West Seattle, Washington
(UPDATED 10:19 AM THURSDAY with finalized Sound Transit graphics summarizing the SAG recommendations)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
When Sound Transit managers insisted it would be OK to mix and match elements of a potential West Seattle to Ballard light-rail plan, they might not have envisioned the level of mixing and matching that went on tonight at the first of four milestone meetings.
Members of the all-volunteer Stakeholder Advisory Group concluded their 14-meeting role in the planning process with a jumble of recommendations – and, for a few segments, non-recommendations. So if you were hoping to hear and see something simple like “they voted to recommend the (x) line,” sorry, it didn’t go that way.
First, here are the toplines as visually summarized at meeting’s end, one set if third-party funding was available to cover costs (tunneling) beyond what the ST3 taxes/fees collect, one set if not:
We’ll get clearer versions of those tomorrow (10:19 am, finalized graphics substtuted above – from this PDF), but at the meeting we could only grab quick pics as they went by. In case you found them hard to read, here are the basics of SAG feedback for the three West Seattle segments, east to west:
-Crossing the Duwamish River – support was for doing it south of the existing bridge, no matter what
-Getting to the Delridge station – study either what was originally called the purple (Pigeon Point tunnel) or blue alignment if third-party funding is available, the blue alignment if not, and in both cases, modifying blue with the southernmost Delridge station location
-In The Junction, the with-third-party funding option would be a tunneled station at 41st or 42nd; the without-extra-funding option would be a modified version of the elevated “representative alignment” (red) that could either end at Fauntleroy or at Jefferson Square, or saving money by tunneling but consolidating the Junction and Avalon stations.
In general, the orange (some called it yellow) line was completely cast aside. So was the notion of taking the Junction end any further west than 42nd. To elaborate on the above, here’s our video of the recap at meeting’s end, when those slides were shown:
Two hours of discussion led up to all that, and we have that on a separate clip, which we’ll add in the hours ahead, along with more on how the SAG got there. So check back for more of the story But first, what’s next:
-The Elected Leadership Group meets 9:30 am Friday, April 26, to make its recommendations, taking into account what the SAG said tonight as well as the 2,700 “scoping” comments received (here’s the PDF summary/”themes” report on those).
-The Sound Transit Board has the final say in May on what goes into environmental studies. The next major public-comment period won’t be until “late 2020.”
ADDED 3:33 AM THURSDAY: If you need a refresher on the aforementioned red vs. orange vs. blue routes, see pages 22-26 of the meeting deck (PDF).
Now, here’s our video of the discussion that led to the aforementioned recommendations (as well as those on other segments of the West Seattle to Ballard line):
(WSB photo, November 2016: TEALS founder Kevin Wang and U.S. Sen. Patty Murray at left, visiting CSIHS)
The TEALS program is still going strong at Chief Sealth International High School, whose principal Aida Fraser-Hammer sent this announcement:
Chief Sealth International High School is extremely excited to announce that we are entering our 4th year of partnership with the Technology Education And Literacy in Schools (TEALS) Program, which provides support to students who want to explore computer science in the classroom.
We are now planning for the 2019 – 2020 school year and as in years past, we are reaching out to the West Seattle community in search of software programmers or engineers willing to share their programming skills with our students. Volunteers are needed in the classroom as team-teachers 2 days per week for the next school year. No teaching experience is necessary; all training and additional supports will be provided by the TEALS program.
TEALS volunteers have enjoyed a successful partnership with Sealth by exposing students to challenging coursework which has been extremely successful in getting students hooked into computer programming and interested in pursuing higher education in the field of computer science. Volunteer training is provided during the summer and involvement in the classroom varies. Volunteers can team-teach or simply help out in the Computer Science classroom. They commit to two days per week during the 1st period of the day which allows them to maintain their regular work schedule.
Past volunteers have provided classroom support to students and have enjoyed helping teach CS in the classroom. Others have actually used the opportunity as a testing ground to explore a career in teaching. In fact, two-year Sealth volunteer Jon Fincher saw TEALS “as a chance to explore my interest in a more formal teaching role. It wasn’t long before I was fully stuck in. Within a few months, I knew teaching was going to be my post-tech career. I went back to school to get my CTE (Career Technical Education) credentials to follow my passion.” Although only a few TEALS volunteers explore teaching as a second career, all report, as Fincher does, “When I see a student ‘get it’, and see them take what they learned and do something I never thought of, I get as much satisfaction as they do.”
Interested CS professionals are encouraged to explore more at the volunteer section of the TEALS website (https://www.tealsk12.org/volunteers) or contact Chief Sealth teacher Luke Azinger (firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-252-8550) for more information.
Thanks to @Fanta_Box for the tip via Twitter that the sign went up today for another new West Seattle Junction business. The former WS Cyclery space at 4508 California SW – vacant for 16 months – will become Naked Crepe. It’s a new venture for Jacques Nawar, proprietor of Pizzeria Credo a few doors down, according to online records. He’s not in tonight for comment but the staff there tells us Naked Crepe will be open in about a month. (The space is part of a building scheduled for redevelopment but that’s a slow-moving process.) West Seattle’s previous creperie was also in The Junction, Firefly, open for about two years where Itto’s Tapas is now.
Police mentioned to community groups including the Highland Park Action Committee last month that the unauthorized-camping area near 1st Avenue S. and SW Kenyon, along the west side of Highway 509, was scheduled for a cleanup. Today, it began. We found the cleanup under way when we went down to the area after hearing an in-passing mention on police radio. Our photos show the cleanup activity visible from the roadside, with heavy equipment much like the operation on the east side of Myers Way last fall:
Roadside trees were posted with this notice, indicating a fairly wide area [map] planned for cleanup today and tomorrow:
In addition to that area, “No Parking” signage stretched northward along 1st and to the west along Highland Park Way east of W. Marginal. To find out more about the cleanup, we contacted city homelessness-response spokesperson Will Lemke, who replied: “The area was posted as a ’72-hour removal,’ which means occupants of the area were given 3 days’ notice and received advanced outreach ahead of the clean-up. Shelter is available for everyone living unsheltered at the site and we will store suitable possessions (not destroyed by water, soiled, etc). Navigation Team was concerned about the accumulation of garbage and waste on site, and the impacts to the natural environment.” He said six people were found in the area before the cleanup: “There were 30 shelter beds available today — including 24/7, enhanced shelter options. 6 people on-site. No word yet if they took shelter.”
Two months after King County Executive Dow Constantine, County Councilmember Joe McDermott, and others came to Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center to unveil the successor to the expiring county parks levy (WSB coverage here), it’s officially on its way to the ballot. The County Council voted 8-1 today to send it to voters in August. As noted in the announcement of today’s vote:
The proposed levy would generate an estimated $810 million over six years. It would cost the owner of a home that has an assessed property value of $500,000 about $7.70 per month.
King County Parks would use proceeds from the levy to:
*Build and design regional trails, including missing links and crossings over rivers and highways
*Acquire more open space lands that provide recreation opportunities for people and protect forest lands, water quality and habitat for fish and wildlife
*Improve trailheads by adding parking and signage
*Repair hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding trails
*Replace turf on 11 ballfields
*Rehabilitate play area equipment in six parks
*Maintain park infrastructure, such as pathways, roofs, fencing, and electrical systems
The full ordinance text is here. Though the levy is expected to generate more than double the $396 million of its expiring predecessor, the fine print shows property owners will be paying less per $1,000 – 16.8 cents is the starting rate in the new levy, compared to 18.7 cents in the old one.
That’s what Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis told the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting last night.
The tower recently turned up in a Rainier Valley supermarket parking lot, but not for long. In West Seattle, police intend to use it in the expansive parking lots at Westwood Village and the Delridge Home Depot – both hot spots for theft, with strong-arm robberies also a problem at the former. Capt. Davis said the tower, sold as SkyWatch, will be backed by emphasis teams on the ground including the bicycle squad. No time frame yet.
Also at the lightly attended (five members of the general public) meeting:
First, a reminder of our special seasonal guide:
HOLY WEEK/EASTER/PASSOVER: Events all week, from services to egg hunts (and a few extras) through Easter Sunday are listed here.
And now, from the year-round WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
BABY STORY TIME: 11:30 am at High Point Library – bring little ones up to one year old! (3411 SW Raymond)
WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON MOVIES: 1 pm at Senior Center of West Seattle, this week’s movie is “Each Dawn I Die” (1939). $1 members, $2 nonmembers, free popcorn! (4217 SW Oregon)
LIGHT RAIL: Big night on the road to West Seattle/Ballard light rail. 5-8 pm, the Stakeholder Advisory Group meets at the Sound Transit board room downtown to discuss what it will recommend for environmental studies of routing and station locations. Here’s the agenda. No public-comment period but the meeting is open to public observation. (401 S. Jackson)
GROUP RUN: 6:15 pm at West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor). Free; all welcome! (2743 California SW)
MORGAN COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION: Quarterly meeting, all welcome, with a variety of topics including the status of the Morgan Junction Park addition site. Here’s the agenda. 7 pm at The Kenney (WSB sponsor), lower level. (7125 Fauntleroy Way SW)
DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOODS DISTRICT COUNCIL: 7 pm at Neighborhood House High Point, come talk about what’s up in east West Seattle. Here’s the agenda. (6400 Sylvan Way SW)
WORDSWEST LITERARY SERIES: Final “National Poetry Month” edition, as this is WordsWest‘s final season. Don’t miss it! 7 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), poetry greats Mark Doty and Ilya Kaminsky. (5612 California SW)
OPEN MIC: Alan Sobel hosts open-mic night at Great American Diner and Bar in The Junction. Signups start at 7. All ages! (4752 California SW)
CEPHALOPOD: Funk/jazz jam at Parliament Tavern, 9 pm. No cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
Celebrate Earth Day at Roxhill Park Community Fair!
Saturday, April 20th from 11:00 – 1:00
Location: Roxhill Park, parking lot on 29th Ave SW at Barton Street SW
– FREE fun activities and crafts for all ages.
– FREE turkey dog lunch for the first 100 visitors.
Join us in celebrating our local natural areas, Longfellow Creek and its wildlife.
Did you know West Seattle has the city’s largest natural area, its only river, one of its last bogs, and is connected to our orca?
Learn about Longfellow Creek, the Duwamish River, Roxhill Bog, and how its wildlife and salmon are a valuable asset to our area and environment.
All ages are welcome; come rain or shine!
This is a free event, hosted by: Duwamish Alive Coalition, Green Seattle Partnership, Seattle Neighborhood Group, Roxhill Park Champions, Seattle Parks
6:56 AM: Good morning! No traffic alerts so far.
TRANSIT ALERTS: The 6:44 am Route 37 did not run.
STADIUM ZONE: Mariners play a day game, at 3:40 pm vs. Cleveland.
As we noted last year, longtime educator Chris Brown has a special reason for bringing students here – in addition to the park’s characteristics as an oasis of nature in the city, perfectly suited to the experiential learning that is a hallmark of the school in Edmonds. He’s a member of the Schmitz Family, whose donated land created the park more than a century ago. He was welcomed again on Tuesday, as he was last year, by Vicki Schmitz Block (below left):
Schmitz Preserve Park is one of West Seattle’s semi-hidden gems, with main entrances are on the east side of Alki Community Center (5817 SW Stevens) and off Admiral Way east of the historic bridge. (Here’s a map.)