West Seattle, Washington
Today the usually obscure process of redistricting – drawing new maps for political districts after the Census – drew headlines because the commission working on legislative and congressional maps missed their deadline. But a separate group is still at work on another new map of note – redrawing King County Council districts. Their deadline is next week, after 10 months of work, and they’re down to working out the differences between two draft maps. A West Seattleite who’s on the King County Districting Committee, Rob Saka, called our attention to the group’s work earlier this fall. We watched tonight’s meeting.
West Seattle is currently in County Council District 8 [map], which also includes Vashon and Maury Islands, White Center and much of unincorporated North Highline, much of Burien, and part of downtown/Capitol Hill. Both of the draft maps keep West Seattle and Vashon/Maury remaining in District 8, but the district diverges from there. On Draft Map D, District 8 stretches much further south; on Draft Map E, the boundaries are much further north on both ends of the district, which would endin White Center. Here’s a version showing the areas of disagreement countywide (look for the stripes):
Before the end of tonight’s 2-plus-hour meeting, the committee members resolved some of the differences, but they didn’t reach final agreement on District 8, only agreeing that the “small cities” in the Sea-Tac Airport area should be in the same district, whichever district that turns out to be. They’ll continue talking again tomorrow night, and you can watch the livestream – the link is here, along with the schedule of other meetings, including a final public hearing on November 30th. If you have comments in the meantime, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
P.S. The city of Seattle has a redistricting commission, too (with members including former mayor Greg Nickels of West Seattle), but it’s at a much earlier stage of the process.
The long-in-the-works East Marginal Way South Corridor Improvement Project is finally fully funded. It’s not in West Seattle, but it’s on a transportation corridor for many traveling between here and the downtown waterfront, in modes from bicycling to trucking. Federal and city officials announced today that the project has received a $20 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s RAISE (Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity) program. SDOT says this will enable it to start construction “at the end of 2022,” with completion “estimated for 2025.” The city’s announcement continues:
The grant funding will enable SDOT to do both the safety improvements and the road reconstruction at the same time. This means that there will be fewer disruptions to freight traffic during construction.
Currently, East Marginal Way S faces three primary transportation challenges along the corridor: 1) safety, 2) mobility and increasing demand, and 3) deterioration of pavement. The RAISE grant will now help improve operational and safety deficiencies by widening and strengthening the road to accommodate larger and heavier truck traffic, provide access to freight terminals at the Port of Seattle for the trucks that use the corridor each day, and helping to reduce congestion with improved traffic signals.
Below are some of the improvements in the East Marginal Way S Corridor Improvement project:
-Reconstructing the East Marginal Way S roadway and upgrading the route to Heavy Haul Network standards along a 1.1-mile segment from a point south of S Massachusetts St to S Spokane St to enhance efficient freight flow.
-Constructing a 2-way protected bike lane along a 1.4-mile segment between S Atlantic St and S Spokane St to increase visibility, protect the approximately 1,000 people who ride bikes on this corridor each day, and work toward our Vision Zero goal of ending traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030.
-Rebuilding the sidewalk on the west side of East Marginal Way S adjacent to the roadway reconstruction to provide a safe, accessible route for people walking.
-Constructing new traffic signals that will work dynamically together to enhance safety and improve traffic flow at several of the City’s busiest freight intersections.
For more details on what’s planned, see this fact sheet. The city says the project funding also includes $7 million from the Levy to Move Seattle as well as from the port and state. Total estimated cost will be $43 million, according to page 19 of this document used in the application for the just-announced federal grant.
In addition to the already announced Eastridge Church turkey-and-groceries giveaway in The Junction on Saturday morning, the West Seattle Food Bank is also again offering free turkeys and other holiday food in a drive-through distribution at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) that day. WSFB development director Breanna Bushaw says the Saturday distribution is “open to any West Seattle family in need of Thanksgiving groceries.” Details:
Each family will receive a turkey and a box of produce, or turkey and thanksgiving box.
Drive Thru Distribution
South Seattle College, North Lot
6000 16th Ave SW
Saturday, November 20, 2021
10 am to 2 pm (or supplies run out)
Masks are required. Must remain in your car.
Maximum of 2 families per household. Each family must be present & show proof of address.
If families are not able to make it to our Saturday Thanksgiving distribution, our walk-up distribution at West Seattle Food Bank will have turkeys next week:
Monday: 10 am – 2 pm
Tuesday: 10 am – 2 pm
Wednesday: 10 am -4 pm
Thursday & Friday: CLOSED
The WSFB is headquartered on the southeast corner of 35th SW and SW Morgan. If you don’t need food but would like to donate, Bushaw says the food bank needs money most of all: “Monetary donations help us purchase fresh produce, meat and dairy products. Donations also go to fund our emergency financial assistance program to help neighbors stay in their homes and keep utilities on when they are going through a tough financial time.” (Here’s where to donate.)
Meet Chris Mackay, 25-year West Seattle resident and veteran nonprofit manager. Her most-recent role was as executive director of Crooked Trails, a nonprofit that specializes in “meaningful travel opportunities” – tourism and volunteering rolled up into one adventure, for example. But after 20 years of that – doing a lot of traveling along the way – she’s excited to work “close to home” in her new role.
Mackay’s previous work led to a skillset that’s perfect for the WSJA leadership position, from partnerships to development to event production. The latter is especially important as, after the pandemic hiatus, the Junction Association is reviving its signature events, including the Hometown Holidays Tree Lighting and Night Market (December 4th) and a “full-blown” West Seattle Summer Fest next year (set your calendar for July 15-17, 2022). Mackay told WSB in a short introductory chat at the WSJA office that she expects to spend a few months getting up to speed with everything that’s already in the works, and then starting a conversation about future strategy, growth, and direction – “what’s the dream?” as she puts it.
First, she’s working closely with Radford – whose last official day is later this week – “to extract everything from her head … and her heart.” Radford expects Mackay to shine: “Chris will be a wonderful advocate for small businesses; she has wonderful energy and is ready to take over the reins.”
Today we’re welcoming The Bridge School as a new WSB sponsor, which means they get the opportunity to share information about what they do:
The Bridge School is a cooperative, multi-age, progressive elementary-school program that fosters authentic learning through whole-child development.
We are a cooperative learning environment that supports creativity, exploration, community building, academic growth and connecting to nature. We do this by using a progressive, multi-age, child-centered, constructivist approach that includes a variety of curriculum and activities selected for the age and needs of current students. Families who choose The Bridge School want to be involved in their child’s education, which builds a strong, supportive, and friendly community and helps keep tuition low.
We are a Washington State Approved Elementary School Program serving ages 5-11. Our multi-age classes include regular instruction in math, literacy, science, social studies, music, art, theater, outdoor education, and social-emotional skill development. For students ages 4-5, we also offer our nature-based Cedar Play School on Friday mornings.
Our teachers plan and create challenging, dynamic, emergent learning opportunities in and outside of the classroom. We believe that there are unique benefits to multi-age classrooms including allowing students to grow at their own pace in a non-competitive environment and deep peer-to-peer learning and mentorship. Many teachers have the same students for more than one year, which allows them to deeply understand their students and their families, and develop strong, trusting relationships.
The Bridge School does not discriminate in any programs, activities, the hiring of employees or selection of volunteers on the basis of sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, marital status, disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our school community.
We thank The Bridge School for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
12:37 PM: More word of recent rains drawing salmon into local creeks! This time we have an update from Fauntleroy Creek, courtesy of Judy Pickens:
Nearly a month ago, volunteer salmon watchers began seeing a few coho spawners come into Fauntleroy Creek. After several days with no new fish, we were about to call it quits at seven but, because of tides at or exceeding 11 feet, we decided to keep going. By Sunday (Nov. 14), watchers had tallied 10 – a good year for this small creek.
Yesterday’s high tides were still high enough to give spawners easy access from Fauntleroy Cove. Watchers braved rain and gusty wind and were rewarded when spawners began to pour into the creek.
(Video by Dennis Hinton)
By dark, the tally had jumped to 48, the most in nine years. And it may not be over. Watchers will be back this afternoon to see if another very high tide brings in more.
If you want to take a chance on seeing spawners, come to the fish-ladder viewpoint (SW Director and upper Fauntleroy Way SW, overlooking the ferry terminal). Catch the attention of a salmon watcher below and you’ll be invited down to the creek. Children must come with a parent, and dogs must be on leash. You may stay as long as the watcher does.
Judy says a watcher is expecting to be there by 2 pm.
ADDED TUESDAY NIGHT: Thanks to Michelle Green Arnson for the photo of a fish she saw there today:
Every year, many ask about Thanksgiving volunteering opportunities. So far we don’t have anything for the actual holiday, but if you have time to spare the day before, the Junction Church (4157 California SW) needs helpers for its free Thanksgiving Eve community lunch at noon Wednesday, November 24. Interested? Text Pastor Gilbert, 206-327-2348.
Notes for the rest of your Tuesday:
WARM CLOTHING DRIVE CONTINUES: 9 am-5 pm weekdays, drop off donations of clothing, coats, and shoes at Dave Newman State Farm Insurance Agency (3435 California SW; WSB sponsor).
(added) ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: Learn about it during the Rotary Club of West Seattle‘s online meeting:
Join us on Tuesday, November 16th at noon to hear Richard Yonck present at the Rotary Club of West Seattle weekly meeting via Zoom.
Topic: “Fostering Artificial Intelligence For Good.”
Featured Speaker: A West Seattle Local, Richard Yonck
Richard is an author, futurist and international speaker with a background in computer science and media studies. Richard makes a strong case why our devices and advanced AI Systems need to have emotional intelligence, specifically the ability to sense human emotions and adapt accordingly. Come and hear how our world is about to change in amazing ways…catch a glimpse of the future and the heart of how we will work with Artificial Emotional Intelligence for Good.
Meeting ID: 839 9707 2661
DEMONSTRATION: Organizer Scott continues leading weekly demonstrations for racial justice, 4:30-6 pm at 16th/Holden. Signs available if you don’t have one of your own.
LIGHT RAIL ADVISORY GROUP: Sound Transit‘s new Community Advisory Group for the West Seattle-Ballard light-rail line has its first meeting at 5 pm, online. Our preview has the agenda as well as the viewing link.
HOPE LUTHERAN SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE: 6 pm at the school (42nd SW and SW Oregon), prospective families are welcome to find out about learning opportunities.
CHIEF SEALTH IHS PTSA: 7 pm meeting, online. The link’s in our calendar listing.
MORE … on our calendar!
Just two days remain to get in on this school fundraiser, which is Thanksgiving-specific!
Alki Elementary PTA‘s Thanksgiving Shop is open! We have partnered with Macrina Bakery, Metropolitan Market, and Remlinger Farms with an offering to help you gather around the table with loved ones:
-Macrina Bakery baked goods
-Fall Flower Bouquets
-Sparkling Apple Cider
-Remlinger Fresh Fruit Pies
-Family Gratitude Kit
Pre Sale ends November 17th with order pick-up at Alki Elementary on Wednesday, November 24th from 11 am-3 pm
6:03 AM: Good morning.
More sunshine expected, and cooler.
BUSES, WATER TAXI, FERRIES
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES
603rd morning without the West Seattle Bridge. 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.)
The 1st Avenue South Bridge (map):
South Park Bridge:
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
ROAD WORK REMINDERS
26th SW – Continuing southbound closure between Roxbury and Barton for RapidRide H Line prep work. Also, work at 26th/Roxbury. This flyer has details.
Trouble on the streets/paths/bridges/water? Please let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.