day : 01/06/2016 8 results

West Seattle schools: Lafayette Elementary gets its wish – earlier bell times next year

9:15 PM: Lafayette Elementary in Admiral is getting its wish – an earlier schedule next year. Thanks to the parents who pointed us to today’s announcement, which is posted on the school website as well as having been sent home on paper. When the district announced new “bell times” last fall (WSB coverage here), mostly to try to get older students onto later schedules, Lafayette was the only elementary school in West Seattle that was left in late-start “Tier 3” – and its 9:30 start time was even scheduled to move five minutes later. But today, Lafayette leadership announced that the request to move to Tier 1 had been granted, one of only two of the 11 districtwide requests that the district was able to honor, according to this letter from assistant superintendent Pegi McEvoy. Next school year’s start time and end time at Lafayette will be 7:55 am and 2:05 pm. (Lafayette file photo from SPS website)

ADDED 4:16 PM THURSDAY: Thanks to the commenters who provided additional information. Here’s the official district reply to our request for the list of the 11 schools that asked to be moved up and which school besides Lafayette had the requested granted:

The district was able to move Bailey Gatzert and Lafayette to Tier 1 while keeping transportation “budget neutral”:

1. Bailey Gatzert
2. Orca K-8
3. Thurgood Marshall
4. K-8 STEM at Boren
5. Lafayette
6. Laurelhurst
7. Adams
8. John Hay
9. View Ridge
10. Catherine Blaine K-8
11. Cascadia@ Lincoln

West Seattle development: Site clearing begins at 4505 42nd SW


6:10 PM: Weeks after equipment showed up for clearing the site, work started today on the mixed-use project at 4505 42nd SW in The Junction, across the alley from the Senior Center of West Seattle. This project got final Southwest Design Review Board approval early last year after four meetings over the course of a year. It is set for 7 stories including 40+ residential units, ~6,000 square feet of lodging, and ~4,500 square feet of retail, with 14 offstreet parking spaces; owner Leon Capelouto has said that tenants interested in parking beyond that will be able to access it in the garage for his Capco Plaza building less than a block south at 42nd/Alaska. The “lodging” was described during Design Review as nine furnished units to be offered for “minimum one-week, maximum one-month” use, expected to appeal to “corporate types.” (Thanks to NLB and Eddie for the tips that site work had begun.)

ADDED 7:55 AM THURSDAY: Thanks to NLB for this clip of demolition work continuing this morning:

See which community proposals West Seattle’s district councils are advancing for Neighborhood Street Fund

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Tonight, the Southwest District Council‘s June meeting includes a discussion of an in-progress city review that could eventually determine whether the SWDC and the city’s other 12 district councils continue to exist.

One of the arguments for district councils is their advocacy for their respective jurisdictions getting their fair share of city attention and money, in programs like the Neighborhood Street Fund.

Since their last monthly meetings, members of both SWDC and its eastern West Seattle counterpart, the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council, have decided which five community-proposed NSF projects they’re forwarding to the city for consideration.

1st-through-5th-ranked by the Southwest District Council (western West Seattle):

1. Improvements at Harbor Ave SW & SW Spokane Street
2. Improvements at 39th Avenue SW and SW Oregon Street
3. Rapid Ride Bus Stops, Morgan Junction
4. Improvements on Fauntleroy Way
5. Traffic Circles, Sidewalks, and Safety Improvements in Arbor Heights

1st-through-5th-ranked by the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council (eastern West Seattle):

1. Modernize the Intersection of 16th Ave SW & SW Holden Street (Highland Park)
2. (tie) Complete SW Barton Street
2. (tie) Roundabout for Highland Park Way/SW Holden St
4. Brandon St Sidewalks (Delridge to High Point)
5. Safety Improvements to 26th Ave SW and/or 25th Avenue SW (Connecting Chief Sealth HS and the Westwood Village Bus Hub)

Both sets of decisions followed project-proposers’ presentations at the respective district councils’ meetings, and review of written applications – this document explains the criteria for evaluation.

No project is guaranteed funding just because the district council supports advancing it; the city’s pot of money is finite, and the Neighborhood Street Fund is citywide, opening for applications every three years, available for up to $90,000 $100,000-$1,000,000* for a project making it all the way through the process. But sometimes even projects that don’t get NSF funding land on SDOT’s radar. If you’d like to know more about any or all of the 10 aforementioned proposals, scroll ahead (or jump from the home page) for more details on each, excerpted from the community proposers’ applications – sometimes brief, sometimes detailed: Read More

West Seattle scene: Feathered pedestrians on Admiral Way


Thanks to Marco for sharing the scene from Admiral Way, when a mallard mom and ducklings got some help making it across the street just west of 42nd SW. Marco adds, “Props to the guy who was keeping them safe in traffic!” A closer look:


(We can’t quite guess where mom was headed – Hiawatha? – or coming from, for that matter – can you?)

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: South Seattle College security video shows truck before, after ATM theft


That’s the clearest image of the truck shown on security video, entering and leaving South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) in a span of less than 10 minutes, before and after Tuesday morning’s smash-and-grab ATM theft at Brockey Center (here’s our original report; here’s our followup on the damage done). While tracking technology led police to the ATM safe in an Arbor Heights backyard within a few hours, they have not yet found the truck or made arrests. SSC provided the video to WSB – here are the two sections showing the truck arriving and departing (at a time when the main-campus entrances on 16th SW are gated):

SPD describes the truck as a “white Chevrolet pickup truck with a crew cab” and asks that anyone with information about it, and/or anything else related to the theft, call the Southwest Precinct burglary unit at 206-233-2623.

New city rules proposed for short-term rentals: 90-night-a-year limit for many

A new move today in the city’s attempts to address the affordable-housing crisis: New rules proposed to crack down on alleged abuse of the new technology-enabled short-term-rental market. Here’s the announcement, just out of the WSB inbox:

Mayor Ed Murray and Councilmember Tim Burgess today announced a proposal to prevent long-term rental units from being converted to short-term rentals, while still providing residents the flexibility to earn additional income by renting out their homes.

The measure focuses on commercial operators who use platforms, such as Airbnb and VRBO, to rent multiple properties year-round. Approximately 80 percent of existing short-term rentals in Seattle will see no new regulations.

“Property owners are shifting hundreds of homes from the long-term residential market to short-term rental platforms like Airbnb, and in doing so dangerously reduce our housing supply,” said Councilmember Burgess, chair of the Council’s Affordable Housing, Neighborhoods and Finance Committee. “At the same time, Seattle homeowners offering short-term rentals in their own homes earn valuable supplemental income. These proposed regulations focus narrowly on the commercial operators that take advantage of home-sharing platforms to exacerbate our housing crisis.”

Under the proposed rules, any property may be provided as a short-term rental for up to 90 nights in a 12 month period. Only properties that are the primary residence of the short-term rental operator will be allowed to rent past the 90-night threshold. The primary residency requirement will curtail the growing year-round commercial operation of these platforms.

“We must protect our existing rental housing supply at a time when it is becoming harder for residents to find an affordable home in Seattle,” said Mayor Ed Murray. “This proposal ensures that apartments and houses are not being used exclusively as short-term rentals, while still providing a means for homeowners to earn some extra money by occasionally renting out their property.”

Consistent with current City rules, all short-term rental operators must secure a City business license tax certificate and pay all applicable taxes.

“Our communities are facing steep rent increases and having difficulty staying in their homes, and the fast growing short-term rental industry is making it worse,” said Rebecca Saldaña, Executive Director at Puget Sound Sage. “The Mayor and Councilmember Burgess have started an important conversation about how short-term rentals should help, and not hurt, people who want to stay in Seattle.”

The small percentage of operators renting their primary residence for more than 90 nights will be required to also obtain a City regulatory license. This license will require proof that the unit being rented is the operator’s primary residence, proof of liability insurance that covers the short-term rental use, a local contact number for guests, a signed declaration that the unit meets building and life safety codes, and basic safety information posted for guests in the unit.

Under the proposed regulations, all short-term rental platform companies will also need to obtain a new regulatory license with the City. The platforms will be required to give the City limited data on a quarterly basis necessary for enforcement of the proposed law.

More information on the proposals can be found in these documents:

· One-page summary
· Frequently asked questions
· Detailed policy brief

The proposal is due to get its first council review before the Affordable Housing, Neighborhoods and Finance Committee two weeks from today, 9:30 am Wednesday, June 15th.

What’s ahead for your West Seattle Wednesday

June 1, 2016 9:04 am
|    Comments Off on What’s ahead for your West Seattle Wednesday
 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(American Goldfinch – the state bird of Washington! – photographed by Mark Wangerin)

Brand-new month, and here’s how it starts – with highlights from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

NEIGHBORHOOD DISTRICTS VS. COUNCIL DISTRICTS: A City Council committee talks this morning about the draft report resulting from last year’s council request that the Department of Neighborhoods look at realigning the city’s 13 “districts” with the 7 new council districts. 9:30 am, live on Seattle Channel if you won’t be at City Hall.

TODDLER STORY TIME: For ages 1-3, 10:30-11 am at Southwest Library. (35th SW/SW Henderson)

HIGHLAND PARK SPRAYPARK: Another warm, sunny day, so we’re reminding you that HP Spraypark – the only spraypark in West Seattle – is open 11 am-8 pm daily through Labor Day. (1100 SW Cloverdale)

NETWORKING MEETUP: Noon-1:15 pm, you’re invited to visit our area’s only coworking center, West Seattle Office Junction (WSB sponsor), and meet your fellow nontraditional workers/entrepreneurs/etc. at this week’s networking meetup. (6040 California SW)

THE GREATEST MOVIES YOU’VE NEVER HEARD OF: Wednesday-afternoon series continues at Senior Center of West Seattle, 1 pm, with Paul Newman and Patricia Neal in “Hud.” $1 members/$2 nonmembers. (California SW/SW Oregon)

ULTIMATE FRISBEE: 6 pm Wednesday is “coed,” at Fairmount Playfield – more info here. (5400 Fauntleroy Way SW)

SOUTHWEST DISTRICT COUNCIL: 6:30 pm at the Sisson Building/Senior Center, the Southwest District Council’s agenda this month includes an update on the Alki “car-free” event planned September 25th for Seattle Summer Parkways and a discussion of the future of neighborhood districts vs. council districts – same item a City Council committee is discussing this morning. (California SW/SW Oregon)

JIM PAGE, LIVE: Singer-songwriter at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), 7-9 pm. (5612 California SW)

TRIVIA AT TALARICO’S: Never been to popular Wednesday night trivia at Talarico’s Pizzeria? Maybe tonight’s your night. 8:30 pm. (4718 California SW)

WONDERING WHAT ELSE IS UP? Just browse our complete calendar.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Wednesday updates; overnight bridge closures continue

June 1, 2016 6:28 am
|    Comments Off on TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Wednesday updates; overnight bridge closures continue
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

6:28 AM: Good morning! No incidents in/from West Seattle so far. Today’s updates:

*Another Fauntleroy Expressway seismic-cushion work bridge closure tonight, 9 pm-5 am.

*Seattle Public Schools are out two hours early today

*Sewer-repair work is scheduled to continue on 35th between Juneau and Raymond.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: SDOT plans to install 80 signs on the West Seattle Bridge this weekend, marking it off in “zones” in hopes that will help emergency responses get to the right places.