Highland Park ‘RV safe lot’ officially dead, says Councilmember Herbold

(WSB photo from last month)

We’ve reported repeatedly in the past few weeks (most recently, on Thursday) that the “RV safe lot” announced for Highland Park has been on indefinite hold. And now, Councilmember Lisa Herbold says the mayor’s office has confirmed to her that it’s officially not happening – because it would cost too much, for the 10 or fewer RVs it would serve.

As a result, Herbold’s office says, the two interim “safe zones” set up in SODO and Interbay will be “extended for an additional 60 days,” and the 39 RV residents that were waiting there will get help with making their vehicles operational so they can comply with 72-hour parking laws, or they will get help finding “secure housing.”

That doesn’t address what happens to the half-dozen or so RVs that we’ve reported are described by SPD as “staged” along Myers Way, awaiting the now-a-no-go Highland Park lot, so we’ll check on that next week.

It’s been two months since the mayor’s original announcement that the lot would be set up at West Marginal Way/Highland Park Way within a month, along with the one that did open in Ballard. Since then, we’ve made almost-daily checks of the site – a paved lot adjacent to the longtime site of an unauthorized encampment that was closed two and a half years ago – and the only sign of preparations has been a canvas-covered fence around the lot.

25 Replies to "Highland Park 'RV safe lot' officially dead, says Councilmember Herbold"

  • cliff March 25, 2016 (9:50 pm)

    The city cannot help the downtrodden and buy a bike business at the same time.  The only solution is the usual raise the car tab fees etc.  Still appreciate Lisa’s no vote on buying the bike business scam.

  • New thinking needed March 25, 2016 (9:58 pm)

    The city should have voted no! on Pronto & used the 1.5 or 1.6 million Pronto bailout to get the RVs running again so they can comply with the 72 hour parking rules.

    Thanks to Lisa for the no! vote on Pronto. 

    • chemist March 25, 2016 (11:49 pm)

      Our elected council voted on this Pronto bail-out a week and a half ago (not the public) and it looks like Mayor Murray signed it, CB 118618, today.

  • wsea98116 March 25, 2016 (11:00 pm)

    Haaahaaa haa!! Hee heee!! Oh  haaha! Hooo hhoo ha ha!! Oh my god! Oh my god!! Haa ha ha!!! Hoo hoo!! Ha ha!! 

    Ahhh.. Huh huh.. Mmm. 

    Ok, nothing anyone can say will be as funny as the truth. And sad, of course.  But, in a funny, sad way. 

    Sad funny… Or?

  • Overthere March 26, 2016 (12:19 am)

    So no money for the homeless, if I remember right that is priority #1, but enough money to buy this worthless bike company that they will continue to dump money into,  This City is quickly becoming a joke.

    I am happy with the end result that this wasn’t competed, that was not a good location, but to say it the cost benefit analysis didn’t work out is laughable when you compare it to Pronto!.

  • Marty March 26, 2016 (12:26 am)

    How does being able to comply with the 72 hour parking rules solve the problem? What about sewer hookups and garbage disposal? Sounds like nothing will change…

  • wsguy March 26, 2016 (6:21 am)

    So the city is now in the business of fixing old junk RV’s and making them operational? Wonder if they will pay for the brake job my car needs – lord know we pay enough property taxes and car tab fees…

    • AMD March 26, 2016 (7:22 am)

      They provide financial assistance for low income housing.  Think of this as financial assistance for extremely low income housing.

  • Gene March 26, 2016 (7:53 am)

    So does paying to make some of these RV’s ” operational ” include $$ so they can utilize waste dump sites too- or will that waste end up in our streets- parking lots?  

    This plan was  absurd- given cost etc. — but then not really given the mentality of some in city government- by the way- thank you Lisa Herbold- for your no vote on Pronto – sure wish that money could have been allocated for work helping the homeless instead of bailing out a bike program. 

  • E QT March 26, 2016 (7:53 am)

    They should have an “RV for Pronto Bike” swap.

    Glad to hear this place is not going live.

  • Cynical girl March 26, 2016 (8:53 am)

    So the fenced in area will be invaded with tents and homeless in what, a week? Tomorrow? 

  • Joel March 26, 2016 (9:08 am)

    guess someone finally ran the numbers on providing 24 hour security for 10 people in RV’s.  maybe in the future they could run numbers first on other projects before pulling the trigger.

    now if they can get that ugly green ‘fence’ down so they can stop paying rent on that thing…or  maybe the next wind storm will take it down…again.

    is there any cost known to renting the fence for the past 2 plus years to fence off the old Nicks villa camp?

  • Ruth paulson March 26, 2016 (9:18 am)

    So they can comply with the 72 hour rule? They were never going to pay tickets anyway and the city won’t tow them. I have an old car that needs work. If I stop paying taxes will the city fix my car for me?

    Our city leaders are so busy trying to “out liberal” each other instead of covering the basics. We still own a house in West Seattle and are excited to be putting it on the market this summer before council slaps us with some form of rent control.

  • Annaeileen March 26, 2016 (12:47 pm)

    I truly believe in helping the less fortunate but fixing RVs?  What is their criteria for deciding who to help?  I popped a tire on Delridge last month and sent a note to the city on the find it and fix it app. I had room in my budget to pay for them and I am aware of how fortunate I am that I can afford unexpected repairs.  To echo what others said, so we fix RVs but where do they dump sewer and garbage? Do we pay for that too? I prefer this over paying for Pronto but we are band-aiding problems.

  • flimflam March 26, 2016 (2:21 pm)

    so how are the other lots more “cost effective” than this one would have been?


    it seems the current “leadership” has no real clue what the heck its doing…. 

    • WSB March 26, 2016 (2:45 pm)

      I received a bunch of numbers. The explanation of which numbers were which did not make sense and I won’t be able to follow up further until Monday so I went with the basic “too expensive.” There is only one other actual “safe lot” that could be in operation for up to a year, the one in Ballard. – TR

  • hj March 26, 2016 (3:26 pm)

    I’m also excited that you’re putting the house on the market– more inventory for those of us that enjoy living here.

  • Craig March 26, 2016 (7:30 pm)

    I’d like to know what has developed regarding the City’s interest in purchasing the land once occupied by Nickelsville?   

  • Melissa March 26, 2016 (10:21 pm)

     Craig I am also interested in what is planned for the property after it is sold.

  • Wseattlite March 26, 2016 (10:45 pm)

    It’s too bad, but predictable.  The city creates a program long enough to pay some of their own a bunch of money to then decide to not do anything.  Local government is either incredibly ineffective or corrupt.  I see this in Mexico a lot.  

    • wetone March 28, 2016 (11:41 am)

      Exactly,   no rocket scientist of professor needed to see outcome of this boondoggle. Like to see where monies have disappeared to…  a lot of money spent in very sort time and little if any improvements. City said West Marginal site per RV would run $1700 per month, so if that’s city’s numbers better double…..      

        Here’s the link to  118618  http://murray.seattle.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Bike-Share.pdf   Interesting as  SDOT director Kubly removed from loop. I’m can already hear conclusion of Kubly’s ties to Pronto program in that while not really ethical, there was no criminal intent or profit of…….. and things will continue as they were……

    • Joe March 29, 2016 (4:01 pm)

      Funny cuz itz true.

  • Ruth paulson March 27, 2016 (9:23 am)

    @hj:  great, you can go tell it our tenants for us. 

  • Alan March 28, 2016 (11:12 am)

    It would be nice if the city looked to find a use for this property that would enhance the neighborhood, which would be a nice change from using it for projects unacceptable to other areas of the city. A good grocery store would be helpful. Georgetown and South Park don’t have much in the way of close grocery options, so it would probably benefit them as well.

Sorry, comment time is over.