West Seattle, Washington
6:03 AM: Good morning. It’s Monday, April 18th. Seattle Public Schools are back in session after spring break, while several local schools start theirs today
Today’s forecast includes rain, wind, and cooler temperatures.
The two-week closure of the West Seattle Bridge/Spokane Street ramp to northbound 99 is supposed to start today, though WSDOT also warned that wet weather might change that.
BUSES, WATER TAXI, FERRIES TODAY
Metro is on its regular weekday schedule. Watch @kcmetrobus for word of reroutes/cancellations.
No midday service today through Wednesday for the West Seattle Water Taxi, because of training. Check its status via Water Taxi Vessel Watch. Summer schedule – adding later evening runs on Fridays and Saturdays – starts at the end of this week.
Ferries: WSF is still using the two-boat schedule for Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth. Check here for alerts/updates.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES
756th 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.)
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.
COVID cases are up for a fourth week, while hospitalization and death rates are down. The weekend’s end brings our weekly check of key local numbers, via the Public Health – Seattle/King County dashboard:
*37 percent more cases countywide in the past week than the week before
*Currently averaging 535 new daily cases countywide (up from 384 when we checked a week ago)
*21 percent fewer hospitalizations countywide in the past week than the week before
*Currently averaging 4 new hospitalizations daily (down from 5 a week ago)
*60 percent fewer deaths countywide in the past two weeks than the two weeks before (the dashboard doesn’t offer a one-week increment)
*Currently averaging 1 death daily (same as the two-week average last week)
For West Seattle, we have two-week comparisons (these are the combined totals from two “health reporting areas,” labeled West Seattle and Delridge):
*365 cases between 3/28 and 4/11, up from 134 between 3/13 and 3/27
*2 hospitalizations between 3/28 and 4/11, down from 3 between 3/13 and 3/27
*No deaths between 3/28 and 4/11, unchanged from between 3/13 and 3/27
And checking vaccination rates:
*80.7 percent of all King County residents have completed the initial series (up .1% from a week ago)
*85.4 percent of all King County residents ages 5 and up have completed the initial series (up .1% from a week ago)
*48.1 percent of all King County residents have had the initial series plus a booster
*In West Seattle, here are the zip-code vaccination rates for ages 5 and up (reminder, 98106 and 98146 are not entirely within WS):
98106 – 87.7% completed initial series (up .2% from a week earlier), 52.2% have had a booster
98116 – 92.4% completed initial series (unchanged from a week earlier), 64.1% have had a booster
98126 – 83.3% completed initial series (up .1% from a week earlier), 54% have had a booster
98136 – 93.3% completed initial series (up .1% from a week earlier), 67% have had a booster
98146 – 82.7% completed initial series (up .2% from a week earlier), 47.1% have had a booster
VACCINATION AND TESTING, UPDATED HOURS: No pop-up clinics on the near-future schedule, so you can look for vaccination locations via this statewide lookup. If you want to get tested and don’t have a kit at home, public testing sites include the city-supported site at Nino Cantu Southwest Athletic Complex (2801 SW Thistle, 9 am-5:30 pm Mondays-Saturdays), the Curative kiosk at Don Armeni Boat Ramp (1220 Harbor SW, 9 am-3 pm Monday-Friday), and the Curative van at Summit Atlas (35th/Roxbury, 8 am-noon Tuesday-Friday this week).
Thanks for the photos! Here are four we received today – above, from Vlad Oustimovitch, out flying late this afternoon; below, from Theresa Arbow-O’Connor early this morning:
A different sunrise view from Debbie Taylor, at Forest Lawn in High Point for the Easter Sunrise Service:
And Jerry Simmons captured the egg-decorated edition of the 49th/Spokane walkway:
Not much hope of sun this week, so we’re glad to have the memories!
Two reminders for West Seattle Water Taxi riders: No service between the morning and evening commute hours (9:10 am to 3:25 pm) tomorrow through Wednesday (April 18-19-20) because of crew training/drills. Then on Thursday, the summer schedule begins. Since the Water Taxi already has been running year-round, the main change is the return of later evening service on Fridays and Saturdays, until mid-October.
2 PM: If you’re headed to a business in the main White Center district, check first – as reported on our partner site White Center Now, 268 customers are without electricity because of an outage blamed on a balloon. (Thanks to Cindi for the initial tip.)
3:48 PM: Power’s restored, according to the SCL map.
Three reports in West Seattle Crime Watch this morning:
CLASSIC VAN STOLEN: Be on the lookout for Zack‘s van:
My van was stolen last night … from the Pigeon Point area, 21st/Genesee, between 10 pm and 9 am
1987 Gray Vanagon
Yakima roof cargo box
“Campmobile” sticker on the nose
“Treepeople” sticker in back window
WEDNESDAY UPDATE: Zack and the van have been reunited – see comments.
EARLY-MORNING GUNFIRE: We received a few inquiries this morning about a search in Highland Park around 1 am. We didn’t hear it at the time, and nobody texted, but archived scanner audio confirms that after 911 got a report of possible gunfire near 10th SW/SW Kenyon, they found at least one shell casing in that area. No medical calls, so apparently no victims.
PROWLER/BURGLAR ALERT: From Becky:
Wanted to get the word out about this man observed to be lurking around our homes this am around 9:00. He walked around 5-6 homes before a neighbor spotted him and called law enforcement but he took off. He even opened a door to a home and stepped in. He rummaged around our property before moving on to our neighbor. Attached is a photo of him from our surveillance. This took place on 17th Ave SW near South Seattle College.
Something else you can do today in the sunshine – visit “Gatewood Gardens”! Sally Hardwick sent the photos and report:
Aaron Smith and Michael Starling have been bringing neighbors together on a stretch of California Ave SW between SW Portland Street and SW Monroe Street and through their love of gardening. The whole neighborhood got together and planted bulbs on a few cold rainy days last fall—and the effort and wait was worth it!
This is the second year of daffodil and tulips putting on a spectacular show. I have people stop all the time gushing about the beautification of my parking strip, or “boulevard” as Aaron calls it. As one passerby commented, “We’ve got our own tulip festival right here this year, who needs to go to (Skagit)?!” It really is jaw-dropping, especially considering how it looked before Aaron and Michael stepped in to help. Their planting enthusiasm and generosity is beyond measure!
I am really fortunate to be a part of this group of people who have formed a tight community on a busy street as result of Aaron and Michael’s gardening projects, which included a recent succulent-planting party, summer perennial-planting projects, and of course the star of the show, spring tulips and daffodils! I feel a real sense of community since these efforts began. One neighbor just said, “I love it that we all look out for each other”. We have formed a group text chat, which allows us not only to talk about upcoming plant projects, but also ask “does anyone have a cup of sugar?” when in a pinch. It really is wonderful.
Go for a walk or a drive to take a look, or check out the Instagram page for gorgeous photos!
We also reported on the displays last year, after hearing from another neighbor.
Here’s our list of what’s happening today, mostly from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
EASTER SERVICES: This week our list features the local churches that sent us their info for Easter/Holy Week. That includes two sunrise services – both at 6:30 am – with the West Seattle Ministerial Association at Forest Lawn Cemetery (6701 30th SW) and with the local UCC churches at Alki Beach.
PASSOVER CONTINUES: See the calendar for West Seattle synagogue Kol HaNeshamah for Passover observances.
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: 10 am-2 pm, find fresh food – produce, meat, fish, cheese, beverages, baked goods, and prepared food – at the weekly WSFM. (California SW between SW Oregon and SW Alaska)
COLLEGE VOLLEYBALL: The University of Washington beach-volleyball team is hosting the Husky Invitational tournament again today at Alki, with play starting today at 10 am and continuing through the championship match at 2:30 pm.
ALKI KAYAK TOURS’ FIRST WEEKEND: As reported here Friday, AKT has just opened at Seacrest for the season, with tours and rentals, 10 am-6 pm Fridays-Saturdays-Sundays.
NEED FOOD? White Center Community Dinner Church serves a free meal (take-away available) at 5 pm Sundays at the Salvation Army Center in South Delridge (9050 16th SW).
SUNDAY NIGHT KARAOKE: 9 pm to 1:30 am at Admiral Pub (2306 California SW).
Have an event to list on our calendar? We’re adding more daily – email email@example.com – thank you!
4 weeks from today – Saturday, May 14 – West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day is back for the first time since 2019! 140 sales of all sizes are registered as of tonight – individual sales, block sales, business sales, school-benefit sales, and more. We’ll keep registration open until at least April 26th, so if you are still deciding whether to have a sale, you have about a week and a half left to settle on how you want to be part of this one big day of person-to-person recycling. If you’re ready to register – have your up-to-20-words listing ready, and find the signup form here! Sale hours are 9 am-3 pm on May 14th, with some sellers adding earlier and/or later hours; the map/guide will be available online one week in advance so you can see who’s selling what/where!
Big day for the little ones as another annual tradition returned from its pandemic hiatus: Seattle Parks egg hunts. One was in West Seattle, this morning at Delridge Community Center, starting with the littlest egg hunters on the tennis court:
Older kids were turned loose on the grass – we recorded video as they began:
If you’re still looking for egg hunts, several local churches are having their own events after or between Easter Sunday services tomorrow – check our list.
Got room under your roof for a summer visitor? The DubSea Fish Sticks – the newly renamed collegiate baseball team that plays home games in White Center – are looking for a few more host families for the players who will spend a big part of their summer in this area. Here’s the pitch:
The team recruits players from colleges across the country to come and play for the months of June and July. The 2022 summer roster is composed of players from 26 different colleges. The players report in late May and play with the team to hone their skills and hope to one day play professionally.
Similarly to junior-hockey teams like the Seattle Thunderbirds out of Kent, the Fish Sticks rely on the support of local families to host players for the summer months, also known as billets in the hockey community.
General Manager Justin Moser said, “Host families are the backbone to successful summer collegiate teams. Being able to recruit players from a broader range of area improves our ability to be as competitive as possible. It also allows us to expand our reach into other communities and give college student athletes an experience of living in our community.”
The Fish Sticks aren’t just a baseball team, though. They require players to volunteer within the community weekly, performing community-service hours at the food bank, with local non-profit organizations, help run youth baseball camps, and do community cleanups regularly.
“We’ve seen host families in the past start out as a safe place to stay, and then the relationship grows and many players become an extension of the family. Most of our former players and their families still have relationships with their former host families,” explained Moser.
If you’re interested in learning more about becoming a host family, please visit gofishsticks.com/hostfamilies. The team is still in need of hosts for 8 players this summer.
You can find more information about the Fish Sticks at GoFishSticks.com, where you can join their priority ticket list. Season tickets and flex packs go on sale in mid-April and single-game tickets go on sale in May.
If you’re not sure about inquiring, take a look at the info packet for prospective host families here.
3:47 PM: What’s reported to be a two-vehicle crash is blocking eastbound Sylvan Way near Sylvan Heights Drive. At least one person is reported injured.
3:50 PM: Thanks to the texter who sent the photo of the police response. (added) One of the cars involved is reported to be stolen, a Honda Accord.
4:26 PM: At the scene, police confirmed to WSB that the driver of the stolen car (photo added above) was also the suspect in a reckless-driving situation at Westwood Village just before this. The driver is in custody, also suspected of DUI. The car, meantime, is being towed, and Sylvan should reopen to traffic soon.
5:13 PM; Just went through – Sylvan Way has fully reopened.
SDOT just announced another milestone in the West Seattle Bridge repairs, albeit a belated one – the first pour of strike-delayed specialized structural concrete, a key ingredient for strengthening the bridge before reopening it. SDOT’s announcement explains that this concrete “will be used to form structures inside the bridge to hold the new steel cables for the improved post-tensioning system” – summarized as “46 miles of steel cables … capable of holding more than 20 million pounds of force.” SDOT sent this aerial video of today’s pour – the truck’s atop the bridge but the concrete’s destination is inside:
As reported previously, the project received two deliveries of non-structural concrete earlier this month for new expansion joints, part of the maintenance work that’s being done before the bridge reopens. Today’s announcement adds, “This past week, SDOT completed the final core drills through the bridge’s pier structures, which is another major milestone to get ready for installing the new post-tensioning system. SDOT and its contractor have also be been continuing to make progress filling existing cracks with epoxy and installing carbon wrapping on both the interior and exterior of the bridge.” As for when the bridge will reopen, SDOT reiterated today that they can’t reassess the schedule until all the concrete pours for the post-tensioning are complete.
Right now from Seattle to Tukwila and beyond, hundreds of people are working on and near the Duwamish River and its watershed as part of the return of the one-day mega-work party Duwamish Alive! Above and below are photos from the kickoff ceremony at həʔapus Village Park & Shoreline Habitat in West Seattle; before getting going on their projects, volunteers heard from speakers including Mayor Bruce Harrell:
The sites and organizations who are participating today, according to the Duwamish Alive! Coalition:
Pigeon Point, West Seattle with Delridge Neighborhood Development Association
Heron’s Nest, West Seattle with Shared Spaces Foundation
həʔapus Village Park & Shoreline Habitat, West Seattle with Duwamish River Community Coalition, DIRT Corps, Port of Seattle
North Wind’s Weir, Tukwila with King County Dept Natural Lands & Water
Riverview Park, Kent with Green River Coalition and Kent Parks
Fenster Nature Park, Auburn with Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group
Duwamish Hill Preserve, Tukwila with Tukwila Parks, Forterra & Friends of the Hill
Duwamish River Kayak Cleanup, West Seattle with Puget Soundkeeper Alliance
Delridge Wetlands, West Seattle with DNDA
Duwamish Longhouse, West Seattle with the Duwamish Tribe
Herring’s House Park, West Seattle with Seattle Parks
Cecil Moses Park, Tukwila with King County Parks
If you’re volunteering at one of today’s sites, send a pic so we can add!
Angie hopes you will be on the lookout for her car: “Last night, my silver 1977 Toyota Celica was stolen from the 4700 block of Findlay St. in West Seattle.” Plate # AGE4765.
Here’s how the weekend begins – with our list of events and reminders, mostly from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
ROAD-WORK REMINDER: SDOT plans to work at 45th/Admiral today, installing the flashing-beacon sign that’s art of a package of crossing improvements.
HOLY WEEK SERVICES: Local churches that sent us their schedules have services today/tonight, listed here.
SECOND NIGHT OF PASSOVER: See the calendar for West Seattle synagogue Kol HaNeshamah for Passover observances.
EGG HUNTS: Four in West Seattle today:
–Fauntleroy Community Association‘s neighborhood-wide egg hunt, final day – details here
–Delridge Community Center (4501 Delridge Way SW) at 10 am – details here
–Lincoln Park (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW) at 10 am – details here
–Ounces (3809 Delridge Way SW) at 3 pm – details here
Duwamish Alive! is a watershed-wide collaborative effort in improving the health of our salmon by restoring their habitat, which provides food, shelter, and cool, clean water. Starting at 10:00 am, volunteers will be restoring native habitat in multiple urban parks and open spaces from Seattle to Auburn in the ongoing effort to keep our river alive and healthy for our communities, salmon, and Puget Sound, proving that many individuals working together can make a substantial difference in improving the health of our region. Visitors will learn about the river, its salmon, wildlife and communities from the special programing and information at həʔapus Village Park & Shoreline Habitat, located on the ancestral site of the Duwamish Tribe along the river. Meet the organizations working to improve and protect the river and its habitat areas. Take home a FREE NATIVE PLANT from the Duwamish Longhouse while visiting their exhibit “Spirit Returns – A Duwamish and Settler Story.”
Scheduled speakers include Duwamish Tribe chair Cecile Hansen and Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell.
LIVE MORNING MUSIC AT C & P COFFEE: 10:30 am-noon, Marco de Carvalho and Friends perform at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor). No cover.
COMMUNITY CLEANUP: From Erik, word of an 11 am-1 pm cleanup at and near the Rotary Viewpoint Park encampment (35th/Alaska). The group organizing the cleanup says camp residents plan to participate. They also will have cleanup opportunities along 35th SW if you don’t want to go into the park. Equipment and bags provided. Questions, contact Erik at 206-852-9552.
VIETNAMESE CULTURAL CENTER: Open to visitors noon-3 pm, as noted here. (2234 SW Orchard)
LOG HOUSE MUSEUM: The Southwest Seattle Historical Society has reopened its museum on Alki, and you can visit noon-4 pm, (61st/Stevens)
KIDS’ CRAFT EVENT: A special reason to visit the Log House Museum – a crafting event for kids noon-2 pm, a chance to have fun and learn about history via old-school craft creation.
WINE TIME: Viscon Cellars‘ (5910 California SW; WSB sponsor) tasting room is open 1-6 pm, for tasting or by-the-glass/by-the-bottle wine.
OPEN MIC: Go perform at The Spot West Seattle (2920 SW Avalon Way), 6 pm!
EVENING MUSIC @ C & P COFFEE: Singer/songwriter E.C. Frazier at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor), 7 pm, no cover.
DRAG SHOW AT ADMIRAL PUB: Saturday’s the night for Dolly Madison‘s show at Admiral Pub (2306 California SW), 9 pm.
Something to add, for today/tonight or beyond? Email firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
Volunteers placed the eggs after filling them with non-candy surprises. That was just one topic at the FCA board’s April meeting, held in-person and online this past Tuesday night. Major topic continued to be the Fauntleroy ferry dock/terminal replacement project, now in the planning stage. The FCA is organizing a community meeting for May 24th at The Hall at Fauntleroy (time TBA) to give people from all over West Seattle a primer on the dock and the project, which will be the biggest transportation project in West Seattle post-bridge and pre-light rail. They’ll include Q&A, with Washington State Ferries reps invited to participate in that. They’re hoping to have elected officials present too.
In the meantime, as the dock project goes forward, they’re hoping to get WSF to survey drivers about their final destinations, as they don’t believe WSF has enough current data on that, though it’s critical information for planning.
Current dock-related issues of concern include traffic control; the FCA is still working on bringing together all the involved agencies – SDOT, WSF, WSP, SPD – to talk about traffic and line-cutting. They’re also working on getting collision data both for that meeting and for the upcoming community-wide dock discussion.
Before that meeting happens, the FCA’s annual general meeting will be May 3rd, 6-8 pm at The Hall at Fauntleroy, which will include a chance to mingle as well as the annual board election.
Watch fauntleroy.net for updates between meetings, which happen on second Tuesdays most months.
It’s the fifth week of what’s supposed to be a six-week experiment with “driver report card” signage showing what percentage of drivers stopped for pedestrians at two crossings in High Point, and things haven’t gotten any better. The signs are updated on Fridays, so that’s when we’ve been checking them. The one above is the sign at an unmarked crossing on Sylvan Way, and this week’s check showed only 9 percent of the drivers stopping, down from 17 percent last week, which is as good as it’s gotten at that spot. At the westbound sign, a marked crosswalk at 34th/Morgan, the 27 percent count was up a bit from last week’s 22 percent:
SDOT says the counts are taken midweek by student interns working with the Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association. The announcement of the project said it’s based on one in St. Paul, Minnesota, that “led to more drivers following the law.” (We found a slide deck from that city suggesting it was part of a broader pedestrian-awareness program; SDOT says there’s more to come in theirs too.)
One of West Seattle’s unique seasonal businesses is about to open its doors for the year. The photo and update are from Gill at Alki Kayak Tours: “Just wanted to let you know that Alki Kayak Tours is opening this weekend for the season! We’ll be open for Kayak, Paddleboard, and Bike Tours and Rentals, Fridays/Saturdays/Sundays 10-6.” AKT is at Seacrest (1660 Harbor SW), same place you’ll find the West Seattle Water Taxi dock and Marination Ma Kai.
The latest Andover RV-encampment “remediation” cleanup is over, so we asked Seattle Public Utilities about the results. Spokesperson Sabrina Register says crews working there, primarily this past Tuesday, “collected and disposed of 15,000-thousand pounds of trash and debris.”
We asked about plans for six other RV encampments around West Seattle. None are “currently scheduled for remediation,” Register replied, adding that “Sites considered for remediation include locations where five or more RVs are present, and public health and safety-related factors are assessed.” So here’s what has happened/will happen at the six sites about which we inquired:
We have performed intense, one-day cleans (called geographic or geocleans) at the following locations:
Barton (east and west) of 16th SW (1/3)
SW Brandon west of 26th SW (2/14, 4/4)
SW Juneau near 26th SW (3/3, 4/4)
West Marginal Place (1/10, 3/16)
The following two locations are scheduled for geocleans in the near future:
1st Avenue South in the SW Detroit vicinity
2nd Avenue SW south of Highland Park Way
The amount of trash and debris that SPU reported removing in this Andover cleanup is double the total from four months ago.
Three development notes from the West Seattle Junction area:
4508 CALIFORNIA SW: First, a reminder that the first of the next wave of major projects in the heart of The Junction is expected to start soon. This is the mixed-use project that will replace the building that housed recently closed restaurants Lee’s and Kamei as well as the former Naked Crepe/West Seattle Cyclery space. It finished Design Review more than three years ago – here’s our report on the final review meeting in January 2019, at which time it was described as 58 apartments, 12 lodging units, 17 underground parking spaces, and ground-floor commercial space. When we asked property owner/developer Leon Capelouto about the timeline recently, he said work could start by month’s end; the most recent permit filing for the project, related to use of the alley behind the building, suggests an early May start is expected.
CHURCH-PROPERTY REDEVELOPMENT: An early-stage filing with the city this week proposes 30 townhouses for the parking lot and former school building that West Seattle Christian Church owns to the east of its main building, 4401-4425 41st SW. We asked WSCC’s Pastor Worth Wheeler about the plan; he explained that the filing is part of a feasibility exploration for a potential buyer, but both sides have two months to consider it, so it’s not finalized yet. The church also formerly owned land across 42nd SW, including the 42nd/Genesee corner where a new owner is currently developing an apartment building.
MICROAPARTMENT PROJECT: Several blocks south on 41st, it’s been five years since we first reported on a plan for 22 microapartments at 4807 41st SW. Last time we made note of it was when the site went on the market in 2020. The building-permit file showed activity on the project recently, so we checked out the site and noted that work is under way (below is the view eastward from the alley).
We don’t know how long the work’s been going on, as we weren’t tracking this one closely. County Assessor records do not show an ownership change having resulted from the aforementioned 2020 listing.
A local nonprofit that helps thousands of families every year just got a boost from one of our area’s biggest businesses – here’s the announcement and photo sent by Nucor:
Today Nucor Steel Seattle, Inc. presented WestSide Baby with a check for $9,260.
This check was the result of an semi-annual behavior-based safety Observation Blitz, which is coordinated with the plant’s regular maintenance outages. During the Blitz which ran for three weeks, Nucor challenges their teammates to complete as many safety observations as possible and donates $5, for every observation completed, to a local charitable organization. For the first time, Harris Seattle also joined in on the safety challenge. Between the combined efforts of Nucor’s 1,255 and Harris’s 617 observations, Nucor was able to make this donation today.
WestSide Baby will be able to take that donation and turn it into approximately 65,000 diapers for families in need. In 2021, WestSide Baby provided approximately 2.5 million diapers, along with 1,612 car seats, and 2,075 clothing bags to our local community. Nucor is proud to partner with WestSide Baby as they work to meet the local needs.
Pictured in the check presentation are, left to right: DJ Williams, Observer Champion (127 observations), a Nucor Mobile Equipment Operator; Carina Schubert, WestSide Baby Director of Development; Samantha Steffeck, Observer Runner-up (55 observations), a Nucor Safety Engineer; and Oliver Lyles, Nucor’s Safety Director.