FOLLOWUP: New schedule for Alki pump-station construction

(Pump Station 38 art concept by Sarah Thompson Moore)

10:44 AM: Back in March, we brought you an update (with video) on the art project planned for the Alki Pump Station 38 project, which also revealed a new design detail – a guardrail. At the time, the project website still said construction at the site in the 1400 block of Alki Avenue SW [map] was expected to begin this year. Today, an update from Seattle Public Utilities: The pump-station project is now expected to start early next year, with work lasting at least 9 months. They’re circulating a fact sheet and FAQ about the project:

And if those don’t answer whatever questions you might have, they’ve set up a survey to collect construction-related questions. SPU says the main reason for the project is to handle increased flows in the area; most of the work will be below-ground. We’re asking SPU about the latest projected cost; last year the utility told us it was budgeted at $1.2 million, with about $50,000 for the public-art component.

4:19 PM: SPU spokesperson Dylan King says the budget is still estimated at $1.2 million, but, “SPU is in the process of finalizing the design and will reevaluate the cost estimate once design is complete. The project team is also expecting increased budget needs for the artwork to accommodate the addition of the decorative panels and other art features included as part of the safety guardrail.” That rail, by the way, is expected to be 38.5 feet long and 49 inches high. The project is scheduled to go out to bid this fall.

8 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: New schedule for Alki pump-station construction"

  • Guy Olson May 11, 2021 (12:22 pm)

    I sure wish they would finish/work on the bathrooms on 57th first. 

    • WSB May 11, 2021 (1:02 pm)

      Not the same department, fwiw. And here’s hoping the restroom rebuild is done before this starts. Overdue for a progress report on the rebuild, though … it’s looked a little stagnant in recent weeks.

  • Really? May 11, 2021 (12:29 pm)

    In 1973, Seattle passed a 1 Percent for Art ordinance, which sets aside 1 percent of capital-improvement-project funds…I’m a person that appreciates art in our community but is this necessary?? considering the homeless people living on our sidewalks? Shouldn’t the $50k be allocated to a solution to the blight thats in our face every time we step outside our house? I wouldn’t be surprised if the pump station platform became a homeless encampment anyway. Take a look at your local fire stations, I see beautifully designed rebuilds of stations in my neighborhood with accompanying sculptures. First responders deserve nice quarters but sculptures?? To me, it’s a case of fleecing the tax payer. Its time to recall the 1 percent for art ordinance until the homeless crises is under control!… and crime… and broken bridges.  

    • anonyme May 12, 2021 (6:51 am)

      Really?, I’m kind of torn on this, but tend to agree with you.  I support public art, but much of what passes for public art these days is questionable, as well as impermanent.  Fifty thousand dollars seems a lot to spend on this.  I would disagree that the solution to the homeless problem involves more money (especially in the hands of our current mayor and council) but there are many infrastructure issues around this city that are crying out for help.  They may be different budgets, but perhaps the budget structure needs to be looked at to allow more flexibility.  Departments always overbudget to avoid cuts; great for individual departments, bad for taxpayers and the city in general.

  • Flan May 11, 2021 (2:38 pm)

    After watching the video it sold me on the design and it seems like it will also include plants around it! I think people think its just flat colors on concrete but the video states a variety of different mix media which will make it pop much more than the renders. 

  • Snails pace May 11, 2021 (5:47 pm)

    Maybe we could add a clause requiring a reasonable timeline for each project. A week seems reasonable for that bathroom.  

  • Craig May 11, 2021 (6:25 pm)

    Not sure why that rail system needs to be there. It’s not now, it won’t stop a car, workers should just put up a temp rail, it  blocks the view, it adds cost, and there’s open wall for hundreds of yards on either side of it. I get code requirements, but this deserves an reprieve. 

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