West Seattle, Washington
One more community meeting to recap from this past week before we head into a new week: The Southwest District Council.
AVALON REPAVING/RECHANNELIZATION: Two project reps summarized where the design stands now for the project (see our most recent coverage here). They said there’s still time for feedback on the proposal before design is finalized. They heard two major concerns – one, from Avalon residents who are worried about the rechannelization plan’s removal of the center turn lane, given its use by business and delivery vehicles as well as for turning; two, from Luna Park businesses about the loss of street parking. SDOT plans to add limits to street parking that currently has no limits, in order to encourage turnover. Luna Park Café owner John Bennett says the situation is already challenging even before this project, and the transit lanes that currently replace parking from 6 to 10 am should end at 9 am instead.
THE WHALE TRAIL: Executive director Donna Sandstrom elaborated on some of what she’d said the night before at her organization’s latest Orca Talk (WSB coverage here). She is on Governor Inslee‘s task force trying to help the dwindling Southern Resident Killer Whale population and noted that its draft report is due in a few weeks. She reminded attendees that saving the orcas doesn’t just involve increasing the salmon population so they have more food – reducing boat noise, which gets in the way of their fishing, is a fast way to help them.
The SRKWs’ plight – including efforts to help ailing J50 – could have a silver lining in that they’ve raised awareness about the whales to a level not seen in more than a decade, and she hopes that can be converted to action. Sandstrom also offered a primer on The Whale Trail and said they’re reaching out more than ever to local community groups – like the SWDC – to get more help and support. Watch for upcoming events (the next Orca Talk, for example, is October 2nd – details to come).
The Southwest District Council meets first Wednesdays most months, 6:30 pm at the Senior Center/Sisson Building (4217 SW Oregon).
9:56 PM: If you have to head out any time soon – heads up, there’s a crash on the eastbound high bridge. Just got two reader reports, plus we heard SPD dispatching, describing the location as near the 99 exit. So far no SFD dispatch so there’s no indication of serious injuries.
11:20 PM: No updates on this, and the camera pointing that way on the bridge isn’t working, so we are hoping no news is good news.
11:57 PM: Now there’s a dispatch – SFD *is* being sent this time – for another crash on the eastbound bridge at 99. (added) Two people are reported to be injured.
Produce does not need to be flawless to be delicious. You probably already know that. The point was reinforced at the Kiwanis Club of West Seattle booth at today’s West Seattle Farmers’ Market, as vendors contributed entries for the “Ugliest Produce” contest. Market shoppers voted with beans. And the winner was …
… a tomato from Kittitas Valley Greenhouse.
… and getting some work in before fall arrives in full force.
That’s Stu Hennessey with the young volunteers. Want to help at PREP? 4-6 pm Sunday, October 14th is the next scheduled work party. The park is at 5265 18th SW.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
More tiny houses and a permanent camp manager were among the updates at a brief meeting of the Camp Second Chance Community Advisory Committee this afternoon.
C2C – at 9401 Myers Way S. – is the only city-sanctioned encampment in West Seattle; the city requires each of the sanctioned encampments to have one.
Community Advisory Council members present were chair Willow Fulton, a nearby resident; Judi Carr, a resident of Arrowhead Gardens (where the committee meets); Aaron Garcia of the White Center Community Development Association; Cinda Stenger of the Westside Interfaith Network and Alki UCC; and Grace Stiller of Weed Warriors.
Present from camp operator LIHI were Josh Castle. C2C manager Eric Davis announced he will soon be in that role as a LIHI employee, after about a year. (That drew a round of applause at meeting’s end.) Davis is a camp founder and managed C2C in a paid position under the original camp operator Patacara, but the camp changed operators during a time of controversy and Davis’s position did not become a job again until now.
He presented the monthly update on the city-sanctioned encampment: 45 residents (34 men and 11 women), four of them new, six moved out for jobs/housing/family reunification; one moved out for treatment; no one was barred during the month.
No City of Seattle rep this time – Tom Van Bronkhorst of the Department of Neighborhoods, the usual rep, was absent. Fulton had hoped for a city rep to be present as usual because on the city side of Myers Way – not at/in C2C, she made clear – there are new problems including vehicles in various states of disrepair/demolition.
She feels that such dumping/activity is a magnet for more trouble – “people see it as a dumping ground because it looks like a dumping ground” – so she feels the city should patrol the area regularly rather than wait for complaints. Davis said that vehicles are being stripped at 2, 3 am and yes, he said, the camp has called police to report it. “They just need someone to drive up and down there for six months to get it under control, midnight to six am.”
Fulton says it would be great to have a camera of some sort in the area.
Liz Giba of the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council suggested working with King County Sheriff’s Office White Center storefront Deputy Bill Kennamer. Fulton noted that the problems seem to be on the Seattle side and the city and county law-enforcement agencies seem to pass problems back and forth “like a hot potato.”
Meantime, Stenger said Alki UCC has completed eight more tiny houses for the camp and has money to build five more. The camp now has 31 tiny houses and 22 tents. (City funding covers platforms holding either tiny houses or tents, but not the structures themselves.) On September 22nd, the camp will host a celebration and blessing of the eight new houses, starting at noon, with music and food. (All welcome!) She also said she’s working on “the shower issue” (as discussed at previous meetings, camp residents are hoping a mobile shower vehicle can visit more often) and “might have a solution for that.”
Castle noted that the County Council has taken its vote on whether to give lodging-tax money to the Mariners or to affordable housing, and says more was shifted to the latter than originally proposed. (The final vote is on September 17th; the committee approval on September 5th was to allocate $165 million more lodging-tax dollars to affordable housing than originally proposed.)
Absent any further community concerns, or formal agenda items, the meeting adjourned after half an hour. Next one will be 2 pm October 7th, also at Arrowhead Gardens (9200 2nd SW, a few blocks north of C2C).
The photo is from Matt Hedlund: “My wife Meagan and I stumbled onto a pretty low tide at Alki today and it was awesome. Here’s a picture of a baby octopus.” Per our favorite chart, the tide was out to -1.2 feet at midday. Tomorrow just before noon, -0.6 feet, and after that we are headed into the time of year when the minus tides are after dark, until spring.
After 19 days of testimony before city Hearing Examiner Ryan Vancil, the appeal of the HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability upzoning is now in his hands. Friday was the last scheduled day of testimony – the 19th, in sessions spread across 2 1/2 months – in the appeal challenging the city’s Final Environmental Impact Statement on the plan. We listened to audio from the hearing’s conclusion to find out what happens next: Both sides have deadlines to submit their wrap-up briefs to Vancil, and he indicated he doesn’t expect to announce his decision before November.
HALA MHA would upzone commercial and multifamily property citywide, plus residential property in “urban village” areas, with developers allowed to build higher/denser as a result, while being required to include a certain level of “affordable housing” in their projects or to pay the city a fee to fund construction somewhere else. (Check the interactive map here to see how/whether any particular site would be affected.) The coalition of more than 30 neighborhood groups that filed the appeal last November (plus some individual challenges that were heard concurrently) contends that the FEIS is inadequate for a variety of reasons and wants the city to have to go back to the drawing board and work directly with neighborhoods to address their specific challenges and conditions. Until the appeal is settled, the City Council’s vote on HALA MHA – a proposal initiated before Jenny Durkan was elected mayor – is on hold. They’ve had a multitude of meetings and hearings on it, including in-district hearings that concluded with one June 5th in West Seattle (WSB coverage here). Meantime, documents in the appeal case, as well as minutes (detailing who testified but not the substance of their testimony) and audio, can be found here. The Hearing Examiner (whose role is explained briefly here) has the city’s final say in matters brought before him; a court challenge would be the next step.
11:39 AM: Thanks to Ryan for the tip. California SW is wet just north of Admiral Way because of a water break. Seattle Public Utilities has a crew on scene investigating but they haven’t yet scoped out what repairs will be needed.
3:07 PM: Just came back to check. A repair crew is on scene and working in a big hole in the northbound lane.
The next 2 Sunday mornings bring big running events – one of which will close the streets:
COSMO 7K ON SEPTEMBER 16: This run benefiting Northwest Hope and Healing was postponed from last month because of wildfire smoke. It starts at the Alki Bathhouse at 9:30 am on September 16th and will close Alki Avenue for a while. Registration info is here.
ORCA HALF ON SEPTEMBER 23: This half-marathon benefiting The Whale Trail happens in “the parking lane, sidewalks, and on the Alki Trail,” starting at Lincoln Park and concluding at Don Armeni Boat Ramp. According to the Orca Half website, registration is closed because they’ve maxed out. The runners will start in waves between 8 and 9 am on September 23rd and the course will close at 1 pm.
Here are the highlights, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
END-OF-SUMMER BEACH VOLLEYBALL: Alki Volleyball Association games 8 am-6 pm at the beach. (2400 Alki SW)
FINISH IT! AT WESTCREST PARK: A massive blackberry-clearing task will be finished this morning with your help – and the celebration will include homemade blackberry jam. Full details here. 10 am-noon at Westcrest Park. (5th SW/SW Cloverdale)
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: 10 am-2 pm in the heart of The Junction, end-of-summer freshness! (California SW between SW Oregon and SW Alaska)
MINISTRY FAIR, SALAD POTLUCK, DESSERT CONTEST: 11 am at Tibbetts United Methodist Church (WSB sponsor):
Tibbetts United Methodist Church is hosting a Salad Potluck, Dessert Contest, and Ministry Fair after worship service ~11:30 am-1:30 pm, in Adams Hall on the basement level of Tibbetts UMC.
Please bring any kind of salad or salad ingredient(s) and we’ll have a feast of fellowship. In theory, at least, salad leaves plenty of room for a dessert contest and you are the judges! This year the ministry fair will also focus on explaining the unique structure behind each of our four ministry areas – Stewardship, Worship, Outreach, and Discipleship. All are welcome! The leadership team looks forward to seeing you there!
(3940 41st SW)
SAN GENNARO FESTIVAL: Last chance to go to Georgetown to enjoy this West Seattleite-founded Italian-American festival, with music, food, more. (S. Angelo/Ellis Ave. S.)
BOUNCY HOUSE AND BARBECUE: After the 10:15 am service at St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, a parking-lot barbecue picnic to celebrate the end of summer and start of a new program year. Face-painting and bouncy house, too. All welcome. (3050 California SW)
COLMAN POOL, LAST 2018 DAY: The outdoor pool on the shore at Lincoln Park finishes its sole post-season weekend this year today, noon-7 pm. See the schedule of swim sessions here. (8603 Fauntleroy Way SW)
NEW CLEAR NEWS: West Seattle Neighbors for Peace and Justice hope to see you for this publication distribution in The Junction, noon-1 pm. (California/Alaska)
FORMERLY CHORO TOCANDO: 3-5 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), you knew them as Choro Tocando but: “Now that we are more than a duo, our expanded group name is Chorando na Chuva, which translated means ‘Crying in the Rain’.” No cover. (5612 California SW)
FRIENDLY COED FUTSAL NIGHT: Go play futsal with the new Queen City Futsal folks, 6-9 pm at the Salvation Army. Maybe even find a team to join, or just go to see what it’s all about. Everyone 18+ is welcome. (9050 16th SW)
THAT’S NOT ALL … see our complete calendar for today/tonight/beyond!