City wants West Seattle bus yard to be Seattle Public Utilities division’s new home

Seattle Public Utilities has settled on a new home, in West Seattle, for its Drainage and Wastewater Operations team. Now the hitch – getting the site, the bus yard at 4500 West Marginal Way SW.

That’s the slide deck for this plan, which is the only item on the agenda for a meeting next Tuesday morning of the City Council’s Public Utilities and Neighborhoods Committee. It points out that this division – more than 100 vehicles and 100 staffers – currently operates from the city’s Charles Street yard on the south side of downtown, shared with other departments/agencies, with no room for expansion. The tipping point: Maintenance of the forthcoming First Hill Streetcar will be at Charles Street too.

The West Seattle site choice was made, SPU says, after evaluating sites including the Myers Way parcels on the southeast edge of West Seattle and the former South Transfer Station in South Park. It would require some cleanup and remodeling over the next three-plus years. Meeting documents say the city started trying to buy the site this past spring; the owner asked $16 million, $6 million over the appraised value. (While the documents also say the site wasn’t on the market, it has been in recent years.) So now there’s an attempt to lease it. If none of this can be worked out, the city might try to acquire it by eminent domain. So they’re asking for City Council authorization to, basically, do what it takes to get the site. This meeting’s the first step; it’s at 9:30 am next Tuesday, and will include public comment (as do most council meetings); you’ll also be able to watch live via Seattle Channel, online or cable channel 21.

SEPTEMBER 29TH UPDATE: Though it was shown on the Seattle Channel schedule as the appointed time arrived – suddenly it seems this meeting’s been canceled. The committee’s next scheduled meeting is October 13th. We’ll keep watching.

7 Replies to "City wants West Seattle bus yard to be Seattle Public Utilities division's new home"

  • LBJ September 25, 2015 (9:14 am)

    Those poor buses just can’t catch a break. First moved because of the transfer station, now this!

    • WSB September 25, 2015 (9:20 am)

      I am checking with the bus lines’ parent company about whether they have a new home – the 2010 mention that I linked, when this site was on the market (and I’ve seen the listing come and go on the Commercial MLS site in ensuing years), noted a new five-year lease for its use … but that would be running out about now.

  • Fred Johnson September 25, 2015 (9:58 am)

    (mayor) Mr. Ed – We’ll need to see your public transit plan for the employees getting to work…..

  • dsa September 25, 2015 (3:16 pm)

    Good grief, can’t the city planners get it right? Proximity to West Seattle Bridge is *not* a benefit for this purpose.
    In fact they are wrong. It is only accessible using the twisty, stoppy route to the to the too often open swing gate lowlevel bridge. Not a good choice.

  • Amy Thomson September 25, 2015 (9:41 pm)

    Yaaaay! Maybe Puget Creek and our chronically clogged culvert will get a little much needed TLC, since we’re so closets the new facility!

  • Amy Thomson September 25, 2015 (9:43 pm)

    Fred, there are no Metro bus lines running down West Marginal!

  • LS September 27, 2015 (8:52 pm)

    I urge everyone to read the eyeopening Seattle Times editorial comment posted in Sunday September 27, 2015 page A-12. The Times editorial board has touched on some very valid issues that the 930 million dollar “Move Seattle Transportation Levy” fails to address and also further highlights the lack of accountability exhibited within SDOT thus far in meeting schedules and budgets of various city contracts.

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