day : 22/09/2016 12 results

PHOTOS: Welcoming autumn with Alice

September 22, 2016 11:56 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle weather

Photos by Leda Costa for West Seattle Blog


The first sunset of autumn brought about 40 people to West Seattle’s Solstice Park to watch with, and learn from, NASA Solar System Ambassador Alice Enevoldsen.


Though a cloud bank got in the way of checking the alignment with the park’s equinox marker, the weather never gets in the way of Alice’s interactive lesson about the Earth’s position, and its relationship with the Sun, at the change of seasons:



Special guest at tonight’s sunset watch … Ida, born to Alice and husband Jason five weeks ago:

Ida Enevoldsen, five weeks old, at her first sunset watch.

This was Alice’s 30th quarterly sunset watch, by the way. Watch here for word of her 31st, when winter solstice approaches in December.

YOU CAN HELP! Volunteer to survey Longfellow Creek salmon with Puget Soundkeeper Alliance

(WSB photo – Longfellow Creek during fall 2014 salmon survey)

Help survey coho salmon returning to Longfellow Creek in West Seattle! Puget Soundkeeper Alliance is looking again this fall for dedicated volunteers. Here’s their announcement:

During the salmon run each fall, a population of coho salmon enters the Duwamish River from Elliott Bay, and then swims up Longfellow Creek to spawn. As coho migrate through urbanized waterways like Longfellow, they encounter a chemical cocktail of toxic runoff from roadways and other paved surfaces. These chemicals severely disorient adult coho and result in “pre-spawn mortality” in many individuals, meaning the salmon die before reproducing.

Previous surveys conducted by the City of Seattle and NOAA on Longfellow Creek have found pre-spawn mortality rates of up to 90% amongst females, an alarmingly high statistic. Examining the number of salmon that return to Longfellow Creek every year and documenting the pre-spawn mortality rate are great indicators of the health of our local waterways. Data gathered from these surveys shared with NOAA, the City of Seattle, Department of Fish and Wildlife and King County.

Volunteers will attend an orientation meeting on Tuesday, October 4th from 6:30-8:30 pm at Chaco Canyon Organic Café in West Seattle.


The nature of this work is geared toward adults only.

Surveying is a weekly commitment that takes approximately 1 hour to complete. The salmon run begins in mid-October and finishes mid-December, during which there will be a survey every day. Volunteers will be divided into teams of 2-3 people and assigned a weekday to conduct their survey.

We’re looking for adventurous volunteers! Surveying requires handling fish carcasses found in the creek (with gloves) and dissecting the female salmon to check for eggs.

Volunteers should be in good physical condition. Surveying in Longfellow Creek requires climbing up and down steep muddy embankments and wading through shallow water on uneven terrain.

Surveying is conducted in varying weather conditions. If conditions are dangerous (e.g. a downpour), we will cancel on that day. Otherwise, we survey rain or shine.

Volunteers will be provided with surveying kits and waders (unless you have your own pair). Data collected during the survey will be uploaded by the volunteers into Puget Soundkeeper’s database.

Salmon surveys are a great way to observe one of nature’s most amazing migrations and experience scientific field work. The data we collect from these surveys help us understand the effects of toxic runoff on one of the Pacific Northwest’s most iconic species and determine the best methods to protect them in the future!

Qustions? – and when you’re ready to register, go here.

SATURDAY: K-8 students invited to Chief Sealth Mini Cheer Camp

September 22, 2016 7:19 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

(Chief Sealth cheerleaders @ SWAC on September 2nd)

Students in kindergarten through 8th grade are invited to spend this Saturday (September 24th) at Chief Sealth International High School Cheer Camp, 11 am-3 pm:

You will learn a dance, basic arm motions, some Chief Sealth cheers, team bonding games, jumps, and stunts. You will have the opportunity to perform your dance with the Chief Sealth Cheerleaders during their home game (Sealth vs. Ballard) halftime show on September 30th at the SWAC. Come join us for the fun! …

The cost of the camp is $40 cash or check payable to “Chief Sealth Cheerleading” – it includes admission to the (Sept. 30) game and a T-shirt to wear for your performance!

Registration is due tomorrow (Friday) – you can e-mail Sealth cheer coach Tahreana Turner for a registration form – – then on Saturday, the cheerleaders will meet campers at the gym door (2600 SW Thistle)!

Speed limits, paid parking, street cuts @ City Council Transportation Committee

(Seattle Channel video from Tuesday’s Transportation and Sustainability Committee meeting)

Next Monday, the full Seattle City Council is scheduled to consider the SDOT speed-limit-reduction proposal, primarily proposing that all non-arterial roads to have a speed limit of 20 mph. First word of the proposal a week and a half ago sparked much discussion; it was one of three major topics at this week’s meeting of the council’s Sustainability and Transportation Committee.

SPEED LIMITS: As you can see in the video above (starting one hour, 29 minutes in), the SDOT presenters stressed that they believe lower speed limits will reduce pedestrian deaths and injuries; they presented this slide deck to underscore that.

As for what’s planned for other arterials, SDOT reps said this specific bill does not include any speed-limit changes for arterials outside downtown, but noted that others remain under review, especially the ones with the most crashes. They also pointed out that the city has reduced speed limits relatively recently on four arterials around the city, two of them in West Seattle (Fauntleroy Way SW last February, and 35th Avenue SW). And they said they’re reviewing some areas – many in West Seattle (though specific roads weren’t mentioned) – where they need to add signage reminding people of current speed limits.

The speed-limit proposal needs a majority vote at Monday afternoon’s full-council meeting. No one opposed it at the committee meeting.

PARKING BENEFIT DISTRICTS: While this item did not directly involve West Seattle, some information of interest emerged – particularly, the revelation that SDOT expects to review West Seattle Junction on-street parking again in 2018. That would be nine years after the last full review in 2009, which included SDOT‘s announcement that paid on-street parking did NOT seem to be warranted in The Junction. The review did result in some mostly minor changes, including time limits.

The committee briefing was about a proposal to look at Parking Benefit Districts – in which revenue from paid on-street parking would go back into the geographic districts where the parking was located, theoretically to give community members an incentive to support the paid parking. Specifically, there was a proposal for a pilot PBD in Capitol Hill. SDOT recommended against it, saying it prefers to stick with what it’s been doing, including “time-of-day” variable pricing in some areas and potentially extending paid parking later into the night in some parts of the city. The latest online update from our area’s Councilmember Lisa Herbold (who was not at Tuesday’s meeting of the committee, for which she is an alternate member) has more details on SDOT’s rationale for opposing PBDs.

Back to the meeting – Councilmembers Rob Johnson and Mike O’Brien had a notable exchange involving constituents’ concerns about parking. O’Brien said he hears most often about new development projects without offstreet parking and said he wasn’t sure that PBDs would have any effect on those concerns. And separate from that, West Seattle’s “remarkable growth and increase in density” was mentioned in passing a few times during the discussion.

CUTTING UP STREETS: This briefing got a little technical but here’s what you really need to know: The city is tightening up the rules for when and why streets can be cut into, and how long the cutters get before they have to restore the pavement. With the Move Seattle Levy funding new pavement, SDOT reps explained, “One of the things we wanted to avoid were a bunch of asphalt cuts turning (newly repaved) streets into Swiss cheese.” You can read here what they are working on, in addition to listening to the discussion in the meeting video (1 hour, 9 minutes in).

ALASKAN WAY VIADUCT CLOSURE: Next one set for October 8-9

ORIGINAL SEPTEMBER 22ND REPORT: Another road-closure alert: The weekly “lookahead” published today by SDOT includes the news that the next twice-yearly inspection/maintenance closure of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is set for the weekend of October 8-9, 6 am-6 pm each day. The most recent shutdowns have lasted just one day, with the second “reserve” day going unused; we’ll be checking with WSDOT to see what they can tell us in advance.

P.S. WSDOT continues to update its tunnel-progress page on Thursdays and Mondays; as of today, the machine has traveled 4,362 feet of the 9,270-foot distance.

ADDED: WSDOT confirms the closure plan. The official announcement is expected on Monday, October 3rd, but it’s on their website already:

Plan ahead: Semiannual Alaskan Way Viaduct Inspection

Saturday, Oct. 8 and Sunday, Oct. 9

The Alaskan Way Viaduct/SR 99 will be closed between South Spokane Street and Denny Way from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day.

Additionally, there will be a full closure of SR 99 between Denny Way and Valley Street from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 8. Valley Street will remain open for detours.

ADDED MONDAY: And, the final confirmation.

BRIDGE CLOSURE: SDOT plans one-night closure of West Seattle Bridge to replace jersey barriers

September 22, 2016 1:14 pm
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 |   Safety | Transportation | West Seattle news

(September 10th photo contributed by Mark)

Remember that crash two weeks ago? It’s just one of several in recent months that have damaged jersey barriers on the West Seattle Bridge. Now, SDOT has announced an overnight closure, eight days away, for replacements:

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) advises travelers that maintenance crews need to replace damaged jersey barriers in the median of the West Seattle Bridge, requiring a full closure of the bridge on Saturday, October 1, during the overnight and morning hours. Damage to these barriers has been caused by several recent vehicle collisions that have struck the median. An SDOT inspection of all of the jersey barriers on the West Seattle Bridge identified 18 that are in need of replacement.

From 11:59 p.m. on Friday night, September 30 to 9 a.m. on Saturday morning, October 1, travelers can expect the following:

· The West Seattle Bridge (WSB) will be closed to through traffic in both directions between 35th Ave SW and the Harbor Avenue/Avalon Way exit.

· Crews will begin closing lanes at 11:30 p.m. Friday with full closure by midnight.

· A detour will be in place for eastbound and westbound travelers on the WSB.

· The detour for eastbound traffic is via SW Avalon Way, SW Spokane St and back onto the WSB.

· The detour for westbound traffic is via the Harbor Avenue/Avalon Way exit to SW Avalon Way to Fauntleroy Way SW.

· Crews will remove and replace 18 damaged jersey barriers.

· Crews will check and adjust any existing barriers that may have moved, but do not need immediate replacement.

· The West Seattle Bridge will be reopened by 9 a.m. on Saturday morning, October 1.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Stolen/dumped items? Plus, tale of 2 stolen-car suspects

Two notes in West Seattle Crime Watch so far today:

STOLEN TOOLS/JACKETS? From Patty in Morgan Junction: “I believe someone took these from someone and dumped them in our apartment parking lot. It’s a tool belt with tools in it, 2 jackets (one fleece). Our address is 6500 block of California. … A name is on the tape measure but we couldn’t find the person by googling them. Hate to toss them.” Let us know if you’re missing similar items and we’ll send you her way.

SUSPECT RELEASED: Following up on our Sunday report of a 36-year-old car-theft suspect’s arrest along Longfellow Creek – he has not yet been charged and was released from jail after three days. The probable-cause documents in the case (basically, the police-report narrative) described the circumstances leading up to the arrest, information we didn’t have for our original report: A patrol officer became “suspicious” of the car, which at the time was parked, unoccupied, near 25th SW/SW Juneau, called it in, continued along his way, and then got confirmation that it was stolen. When he went back to the area, he noticed someone was in the car and had started it. As his car got closer, the person got out of the car and bolted. The officer ordered the suspect to stop; he “feigned compliance” and then fled. Backup officers were called in to search, and as we reported, the suspect was arrested nearby.

SUSPECT BACK IN JAIL: While checking the jail register, we noticed a familiar name among those booked this week: 39-year-old Joshua Utecht. He is the man arrested and charged in a stolen-car case after an incident in the Beach Drive area, back in April. He is now back in jail with bail set at $35,000 for allegedly failing to appear in connection with that case. Court records say the warrant that resulted in his arrest this week was issued a month ago; we don’t know the circumstances of his arrest on that warrant, nor whether he was in West Seattle, but thought it notable. He had spent a month in jail in connection with the April case before getting out after posting bond.

West Seattle Thursday: Equinox sunset watch; Transportation Coalition; ‘Ghosts’ opens; more

September 22, 2016 11:20 am
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 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous


Thanks to David Hutchinson for the photo of the Schooner Adventuress as it passed Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza earlier this week. Adventuress is 103 years old and is operated by the educational nonprofit Sound Experience. … Now, looking into the near future via the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

DELRIDGE GROCERY FARM STAND: 4-7 pm just north of the Delridge P-Patch, support the Delridge Grocery Cooperative by buying fresh produce at the weekly farm stand. (Delridge Way SW/Puget Boulevard SW)

LANDER STREET BRIDGE OPEN HOUSE: 4-6 pm, with a presentation at 5:15 pm, be at Metropolist to find out the latest – and ask your questions – about the revived Lander Street Bridge (formerly Overpass) project in SODO. (2931 1st Ave. S.)

‘DOG DAYS’ AT ARBOR HEIGHTS SWIM & TENNIS CLUB: Third day for the Arbor Heights Swim and Tennis Club fundraiser allowing dogs to swim after the pool has closed to people for the year. 5-7 pm; details in our calendar listing. (11003 31st SW)

EVENING OF YMCA MEMORIES: 5:30-7:30 pm at the Fauntleroy Church Fellowship Hall, “HiSTORY, HerSTORY, OurSTORY, YourSTORY – An Evening of West Seattle & Fauntleroy YMCA Memories.” RSVP deadline has passed but our calendar listing has contact information you can use to see if there’s still room. (9140 California SW)

WEST SEATTLE TRANSPORTATION COALITION: The WSTC resumes its monthly meeting schedule tonight at Neighborhood House’s High Point Center, 6:30 pm. Here’s the agenda:

6:30 – Welcome & Introductions
6:45 – How Will I Travel the Waterfront in a Post-Viaduct World? with featured guest Angela Brady, Manager for Project Delivery for the Waterfront from the City of Seattle’s Office Of The Waterfront
7:15 – Q&A
7:25 – 35th Ave SW project with featured guest Jim Curtin from SDOT
7:55 – Q&A
8:00 – Consideration of Sound Transit 3 for Endorsement

(6400 Sylvan Way)

FALL EQUINOX SUNSET WATCH WITH ALICE: The autumn equinox happened at 7:21 am today and so that means tonight is the official quarterly sunset watch with NASA Solar System Ambassador Alice Enevoldsen at West Seattle’s Solstice Park. Sunset’s just before 7, so get there by 6:35 pm. Free and fun for all ages. (7400 Fauntleroy Way SW)

FREE FALL FISHING SEMINAR: 7 pm at Emerald Water Anglers (WSB sponsor) – RSVP ASAP to be sure you have a spot – info’s in our calendar listing. (42nd SW/SW Oregon)

OPENING NIGHT FOR ‘GHOSTS’: ArtsWest Playhouse in The Junction begins its new season with Henrik Ibsen’s “Ghosts.” 7:30 pm curtain; more info in our calendar listing. (4711 California SW)

AND THERE’S MORE FOR TODAY/TONIGHT/BEYOND … including nightlife! … on our complete-calendar page.

Landmark status sought for two West Seattle Junction buildings


(WSB photos taken the day of the March 2016 SWSHS announcement)

9:49 AM: Almost seven months after announcing that it would seek landmark status for two “iconic” buildings in the heart of the West Seattle Junction (WSB coverage here), the Southwest Seattle Historical Society has taken the next step in the process. Here’s the announcement just sent:

The Southwest Seattle Historical Society this week submitted its landmark nominations to the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board for the two West Seattle Junction buildings that have been the focus of its “We Love The Junction” campaign since last March.

The nominations were submitted for two buildings at the intersection of California Avenue Southwest and Southwest Alaska Street:

— The Campbell Building (primary tenant Cupcake Royale), at the northeast corner.

— The Crescent-Hamm Building (primary tenant Easy Street Records), at the northwest corner. (The building is known as the Hamm Building but is identified in the nomination as the Crescent-Hamm Building.)

In the West Seattle Junction Historical Survey released last March, the two buildings were identified at the top of the list of potentially eligible Seattle landmarks in the Junction.

The complete nominations can be seen on the historical society’s website.

The nominations were prepared by consultants Flo Lentz and Sarah Martin, whose work was funded by a grant from 4Culture.

The Campbell Building nomination, at 59 pages, and the Crescent-Hamm Building nomination, at 54 pages, provide a detailed history of the two structures, including information that has not surfaced since they were constructed.

For instance, the Campbell Building, thought to have been built in 1918 based on previous research, actually was built in two parts in 1911 and 1920. (The Crescent-Hamm Building was built in 1926.)

Setting Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board hearings for the nominations may take a month or two, said Clay Eals, executive director. Whether the hearings take place in one meeting or two is yet to be determined by the city, he said.

The nominations were submitted on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2016. On the same day, the historical society notified representatives of the owners of the Campbell Building and the Crescent-Hamm Building that the nominations were submitted and provided the web link to the nominations.

For the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board to designate a building a city landmark, it must meet at least one of six criteria related to its association with a historical person or event, architectural style, designer or cultural heritage or status as an “easily identifiable visual feature” of its community.

In coming weeks, the “We Love The Junction” Task Force of the historical society will plan its approach to the nomination hearings. Anyone wishing to join the task force and assist in the campaign can contact Peder Nelson, task-force co-chair at

Agendas and other documentation related to Landmarks Board meetings can be found here, though, as mentioed in the SWSHS announcement above, nothing related to this is scheduled yet.

P.S. Wondering which West Seattle buildings are already official city landmarks? They’re all on this map.

ADDED 10:48 AM: Some are asking in comments, what about other Junction buildings? As mentioned briefly in the SWSHS announcement above, this was preceded by the release of the results of a historical survey of Junction buildings, including these, which were considered the most likely to qualify (here’s our March report on the survey). Curious about your favorite Junction building(s)? Here’s the section of the survey document that addressed each of dozens of buildings.

Where to find city information

You’re probably here because you appreciate being informed. You probably have other favorite stops around the web, too. And if you are in the “there’s no such thing as too much information” category … you might be interested in this city post we just happened onto by browsing It’s a long list of ways to get information from and about specific city departments, resulting from a recent “civic tech lunch hour” at which attendees were asked what kind of information they want from the city.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Thursday updates & 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)

6:45 AM: Good morning! No incidents reported in/from West Seattle so far. Autumn officially arrives at 7:21 am.

SUNDAY REMINDER: Don’t forget that the Seattle Summer Parkways event on Sunday will include parking/traffic changes on Harbor and Alki Avenues all day – here are the details.

FOLLOWUP: Revisiting East Admiral illegal-tree-cutting site

After Tuesday’s news of city lawsuits in the case of illegal tree-cutting on public land in East Admiral, some asked what the site looks like now. We don’t have September 2015 photos for a true comparison, so keep in mind that any area with deciduous trees will look dramatically different between the end of winter and the end of summer. But here are the closest “now and then” shots:


Above is our Wednesday afternoon view looking west/upslope after walking into the city land north of CityView/34th SW. You can barely pick out the tops of a couple of the residences (note the chimney) clearly visible in our March photo taken from that same trail:

(March WSB photo)

Looking the other way, this time, to the east:


That was the Wednesday afternoon view from an angle similar to, but from a higher perspective than, this one photographed in March:

(March 2016 WSB photo by Christopher Boffoli)

Note that our photos involve what the city calls “Area C,” which is the subject of the “southern site” lawsuit against Kostas and Linda Kyrimis and “John and Jane Does.” The “northern site” lawsuit involves “Area A,” which is much less accessible, aside from a view looking downslope from the 35th SW street end, which is where we took this photo Tuesday afternoon:

(We haven’t found a photo with a March view from that spot.) Here’s the graphic from the lawsuit documentation, showing where Areas A and C are:


Meantime, we are watching court files to see what tentative scheduling will be set for these cases to proceed in court.

ADDED THURSDAY AFTERNOON: We did obtain the case numbers for the lawsuits today, and the online files verify that for starters, as with most if not all civil cases, these have tentative trial dates that are a year away. Along the way, however, motions and hearings pop up, and that’s what we’ll be watching for.