By Randall Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
With Sub Pop Records’ 30th-anniversary party bringing thousands to Alki Beach three weeks from tomorrow, it was a primary topic at last night’s Alki Community Council meeting.
Sub Pop CEO Megan Jasper opened discussion by thanking community members for asking questions and offering feedback that have helped guide efforts to minimize impact on the neighborhood.
“You share your neighborhood with so many of us,” said Jasper, “and I want to be respectful of that.”
Following Jasper’s opening remarks, Sub Pop Operations Manager Gabe Carter introduced the topic of street closures, with a reminder that Alki Avenue will be completely closed to traffic between 56th SW and 63rd SW. There will also be a “soft closure” of 59th SW from Alki Avenue SW to SW Stevens Street.
Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Steve Strand explained that there will be 30 specific access points at which police officers or monitors will be stationed to control street access on the day of the event. Strand also praised event organizers for their efforts, saying “Sub Pop have come up with a good plan.”
With parking near Alki challenging in the best of times, organizers have continued to discourage people from attempting to drive to SPF30. Organizers will hope to move the bulk of attendees by shuttle service, with buses running from Don Armeni Boat Ramp, Admiral Junction, and Alaska Junction throughout the day.
While attendance at last weekend’s West Seattle Summer Fest in The Junction is estimated to have been around 60,000 for the three days, the Sub Pop event is poised to become a bit of neighborhood history, should estimates of 40,000 attendees be accurate.
“This is going to be the largest single-day event in West Seattle history,” said Jeff McCord, executive director of the Southwest Seattle Historical Society, which has taken a lead role as a liaison between the record label and the hosting neighborhood and will be one of SPF30’s beneficiaries.
Near the conclusion of the meeting, Jasper disclosed that Sub Pop will reveal three additions to the current SPF30 lineup next Thursday.
Another major topic of last night’s meeting:
NOISE ORDINANCE ENFORCEMENT: Though the new standard for illegal vehicle noise goes into effect Sunday, concern over enforcement of noise ordinances continues to be a concern for Alki residents.
Lt. Strand said that Seattle Police are currently working on educating people on the new ordinance before moving to citations. For the first 30 days of the new standard, only warnings will be issued to offenders.
Jesse Robbins has been leading a push to introduce a technological aid to enforcement, but told community members last night that he is concerned that the passage of the new standard could lead local politicians to move on to other issues and asked attendees to help keep enforcement issues in the mind of City Councilmember Lisa Herbold.
Robbins is promoting a pilot of “automated enforcement” to help curb vehicle-based noise in the Alki area. While there are legal hurdles to clear, Robbins says the technological solution would be more sustainable and budget friendly than increasing police presence, which usually involves overtime pay for the officers.
In the meantime, the ACC voted to form a committee to explore further solutions to the continued noise issues in the neighborhood.
The Alki Community Council meets third Thursdays most months, 7 pm at Alki UCC (6115 SW Hinds).