West Seattle, Washington
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) July 25, 2017
10:44 AM: If you’re anywhere near Alki and noticing the Guardian One helicopter over a Seattle Fire fireboat – it’s not a rescue, it’s a drill. This is part of a demonstration SFD has been putting on for us and the citywide media this past half-hour, showcasing the new SFD “rescue swimmer” program. Lots of photos, video, and info to come!
11:24 AM: The demonstration is over and we’re back at headquarters. SFD explains that this new program is meant to bridge the gap between a regular response and deployment of the Dive Team (which is based in SODO), but is not replacing any existing components or units – this is an addition, as explained by SFD Deputy Chief Ron Mondragon:
SFD says 38 firefighters are now trained as “rescue swimmers,” and the department’s goal is to have at least nine on duty in each 24-hour period, stationed around the city – not just deployed via certain stations. They’ve been in training, including with the help of partners such as West Pierce Fire and Rescue (south of Tacoma), and officially launched these new duties as of last Wednesday. Whenever there’s a water-rescue response, dispatchers will ensure that two rescue swimmers are part of the response. They can deploy from almost anywhere/anything – boats, beaches, piers, rocky shorelines, etc.
Their gear, which also was explained at the demonstration, includes a yellow “marker buoy” they can deploy to help divers that follow them into the water, if applicable.
This is a pilot program, SFD says, that will be evaluated after a year.
Meantime, besides emergencies, their planned upcoming assignments include Seafair weekend on Lake Washington, when four teams of two swimmers will be on duty.
Thanks to Dan Ciske for the view of the waxing crescent moon in last night’s sunset. Along with sunset-watching, here’s what else you can do in the hours ahead:
WADING POOLS AND SPRAYPARK OPEN TODAY: Lincoln Park wading pool and Highland Park spraypark are both open 11 am-8 pm; Delridge wading pool is open noon-6:30 pm. (Find addresses here)
LOW-LOW TIDE, WITH BEACH NATURALISTS: One more round of beach-exploration information at Constellation and Lincoln parks, 11:30 am-2:30 pm. Low-low tide is -2.1 feet at 12:55 pm.
DINE OUT FOR HIGHLAND PARK ELEMENTARY: The HPE playground project will benefit from part of the proceeds at Mioposto in Admiral, 4-10 pm, including takeout as well as dine-in. (2139 California SW)
TIMOTHY BROCK AND MUSIC OF THE SILENT GIANTS: 6:45 pm at The Admiral Theater, a night of entertainment and enlightenment, raising money to restore its 1942 murals, featuring Timothy Brock, who grew up in West Seattle and went on a one-of-a-kind career as a composer and conductor who specializes in scores for silent films. First, you’ll see and hear him talk with West Seattle’s Dave Beck, and as the Southwest Seattle Historical Society explains:
Interspersed will be stills and clips from silent films that Brock has scored. Following an intermission, Brock will introduce the screening of the Chaplin feature “Modern Times,” for which Brock has restored and re-recorded the original 1936 Chaplin score.
As a bonus, two Chaplin items donated and personally inscribed by Brock — his score to the short “A Night in the Show” and a BluRay/DVD of the feature-length “The Gold Rush” (1925) that includes a Brock featurette — will be auctioned.
Tickets are $20, and proceeds will go to the Historic Admiral Theater mural restoration led by our historical society. A VIP opportunity, to attend the presentation and visit one-on-one for an hour with Brock and Beck beforehand, will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the theater. VIP tickets are $100.
Buy yours in advance – don’t run the risk it’ll sell out before you get there – go here now. (2343 California SW)
CANDIDATES’ FORUM: 7 pm at Highland Park Improvement Club, hear from a dozen of the 15 candidates in the running for the citywide City Council positions (8 and 9), organized by the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council, as previewed here again last night. (1116 SW Holden)
METROPOLITAN MARKET CLOSING EARLY: Late-night shoppers take note, signage at the store -usually open 24/7 – says it’ll be closed 10 pm tonight to 5 am tomorrow for installation of new card/chip readers. (41st/Admiral)
LOTS MORE FOR TODAY/TONIGHT … on our complete-calendar page.
(HERE’S THE REVAMPED SDOT MAP with travel times/video links)
7:02 AM: Good morning. There’s a crash response in the 1300 block of Alki SW right now, though SFD closed out of it within minutes – no other outbound incidents from West Seattle so far.
7:15 AM: Trouble on NB I-5 – stalled vehicle blocking right lane before Seneca.
7:40 AM: I-5 now clear but slow.
10:48 PM: Thanks for the tips about police back on Alki, searching around 61st/62nd/Admiral and vicinity. We just talked to a sergeant who tells us they are looking for an assault suspect who has at least one warrant out for his arrest. Photo at right.
The suspect is 25, 5’6″, khaki shorts and a hoodie. Call 911 if you see him. The victim was not seriously hurt.
PS – This is not related to last night’s search (as we reported earlier, four people were taken into custody).
11:28 PM: No new info so far (but we’ll still be monitoring for a while, and will follow up tomorrow too).
As far as we know, this is the final West Seattle forum before ballots are due on August 1st – tomorrow (Tuesday) night, the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council hosts 12 of the 15 candidates for the two citywide City Council positions on the primary-election ballot. Seven people are running for Position 8 (incumbent Councilmember Tim Burgess is not) and eight people are running for Position 9 (incumbent CM Lorena González among them). Here’s who has RSVP’d, as sent by DNDC chair Mat McBride:
It’s happening 7-9 pm at Highland Park Improvement Club (1116 SW Holden), and the format is simple – each candidate gets 5 minutes to make her/his pitch. Then you get to talk with them one on one. Even if you don’t want to do anything but listen and leave after that first hour, McBride’s pitch to you: “I’ve said this before, but nothing, nothing is more impactful than showing up. You cannot disregard a community that shows up. Let’s be that community.” All ages welcome.
The photo and report are from LS:
Our truck was stolen on Thursday (7/20) night, between 5-9 pm, from the Spokane Street parking area under the West Seattle bridge.
1990 Chevy Silverado 1500 Z71. Red, short bed, standard cab, tow hitch, oversized tires, half of the rear sliding window is very opaque.
Please call/text 206-915-3495 if seen/found.
And also call 911.
Another big West Seattle restaurant mystery is a mystery no longer. You might recall that when we reported in mid-June that Pellegrini Italian Market (4521 California SW) had closed, its owners said they had sold it to “another GREAT West Seattle operator.” We hadn’t found any hints in permit filings but today the “great … operator” is unmasked by Seattle Met food reporter Allecia Vermillion as Chef Mark Fuller, of Ma’Ono and New Luck Toy. She reports it’s a pizza-and-drinks place to be called Supreme, opening this fall. (Thanks to Brian for spotting and sending the link.) Checking around, we find the name and owners are also confirmed by a liquor-license-application filing that’s new on the state website this afternoon.
More followup information this afternoon on weekend news – this time, the man arrested for allegedly setting a fire underneath the Alaskan Way Viaduct on Sunday afternoon, leading authorities to close it for a while. The 52-year-old suspect waived his first appearance, and a judge set his bail at $250,000.
Probable-cause documents tell the story from the officers first noticing smoke while checking out something near Pike Place Market. As they continued to investigate, they moved toward an area under The Viaduct that they say was fenced off and marked NO TRESPASSING but had been clearly broken into and turned into an encampment with at least a dozen tents. The report said the smoke was billowing from an area between the camp and the nearby Burlington Northern railroad tracks. While they continued looking for the source of the smoke, they first spotted the suspect, standing halfway down a slope, near a Viaduct pillar, and noticed that the fire was feet away from him. The officers yelled at him to get away, but he took a few minutes to gather up some belongings before climbing up the hill. Meantime, Seattle Fire had been called in, and the officers went into the camp to evacuate people. At that point, police wrote, “The fire had grown to significant size after only a few minutes. The flames were reaching the ceiling of the roadway above, which was over 20 feet.”
While they were evacuating people, police say, some told officers that the suspect was responsible for the fire. But none would admit to seeing him start it. Several told them, though, that he had been known for burning clothing and trash and getting kicked out of camps in the area as a result. One witness then told officers she had seen the suspect adding cardboard to the fire. They subsequently placed the suspect under arrest and found three lighters and a book of matches while searching him. Then they found he was under Department of Corrections supervision; King County Jail records show this is his ninth booking into the King County Jail in the past year, and that his most recent release was just last Tuesday, after a 17-day stay. He was charged with robbery last August after a downtown shoplifting incident at a clothing store turned violent.
His next court appearance – by which time charges might be filed – is set for Wednesday. Police wrote on the hearing documents that they object to him being released – which, at $250,000 bail, he’s not likely to be – because he’s a risk to public safety and has no fixed address other than a mailing address. As for the Viaduct, spokesperson Laura Newborn says no structural damage was found, which is why inspectors gave the go-ahead for it to be fully reopened within a few hours.
In West Seattle Crime Watch today:
16TH SW GUNFIRE: We heard a scanner mention of possible gunfire reported around 2 am, but nothing further, including a location. So we followed up today and learned from police that one 9mm shell casing was found in the 5200 block of 16th SW. Witnesses reported two cars stopped in the street, southbound. No victim(s) reported.
ALKI STOLEN-CAR SUSPECTS: Last night we reported on an extensive search that started when a stolen car was spotted at 61st and Alki. We learned today that the car was stolen from Federal Way; after police caught up with it, five people fled, and a foot pursuit began, followed by a search that included K-9 Zeff (SPD Blotter explains that part of the story – photo at right). As mentioned by a commenter, one juvenile was found first; then, police confirm, three other teens were taken into custody overnight. They were to be questioned by the Major Crimes Task Force.
HANDCUFFED ESCAPEE: On Saturday night, we reported on a police search centered near 26th SW and SW Brandon, involving a handcuffed man who got away from an ambulance crew. We’ve confirmed that he has been found – while riding in a car on 35th SW – and already had a warrant out for his arrest in a drug case.
2:42 PM: Thanks to CJ for the tip – 81 homes/businesses are out of power in the Morgan Junction/west Gatewood area, as shown on the Seattle City Light map. No word yet on cause or estimated restoration time.
3:43 PM: The restoration estimate – keep in mind, this is not scientific, and it could come back much sooner or much later – is 7:28 pm. We’re told the problem involves a utility pole (City Light lists it as “equipment failure”) and have a crew in the area working to find out more. West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) tells us they’re not affected. But just to the south, the Shell station is – its pumps are currently taped off – as are the neighboring business New Teriyaki & Wok and Domino’s. McDonald’s has power, as do the businesses on the west side of California.
7:27 PM Three-fourths of those affected are reconnected – 21 still out.
12:51 AM: And those 21 are still out, with restoration now estimated around 4 am. Via comments and e-mail, we’ve learned more about what happened. The next two photos are from David Newell:
Another neighbor told us that City Light crews explained that the outage was “related to a rotten power pole that broke off while a Comcast crew was pulling new lines. The pole came crashing down in the alley and across the patio areas of the condos behind the strip mall housing Domino’s and the mini mart. So lucky no one was injured. The electrical hookup for one the condo buildings was severely damaged.” We’ll be following up with City Light later this morning.
7 AM NOTE: The rest of the customers did get their power back in the early-morning hours.
If you’re part of the Gatewood Elementary community, you’ve probably already heard, but the district is now publicly sharing the announcement that the school’s new principal Kyna Williams is on the job as of this month. She formerly led Destiny Charter Middle School in Tacoma. From Superintendent Dr. Larry Nyland‘s letter:
Kyna Williams was one of multiple candidates interviewed by a hiring committee that included school staff, parents, principals, and central office staff before being recommended for the consideration of the Superintendent and Chief of Schools. The committee was impressed with her commitment to social justice and her experience with school culture building. She is a strong instructional leader and relationship builder.
Ms. Williams most recently served as Founding Assistant Principal, and ultimately the Principal at Destiny Middle school in Tacoma, where she created and implemented positive behavior supports and school-wide culture systems and a system of professional learning for educators in a brand-new middle school. She has also served as a school leader in Washington, D.C. where she facilitated teacher engagement programs, coached and supervised teams of teachers, and oversaw a teaching residency program. She has also taught math and science and tutored literacy skills.
Principal Williams earned her Masters in Elementary Education from Chaminade University in Hawaii; her Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Minnesota; and was a Teach for America corps member.
I would like to extend my thanks to Principal Connie Aleman for working to create an inclusive environment for all students. She has worked diligently to create systems to support students’ social and emotional well-being so that all students can access learning with success at Gatewood.
Principal Williams is excited to be joining the Gatewood Elementary community, and is looking forward to
working with the students, staff, and families to build a place where all stakeholders have high
expectations of students and believe that every student can succeed.
They’re just a few years out of diapers themselves … and today, 4- and 5-year-olds at Bright Horizons West Seattle in The Triangle helped make sure littler kids who need them will have them.
Afterwards, the young donors got some help disembarking:
Still time for you to do a good deed too … here are all the ways you can help.
Three West Seattle development notes:
HEARING SET FOR CHURCH’S TOWNHOUSE PLAN: Almost four years after first word of the West Seattle Church of the Nazarene‘s proposal for six townhouses on single-family-zoned land it owns next door [map], the city is recommending approval of the rezone that the project requires. The recommendation has conditions including a component of Mandatory Housing Affordability. You can see the conditions in this notice published with today’s Land Use Information Bulletin. Also in the notice – before this goes to the City Council for final approval, a public hearing is set before the city Hearing Examiner on August 14th (9 am, examiner’s chambers at the Municipal Tower downtown). We talked with church leaders about the project back in 2013; they partnered with a local builder on the project and hope its proceeds will help them keep and renovate their sanctuary, while maintaining part of the land as the unofficial park it’s long been.
STREET-VACATION HEARING FOR STORAGE-FACILITY PLAN: Also set for a public hearing next month, the street vacation required for a new self-storage facility at 3252 Harbor Avenue SW, north of the West Seattle Bridge (first mentioned here back in April). Here’s the notice, which includes this map:
The hearing for the street vacation – which means the city would sell the land, not currently in use as a street, to the developer – will be at 2 pm August 15th before the City Council’s Sustainability and Transportation Committee at City Hall downtown. Here’s the notice from today’s LUIB.
One item that’s not from today’s LUIB – it just showed up in our daily check of city files:
8 UNITS TO REPLACE 1 AT 7111 CALIFORNIA SW: There’s an early-stage proposal for 7111 California SW [map], where a century-plus-old single-family house would be replaced by four townhouses, each including an “accessory dwelling unit” with separate entrance, for a total of eight units. The project would include four offstreet parking spaces.
10:21 AM: If you’re headed to or from the Fauntleroy ferry terminal, or Lincoln Park, note that a multiple-car crash is reported in the 7500 block of Fauntleroy Way. No serious injuries reported so far but police say “two of the vehicles can’t move” and SFD has been dispatched.
10:35 AM: The collision is on the north side, as shown in our photo; traffic is being directed around via south-side lanes, including what would be the ferry waiting lane if this were a busier outbound time of day. SFD has already left after determining that no one needed to be treated.
West Seattleite Greg Nickels (mayor from 2002-2010) is one of four former Seattle mayors – Norm Rice (1990-1998), Charles Royer (1978-1990), Wes Uhlman (1970-1978) – say it’s enough that Ed Murray is not running for re-election. Despite the most recent revelation that an Oregon caseworker believed Murray had molested his foster child, they don’t think he should resign. Here’s the “open letter” sent to media this morning:
Murray has said he doesn’t intend to quit. The signatories to the letter represent four of the six mayors who served before Murray; his immediate predecessor Mike McGinn – now running to get the job back – has called for Murray to resign. (Paul Schell, who held the job for one term between Rice and Nickels, died in 2014.)
The City Council could take action to remove Murray, and West Seattle-residing citywide Councilmember Lorena González said last week that he should consider stepping down. In a new statement today, she says the City Council should “independently address issues related to either a voluntary or involuntary transition of Executive leadership.”
Another chance to see sights like the starfish above, photographed by Victoria Gnatoka, top the list for today/tonight, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
LOW-LOW TIDE, WITH BEACH NATURALISTS: Today’s low-low tide is out to -2.8 feet at 12:09 pm, and Seattle Aquarium volunteer beach naturalists are out again at Lincoln and Constellation parks, 10:30 am-2 pm.
WADING POOLS AND SPRAYPARK: Open today are Highland Park spraypark and Lincoln Park wading pool, 11 am-8 pm; also, Delridge wading pool, noon-6:30 pm. (Find addresses here)
BENEFIT FOR DOMESTIC-VIOLENCE SURVIVOR: Arthur’s in The Admiral District is donating part of the proceeds 6-10 pm to an employee who is recovering from injuries suffered in a domestic-violence attack – they’re also having a silent auction to help her. Details here. (2311 California SW)
‘MUSIC UNDER THE STARS’ FINALE: Tonight is the fourth and final Monday night this season for the Seattle Chamber Music Society‘s events at Delridge Playfield. At 7:30 pm, you’ll see and hear a mini-concert by a chamber ensemble, live and in-person; at 8 pm, the concert concludes and the audio system switches to the SCMS’s festival broadcast, live from Benaroya Hall. (4501 Delridge Way SW)
FAMILY STORY TIME: Kids of all ages welcome at High Point Library, 6:30 pm, for stories, songs, and rhymes. (35th SW/SW Raymond)
MORE OF WHAT’S UP TODAY, TONIGHT, BEYOND … on our complete-calendar page.
(HERE’S THE REVAMPED SDOT MAP with travel times/video links)
6:58 AM: SDOT just finished cleaning up after a crash on the west end of the westbound bridge last hour, re-setting the jersey barriers near Charlestown, and that was affecting eastbound traffic. We’ve heard police (via scanner) just report that the scene is clear.
7 AM: SDOT has also just verified this as well. Meantime, road alert from King County, starting today and lasting about two weeks: SW 104th is closed from 15th Ave SW to 16th Ave SW; crews are “replacing a deep, deteriorated underground drainage system.”
7:11 AM: Bus cancellation:
Transit Alert – Rt 116 due to leave SW Brace Pt Dr/SW Wildwood Pl at 7:48 AM & Fauntleroy Fry Trml at 7:55 AM will not operate this morning.
— King County Metro 🚌 (@kcmetrobus) July 24, 2017
8:33 AM: If you use 1st Avenue S. to get into downtown, an alert from SDOT:
Stalled semi truck on 1st Ave S at S Spokane St blocking NB left lane. Use caution. pic.twitter.com/TP01AiejHY
— seattledot (@seattledot) July 24, 2017
One last gallery from Saturday’s West Seattle Grand Parade, before the weekend is completely over – more of the wheels!
That view is from @tweetbyvika – the motorcycle drill teams led the parade as usual. Our views were from ground level once they reached The Junction:
9:56 PM: You might be hearing the sirens, and/or seeing the police vehicles – there’s a search on in Alki, with K-9 joining in. The 2700 block of 61st SW is where it’s reported to have begun, with suspects possibly heading east and south. We don’t know exactly what sparked the search, nor do we have suspect descriptions, but what’s been mentioned via radio so far includes a possible stolen car and discovery of ammunition. More as we get it.
10:19 PM: One person tells us via Twitter that the suspects fled after a suspected stolen vehicle was stopped on 61st just south of Alki, which would match the address we had heard.
11:24 PM: While as noted in comments one person is reported to have been taken into custody in the area, we don’t know yet whether the person is connected to this, but will be checking in the morning, by which time a report should be available. The search has scaled back somewhat and some police have been released to go to other West Seattle calls that had been on hold.
(Gathered in May to celebrate the transfer of the Riverside Memorial to SWSHS: From left, Riverside natives Mike Budinich, Frank Zuvela, Jerry Vandenberg; SWSHS board president Karen Sisson; vice president Peder Nelson; former presidents Marcy Johnsen & Judy Bentley; trustees Nancy Sorensen & Kerry Korsgaard; Advisory Council members Flora Belle Key, Tom Rasmussen, Ken Workman)
Until now, the only property owned by the Southwest Seattle Historical Society was its Log House Museum. Now, a second history-laden West Seattle site is in its care as well. Just announced:
Budinich gift deeds Riverside Memorial to Southwest Seattle Historical Society
Triangle dedicated to residents of Croatian fishing community becomes local heritage organization’s second piece of property
Historic Riverside Walking tour set Saturday morning, Aug. 5
Thanks to a generous gift by the family of Mike Budinich, the Riverside Memorial triangle that was dedicated in 2012 is now the property of the Southwest Seattle Historical Society.
Initial documents for the property transfer were signed May 31, 2017, and final documents were signed July 19, 2017. The Riverside Memorial is located at 3810 17th Ave. SW, just off West Marginal Way and almost directly beneath the West Seattle Bridge.
The innovative triangle – a total of 1,010 square feet appraised at $21,200 – features bricks denoting the resident families, largely Croatian, of this historic neighborhood, with the bricks arranged in the configuration of the community’s hillside street grid.
Five years ago, the families who trace their roots to the Riverside neighborhood created and dedicated the memorial, which also includes an interpretive monument and metal fishing-boat artwork. In addition, its eastern parking strip features a small garden and bench.
The Southwest Seattle Historical Society co-sponsored the opening ceremony, “Coming Home to Riverside,” on Jan. 28, 2012, and since then has sponsored an annual walking tour centered on the memorial and conducted by Riverside native Frank Zuvela. He will lead this year’s walking tour at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017 (donation of $5).
The Budinich family, which owned the property, deeded the triangle to the historical society on two conditions, (1) that the triangle be preserved and not be built upon without the family’s permission and (2) that the historical society maintain it periodically.
(At the Chelan Café, Mike Budinich signs the transfer agreement for the Riverside Memorial, flanked by his partner Michelle Kelly, left, and SWSHS representatives Karen Sisson, board president, and Ken Workman, Advisory Council member)
Karen Sisson, board president for the historical society, says the property fits the organization’s mission “to promote local heritage through education, preservation and advocacy” and allows the historical society to expand its presence within its service area of the Duwamish Peninsula. The site also is adjacent to early settlements of the Duwamish Tribe.
The historical society’s other property is at 3003 61st Ave. SW, the site of the “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum on Alki, acquired in the mid-1990s.
The historical society plans its first work party to freshen the Riverside Memorial for 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017, two days prior to the Aug. 5 tour. The public is invited to help weed and do other cleanup at the site.
(2015 photo courtesy Kathryn)
The reader-contributed photo above is from 2015, the last year the Seattle Outrigger Canoe Club ran its “Da Grind” races from Alki, subsequently taking last year off. The races are back for this year, and in case you want to watch – or participate – the club wants you to know it’s happening next Saturday (July 29th), with four- and 12-mile courses, and projected start times at 9:30 am, noon, and 2 pm. The award ceremony is expected around 3:30 pm.
(SDOT screengrab from 3:45 pm)
6:37 PM: If you’re heading back this way from points north of downtown, note that SB Highway 99 is closed from Denny, just before the Battery Street Tunnel, to Columbia. This is in the aftermath of a fire under the Alaskan Way Viaduct that closed NB 99 for a short time as well (but that’s since reopened). Seattle Police report an arrest related to the fire:
Both the Seattle Police and Seattle Fire Department responded to a report of a brush fire in the 1900 block of Alaskan Way just before 4 p.m. Sunday. The firefighters quickly extinguished the blaze that engulfed a nearby homeless encampment. Officers arrested a man who witnesses claimed set the fire. Officers will book the man into King County Jail for investigation of arson.
The Seattle Department of Transportation will be inspecting the underside of the viaduct in the area to see if there was any structural damage caused by the heat.
7:48 PM: SDOT says Highway 99 has reopened southbound, too.
That’s the Alki Art Fair from above, photographed on Saturday by Long Bach Nguyen. Its second and final afternoon is another beautiful one, and you have until 6 pm to come visit (or revisit) the dozens of artists and other vendors who are here. Inside the Alki Bathhouse, you have until 4 pm to bid on the final round of silent auction items.
Music continues until 6, too. Onstage now, Viking Surfers:
Find the bands on the main stages east of the Bathhouse and the busker stage on the boardwalk by 63rd – see the schedule here.