TRANSIT CHANGES THURSDAY/FRIDAY: Metro runs a Sunday schedule on Thanksgiving Day, “reduced weekday/no UW” on Friday. West Seattle and Vashon Water Taxis are out of service both days. (And even if you don’t use transit, if you have to go downtown Friday morning, remember the holiday parade, which closes off a chunk of central downtown until about 10 am.)

7:04 AM UPDATE: Washington State Ferries texts, “All three vessels on the Fauntleroy/Vashon/Southworth route are delayed and estimated 10-15 minutes due to heavy fog.” The Vashon Water Taxi is delayed too.

8:10 AM UPDATE: Mike Jensen tweets about bridge trouble, on the incline near the Delridge onramp:

5:45 PM: Crash at Fauntleroy/Alaska is leading to trouble in The Triangle:

Thanks to Brian Presser from TouchTech Systems for the pic.