ALKI BEACH: Earlier closing time planned again this year

Alki Beach is quiet today. But now that it’s spring, the busy season isn’t far off. A discussion at last week’s Alki Community Council meeting touched on perennial summer concerns, some of which were addressed last year by closing the park earlier, so we asked Seattle Parks whether that’s planned again this year. Spokesperson Rachel Schulkin says yes, they’re planning a 10 pm closing time this summer too. The exact launch date hasn’t been determined yet – sometime in May – nor have the implementation details. (Seattle Police have already said they’re planning emphasis patrols at the beach again this year.) Last year the early closing time was put in place in early July, days after a deadly shooting, and continued until mid-September.

32 Replies to "ALKI BEACH: Earlier closing time planned again this year"

  • CarDriver March 23, 2022 (1:50 pm)

    Wonder if it will be enforced like they enforce no dogs on beach.

  • Derek March 23, 2022 (1:52 pm)

    Beach should be open late or all night. It’s public. I’m sorry but this is silly.  why do beach side residents live next to a beach if they’re going to complain about people? Makes zero sense.

    • WS Res March 23, 2022 (5:11 pm)

      Same reason they never built or filled in the pools in certain neighborhoods. Public goods for some people, just not “blah people.”

    • wscommuter March 23, 2022 (6:15 pm)

      I don’t live by the beach – but live about 10 blocks away and experience the problems where we live.  The out-of-control behavior ramps up in the evenings – the partying and loud cars racing along Alki Ave and then through the neighborhood/up Admiral.  It is pervasive and affects a lot of people other than those who happen to live on Beach Drive or Alki Ave.  Too often there are piles of beer bottles (many smashed) the next day and fast food debris thrown around by the late night crowd – mostly teenagers who can’t be bothered to clean up.  And, there is increasingly violence – fights and sometimes gunfire, sadly.  So, yeah … closing Alki at 10 is fine with many of us.  What makes “zero sense” is thinking that people who live in this neighborhood, many of whom have to get up and go to work early the next day, should have to put up with it.  If it was just kids having bonfires and chilling, no one would much care.  But reality is radically different than that.  

    • Guy March 23, 2022 (6:21 pm)

      I would be willing to bet that you don’t live directly across from the sand, or near a place that people like to congregate on the beach. 

    • Boop March 23, 2022 (6:21 pm)

      City hall is public and it has closed hours.  The water taxi is public and it has closed hours.  The express lanes are public and they have closed hours.  Just because something is public, doesn’t mean it is always available.  Especially when there are acts of violence at that public place.  

    • Axe March 23, 2022 (9:10 pm)

      Because some morons have ruined it for others. And public places do close by the way. Public doesn’t mean open 24 hours. You know, libraries, court houses, schools, etc…..

  • UselessPoliticians March 23, 2022 (1:58 pm)

    Would be nice if cruising laws were enforced… Or emphasis patrols on the Admiral Speedway, 63rd, 61st, etc.

  • Vee March 23, 2022 (2:19 pm)

    Too early. At least open till 11 on nice summer  nights 

  • Carson March 23, 2022 (2:25 pm)

    Make it Permanent please.

  • Jay March 23, 2022 (2:33 pm)

    The vast majority of evenings it’s just quiet, responsible people sitting on the beach getting kicked off by the cops. This isn’t the right solution to this problem and it uses a ton of police resources.

  • StopCuttingDownTrees March 23, 2022 (2:34 pm)

    Normally, I’d be against this. But until SPD is fully-funded again and fully-staffed I think it’s going to prevent injuries and deaths down there.

  • Mj March 23, 2022 (4:05 pm)

    Wow I’m in agreement with Derek’s post on this item, it’s a Public Beach!

    • Rhonda March 23, 2022 (6:01 pm)

      The normal closing time has been only 1 hour later at 11pm for decades. I doubt one hour out of 18 is going to inconvenience  anyone during this SPD staffing shortage.

      • WSB March 23, 2022 (6:56 pm)

        11:30. (I photographed the sign today but didn’t use it in the story.)

  • mark47n March 23, 2022 (4:24 pm)

    Public does not equate to free-for-all. All parks have operating hours, Public pools, rec centers, etc all have operating hours.  As things are on Alki during the summer, what with assaults, shots fired, and general ruckus This isn’t a bad thing. Does it mean that responsible folk have to go home? Yes.  It also more clearly delineates with whom the cops need to have contacts with. If you think this is unreasonable then you may want to take a good look in the mirror when you complain about scofflaws, and then put a leash on your dog.

    • Lucy March 23, 2022 (6:05 pm)

      I’d like to see park patrols during the day when people bring their dogs down to the beach.  Yesterday alone, in two hours, I saw severaldogs, off leash.  All of them peed on the beach or on the grasses.  Manyof them pooped.  Three owners just kicked sand over the excrement.   Not ok.  

    • Amu March 23, 2022 (6:14 pm)

      Yes to all of this.

    • Guy March 23, 2022 (6:22 pm)

      Well put!

  • K Valadez March 23, 2022 (8:04 pm)

    Everyone who lives off Alki like myself know that the closure time is a total farce..even when it was 11 p.m. Wait 20-30 minutes and it’s like the police were never there.

  • Brian March 23, 2022 (8:57 pm)

    Here’s a thought, instead of closing the beach earlier during the nicest time of year (when the PNW already has limited nice days/nights to enjoy every year) how about the police address/enforce the criminal behavior that takes place there during the day/night (especially in the nicer months). Speeding vehicles, drag racing, overly loud vehicles and other criminal behavior. If they are going to have emphasis patrols there this summer already then that should be sufficient and no need to penalize all for the behavior of few. Wish the tax paying law abiding citizens (who may want to have a late night bonfire with friends, family or out of town visitors) could enjoy the beach they find with their tax dollars while the police focus on the few who take part in criminal behavior. Heavy police presence early on in the summer should help deter those who want to commit acts of crime from choosing Alki as a gathering place and ticketing those who drag race or have loud vehicles early on will help as well. Word will spread that Alki is no longer a place for such behavior. Highly recommend the SPD emphasis patrols take place Fri-Sun when the largest crowds gather.  Not only to enforce crime but keep those who live and visit Alki during the busiest months safe as well. 

  • Alki Local March 23, 2022 (10:16 pm)

    Two questions for the commenters:  1) How many who want the beach open later/all hours actually visit after 10 pm and how often?   2) How many come in the morning, especially Sat and Sun,  during the summer to clean up the debris left behind by the late night partiers? This mess  is routinely picked up by local residents, volunteers, and park staff so the beach looks pristine for visitors during the day in case you weren’t aware, it doesn’t disappear by magic.

    • EricL March 24, 2022 (3:07 am)

      I live on alki (less than 1/4 block from the beach proper) and visit pretty much daily after 10 even in winter.  And on weekdays still do after the police have left.  I’d much rather do it legally.   10pm is way too early for it to close (it’s not even fully dark at the height of sunset).   I’m not convinced that closing early and more forcibly evicting a larger number of people at a fixed time has actually improved anything.

  • Runner March 24, 2022 (8:01 am) Here’s a link to a petition to help with these types of issues at Alki Beach

    • WS Res March 24, 2022 (1:27 pm)

      Thanks for the link – these are good, constructive suggestions!

  • April March 24, 2022 (10:37 am)


  • sgs March 24, 2022 (1:16 pm)

    You can still walk along the boardwalk…..We can’t have anything nice due to the behaviors (new bathroom already has graffiti), and closing hours is a reasonable way to keep the public safe.  Look at Miami Beach during spring break.    If you were in charge of handling the situation, what would you do.  So many don’t care about their communities, behavior, or impact. 

    • EricL March 24, 2022 (7:32 pm)

      You can’t walk across the seawall portion of it from the bath house north (you can walk along the street, but seawall walk is enforced closed)

  • Jort March 24, 2022 (2:11 pm)

    I guess this would be an opportunity for the “enough funding to have one police officer for every citizen in the city” crowd to perhaps reflect on what role the Seattle Police should play in this particular situation. Given limited resources and the need to respond to actual crimes, is “clearing the beach of partygoers” the kind of thing that we need one of the most highly-paid frontline positions in government to be doing? Is it possible that this rather menial task can be routinely performed by someone else? Or do we think that the public safety danger is so severe and risky that we absolutely must send a sworn peace officer to complete the task? You know, the task of telling people to get off the beach. Try to use your imagination a little and think about what roles we actually need police to serve. 

    • What Do I Know March 24, 2022 (10:06 pm)

      It’s been my observation that park staff are the ones who clear the beach. They use a truck and drive through the park announcing the park is near closing time.

  • Robert J Schmidt March 24, 2022 (7:42 pm)

    Funny how the solution to controlling irresponsible scofflaws is always taking away the freedoms of the responsible rather than dealing with the former.

  • Brittany March 24, 2022 (7:46 pm)

    I wish the beach fires were open year round! I would much rather sit by a fire tonight at 8 than on a beautiful sunny day during fire season. I hate the 10pm close. The sun has barely gone down to warrant a fire before the beach closes. There are very few free places teens can spend there time. My parents spent there youth on Alki, so did I, and I hope my children get to as well. 

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