West Seattle, Washington
(The “massing” options shown tonight for 3824 California SW, whose architects have to try again)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
3824 California has never had it easy before the Southwest Design Review Board.
Seven years ago, when a standalone Petco store was proposed on the site, the project died after its first two Early Design Guidance proposals were shot down, and the Charlestown Café stayed open three more years before closing in 2011.
Now, the first post-café development proposal for 3824 California SW – a ~30-townhome/live-work-unit project – has been ordered to come back for a third round of Early Design Guidance, meaning it will appear before the board at least four times before, if, it gains approval to move ahead..
Here’s how EDG round two unfolded tonight (here’s the design packet that was used for most of the review):
Thanks to everyone who’s shared views of the double rainbow that appeared before sunset! We’re building a gallery and adding more. For starters – this one’s from Max.
In some cases, the view wasn’t double so much as just, big. This view looking toward Fairmount is from Maris:
Next – from Debbie Bukoski:
From Eric Renn:
And Melissa sent her perspective via video, panning across the double rainbow from the shore of the bay:
Might add a few more – meantime, thanks to EVERYONE who shared!
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The Morgan Community Association is now officially on the record as supporting the West Seattle Church of the Nazarene‘s proposed six-townhouse plan for land it owns south of the church and its parsonage at 42nd and Juneau.
The vote came at the end of last night’s meeting, after a return appearance by developer and area resident Joe Paar (above), who said he and the church – planning to sell the townhouses but retain ownership of “park” open space on the rest of the site – wanted MoCA’s blessing since they are about to take the first part of the rezoning proposal to the city. The room was full of church members/supporters, about triple MoCA’s usual turnout in the lower-level meeting area of The Kenney (WSB sponsor).
They had a multipage glossy color handout with renderings and Q/A on the project. (Previously, they set up a website.) A sign and painted-on-the-ground outlines are now set up, said Paar. He said they’re still working out where to put the park on the open space that will be left between the townhouses and 42nd SW. He said they’ve been designed to look like “Craftsman-style townhouses,” not the “modern” design that is prevalent in new construction today. The community will be asked to vote on color schemes.
He noted that he and church leadership already have made three appearances at MoCA and will be back often as the proposal proceeds – “you’re going to get sick of us.” A community garden and movie screen are proposed as part of the park section of the site. The project will require a zoning change, as noted previously. The townhouses will have a private porch transitioning into a semi-private yard, then a public path, and the community park area. Their garages won’t be connected to the homes – residents will have to walk to their homes, “which is intentional,” Paar said.
They propose 12 spaces of parking for the townhomes, in addition to 11 parking spaces for the church. The biggest townhomes will have 2 bedrooms and 2 baths in addition to basement space that could be used for a bedroom or office. It was reiterated that these will be sold, not rented, townhomes on fee-simple land. “Would somebody be allowed to buy them for an investment and rent them out?” an attendee asked. “That’s not what we’re looking to sell these for,” said Parr. The church retains ownership of the “park” portion of the land, as well as the parsonage house between the “park” site and the church building.
One attendee said “I commend you on how these buildings look; the buildings they’re building now, they look terrible.” Parr reiterated that he lives nearby and he was afraid a “bad-guy developer would get a hold of the site and build something (we didn’t want to see).”
He outlined a timeline:
*May 2014 – rezoning proposal going to City Council
*May 2015 – response expected from council
*Construction not expected until 2016 or even 2017
It’s a two-step rezoning process, he said, and it requires community support. So far, he says, they have 33 letters from neighbors voicing support, but they all but pleaded for MoCA’s support. The brochure they circulated even included a public accounting of what the church would do with the expected $760,000 revenue, including $200,000 work on the church’s exterior.
MoCA president Deb Barker stressed that the comprehensive-plan amendment being proposed here to facilitate a contract-rezone proposal would only affect the lots on the site. And Parr noted that what they were presenting involves the public benefit they would be required to provide. MoCA’s Eldon Olson said the “park” portion of the site – which would be open to the public but remain church-owned – was attractive, as urban areas are supposed to have more of those.
In the end, MoCA went on the record as voting unanimously to support the comprehensive-plan amendment proposed to change the zoning from single-family to Lowrise 1 on the site. Since MoCA allows anyone present to vote, those who came to show support were part of the vote too.
Earlier in the meeting:
4:42 PM: After some difficulty in sorting out the exact location, emergency crews have just arrived at the scene of a motorcycle crash on the 1st Avenue ramp to the westbound West Seattle Bridge. The rider was reported (via scanner) to be “sitting up.” No other details but a heads-up if you are heading this way from downtown/SODO any time soon, avoid that ramp.
4:46 PM: Injuries apparently not serious – the medic unit’s been canceled.
5:45 PM: Haven’t heard an update but the SFD portion of the call is “closed” now and it doesn’t[ appear the ramp ever had to be closed, so traffic should be back to relatively normal in the area.
You love skyline-from-Duwamish-Head photos. You love bird photos. Now – thanks to Craig Howard – two in one! Couldn’t wait until tomorrow’s daily preview to share it, so while we work on a few more news stories, here it is. Craig was on the beach at low tide, and “a murder of crows sent this eagle down right in front of me. He hung around until the crows went away. Didn’t seem to mind me at all.”
Wish you could get more/better/faster information about crime/police activity online? Have ideas for how Seattle Police could improve/beef up what they offer online now? Come talk about it in person with Shanna Christie from the SPD Web team, next Tuesday (April 22nd) at the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network. As explained by WSBWCN leaders Karen Berge and Deb Greer:
She wants our feedback about the online tools that are currently available on the SPD website, how they work and how they don’t. Are you able to find the information you need? Is the Block Watch Toolkit useful to you? She will talk about the plans in the works for a re-vamp of the precinct webpages, starting with the SW Precinct. They hope to provide better information, and more timely information, about what is happening in our neighborhoods. Your feedback is needed!
That’s 6:30 pm Tuesday in the meeting room at the Southwest Precinct (Webster/Delridge).
With three representatives from the city Department of Planning and Development due at last night’s Delridge Neighborhoods District Council meeting, we thought video might be in order. The interactions, in fact, were tense at times.
Land use and planning was the night’s theme. Before we started rolling, attendees at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center heard from their crosstown counterpart Southwest District Council‘s co-chairs Sharonn Meeks and Vlad Oustimovitch, talking about the West Seattle Land Use Committee that SWDC is launching with hopes of peninsula-wide involvement. (Stay tuned for news of its first meeting and how to get involved.)
The DPD presenters began with the Seattle 2035 comprehensive-plan-update process we’ve mentioned a few times (including the sparse-in-many-ways “open house” here a week ago). DNDC members’ pointed questions for DPD rep Patrice Carroll included North Delridge‘s Michael Taylor-Judd wondering why the city is looking ahead 20 years when current problems (including exceeded growth targets and inadequate transportation to handle who’s here now and who’s on the way shortly) don’t seem to be getting addressed. WWRHAH‘s Amanda Kay Helmick noted that none of the DPD handouts even mentioned West Seattle.
Second DPD rep was Aly Pennucci, who’s been making neighborhood-meeting rounds for three months talking about the potential rezoning for “pedestrian retail areas.” In the case of Delridge, it was pointed out, that too seems to be looking past a problem – how can you dither about tweaking business districts when there isn’t much commercial space available?
Third up from DPD was David Goldberg, talking about a new project to create a “Healthy Living Framework” for Delridge. A somewhat jargonistic handout was provided, including this paragraph:
“The planning process and resulting action plan will serve to engage the full range of community stakeholders including historically underrepresented communities. The outreach and engagement will focus on the opportunity areas, but may expand to address priorities for historically underrepresented communities. The process will also convene an advisory committee envisioned to transform into or help establish and ongoing and representative implementation committee.”
Part of the preceding bullet points (we don’t have an electronic version of this two-sided handout yet but are looking for) included a mention of “future SDOT improvements along Delridge,” but the DPD rep didn’t have information about upcoming Delridge projects, at and around Andover, which was a point of concern for Pigeon Point‘s Pete Spalding.
ALSO AT THE MEETING: Our crew had to leave after the DPD presentations, so we apologize that we don’t have Cindi Barker‘s land-use-primer presentation on video (but there’s lots of context and info in this one we recorded last fall). In a non-DPD item, North Delridge’s Patrick Baer announced that the city had agreed to fix the asphalt-covered planting strip that resulted from the recent Delridge/Findlay project mentioned here, for which Baer was the original proposer. Here’s our photo from this morning:
We have since confirmed the de-asphalting plan with SDOT’s John Vander Sluis, who says, “Based on public feedback, SDOT will be removing the asphalt and working with the community on the installation of a landscaped planting strip. … The decision to remove the asphalt was made late last week, so I don’t have details on schedule at this point.”
DNDC meets third Wednesdays at Youngstown, 7 pm.
Four reader reports to share today, starting with a package theft caught on video:
Pam says the video shows her
Netflix Amazon package being lifted Wednesday afternoon near 12th and Barton – and right before the person comes fully into view, they took mail out of her mailbox. Recognize the person in the video? (Added: Here’s a frame grab.) Let police know.
Ahead, three more reports – a car prowl, illegal dumping, and suspicious nail-scattering:
(2011 photo of orcas in Elliott Bay, by Craig Savey)
The Whale Trail is hitting the road! West Seattleite Donna Sandstrom‘s vision of helping killer whales with education all along their routes is coming true with an upcoming tour – and you’re invited to the local sendoff at 6:30 pm next Thursday:
The endangered southern resident orca travel as far south as Monterey, CA. In May, The Whale Trail is headed down the Pacific Coast, too – we’re adding new Whale Trail sites in Monterey (Point Lobos), Santa Cruz, and San Francisco (Point Reyes)!
In May we’re also presenting noted author and marine conservationist Erich Hoyt in a series of talks around The Whale Trail, from Saturna, BC, to Monterey, CA, – nine locations in two countries and four states in 20 days – Orca Tour 2014!
Our vision of building awareness about the orcas throughout their range is quickly coming true – we need your help to make it happen!
Join us for a celebration and informal fundraising event for the Whale Trail, featuring light refreshments, no-host bar, and music by DJ Joe Ross!
–Music from or about California, from the Beach Boys to Los Lobos.
–Seal Sitters and “Diver Laura” James will also be there!
Thanks for your support these past six years, West Seattle. Help us celebrate, and take a giant next step for the orcas. Tickets available now at brownpapertickets.com. You can also buy tickets (at BPT) for our upcoming presentation with Erich Hoyt, Sunday, May 18, at McCaw Hall.
(Female Anna’s Hummingbird, photographed by Mark Wangerin)
A selection of what’s up for today/tonight:
TODDLER EGGSTRAVAGANZA: Still time to get to High Point Community Center for this 10 am Easter-time little-kid fave. Details in our calendar listing. (6420 34th SW)
WINE AND BUNNIES: From South Seattle College (WSB sponsor):
1-5 PM at South Seattle College’s Northwest Wine Academy student-produced wines and Pastry Arts student creations will be on sale. From egg-shaped cakes to chocolate bunnies and hot cross buns, South will have you covered!
Tomorrow too. (6000 16th SW)
COMMUNITY ORCHARD OF WEST SEATTLE: Drop-in volunteer opportunity every Thursday, 5-7 pm, explained here. North end of SSC campus. (6000 16th SW)
DESIGN REVIEW X 2: Two projects go back to the Southwest Design Review Board for second-round Early Design Guidance reviews – 3824 California SW (30 townhomes/live-work units) at 6:30 pm, 4505 42nd SW (45 apartments) at 8 pm. See our preview of both hearings, including links to the “packets” with renderings and info, by going here. (Both meetings are upstairs at the Senior Center, California/Oregon)
ALKI COMMUNITY COUNCIL BOARD MEETING: 7 pm at Alki UCC, but a location change: “Because of Maundy Thursday service in the Parlor, we will meet in the Choir Practice Room on the third floor next to the church office.” Board-meeting format but all welcome. (6115 SW Hinds)
FLASHLIGHT EGG HUNT: No, teens are NOT too old to hunt for eggs – this special event starting at 8:15 pm at Hiawatha Community Center is just for them; details in our calendar listing. (2700 California SW)
NIGHTLIFE: Multiple West Seattle venues have listings on our calendar!
Quick reminder, because every year we get a few post-deadline phone calls from people who JUST heard about it … Less than a week left in the registration period (which has been open for more than two weeks) for West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day, the biggest day of its kind in the city! This is the 10th year for WSCGSD, which we at WSB have been coordinating since year four. Great turnout already, with more than 160 sales in the works – individual, block, school, business, service group, and the multi-seller sites at Hotwire Online Coffeehouse and C & P Coffee Company (both WSB sponsors – inquire directly with either one about space). Your space awaits too. Here’s where to sign up – deadline is 11:59 pm next Wednesday night, April 23rd.
And for shoppers – we close registration early so we can make the map and guide in time for it to be available a week in advance, so check back here and at westseattlegaragesale.com on May 3rd.
(Latest bridge and Highway 99 views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
Welcome to Thursday – we’re on the home stretch, headed for a big weekend. And that goes for weekend traffic alerts, too:
ALKI AVE CLOSED SATURDAY MORNING … 9 am-11 am or so for the Earth Day 5K, on the run in West Seattle for the first time.
I-5 RAMP WORK ALL WEEKEND … Another weekend of lane closures on northbound I-5, just north of the West Seattle Bridge, from late Friday through early Monday. Details here.
8:35 AM: Luvsseattle points out in a comment (thank you!) that the I-5 work page now has the notation “canceled,” no further details; likely because of the rain, but we’re checking with WSDOT>