West Seattle, Washington
9:55 PM: Another big Seattle Fire call – this time in the 9200 block of 11th SW (map). SFD says it’s a “confirmed working fire in a residential building.” Updates to come.
10:04 PM: Fire is reported to be under control.
10:16 PM: No injuries, per SFD.
10:23 PM: Our crew talked to SFD at the scene. Much of the damage is in the garage. The family who lives there got out OK.
11:20 PM: SF says the fire is out and under investigation and also – a cat is missing.
ADDED FRIDAY AFTERNOON: SFD says the fire was determined to have started accidentally.
Here’s our nightly roundup, running way later than usual tonight because of breaking news:
NEWEST KING COUNTY NUMBERS: From the Public Health daily-summary dashboard:
*7,645 people have tested positive, up 28 from yesterday
*534 people have died, up 4 from yesterday
One week ago, those totals were 7,307 and 514.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: Find them, county by county, on the state Department of Health page,.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: More than 5.1 million cases. See the global outbreak breakout, nation by nation, here.
GOVERNOR CANCELS: Last night we mentioned the governor had another briefing scheduled this morning. Didn’t happen – a cancellation announcement was sent this morning instead.
HASHTAG FOR THE HOLIDAY WEEKEND: From the state Health Department, urging you to #RecreateResponsibly:
The long weekend is a welcome opportunity for families and households to get outside for fresh air and exercise. Most state lands and parks are now open for day use; camping at state parks is still not allowed. Here are some reminders about how to #RecreateResponsibly while we all continue to do our part to stop the spread of COVID-19:
*Stay local. Find a place to hike, picnic, or take a walk that is close to home. Please avoid traveling outside your own county borders to popular destinations
*Avoid crowded areas. Public gatherings are still not allowed.
*Enjoy the outdoors with people in your immediate household.
*Follow physical distancing and etiquette rules such as wearing a cloth face covering and staying six feet apart from others.
As long as we all #RecreateResponsibly, spending time outside is good for our mental and physical health.
SPEAKING OF HASHTAGS … here’s more on what #SeattleTogether is about.
ALSO FROM THE CITY … a new toolkit to help small businesses and nonprofits who need to renegotiate their rent.
UNEMPLOYMENT INFO: Nonprofit Neighborhood House has produced informational videos in 9 languages.
GOT INFO? Email us at email@example.com or phone us, text or voice, at 206-293-6302 – thank you!
8:40 PM: Big SFD response is headed for Emma Schmitz Memorial Overlook (map), where two people are reported to be in the water. Updates to come.
8:43 PM: SFD says the two people are “swimmers in distress.”
8:48 PM: Now they’re saying that it looks like the “swimmers” are actually “two divers on the surface” who do NOT appear to be in trouble. But a boat crew will continue that way to check with/on them.
(Added: Video by Nicole Neufeld)
9:06 PM: A rescue-boat crew has just made contact and confirmed the divers “are not in trouble at all.”
No commencement ceremony does NOT mean no celebration for the Class of 2020. The photos and report are from Seattle Lutheran High School (which is north of The Junction):
Seattle Lutheran High School principal Dave Meyer delivered signs and gifts to the Class of 2020.
After an incredible year, the Senior class were given signs and gifts to recognize their achievement and perseverance throughout an historical end of the school year. “Seattle Lutheran delivers,” said a parent.
Back in March, we reported on the final design of the next big (planned) road project in West Seattle, Delridge Way repaving (north of Orchard) and other changes to accompany the conversion of Metro Route 120 to the RapidRide H Line. Today, SDOT announced construction will start as soon as June 8th, and launched an “online open house” with key points of the project, including a video presentation. Take some time to go through it – a lot of information is interactive/nested, requiring a click or a pull to see – and then note the feedback opportunity at the end. Also, we have a followup meeting with SDOT tomorrow for an in-depth preview as we traditionally do for major transportation projects, so we’ll be watching to see what comes up in comments. The H Line is scheduled to start service in fall 2021,
Two months after the bridge closed, and three months after the pandemic hit, prospective West Seattle home buyers and sellers just might have some questions. You might also be curious even if you’re not planning to buy/sell any time soon. So West Seattle Realty (WSB sponsor) has set up a chance to chat next Tuesday. Here’s the announcement:
We’ve all come to expect that the spring real-estate market is crazy. This year, COVID-19 and then the West Seattle Bridge have created a lot of uncertainty. But even with these setbacks, the market is building. Just like so many of us chomping at the opportunity to get back to work, the real-estate market is quite busy right now.
We want to make West Seattle Realty available to our community in a socially responsible way. Please join us on Tuesday, May 26th at 4:00 pm for our online Zoom discussion. The goal is to give everyone a chance to get their West Seattle real estate questions answered. We look forward to meeting you virtually! Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the invite list.
Here’s what we plan to cover:
Buyers are still very active. Despite restrictions on showings and stock-market volatility, in some ways the “Stay Home” order has made people want to have a place of their own, even more. Along with historically low interest rates, buyers, especially those who already have roots in our community, have been undaunted. Our advice to buyers has always been that real estate is a long-term investment, and that is unchanged. Market volatility is always something to consider, but even looking back on the Great Recession where home values dropped nationally almost 20%, prices recovered quickly. Time has shown us that residential real estate is a sound investment.
Sellers are anxious, but the market is still good. And this has led to yet another year where there are not enough homes to satisfy demand. It’s still a good time for sellers, but because buyers also need to be cautious, preparation, timing and of course pricing are as important as ever. It is likely that other areas in Seattle will see price growth that we will not, but thus far prices have held steady.
The West Seattle Bridge is a huge X factor that no one anticipated. West Seattle Realty has led the effort to let the City know this is an urgent problem with untold ramifications. We are rallying our neighbors around this issue by starting the online community “West Seattle Bridge Now.” We need a solution as quickly as possible. And the sooner we have a definitive answer to fixing or replacing the bridge, the sooner we can establish our new normal.
Again, to join in on next Tuesday’s real-estate discussion, email email@example.com.
By Judy Pickens
Special to West Seattle Blog
When school closures started in March, most of the 72 teachers leading Salmon in the Schools projects across the city immediately released their tiny fish into the wild on the chance that some might survive. In West Seattle, however, most salmon teachers found ways to keep growing their fish and to share releases electronically with their students.
Arbor Heights Elementary‘s tank tender Kristin Waitt Hutchinson spun into action as soon as the closure notice came. She quickly got a freshwater tank ready in her garage for the 150 coho fry she had been helping teacher Angie Nall care for at the school. Two months later, she brought the robust fish to Fauntleroy Park, where Angie shared the release as it happened with her students on Zoom. Read More
That’s one of nine new videos that Neighborhood House – the nonprofit with a major resource center in High Point – asked us to let you know about. Explains Sayyora Polat from Neighborhood House, “Our staff have created videos on the new Expanded Unemployment Benefits that are available in multiple languages: Amharic, Farsi, Khmer, Marshallese, Russian, Somali, Tigrinya, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese. More languages coming soon.” All nine videos are linked here.
Thanks to Kersti Muul for word that there’s a humpback whale in the area, seen in Elliott Bay off Duwamish Head, a few hundred yards out. (If you’re not sure how to ID a humpback, check out this page from The Whale Trail‘s species guide.) Let us know if you see it!
That security video shows the thief who took Ariana‘s red 2014 BMW x3 from her Fauntleroy driveway. Note the accomplice moving solid-waste containers at upper left. Here’s the plate:
If you see it, call 911.
Neighborhood-group meetings continue online, for those that choose to host them that way. Next one is tonight, the Alki Community Council, at 7 pm. This is the ACC’s first meeting since the city’s much-discussed move to turn part of Alki Avenue and Beach Drive around Alki Point into a “Stay Healthy Street.” Topics also include an upcoming discussion scheduled between Beach Drive neighbors and police, and Piers 1/2. The ACC meeting tonight will be online at this link, ID 930 5612 1563 and PW 167267, or by phone at 253-215-8782.
9:58 AM: Thanks to Jessica for the tip. 165 homes in the Brace Point area south of Fauntleroy are still out of power, after losing it in the middle of the night. We are checking with Seattle City Light about the cause. Xfinity service is also out in some if not all of the area, according to a tip from Nathan.
10:53 AM: SCL spokesperson Julie Moore tells WSB, “Crews are still investigating where the fault occurred. The neighborhood is fed through a underground residential distribution system, so crews are investigating each vault to see where the damage occurred and so they can identify the issue and make the repairs. This takes a bit more time than it does for an overhead system where it’s easier to pinpoint where damages occur along the power line or utility pole.”
12:14 PM: The SCL map now shows 337 customers out. (Thanks to Nathan for the alert on that.)
10:55 PM: Not fixed yet. Thanks to Hadlie for the photo (posted in comments) of SCL on scene. We’ll be following up again tomorrow.
10:56 WM: 12 hours later, still out – see comments for what neighbors are hearing.
12:13 PM FRIDAY: We’ve published a separate update.
6:03 AM: Good morning – the 59th morning without the high-rise West Seattle Bridge. Our morning notes start with the cameras for the 5-way intersection at West Marginal/Delridge/Spokane/Chelan, and the restricted-access low bridge (where SPD enforcement continues):
Since the main detour route across the Duwamish River is the 1st Avenue South Bridge (map), that’s the next camera:
The other major bridge across the river is the South Park Bridge (map) – this camera shows the approach:
Check the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed for info about any of those bridges opening for marine traffic.
Water Taxi – Reduced schedule continues (note: NO SERVICE next Monday because it’s Memorial Day)
Sound Transit note – Link light rail and Sounder trains will start charging fares again June 1st
ROAD WORK NOTE
Repaving/pavement repair at 6th/Spokane today and tomorrow.
During the stay-home order, we’re not live-monitoring morning traffic, but we’ll update with word of incidents, so please let us know what you’re seeing – comment or text (but not if you’re drivingl!) 206-293-6302.