West Seattle, Washington
You’ve probably heard a lot about redistricting – drawing new boundaries for election districts – for the county, state, and federal governments. But you probably haven’t heard much about the fact the city has to do the same thing (we mentioned it back in October). Before the Seattle City Council‘s seven district seats are up for election again next year, new boundaries will be approved. An appointed commission (with two West Seattleites) is overseeing this process and has released four draft maps as potential starting points. Here’s how these drafts would reshape District 1, which currently encompasses West Seattle and South Park.
First, D-1 on draft map 1 (see this full citywide map here)
Next, D-1 on draft map 2 (see this full citywide map here):
Next, D-1 on draft map 3 (see this full citywide map here):
And finally, D-1 on draft map 4 (see this full citywide map here):
Follow the “full map” links to get a closer look; if you zoom in, you’ll see the current boundaries, for comparison. And keep in mind, these are proposed as starting points – this isn’t a contest between those four; the final map may be something completely different.
So what’s being taken into consideration here? you might wonder. The commission explains that it’s charged with following “City Charter-mandated criteria using geographic information system (GIS) expertise and the latest 2020 Census data to draw new boundaries and produce districts that are approximately equal in population. To the extent practical, the Commission must also consider additional factors, such as following existing district boundaries, recognizing waterways and geographic boundaries, and acknowledging Seattle’s communities and neighborhoods. The consideration of public input and a minimum of one public forum per Council District is required during this process.”
That input process just started this week, and will continue through the spring and summer. You have six ways to participate, all detailed on this webpage – you can attend a meeting at noon on upcoming Tuesdays, you can draw your own map, and you can watch for an upcoming survey, among other opportunities.
Two reports tonight:
EARLY-MORNING CARJACKING: From a Seattle Police preliminary summary: Around 6:40 am, near Delridge/Barton, a person “was driving and saw a male standing in the roadway. The victim stopped to see if the male needed assistance. The contact turned into a fight.” Police say the person who was standing in the road then pulled out a gun and robbed the victim. Another person described only as female then “jumped into the victim’s car and drove away,” while the robber jumped into his own car and followed her. Police spotted those two cars in the Roxbury Safeway parking lot; the robber’s car, a Mercedes, left, while the carjacking victim’s vehicle was left behind, unoccupied. Shortly afterward, another officer saw the Mercedes on 35th SW; he followed it a ways and saw a man and woman dropped off. They were taken into custody. Eventually the woman was arrested and booked into jail; the man was released, after it was determined that the person who dropped them off was the person they were looking for. He was still at large at last report and may be linked to other robberies.
CAR PROWLER: Reader report – “Last night around 11:30 pm we had a prowler trying car doors on 41st Ave SW, just south of Jefferson Square. He was walking a small white dog, I’m guessing taking the dog for walkies was to avoid suspicion. After the street prowl, it looked like he then walked down the SW Hudson steps and prowled the alley between 40th SW and 41st SW. Trying doors, etc. He was wearing what looked like an outdoor coat (sleeves may be a secondary color) and the dog was small, maybe a Pekingese or small Spaniel mix, mostly white fur with fluffy tail and what looked like brown areas on the face.”
With baseball season almost here, the Mariner Moose joined Metro reps this afternoon to show off a new set of stadium-convenient bus stops downtown, serving mostly West Seattle routes. They’re on Alaskan Way, with the northbound stop just north of Jackson, the southbound stop just south of it:
The new stops open tomorrow, though they won’t have their full RapidRide shelters and equipment for a few months, acording to Metro’s Elaine Porterfield. They’ll serve Routes 55, 56, 57, 113, 120, 121, 125, and the C Line.
Along with stadium proximity, the new stops are also closer to Link light rail, the Amtrak and Sounder station, and the Seattle Streetcar.
Seattle Public Schools is aware of Governor Inslee’s plan to lift the state mask mandate on March 21, 2022.
Implementation in the school district must meet the unique health and safety needs of our students, families, and staff. Seattle Public Schools continues to look to guidance from Public Health – Seattle & King County.
-Continue until further notice with our current policy requiring mask use by all students, staff, visitors and others while they are indoors and outdoors at all SPS buildings;
-Continue to require mask use on school buses, as required by federal law;
-Base updates to current masking policy on the specific needs of the district, informed by local public health guidance.
-Negotiate with the Seattle Education Association, as required by the current collective bargaining agreement, to arrive at a mutually agreeable position regarding any permanent change to mask use requirements throughout the district.
Future decisions on mask use within the district will be made in partnership with public health, and its implementation will be established after consultation and mutually agreed upon guidelines that are reached through bargaining with our labor partners.
COVID case numbers in the district, as in the general local population, continue declining, according to the SPS dashboard.
Heard about this last night at the Alki Community Council meeting and confirmed it today with Historic Seattle: The preservationist group is presenting a visit to the temporary site of the historic Stone Cottage on March 12th, with tickets available now. It’s the first chance for an update since the quirky structure’s move exactly half a year ago. Participants will include some of the local volunteers/advocates who worked for years to save it from facing demolition when its Harbor Avenue site was sold for redevelopment. The event is in-person, in West Seattle, at 11 am Saturday, March 12th, with a small ticket fee that supports Historic Seattle.
Almost a month and a half after modernized Terminal 5 opened for international cargo shipping, it has yet to use a major feature of that modernization – shore power. We visited T-5 this morning as the largest vessel yet, MSC Virgo, was being unloaded:
Virgo is 1,200 feet long, with a capacity of 15,000 TEUs, the second-biggest ship ever to be served by the Northwest Seaport Alliance (the joint cargo authority of the Ports of Seattle and Tacoma) – the biggest was CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin, the 18,000-TEU megaship that made a much-celebrated visit six years ago at Terminal 18 on Harbor Island. So why isn’t MSC Virgo using shore power? NWSA spokesperson Melanie Stambaugh says it’s a labor issue that terminal operator SSA is working on: “Currently, labor parties are negotiating the use of shore power equipment on the terminal and usage will be determined when negotiations are complete.” Meantime, what are literally the biggest aspects of the modernization work, the four giant cranes, are working well, Stambaugh says.
Some of the cargo brought in by Virgo will be transported away by rail, another key operational advantage of T-5. NWSA says there’s no ship backup currently here, but Canada still has issues, so it’s expecting to see more cargo that was originally intended to be offloaded there – a “huge win” as described at the most-recent NWSA managing-members meeting. Virgo, meantime, will be here until Monday; the shipping schedule changes frequently but you can watch it here to see what’s next.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
With 10 weeks left for your comment(s) on West Seattle light-rail options, some neighborhoods are organizing their own briefings and reviews of Sound Transit‘s Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the extension.
Wednesday night, the Avalon-area neighbors who first organized in 2020 invited ST for another presentation and Q&A. What they asked, and suggested, might help you if you haven’t already commented (which you can do via the ongoing “online open house”).
The ST team – led by facilitator Leda Chahim and West Seattle/Duwamish segment manager Jason Hampton – opened with a presentation almost identical to what they showed the Community Advisory Group last week (WSB coverage here). That included select pairings of Junction and Delridge station alternatives – the location of the Avalon station, closest to where most of Wednesday night’s participants live, depends on what’s chosen for those two ends of the WS extension. Here’s the full slide deck from the meeting:
(You can also see it here.)
One more way you can help over the three-day holiday weekend – Alki UCC (6115 SW Hinds) is hosting another donation drive this Sunday, with very specific items requested:
Alki UCC Food/Men’s Casual Clothing/Winter Gear Donations Drive
Sunday, February 20
11:00 am to 3:00 pm
The Westside Interfaith Network, our donations-drive partner, is especially low on blankets, backpacks and sleeping bags to help keep our unsheltered neighbors warm and dry. We also welcome donations of clean men’s casual/work clothing and new men’s socks.
Non-perishable food donations are distributed by the White Center Food Bank. Priority items are:
Soup (pop top)
Sugar (in a box)
Condiments (BBQ, mustard, mayo)
Coffee & Tea
Mac and Cheese
Off on Monday for the Presidents Day holiday? Looking for something you can do with your out-of-school kid(s)? The West Seattle Junction Association is still recruiting volunteers to assist with placing and removing dozens of American flags in the heart of The Junction. Two time slots – 9 to 10 am and/or 4-5 pm. Volunteers will meet Tom in front of Cupcake Royale on the northeast corner of California/Alaska. Sign up online here!
6:03 AM: Good morning! It’s Friday.
Another cloudy forecast for today, high in the mid-to-upper 40s.
ROAD WORK – TODAY AND TOMORROW
16th SW repaving – As previewed last night, SDOT plans to repave 16th SW between Barton and Cambridge today, 7 am-3:30 pm, with one lane open each way during the work.
West Marginal/Highland Park Way signal work – Also from SDOT:
On Saturday, at the Highland Park Way SW and West Marginal Way SW intersection, we’ll be working to replace the signal cabinet, which houses the signal control equipment at the intersection. During this work, we’ll need to turn off the signal for a period of time. We’ll have someone directing traffic at the intersection to make sure traffic is moving efficiently during this work. We’ll start as early as 5 am and expect to be done by 1 pm on Saturday.
Biggest ship yet is in today – MSC Virgo. We’ll be at T-5 for a closer look.
REMINDER ABOUT NEXT WEEK
BUSES, WATER TAXI, FERRIES TODAY
Metro is on its regular weekday schedule. Watch @kcmetrobus for word of reroutes/cancellations.
West Seattle and Vashon Water Taxi routes are on regular schedules.
Ferries: WSF continues the two-boat schedule for Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth. Check here for alerts/updates.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES
696th morning without the West Seattle Bridge.
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:
South Park Bridge:
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
Trouble on the roads/paths/water? Text or call us (when you can do so safely) – 206-293-6302.