West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Phil Tavel says his main motivation for wanting to join the Seattle City Council has only intensified in the four years since his first try.
“When I ran the last time, I wanted to represent our district … in the four years since then, I can’t think of anything that’s gotten better. My desire to help the city work better has only increased.”
It’s been three months since Tavel registered his intent to run, as reported here in October. Now he’s running at full speed as of his campaign kickoff last night at Easy Street Records in The Junction. Here’s what he and his featured speakers told the crowd:
That’s community advocate Pete Spalding speaking after Tavel in the first clip; he was preceded (second clip) by Peel & Press proprietor Dan Austin, who emceed; Easy Street’s Matt Vaughan; local business advocate Lora Radford, entrepreneur Joe Jeannot; and Husky Deli‘s Jack Miller. Responsiveness to small business is a central theme for Tavel, a lawyer who himself has been, among other things, a small-business owner. We sat down to talk the night before his kickoff:
5:35 PM: “For snow fans out there from the Puget Sound eastward, the … model solutions are not what you wanted to see for Sunday night.” So says the National Weather Service in its latest “forecast discussion,” and that’s why the NWS has lifted the weather advisory suggesting some Sunday night/Monday morning snow. It’s not entirely out of the realm of possibility, but the NWS thinks the moisture isn’t likely to meet up with the cold temperatures. By the way, tomorrow – when more than 100,000 people will be outdoors at the viaduct/tunnel celebration – is expected to be partly sunny!
6:31 AM SATURDAY: But wait! A new Special Weather Statement with a renewed projection of potential snow showers Sunday afternoon into Monday!
Going to the viaduct/tunnel party tomorrow? Wondering what’s going to happen when the tunnel opens Monday? Here are the updates we have so far:
TUNNEL/VIADUCT PARTY: That was Topic A as today’s media briefing convened inside the north entrance to the tunnel. We were late – an hour turned out not to be enough to get from HQ to downtown! – so no video, but lots of info. Here’s the weekend schedule:
*8K fun run/walk that “takes runners through the tunnel, onto the viaduct and back to the Seattle Center via the Battery Street Tunnel,” 7:30-11 am, registration required.
*Tunnel ribbon-cutting, 11:30 am-12:30 pm at South Portal – public access on foot from 1st Ave. S./Royal Brougham
*Tunnel walk, 12:30 pm-6:30 pm from north portal to south portal. Shuttle buses will take you back from south end to north end if you walk the whole way, or you’ll be able to walk up to 900 feet in and turn around. Free tickets required, limited walk-up access but WSDOT says no guarantees.
*Viaduct access including community arts festival, 12:30 pm-6:30 pm, entrances at Battery Street Tunnel and Seneca Street. Free tickets required, limited walk-up access but WSDOT says no guarantees.
(added) *The event website also has info on “hubs” you can access without tickets.
*Tunnel bicycle ride, 8 am, sold out.
HOW TO GET TO SATURDAY’S EVENTS: Transit use is strongly encouraged. Here’s the special this-Saturday-only Water Taxi schedule – no 773/775 shuttle buses, but Metro DOES plan to run the one to and from the free Pier 2 parking lot, which WILL be open. And again, no Water Taxi on Sunday
WHO’S SPEAKING AT SATURDAY’S TUNNEL RIBBONCUTTING: Just in case you’re curious, we got the lineup at today’s briefing. In order:
WSDOT secretary Roger Millar
Muckleshoot Tribe chair Virginia Cross
Suquamish Tribe chair Leonard Forsman
Gov. Jay Inslee
Federal Highway Administration rep Dan Mathis
State Sen. Steve Hobbs
State Rep. Jake Fey
King County Executive Dow Constantine
Port of Seattle Commissioner Peter Steinbrueck
City Councilmember Sally Bagshaw
SO WHAT ABOUT THE TEMPORARY BUS LANE FOR 4TH AVE OFFRAMP? SDOT (whose Heather Marx was at today’s briefing along with Metro’s Terry White, above left, and WSDOT’s Dave Sowers, above right) has reiterated, “The temporary bus-only lane on the Spokane St Viaduct and 4th Ave S will remain in place until the new northbound SR 99 off-ramp to S. Dearborn St opens about one week after the new SR 99 tunnel opens.”
NO NEW ESTIMATE OF HOW SOON THAT LANE WILL OPEN … but remember, for that week or so, if you exit the eastbound bridge for 99, you will HAVE TO use the tunnel because there will be no exit open until its north end. Also a reminder: The tunnel tolls won’t kick in until sometime this summer.
TWO TUNNEL FACTS WE HADN’T HEARD: From WSDOT: “The SR 99 tunnel is the longest road tunnel in the lower 48 states (there is one longer in Alaska) and one of only two singlebored, double-deck tunnels in the world (the other is in Turkey).”
If you’re interested in city-sanctioned Camp Second Chance, which is seeking to extend its stay on city-owned land at the Myers Way Parcels, you might be interested in this Sunday’s Community Advisory Council meeting. Every month, usually on the first Sunday, the CAC meets to get updates on the encampment and to discuss any community concerns/questions that arise. This meeting is at the usual time and location, 2 pm Sunday (February 3rd) in the community room at Arrowhead Gardens (9200 2nd SW, a few blocks north of C2C). The meeting is expected to adjourn no later than 3 pm since it’s also Super Bowl Sunday.
P.S. If you missed our coverage of two recent community meetings discussing the camp’s future – here’s our coverage: The Westside Interfaith Network rallied camp supporters on January 21; the Highland Park Action Committee held a “listening session” for community comment on January 23rd. The city hasn’t set a deadline for deciding on the camp’s future but says it’s continuing to accept comments via email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
10:56 AM: Police and fire responded a short time ago to the 4500 block of Beach Drive SW for a call logged as “scenes of violence.” The medical response was quickly downsized; SPD tells us this was a case of suicide.
As always when reporting suicides, we want to remind you that there is 24-hour help available via hotlines including Crisis Connections (formerly Crisis Clinic), 866-427-4747.
12:23 PM: This happened at Me-Kwa-Mooks Park, where police and a Medical Examiner’s Office crew were investigating a short time ago.
First day of February – here are highlights 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)
FRIDAY AFTERNOON MOVIE: 1 pm at the Senior Center of West Seattle, “Steel Magnolias” (1989) is this week’s movie. $1 members, $2 nonmembers. Free popcorn! (4217 SW Oregon)
CORNER BAR: 6 pm at Highland Park Improvement Club, the monthly pop-up bar. “Speakeasy” is this month’s theme! (12th SW/SW Holden)
BASKETBALL: Senior night for Seattle Lutheran High School and Chief Sealth International High School. SLHS (4100 SW Genesee) is playing Crosspoint, with girls’ Senior Night activities at 5:45 pm before the 6 pm game, boys just before their 7:30 pm game; CSIHS (2600 SW Thistle) is playing West Seattle High School, 7 pm girls varsity, 8:30 pm boys.
TRILLIUM SOUL: 7 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), “Guitars, pianos, percussion and beautiful three-part harmony in folk, jazz and gospel genres describes the style of Trillium Soul – Sarah Ackers, Betsy Boyer, and Bronwyn Edwards Cryer.” (5612 California SW)
JOSEPHINE COUNTY: 7:30 pm at Kenyon Hall, “a gathering of four powerful traditional musicians, sharing their expertise, knowledge, and enthusiasm for music ranging from the United States to French Canada to Ireland and back.” (7904 35th SW)
THE BILLY JOE SHOW: 9 pm at Parliament Tavern, “ambassadors of rock ‘n’ roll”! $5 cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
SEE WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING … by browsing our complete calendar.
5:57 AM: Good morning! Rainy, as forecast.
6:07 AM: Checking around, the weather is this morning’s only complication so far. No incidents or alerts.
6:33 AM: Still incident-free.
6:49 AM: If you noticed an SFD response at Admiral/Olga, that’s just cleared; it was described via radio communication as a trash fire in a bus shelter.
6:59 AM: That talk of possible snow showers Sunday into Monday is now the subject of an official weather advisory. … Monday morning, of course, as announced yesterday, will be the first commute with the new Highway 99 tunnel. But remember that for an additional week or so, taking NB 99 from here will require you to use the tunnel because the new exit ramp before it won’t be ready yet.
7:06 AM: Surface Spokane train alert – blocking at Colorado.
7:35 AM: If you head east of I-5, heads up about a big power outage, more than 12,000 homes/businesses in what City Light describes as “the Rainier Valley, Beacon Hill, and Bryn Mawr-Skyway areas.” Lots of signal lights out so traffic is affected.
7:48 AM: Low bridge has opened for maritime traffic … Speaking of maritime, King County Executive Dow Constantine is visiting the West Seattle Water Taxi dock to thank the commuters who’ve triple its usage during the viaduct-to-tunnel transition weeks.
8 AM: The low bridge is back open to riders, pedestrians, and drivers.
8:13 AM: From the scanner, there’s a report of a school bus hitting a parked car at 35th/Raymond. No injuries reported, so far.
8:49 AM: Went looking for that scene, couldn’t find it. So no problems on 35th. If you’re headed for SB I-5, SFD is responding to a reported collision at Michigan, not far south of here.
9:50 AM: If you have to head east on the bridge but could wait a while … be forewarned, it’s at a crawl. And that description is being generous. Entering from Fauntleroy, the backup – more like standstill – starts at Nucor. We’re in the midst of it all hoping to make it to the 10:30 am media briefing on the north end of the tunnel but probably should have given ourselves an hour and a half to get there rather than just an hour.
10:08 AM: Took 20 minutes to get from Nucor to the 4th Avenue exit. Now we attempt to get across downtown!