West Seattle, Washington
More than half a dozen callers to 911 earlier this hour reported what sounded like gunfire in south Highland Park. One location mentioned in radio communication: 12th/Trenton. No word of any victims turning up, and we haven’t heard of any gunfire evidence (shell casings, damage) so far, but police are in the area investigating.
Last week, we reported a fourth candidate had joined the City Council District 1 (West Seattle/South Park) race, popcorn entrepreneur Jesse Greene. Last night was his first public campaign event, a kickoff pizza party at Talarico’s in The Junction. We were there to record the speeches, starting with his, which lasted 15 minutes:
His themes were the same as in our interview last week. Before he spoke, the gathering heard from three introductory speakers:
The first speaker, Lora Radford, has also been announced as a speaker at D-1 candidate Phil Tavel‘s kickoff this Thursday; she tells WSB that she hasn’t endorsed a candidate but is speaking to promote small-business advocacy in the campaign. Also speaking at the Greene kickoff were South Park community advocate Carmen Martinez and former state Commerce Department director Brian Bonlender. Along with Greene and Tavel, two other candidates have registered campaigns in District 1 so far: Brendan Kolding and Isaiah Willoughby.
At midday today, WSDOT and SDOT hosted media crews for a short progress-report briefing at the new intersection that will take people from and to Highway 99 just south of the soon-to-open tunnel. As the sign above shows – with the tunnel’s south-portal building as the backdrop (its distinctive yellow stacks are just out of the frame) – it’s the Dearborn intersection.
It’s still expected to open a week or so after the tunnel, which WSDOT’s project boss Dave Sowers says is still likely to open in time for next Monday’s commute, though he expects it’ll be a few more days before they lock in that date. Our raw video of today’s briefing starts shortly before the Q&A section – we arrived toward the end of the statements because they started a bit early and clogged traffic made us late! First person you see is SDOT’s downtown-mobility director Heather Marx:
Besides a progress report, today’s briefing was also meant to remind everyone that it’s time to start thinking about how you’ll get getting around once the tunnel – and then the Dearborn exit ramp – are open. In case you missed it when first released earlier this month, here are two WSDOT videos of note – first, showing how that new exit ramp will work:
Second, how you’ll get to SB 99 to get out of downtown:
As discussed in the Q&A, traffic engineers will also closely watch traffic flow out of the tunnel – ready to adjust signal timing and turning if need be.
5:34 PM: Seattle Fire is sending a “rescue extrication” response to 16th/Cambridge [map], described as a two-car crash with one vehicle overturned. Updates to come.
5:40 PM: The person reported as possibly trapped in that vehicle is out, per radio communication. 16th is blocked in the area.
5:49 PM: Added a photo. Looks like only one car is involved. One person, a 35-year-old man reported to have hand injuries, is being taken to the hospital by SFD medic unit.
5:56 PM: Added a second view of the vehicle that’s on its side. Again, avoid the area for a while.
7:18 PM: Just went back to check – scene’s clear.
Thanks to the texter who just sent that photo. Back on December 9th, we reported that city files revealed Agave was taking over the Junction space vacated by Fresh Bistro last spring. They never replied to our followup inquiry, but now signage has appeared in the windows. Agave has locations in Queen Anne and Issaquah.
Another family-owned business with a lot of history in West Seattle is looking to the future. Here’s the announcement we received this afternoon:
The Sweeney family has announced they are studying alternatives for their properties located in the West Seattle Triangle, including the current site of Alki Lumber & Hardware. Lynn Sweeney, current owner and operator of Alki Lumber and The Grove, West Seattle Inn, provides the following statement:
In looking to our future, we are faced with the current closure of the SR99 viaduct, upcoming Avalon Way repaving and bike lane project, current ST3 Link Light Rail planning of the West Seattle to Ballard extension, and the continuing support and funding for the Fauntleroy Boulevard Project. Pairing that with the age and condition of our current retail spaces, now is an opportune time to plan long-term for our footprint in the West Seattle Triangle neighborhood.
As a result, we have been actively working to study and understand the implications of zoning, alternatives for the Link Light Rail guideway alignments and station locations, and other urban design factors that affect the extended family’s real estate holdings. Our goal is to establish a vision and a master plan for the future of our properties to benefit the West Seattle Triangle community, which serves as the gateway to the peninsula. This will be a long-term, multi-year, phased approach. Given their depth of experience in transit oriented development and complex urban design and planning projects, we are partnering with HB Management and Northwest Studio to provide their professional knowledge and expertise. Ed Hewson of HB Management and his family have been friends of my family for over 50 years. We are grateful for the broad portfolio of knowledge he brings to the table and, as importantly, for his shared passion for and understanding of the West Seattle community.
We feel lucky to ride on the coattails of Jack Miller of Husky Deli and his published letter to the community about the future of Husky Deli. Our background story is similar in many respects. In 1921 my great grandfather, James A. Sweeney, founded Alki Lumber & Hardware Co. at its original location at Harbor Avenue, on the shores of Alki Point. At the time, Seattle was home to countless independent lumberyards. Today only a select few remain, including Alki Lumber, which is now in its fourth generation of Sweeney-family ownership and operation.
When James passed away in 1938, the business continued under his wife Mayme and son, Bill Sweeney. It was at this time that the Harbor Avenue location was closed and Alki Lumber opened its doors at 36th Ave and SW Avalon. In 1957 the business, including the original building structure, were moved across the street to its current location at 4422 36th Avenue SW.
“Tell it to Sweeney” was a familiar sign on the trucks that serviced West Seattle through the early years and has become a mantra of the company’s “can-do” service philosophy to this day. When Bill passed away in 1962, his wife Hazel and his son, Jim B. Sweeney, in his early twenties at the time, took the helm. In the early 1960s, Jim purchased the wholesale dealer Dearborn Lumber Co. and merged it with Alki Lumber’s retail arm as an avenue to compete in Seattle’s booming commercial lumber market.
After 50 years of unsurpassed leadership, my dad passed away in 2012. As the fourth generation’s flag- bearer, I stepped in with a team of dedicated employees to continue the family’s heritage and the company’s ongoing commitment to service excellence. Thanks to this commitment and loyalty of numerous long-time customers, Alki Lumber has continued to serve the West Seattle community and beyond, supplying materials to contractors and homeowners throughout Greater Seattle and the Pacific Northwest.
As Jack so accurately explained in his letter, “the future isn’t the exact footprint where we are now.” Anyone who comes into Alki today knows that we still look a lot like 1957 and that the structures, lumber trucks, semis, and forklifts don’t mesh with the changing neighborhood or the changing environment for small business in the City of Seattle. The family has decided it is time to study alternatives. As part of this study, the intent is to continue to be an active and responsive member of the community. We will be looking for ways to continue to add value through new retail experiences and by enhancing the uniqueness and vintage character of our piece of West Seattle.
As part of this, we look forward to continuing our longstanding tradition of providing full-service lumber and hardware to the West Seattle community and beyond. We will evaluate new and creative ways to grow our retail footprint in the community, potentially with more mercantile-style offerings, while considering serving wholesale customers from an additional location that better meets the industrial and commercial needs of our business. This is a multi-year, phased approach and Alki Lumber will remain fully operational during the process.
It’s an exciting time, which needs support. We appreciate the loyalty of our employees and customers and we remain dedicated to being part of the community, growing together and continuing the legacy and investment in the community for a fifth generation.
In addition to the two properties mentioned in the statement – Alki Lumber (36,000+ square feet at 4422 36th SW) and The Grove (22,000+ square feet at 3512 SW Alaska) – county assessor’s office also show the family owns an apartment complex at 4500 36th SW (28,000+ square feet). We asked Lynn Sweeney about others. Her reply: “The primary parcels we are studying are where Alki Lumber sits. Family members also own The Grove Inn, the apartment, the Alki Lumber warehouse on 37th, and the buildings on 36th that are occupied by Alki Artisan and Unique Services/Seattle Sorbet. These will be studied as part of the master planning.” Most of the area is currently zoned for mixed-use to 65 feet of height, and under the current HALA MHA upzoning proposal before the City Council, would add another 10 feet. The Triangle went through an extensive planning process that was launched nearly a decade ago.
Today we welcome one of our newest sponsors, The Kenney. New WSB sponsors get the chance to tell you about who they are and what they do – here’s what The Kenney would like you to know:
(WSB file photo)
The Kenney is West Seattle’s original senior-living community. The Kenney has been a beloved icon, serving seniors in West Seattle since 1909. Representatives of The Kenney are proud to say that what started as one couple’s dream is now one of the most respected nonprofit retirement communities in the region.
In 2015, The Kenney affiliated with Heritage Ministries for additional stability. Through this partnership, The Kenney can ensure that it is well positioned for future stability and growth as a 501c3 nonprofit Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC), sometimes known as a life-care community.
With three distinct living levels, each with services and features designed to support current and changing needs, residents may enter The Kenney in any of the three living levels as appropriate. Gourmet dining service offers three daily meals, with a focus on organic and locally sourced delicious foods. With a lifestyle free of home maintenance, residents are able to take full advantage of many life-enriching opportunities to socialize, enjoy fitness, engage in the arts and current events, and get out and about with transportation for shopping, events, and appointments.
Independent Living at The Kenney
The Kenney is a perfect home for an active, relaxed lifestyle in the heart of West Seattle, with its many parks, beaches, restaurants, and shops close at hand. Independent living is offered in apartments located in the Ballymena, Seaview, and Sunrise buildings. The Kenney offers more than 100 beautifully appointed Independent Living Apartments ranging from the coziest studio to spacious 2-bedroom apartments with patios and stunning views. They have also recently announced plans to build 5 row houses which will include private garages, with construction slated to begin in late 2019. The apartments and row houses come in a variety of sizes and are customized with choices of finishes, appointments, and features to suit individual tastes. Entering The Kenney at this level allows the resident to experience the full benefits of community living, with a safety net of support services for current and future needs.
Assisted Living at The Kenney
The Lincoln Vista apartments offer a unique residential experience of maximum independence and privacy, with staff ready to offer support and services as needed 24/7. Studio and one-bedroom apartments include kitchens and accessible bathrooms. Services include three meals daily, weekly housekeeping, laundry service, and activities. A team of licensed nurses and nursing assistants offers services adjusted to the need of each resident, including a higher level of care that may help a resident avoid the need for long-term nursing-home care. Monthly fees correspond to the size of the apartment and level of service needed.
Memory Care at The Kenney
The Kenney offers memory care in a secured residential environment. With only 12 apartments, Memory Care offers all of the benefit of Assisted Living with the addition of specialized programing, in a small intimate setting. The design of the memory-care area enables residents to enjoy the privacy of individual apartments and the freedom to stroll and socialize in a secure environment. A staff of licensed nurses, nursing assistants, and activity professionals is specifically trained to assist residents with memory difficulties caused by Alzheimer’s and other dementia illnesses. With the support of staff, residents are stimulated to socialize, exercise, engage in the arts and participate in learning
For more information on The Kenney, or to schedule a tour of their facilities, visit thekenney.org or call 206-937-2800.
We thank The Kenney for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
Sometime “soon,” the city says, it’ll conside the issue of whether Camp Second Chance can stay at the city-owned Myers Way Parcels. Current city law calls for sanctioned encampments to stay a maximum of two years at a site, and C2C is coming to the end of its second sanctioned year (following more than half a year of unsanctioned time at the site). Last week, the Highland Park Action Committee convened a “listening session” for community members and others to speak about whether HPAC should support an extension. As noted in our coverage, HPAC promised to follow up with a survey – and now that’s available. Find it here (deadline February 14th). Separate from HPAC’s process of deciding whether to support an extension for the camp, the city says it is accepting comments too, via the emailbox firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you know whose basketball that is, EB would like to get it back to its owner. He sent the photos and reports, “My car was broken into last night. The thieves left behind a scarf and basketball with initials PIR. The car was parked in the alley driveway behind 36th Ave SW between Graham and Raymond.”
Nothing was stolen from him – but those items were left behind. Yours? Contact us.
From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
LOUISA BOREN K-8 STEM MIDDLE-SCHOOL TOUR: 10:15 am-11:30 am, families with prospective middle-school students (6th-8th grade) are welcome to visit. (5950 Delridge Way SW)
CHINESE NEW YEAR LUNCHEON: Lunch and entertainment at 11:30 am at the Senior Center of West Seattle – check to see if there’s last-minute room. (4217 SW Oregon)
LEARN ABOUT BUGS: The next 4-lecture series by West Seattle entomologist Jen Paur of Tiny Science starts at the Senior Center, 5:30 pm. Registration info and other details are in our calendar listing. (4217 SW Oregon)
FAMILY STORY TIME: 7 pm at Delridge Library, for families with kids of all ages. (5423 Delridge Way SW)
TAVERN TUNES: 9 pm at Parliament Tavern, jazz/rock with the Suffering F’heads. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
THERE’S MORE … if you visit our complete calendar.
5:30 AM: Good morning! No alerts or incidents so far this Tuesday morning.
5:57 AM: Still quiet.
6:28 AM Still incident-free.
6:57 AM: All remains well.
7:26 AM: Reminder that tomorrow is likely to be lighter because Seattle Public Schools have no classes – it’s the “day between semesters.” Today has followed recent patterns; the bridge is now in full slowdown mode.
7:55 AM: From Marc via Twitter, “Too many bikes for the bike racks on the 7:25 water taxi this morning! Nice full boat! Hurrah for alternative commute options!” Bike parking has been added at Seacrest, as we’ve noted along the way, including a permanent “corral” between the lot entrance and exit.
8:05 AM: Sun’s out. Later this morning we’ll be at the next media briefing on how the #Realign99 work is going, with a look at the progress on the new NB 99 exit ramp that will take you downtown if you’re not using the tunnel.
8:29 AM: Brush-fire call under the NB I-5/Columbian Way/West Seattle Bridge interchange.
8:38 AM: Firefighters arriving in the area have clarified that it’s more like a fire near a retaining wall at I-5/Forest. … Looking ahead to Saturday, we just added more information to last night’s report about the special Saturday Water Taxi for viaduct/tunnel celebration day – no 773/775 shuttles that day.
8:57 AM: Also from the scanner, broken-down, “blocking” vehicle reported on the westbound bridge near 99.