BIZNOTE: What The Shack Coffeehouse wants you to know as road work continues

Yes, the Luna Park businesses are open, even as the SDOT repaving-and-more project continues right out front. But they need your support to stay open. We heard this week from a team member at The Shack Coffeehouse (2920 SW Avalon Way) who asked if we could remind you of that. Since we’ve already mentioned it multiple times, we asked, what more do you want people to know? The reply included a reminder that new owners have been rebuilding the business since taking over two years ago, adding, “There isn’t a cooler spot in West Seattle in my opinion. This place is quirky, used, cozy, old and has such a RICH history in West Seattle.” But that’s in danger right now:

Construction commenced in Front of The Shack/Luna Park on 5/17. We immediately experienced a 30% drop in transaction volume on Saturday May 18th (as soon as the signs and barriers went up); this increased to 40% on Sat 5/25 and 50% on Saturday 6/1 – this is a material loss of sales that the business cannot absorb. It isn’t just a small hit – it’s a death sentence to The Shack if it continues at current levels.

After experiencing such great growth in both sales and transactions over this past year, sales and transactions are back down to what they were when they first took over The Shack over a year ago in what seems to be overnight. The hurt is real, and it is not sustainable. The Shack, the owners and its employees are at an impasse. We’re cutting service hours back to 7-Noon, opening up our pre-order text line “Hangryline” to everyone who wants to order in advance, and we’ve got a pickup space reserved. We hope that once construction is complete that we’ll be back to normal and back on an upward trajectory, but that is unknown. We need the support of the community! Stop in with your friends and family, grab some breakfast or lunch. Text in your coffee order and swing by and grab it! None of us will really know the full impact of the NEW Avalon design, until it’s complete. Let’s just hope we can make it until then.

As our photo, taken this morning, shows, the parking area on the SW Orleans street end between The Shack and Luna Park Café/Avalon Glassworks next door remains open; our photographers reported the crew was very helpful in making sure he got through. There’s also parking under the bridge, a short walk away.

P.S. So how long will work continue in that specific area? We asked the SDOT project team. “Work on the west side of SW Avalon Way in front of Luna Park is substantially complete. Our remaining work includes top paving and other miscellaneous activities, which will take place later this year for most of SW Avalon Way. Currently, we are completing sidewalks and base repairs on the east side of SW Avalon Way across from Luna Park. We anticipate this work wrapping up by the end of June. We will then continue to work in Zone 1, south and north of the Luna Park area through July. While work will not be directly in front of Luna Park, traffic control will remain throughout Zone 1. We anticipate opening parking as feasible as we move throughout the Zone.”

29 Replies to "BIZNOTE: What The Shack Coffeehouse wants you to know as road work continues"

  • S - in West Seattle June 7, 2019 (1:28 pm)

    Sounds like they need to sue the City of Seattle for lose of profit.

    • KBear June 7, 2019 (2:16 pm)

      What has the city done wrong, other than putting off necessary street repairs? By what magic do you think the they should repave without having part of the street closed? At least it’s not a complete closure. 

  • Anw June 7, 2019 (2:01 pm)

    I would recommend parking on Harbor Ave and walking over if there are no spots in the lot. Even though there is parking under the bridge, it was sketchy getting to the businesses. (Did that last weekend.)

    • Swede. June 7, 2019 (2:30 pm)

      It’s rare to ever find a spot in that lot, it is pretty small after all, but street parking around there normally work. The ‘Park and ride’ under the bridge is very sketchy for sure! Used to be impossible to park there and not have you car broken into…

  • Dp June 7, 2019 (2:10 pm)

    Why doesn’t the city help the businesses effected by the construction.  I’ve seen that before with other areas of Seattle.  West Seattle, not so much.

  • KM June 7, 2019 (2:31 pm)

    The construction is a real inconvenience, so looking forward to the completion! It was a long overdue project. Hopefully with the repainted and improved crosswalks by The Shack/Luna Park, drivers will be less likely to block the crosswalk while parking. The curb ramps sure look a lot better than what was there before. I generally visit The Shack on foot, but being able to get there safely by bike too is going to be awesome.

  • The Truth June 7, 2019 (2:31 pm)

    Nothing like watching a dream go bankrupt at no fault of your own.  While I know the city can’t directly reimburse the businesses they need to find a better way to support them then give them a few spots under the bridge that almost no one uses.  Where in the hell is Herbold on this?  Parking under the bridge is the best can be done?  I have seen local businesses on social media encouraging visits, making large purchases, even offering rides to get people there.  This is shameful by the City and Lisa yet again forgets that she represents District 1 and that includes the small businesses she has always been so dismissive of.  Time for two thing: Coffee and Change!!!  

    • WSB June 7, 2019 (3:25 pm)

      Actually, I just learned from CM Herbold’s staff that she had contacted the Office of Economic Development earlier this week to see what can be done. I didn’t contact her or her staff for this story but they saw it and messaged us. – TR

      • The Truth June 7, 2019 (5:07 pm)

        That’s good to hear and an email that should have been sent well before earlier this week.  These businesses have been struggling for weeks and there should have been a plan in place well before this construction started.  I hope those owners can sleep at night not worrying about losing their dream and investment and their employees can make there rents this month.

  • Nw mama June 7, 2019 (4:14 pm)

    Go buy gift cards!

    • LyndaB June 7, 2019 (5:17 pm)

      That’s a great idea!

    • Mike June 8, 2019 (6:35 am)

      They can’t recognize the money from gift cards on the books until it’s been used, which is too late.

  • sam-c June 7, 2019 (4:22 pm)

    Ok, I am going to get into work early next week so I can walk over to Shack there to get some break fast.Anyone know what eggels or MES are?  

    • waikikigirl June 7, 2019 (8:05 pm)

      Not sure what MES’ are but the eggles look like breakfast sandwiches on bagels. YUM!

    • Angela June 8, 2019 (11:14 am)

      I believe MES is muffin egg sandwich? It’s on english muffin i believe. They have a bunch of sandwich variations (or build your own), and you can pick to have it as a burrito, on an english muffin, or on a bagel. You can’t go wrong. They are all SO GOOD. 

    • LyndaB June 8, 2019 (11:56 am)

      I went to the Shack this morning and people are showing their support!  Let’s keep it going.   I found out the M.E.S. is an english muffin egg sandwich.  M.E.S.  for short.  I had their Rat City in a jalapeno bagel and split it with my BF the California on plain bagel.   Both were very tasty.  The Hangryline was responsive by text.

      • sam-c June 8, 2019 (2:47 pm)

        Thanks for the info, LyndaB!  I will make it there next week, hopefully more than once.  It will be a nice long walk break from work.

  • HS June 7, 2019 (4:44 pm)

    Public transit, both the C line and the 21 have stops within walking distance. 

  • Bellvy June 7, 2019 (7:54 pm)

    Park and walk….burns off the yummy grilled cheese…and you can put real cream in your coffee!

    • Rick June 7, 2019 (8:17 pm)

      But can you stir it with a plastic straw?

      • AMD June 8, 2019 (7:46 am)

        Why would you want to?  Bamboo stir sticks don’t release chemicals into hot liquids when you stir with them.

  • Alex June 7, 2019 (10:32 pm)

    Super sad. I like this place and used to stop there regularly, but with the reduction in parking I just don’t see it as reasonable. I’m not going to ride an Uber here just to get coffee, nor am I going to park several blocks away, nor get off the bus here and then back on again on my way to work. This was a good place to quickly stop my car as I drove by, and now that driving through the area is so hard… it’s not. I’ll re-evaluate when the construction is over, but my understanding of the new channelization plans (less parking) is that those businesses are permanently screwed.

  • Mama Suze June 7, 2019 (10:51 pm)

    The city doesn’t care. The funny thing to me is John Bennett and his clamoring for help from the city – he was my landlord in Georgetown for years and he could not have cared less when the city repaved Airport way and we lost our customer parking for months….. OR when the city closed the Argo bridge for months, and the Airport Way traffic detoured around our business. He didn’t care, and neither did the city of Seattle. There was no money or help from anyone. I know the same thing happened to a bunch of businesses on 23rd in the CD when they were working on the road there.  I believe a few of the smaller businesses finally got a little bit of financial help, but it was too little, too late for some of them.

  • WSlite June 8, 2019 (6:01 am)

    Definitely feel bad for these businesses and their hardships during Avalon construction. Try to make the time to support them and drop in for business. Hopefully this is true – I heard through the grapevine that City of Seattle has funding set aside for profit loss of these businesses during construction along Avalon. Not sure if this is true but it would make sense. As long as businesses can show statistics that show loss, City is to reimburse. Again, not sure how true this is but would make sense. And along that same note, to the people complaining about the construction project and its inconveniences…just make your planned detours and go on with life. There’s more than one way to and from work, etc. Drivers get so riled up here if a street is blocked, it’s crazy. The construction crew on this project is getting heat from local drivers which should never happen. They are just doing their jobs and should not be yelled at or criticized from drivers. Once this construction project is finished, it will be great to have Avalon clear again but in the meantime, spread kindness to people not hate. 

  • anonyme June 8, 2019 (6:24 am)

    Normally I don’t support bailouts, but in this case, it appears that the city is directly responsible for creating severe economic hardship.  In most cities, there is a plan in place to compensate businesses for this kind of loss.  Seattle – who knows? 

  • Busrider June 8, 2019 (9:45 am)

    It is also a challenge for the businesses on 35th north of Alaska. Bolsa nails is my favorite place for pedicure. Support the woman business if you can.

  • LyndaB June 8, 2019 (12:36 pm)

    Rat City on jalapeno cheesy bagel.  Have it there or to go! Also shared with my BF and he had the California on a plain bagel.  Super yumz.  Glad to see everybody come out to support the Shack. Let’s keep it going!

  • CAM June 8, 2019 (1:40 pm)

    So this isn’t going to be a popular opinion but I find it hard to feel too terrible for businesses that are impacted by temporary reductions in sales due to long planned projects. By all means support the business and spend money there but the owners have some responsibility to prepare for a situation they were well aware of for a long time before it went into effect. If I know I’m going to experience a decline in income for any period of time it’s my responsibility to prepare for that by saving or economizing where I can before it happens. Why should business owners not have the same responsibilities that I do? I’ll reiterate though, go support all those businesses and spend your money there. 

  • Kate June 11, 2019 (8:09 pm)

    The other day, I specifically went out of my way to support Luna Park and walked there for a late breakfast, but I decided to not have any coffee so I could buy one at The Shack and give them some love too. I didn’t know they changed their hours which happens regularly and where I usually only notice when I have arrived and read a new sign. I walked over, a bike pulled up and another person on the sidewalk was headed that way. It was about 12:00. The door was closed but the window was open. I asked the girl if they were closed yet. “Oh yes we are.” I looked at my watch 11:58. Turned 3 customers away. Maybe there should have been a little flexibility, since I went out of my way. While 3 customers won’t save the business necessarily, and I’ll probably try again, communication needs to be better and customers who make suggestions need to be listened to on occasion. I noticed today that their hours on on the reader board on the roof. Bravo!

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