West Seattle, Washington
Our full report on tonight’s West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force meeting will be out tomorrow, but first, here’s the most interesting thing we heard: Police “recently” busted dozens of drivers for trying to evade the low-bridge enforcement cameras by removing or obscuring their license plates. During SDOT‘s briefing for the CTF, one slide revealed these datapoints about the operation:
• Heard from community and observed unauthorized drivers crossing the low bridge with missing or obstructed plates during restricted hours
• Recent 3-day enforcement resulted in 47 license plate citations given, with a $231 fine
• SPD is periodically at the low bridge to enforce and reduce this type of illegal action and ensure adequate room on the low bridge for transit, freight, emergency vehicles, and authorized users
Bridge program director Heather Marx said those “three days” were more like a.handful of hours spread across three days. She called the violations “outrageous. … This is wrong and if you know (someone) who is doing this, tell them THIS IS WRONG.” Task Force co-chair Greg Nickels suggested making photos of the plates-not-visible violators public. Marx said that wouldn’t be legal, under the state law that authorized the enforcement cameras. State House Rep. Eileen Cody noted that she recalled that legislators were concerned about privacy when considering that legislation. Another elected official on the CTF, City Councilmember Lisa Herbold, suggested the city should ask the court not to let drivers argue down the fine for these violations – “they are intentionally doing a thing to obscure themselves from enforcement of the law and I don’t think the magistrate should be reducing the tickets for those folks.” We’ll be following up to see if more information is available about how many vehicles have been tallied with missing or unreadable plates.
That’s just part of the setup at a home in Gatewood – they’re among the West Seattleites who have answered our call for Halloween decoration locations. With 2 1/2 weeks to go until the spookiest night of the year, we’re ready to build our annual Halloween page, so we wanted to make the request again: If you have, or know of, a memorable display, let us know about it at firstname.lastname@example.org – photo appreciated but not required, and please mention whether it’s best viewed by day or night (or both!). P.S. At the house above (3714 SW Austin), you’ll actually find a show Friday and Saturday nights through Halloween (which is on Sunday this year), 7-9 pm (“if it’s not raining”).
For the second time this week, there’s a video/film crew shooting something off 35th SW in West Seattle. This crew is even bigger than the one that was at the Lucky 5 on Tuesday. But this crew had something in common with that one – they said it was a commercial video/photo shoot, but weren’t allowed to disclose the client. We couldn’t get further than the parking lot – but Dan sent this photo from earlier in the afternoon:
That was a smoke machine, Dan explained, adding, “They had what looked to be actor/football player doing exercises. Plus earlier a group of players in training uniforms doing group exercises.” We caught a glimpse of people in marching-band-type uniforms. Otherwise – a mystery so far.
6:16 PM: Happening now from Alki to Arbor Heights – the October edition of West Seattle Art Walk!
Among the artists you can meet tonight: Painter Carla Dreams is at one of the brand-new WS Art Walk venues, the dental office of Dr. Michael Korn DDS (4401 California SW; WSB sponsor) in The Junction, until 8 pm.
At Fogue Gallery (4130 California SW; WSB sponsor), with a new group show, we found artist (and WSAW coordinator) Reeve Washburn:
We’re hoping to make at least one more stop. See who else is participating tonight – both businesses with art, and food/drink venues with specials – by going here. And don’t miss The Art of Music, at two venues, until 7:40 pm!
7:44 PM: We visited Verity Credit Union (4505 California SW; WSB sponsor) where singer-songwriter Larry Murante was performing as part of The Art of Music:
Set your calendar for next month’s Art Walk – November 11th!
Tomorrow was originally set as the end of spring/summer all-day, 7-day service for the West Seattle Water Taxi. Then, by community request, SDOT and King County Metro worked out a plan to keep it going through this winter since the West Seattle Bridge is still closed. There are a few changes to note, though, Water Taxi spokesperson Al Sanders tells WSB:
The extended Water Taxi service, with seven day a week service (M-F: 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.—Sat-Sun 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.), starts Saturday, October 16, with funding from the Seattle Department of Transportation. A reminder to bike riders – the vessels are now equipped with racks that can handle up to 26 “fat tire” and electric bikes.
Starting on Saturday, shuttle service to the Seacrest Dock (773/775) will be available only during peak-commuter hours Mon-Fri. (6:00 a.m.-9:00 a.m./3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.)
Metro plans to keep the regular full-size vessel M/V Doc Maynard on the route through fall and winter.
Two car crimes in West Seattle Crime Watch this afternoon:
HIT-AND-RUN DRIVER SOUGHT: From Patrick in The Junction:
Our Dodge Charger was totaled by a hit-run vehicle at 12:04 am on Oct 12th on SW Oregon between 42nd SW and California SW.
The vehicle slammed into the driver-side rear bumper, riding up onto the vehicle with the Jeep at an approx. 25-degree angle before backing off our vehicle and sideswiping it before leaving the area quickly, turning south on 42nd SW and finding our rear quarter panel at the intersection of 42nd SW and SW Edmunds.
We have obtained video of the crash but cannot make out the license #. This is now the second hit and run we’ve had to suffer in less than a year; my GF and I are pissed. We want desperately to find this driver and or vehicle responsible and ask if you can possibly put this out there for folks to keep an eye out.
If you have any information, the SPD incident # is 21-270330.
CATALYTIC-CONVERTER THEFT: From Diane:
Our catalytic converter was stolen on 10/12/2021 at 7:46 am. It was captured by camera, see attached photo.
There was one driver, and a passenger who got out and quickly stole the converter. This happened in Fauntleroy just south of Lincoln Park. A police report was filed.
The SPD incident # IS 21-918668.
The West Seattleite who founded The Whale Trail, Donna Sandstrom, has just published a book for young readers telling the story of the event that immersed her in orca activism, the rescue of Springer the wayward whale. You’re invited to a launch event in West Seattle this Sunday. Here’s the announcement:
Whale Trail founder and local author Donna Sandstrom’s book “Orca Rescue! The True Story of an Orphaned Orca Named Springer“ was published this month by Kids Can Press.
The middle grade nonfiction book tells the riveting story of how a young orca was discovered in Puget Sound – lost, alone and 300 miles away from home. Six months later, the 2-year-old orca was rescued, rehabilitated, and returned to her family on the north end of Vancouver Island.
It’s the first and so far only successful orca reunion in history. Almost twenty years later, Springer is thriving, tending her two calves. And on the day the book was published, Oceanwise announced that she is expecting again!
The story is told as it happened, from Donna’s perspective as a community organizer on the project. Many of the events described in the book happened here, including Springer’s initial discovery by researcher Mark Sears, and a pivotal town meeting at The Hall at Fauntleroy.
The book is beautifully illustrated. Fact spreads are interspersed with the narrative, and learning resources include maps, matrilines,and a glossary. The book recently received a starred review in Kirkus Review, and is a selected pick by the Junior Library Guild.
Join Donna and other team members to celebrate the book’s publication, and Springer’s continued success. Books will be available to purchase on site from Paper Boat Booksellers. The family-friendly event is free and open to the public. Please bring proof of vaccination and wear a mask. We look forward to celebrating with you!
What: “Orca Rescue! The True Story of an Orphaned Orca Named Springer” Book launch and signing featuring members of Springer’s team
When: Sunday October 17, 3 to 5 PM.
Where: C&P Coffee, 5612 California Ave SW
Event will be held outside, weather permitting.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Like a giant domino setup twisting and turning as the pieces fall, traffic side effects from the West Seattle Bridge closure have manifested all over the peninsula.
But SDOT‘s traffic-mitigation efforts – from speed humps to radar-enhanced signage – have been concentrated in a few areas.
Fauntleroy is not one of them. But traffic was the top concern in the Fauntleroy Community Association‘s most-recent community-wide survey, so they catalogued specific trouble spots – some longstanding – and invited SDOT and SPD to come talk about problems and possible solutions. (Added Friday – here’s the video recording of the meeting:)
While much was discussed at Tuesday night’s online meeting, few commitments were made (as was the case with a similar meeting in 2014) – many suggestions were deemed too costly, infeasible, unwarranted, or not possible due to staffing.
Heather Marx, who leads the West Seattle Bridge program at SDOT, started with an overview of what’s happening now, as they get ready for the “final push that’s going to (make us able) to open the bridge,” with repair construction starting by late November. 100 percent design will be done by the start of November. They’re doing “early work,” as we’ve previously reported, including constructing work platforms offsite. No new timeline for opening – still “mid-2022.”
Sara Zora, who manages the Reconnect West Seattle traffic-mitigation program, gave an overview of that – dozens of projects, including what’s been done in the so-called Home Zone areas – in West Seattle, primarily Highland Park and Riverview.
Then she launched into the Fauntleroy list highlighting what’s been done and what’s not happening. Details are in the full slide deck:
Quick look at highlights from our calendar for the rest of today/tonight:
GLASS-BLOWING DEMO & ART-GLASS PUMPKIN PATCH: Live demos are back at Avalon Glassworks (2914 SW Avalon Way) – 11 am to 4 pm today – as part of Refract. And while you’re there, check out/shop the Pumpkin Patch!
MEDICARE Q&A: Consultations with Patrice Lewis at the Senior Center of West Seattle (4217 SW Oregon), 11 am-1 pm – call to register at 206.932.4044.
GOVERNOR’S BRIEFING: 2:30 pm, Gov. Jay Inslee holds his next briefing/media Q&A about the pandemic. You will be able to watch the livestream (updated link) here.
WEST SEATTLE ART WALK: 5 pm “until late,” with a record number of businesses participating, as previewed here – some with art, some with food/drink specials to enhance your night out. The list/map:
Browse the featured artists by going here.
THE ART OF MUSIC: Two locations during tonight’s West Seattle Art Walk, 6-7:40 pm:
The Art of Music, presented by the West Seattle Junction Association on upcoming Second Thursday Art Walk Evenings during October through December, returns on October 14th. Performances with free admission begin at 6 pm and will be at two locations: Verity Credit Union (4505 California SW) in the Alaska Junction and Sopranos Antico Pizza & Pasta (2348 California SW) in the Admiral Junction. Click here for more information.
WORDS, WRITERS, SOUTHWEST STORIES: 6 pm online, Barbara Johns will give a presentation on her book “Kenjiro Nomura, American Modernist: An Issei Artist’s Journey.” The Southwest Seattle Historical Society presents the WWSWS series; get viewing information by registering here.
PIANO BAR: 8 pm-11 pm at the Senior Center of West Seattle (4217 SW Oregon), exploring the Great American Songbook. More info in our calendar listing.
Got an event coming up? Email us the info – email@example.com – thank you!
Seattle City Light wants to know what you think of its service, among other things. So they’re running an online survey. The announcement says, “If you have opinions about power outages, your utility bill, different types of renewable energy, and more, this is your opportunity to provide your input.” We went through it – didn’t see any specific questions about outages, but there are a few open-ended places to offer your thoughts. If you have a few minutes to spare, you’ll find the survey link here.
It’s mid-October and – not to rush things, but … – the holidays aren’t that far away. Here’s a chance to do some advance planning while supporting a local school. From the WSB inbox:
We are excited to announce our annual Seattle Lutheran High School Parents Association Greenery Fundraiser!
The sale will run through Friday, October 29th, with pickup of paid orders scheduled for Saturday, November 20th.
Please visit form.jotform.com/212747568275164 to place your order today!
Some of the ways your purchase will help support SLHS are by funding teacher grants and Saints Leadership Award scholarships, helping to offset facility grants and continuing education opportunities for staff, as well as funding student-based activities/needs.
6:02 AM: Good morning!
Cloudy and warmer – with a high around 60.
26th SW – Now closed southbound between Roxbury and Barton for street upgrades to prepare for RapidRide H Line.
BUSES, WATER TAXI, FERRIES
For ferries and Water Taxi; Check here for late word of changes; you can watch @wsferries too. Note that WSF is going to downsize schedules systemwide starting Saturday, as explained here. … No scheduled changes for the West Seattle Water Taxi.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES
569th morning without the West Seattle Bridge. (The Community Task Force gets briefed at 4 pm today.) Here are views of other bridges and routes:
Low Bridge: Automated enforcement cameras remain in use; restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily – except weekends; the bridge is open to all until 8 am Saturday and Sunday mornings. (Access applications are available here for some categories of drivers.)
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
The 1st Avenue South Bridge (map):
For the South Park Bridge (map), here’s the nearest camera:
Trouble on the streets/paths/bridges/water? Please let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.