West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
With little advance notice of the proposed Admiral Way changes, SDOT first presented them at April’s Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting (WSB coverage here), then at May’s Southwest District Council meeting (WSB coverage here), and finally in a contentious standalone community meeting May 21st at Alki Elementary (WSB coverage here). That meeting included the following slide deck, showing the heart of the plan in the final few pages, proposing removing more than 200 parking spaces along Admiral Way west of California SW, to make room for changes including the addition of bicycle lanes:
(Slide deck from May 21st meeting)
The parking removal is the center of concern for area residents, for reasons including that it would require some of them to park across Admiral and dodge traffic to get to and from their vehicles. When they heard SDOT say it considered the parking removal to have a relatively nominal impact because of usage studies they had done in the winter, rather than in the busy summer season, that led to further concerns. From the group’s newly launched website:
We are a group of neighbors who came together, in shock and disbelief, in April 2015, when Seattle Department of Transportation informed us they were planning to remove 200 parking spaces on Admiral Way, between the Admiral Junction and 59th SW, four months hence. Admiral Way is a residential arterial, bordering the Alki Parking Overlay; it is the main access route to Alki Beach, the Alki business district, Alki Elementary School, Alki Community Center, a church, and the Alki neighborhood.
We are concerned that SDOT does not understand this street: the traffic patterns, the parking, the adjoining structures and the safety challenges. Most of the accidents on this section of Admiral Way are caused by impaired drivers, late at night. The SDOT Admiral plan is dangerous because SDOT would force some residents to park on the dangerous side of the street, the side where impaired drivers crash into cars and structures on a routine basis. The plan is dangerous because SDOT would also force some residents to cross a busy arterial, with children, elderly and handicapped family members in tow, to get to their cars. The plan is shocking because this portion of Admiral Way suffers from extreme parking congestion during the summer and during school pick-up and drop-off time.
The new website also links to an online petition asking Mayor Ed Murray to drop the plan, and organizers say they’ll soon have yard and roadside signs to catch the attention of neighbors and visitors alike, including ones like this:
Organizers also tell us they are lobbying elected officials directly and expect to meet soon with Councilmember Tom Rasmussen.
As for where the plan officially stands:
At the May “open house,” pressed by Admiral Neighborhood Association president David Whiting to commit to at least one more public meeting about the project, SDOT agreed. No date’s been announced yet; Rasmussen asked SDOT director Scott Kubly about this project’s “public process” during yesterday’s City Council Transportation Committee meeting (starting 53 minutes into the clip at that link); Kubly said he knew one public meeting had been held and thought multiple additional meetings would be ahead. The project website now shows this timeline, mentioning a “community briefing” in late summer:
We left a message for project manager Emily Ehlers today to ask about the status, and have not received a response.
Pagliacci Pizza in The Junction has been remodeling and expanding into the former boutique space next door, so it can expand its sit-down area and start serving slices. We first reported on the plan last December; work started in April, and tonight, Pagliacci’s Shelly McNulty sends word that they’re almost done:
We plan to start serving slices next Tuesday, June 30. We will be open for lunch at 11 am daily. However, our delivery hours will remain the same, starting at 5 pm weekdays and 4 pm weekends. In addition to pizza by the slice, dine-in customers may enjoy a Coca-Cola Freestyle machine and beer and wine offerings (unfortunately not available for delivery).
Next year will mark Pagliacci’s 20th anniversary in its Junction location.
Summer weather arrived early, and it’s led to an early opening for the High Point Market Garden Farm Stand, selling freshly harvested vegetables grown steps away, at 32nd and Juneau. Today is the first of the farm stand’s weekly selling sessions between 4 and 7 pm on Wednesdays – while there, we noted peas on sale for $3/pound and a variety of other veggies, including greens, leaf lettuce, and root vegetables, on sale for $2/bunch. We also were there for a blessing by The Venerable Soveth Mountain from Wat Dhammacakkaram Khmer Buddhist Temple, dedicating the stand’s season:
The words of gratitude, as printed on a commemorative card:
Thank you, earth, for this food,
Thank you to the gardeners who till this soil,
Thank you to the sellers who bring the food to market,
Thank you for this abundance,
Which we accept in grace and deep gratitude.
The stand is extra-abundant this year because of a new partnership with the urban farmers of ROAR (Roots Of All Roads), who are selling at a table by the stand – what’s there today is from Hillman City, we were told:
They’re also offering samples of a squash salad prepared with some of the items on sale today. Again, if you don’t make it there by 7 pm, stop by next Wednesday, 4-7 pm, and see what’s fresh. The Market Garden, by the way, is tended by community farmers, in partnership with the city Department of Neighborhoods P-Patch Community Garden program.
2:56 PM: As we were discussing here just yesterday, while fireworks are illegal within the Seattle city limits, they’re legal on the other side of the line, in unincorporated King County, and that’s unquestionably where some if not most of the fireworks illegally used here are bought. So you might be interested to know that community leaders from the unincorporated areas of North Highline and West Hill have just launched a petition drive asking county leaders for an emergency fireworks ban – the petition is on this Change.org page. The petition is addressed to the County Executive and County Fire Marshal. We’ll be checking with their offices, as well as with County Councilmember Joe McDermott, to see if this is something they are considering. Right now, fireworks sales in the unincorporated area are scheduled to start at noon on Sunday.
3:43 PM: We’ve just spoken with Jim Chan in the King County Permits and Environmental Review department, which oversees the Fire Marshal’s Office. He says the same thing that commenter Karen was told by the County Executive’s Office – that the county has no authority for an emergency ban; any ban couldn’t take effect for a year. Chan says a few Washington counties’ laws enable such a ban – Douglas and San Juan Counties, he mentioned – but for King County, that sort of authority has just never come up. We asked if the state would have authority, then, to take an action that could enable an immediate emergency local ban, and he said yes. So we’ll be checking next with the state Fire Marshal’s Office. Meantime, we were forwarded a news release that the county Fire Marshal’s Office had been planning to issue, saying only this:
King County fire agencies are urging citizens to attend one of the many professional public fireworks displays during the Fourth of July weekend. Prolonged dry weather and below average spring rainfall have cured grass and vegetation growth, creating high fire danger nearly six weeks earlier than normal. Last year in King County fire agencies responded to nearly 200 fire calls with 82 of them related to fireworks, as reported in the 2014 Washington State Fire Marshal report.
While it is not advisable to light fireworks, follow the three B’s – Be Prepared, Be Safe, and Be Responsible. Retail fireworks go on sale June 28 through July 4 and in those communities that allow fireworks, discharge is limited to July 4 from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. only.
If you’ve been letting parking tickets pile up … this could happen to you:
Just announced via SPD Blotter:
Seattle Parking Enforcement Officers began issuing Courtesy Notices to vehicles with 3 unpaid parking tickets today. Notices encourage motorists to address unpaid tickets and alert them that after 4 unpaid tickets, the vehicle is subject to being booted with a wheel-locking device; whether they are parked legally or illegally.
Courtesy Notices help motorists avoid the added time and expense of the boot and ensure motorists are informed even if the City does not have a current mailing address for the vehicle owner.
For vehicles with 4 or more unpaid tickets where the City does not have the vehicle owner’s address, a 30-Day Notice will be placed on the vehicle.
Read the rest of the announcement – which includes links you can use to check if you have a ticket-backlog problem – by going here.
(WSB photo from June 2014 Field Day)
By proclamation of the governor, it’s Amateur Radio Week in our state – and it will wrap up this weekend with a big event that you’re invited to visit, Field Day on the south end of the South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) campus. The West Seattle Amateur Radio Club is one of the groups that’ll be participating. Here’s the official announcement:
Members of the Puget Sound Repeater Group (PSRG) and the Seattle Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS) will be participating in the national Amateur Radio Field Day exercise, June 27 – 28, 2015 South Seattle College (behind Olympic Hall) in West Seattle. Since 1933, ham radio operators across North America have established temporary ham radio stations in public locations during Field Day to showcase the science and skill of Amateur Radio. This event is open to the public and all are encouraged to attend.
For over 100 years, Amateur Radio — sometimes called ham radio — has allowed people from all walks of life to experiment with electronics and communications techniques, as well as provide a free public service to their communities during a disaster, all without needing a cell phone or the Internet.
(Panorama by Chris Frankovich)
Highlights for today/tonight from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
PRESCHOOL STORY TIME: Lots of story times at local libraries to help with summer fun – today at 10:30 am, preschoolers (and their designated grownups) are welcome at the West Seattle (Admiral) Library. (2306 42nd SW)
NOONTIME MEETUP AT OFFICE JUNCTION: Did you meet the Office Junction‘s designated signkeeper at the Morgan Junction Community Festival last weekend?
Don’t know if he’ll be there, but today, YOU and your fellow home-office workers, entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, coworking-curious West Seattleites are all invited to the OJ (a WSB sponsor) at noontime for the free weekly meetup/networking opportunity. (6040 California SW)
MEDICAL-MARIJUANA RULES @ COUNCIL COMMITTEE: 2 pm, the City Council’s Finance and Culture Committee takes up the city’s new proposed rules regarding medical marijuana and how they will be enforced; some current operations face closure. Live on Seattle Channel if you’re not going to City Hall. (4th/5th/Cherry/James)
FRESH AT THE FARM STAND: As previewed here earlier this week, the High Point Market Garden Farm Stand‘s opening earlier this year, and you can buy fresh-grown organic produce there every Wednesday, 4-7 pm, starting today, through September. (32nd/Juneau)
WEST SEATTLE PRAYERS FOR CHARLESTON: 6:30 pm at St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, you’re invited to join in prayers for the Charleston, S.C., massacre victims, one week later, as previewed here. (3050 California SW)
GO THROW! West Seattle Ultimate Family Frisbee‘s 6:30 pm weekly pickup game is tonight at Fairmount Playfield. (Fauntleroy/Brandon)
POEMS & STORIES AT C & P: It’s the monthly Poetrybridge event at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), 7-9 pm, featuring Mike Hickey this month, and community-microphone readers; details here. (5612 California SW)
(Four WS-relevant views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
7:36 AM: After a short delay for what turned out to be a small fire in South Delridge (we’re still updating here), the overall traffic watch is on.
8:01 AM – TRANSPORTATION NEWS YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED: From Tuesday coverage here and elsewhere, in case you missed it:
8:23 AM: Via Twitter, we’re getting reports of at least two SPD traffic-enforcement areas this morning – on the bridge (thanks to Joe for the tip; he saw at least five drivers/riders “lined up” for citations) and at 35th/Morgan (thanks to Randall for that tip).
8:35 AM: And thanks to Lola for mentioning an orange-cone hazard (usually they mark hazards; this time they WERE the hazard) on the bridge; an SDOT tweet suggests they’ve been handled.
7:13 AM: Big fire response right now to the (corrected address) 9200 block of 17th SW (map) in South Delridge. First crews on scene say it’s a brush fire in front of an apartment building.
7:16 AM: The fire is quickly pronounced “tapped,” and they’re canceling some of the units.
7:30 AM: According to our crew on the scene, SFD is saying that so far, this appears to have been started by cigarette(s) tossed into bushes, and that it scorched a deck of the 2-story building before being put out.
ADDED: Damage is estimated at $5,000.