West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
There was a lot to talk about when HPAC, the community coalition for Highland Park, Riverview, and South Delridge, convened its first 2023 meeting online Wednesday night.
Transportation was the big topic. The photo above shows SW Holden from 12th SW to 11th SW. The former intersection is getting a pedestrian-activated signal, and SDOT was going to as a result remove the flashing beacon at the latter – until local advocates convinced them not to. That responsiveness was something on which they complimented the night’s marquee guest, SDOT director Greg Spotts. He started work just as what HPAC called “two and a half years of hell’ – the West Seattle Bridge detour – was ending. HPAC co-chair Kay Kirkpatrick, facilitating the meeting, told Spotts that SDOT was very responsive to the area’s needs and concerns during that time.
Spotts then offered a few opening remarks. “I’ve developed a real passion for West Seattle,” though he decided to live, carlessly until at least this fall, in South Lake Union. He’s done 100+ field visits with community members around the city, four mornings a week, every week. (In West Seattle, those have so far included Fauntleroy and Alki.) His first day at work in Seattle started with.a visit to the West Seattle Bridge. He talked about the Alki response to reckless driving – installing features including speed humps. He also talked about the rapid response that created a bike detour when the low bridge broke down in last month’s ice storm. Spotts said his theme for SDOT for 2023 is “Delivery fast and flavorful, in concert with our values.” He said he told the mayor in his July 1st job interview that he wants to end the days of telling communities what they’re getting by pointing to lines on a map, and start “co-creating” projects instead.
Then he listened to myriad concerns raised by attendees.
Historic Kenyon Hall is hosting the duo Great Aunt all the way from Down Under this Saturday and thought them worth a special shoutout:
Kenyon Hall proudly presents
GREAT AUNT (from Melbourne, Australia)
January 28th, 2023
DOORS @ 7:00 PM
SHOWTIME @ 7:30 PM
“Raw and austere, simple and bold; full of stomping feet and clapping hands, chants and harmonies, whispered words and soulful lament – that’s the music of Great Aunt. Listen, and you’ll hear tales of joy and grief, whiskey and wine, gratitude and purpose-seeking.”
Great Aunt sets out on a US tour starting in Portland with Hall favorite Mary Flower, and lending their talents to our stage before heading East.
TICKETS: $15 General, $10 Seniors (ages 55+) and Students (ages 18 & under)*
TO RESERVE TICKETS: Go here
Haven’t been to Kenyon Hall? It’s at 7904 35th SW.
From Laura: “My vehicle was stolen from West Seattle on Henderson St. last night 1/25, gray 2018 Kia Sportage, license plate BRK6105.” (Here’s a stock photo.) Call 911 if you see it. (As noted by City Attorney Ann Davison, Kias are such a theft target these days, along with Hyundais, she’s suing over it.)
4:52 PM: The Sound Transit Board‘s meeting has just concluded. As we learned shortly before the meeting, West Seattle “areas of further study” results for ideas such as scrapping the Avalon station were not part of today’s presentation after all, but will be included when the board’s System Expansion Committee meets at 1 pm Thursday, February 9th. The slide deck for this afternoon’s presentation by ST’s Cathal Ridge nonetheless included two dates of note:
Those dates: The vote to finalize the route and station locations is now expected on November 16th. The Final Environmental Impact Statement will be released at some point before that. According to the new timeline, the West Seattle project schedule has slid two months; the line is expected to open in the final quarter of 2032. One more note: While a new survey for the West Seattle/Ballard extensions mostly focuses on the unsettled areas, there is an open-ended option for providing West Seattle feedback; you can go here to do that before February 17th.
6:54 PM: The project website does recap some of what’s been found about the proposed West Seattle “areas of further study,” even though it wasn’t discussed today. Go here and scroll to where you can expand the West Seattle Link Extension section. From what you’ll find there:
Delridge access, integration and alignment refinement shifts alignment south towards SW Yancy Steet to improve passenger access and transit integration and reduce effects to organizations serving low-income and communities of color.
14 fewer residential and 3 additional business displacements
Eliminates potential passenger and freight conflicts
Permanent closure of 32nd Ave
Cost delta compared to realigned financial plan: + $50 million
Eliminate Avalon Station eliminates station and optimizes alignment to reduce costs. Assumes shifting alignment south towards SW Yancy St.
48 fewer residential displacements and 3 fewer business displacements
Longer travel times for passengers closer to DEIS Avalon Station
No expected decrease in project ridership
Reduces temporary and permanent roadway closures
Cost delta compared to realigned financial plan: – $80 million
Alaska Junction station access refinement shifts station entrance 42nd Avenue SW to improve passenger access.
90 additional equitable transit oriented development housing units
Eliminates need for pedestrian crossing of 41st Ave SW
39 fewer residential and 32 additional business displacements
Cost delta compared to realigned financial plan: + $80 million
Two project notes:
5252 CALIFORNIA SW DESIGN PACKET: One week from tonight, the Southwest Design Review Board meets online to look at two West Seattle projects. The second review, at 7 pm, is for the Aegis Living seniors’ complex proposed at 5252 California SW. We’ve been reporting on the plan since last July; now with a week to go until the meeting, the final design packet is available for review – more than 100 pages, twice the size of the draft version we linked previously, It includes the new “concept” rendering shown above, but its main purpose is to explore three “massing” (size and shape) options, since this is the Early Design Guidance part of the process. As previously mentioned, the proposal is for a five-story building – one floor higher than the basic zoning because they’re proposing Living Building Challenge elements – with up to 100 units (70 assisted living, 30 memory care). Public comment is part of the 7 pm Thursday, February 2nd, meeting; attendance/commenting info is here.
1318 ALKI COMMENTS: From today’s Land Use Information Bulletin, a Shoreline Substantial Development application has been submitted for a proposal to build two buildings with six townhouses and nine offstreet-parking spaces at 1318 Alki SW. Comments will be accepted through February 24th; this notice explains how to offer yours.
A second candidate has officially announced a campaign for the Seattle City Council District 1 seat that Lisa Herbold is leaving after two terms. Maren Costa is a West Seattle resident whose announcement describes her as having been “illegally fired in 2020 for organizing Amazon workers” after organizing Amazon Employees for Climate Justice in 2019 and expanding its mission in 2020 “to include better working conditions for warehouse workers during the pandemic.” As reported nationally, a National Labor Relations Board lawsuit was filed against Amazon; it was settled out of court. As for why she’s running for City Council, Costa’s announcement quotes her as saying, “Everyone in our community deserves a livable wage, safe working conditions, and affordable housing. And we need Council members who understand that ‘feeling safe’ means different things to seniors, or to families, or to those of us who are LGBTQ+, or to the unhoused, or to people of color. And it is critical that at this moment, we look for solutions that also help us respond to the climate crisis.” Costa also says she recently “worked at Microsoft as a principal user experience designer leading the shopping team” and is an adviser “for three climate startups: Power Bloom Solar, Carbon Zero, and Impact Karma.” You can read Costa’s full announcement here. Her announcement comes six days after the first one in the race; Preston Anderson announced his campaign last week. Formal filing week is May 15-19, so the field of candidates won’t be finalized until then; the primary election is August 1st.
11:40 AM: Police are responding to The Junction to search for a bank robber. The robbery is reported to have happened at HomeStreet Bank (4022 SW Alaska; WSB sponsor). No description yet; a K-9 team will be part of the search.
11:48 AM: The description so far: White or Hispanic man, 30s, 6′, beanie, gray neck gaiter, gray/possibly orange work gloves, gray hoodie, last seen headed north on foot through the nearest alley. If you’re in the area, you may hear police making loudspeaker announcements about the K-9 deployment.
12:01 PM: A HomeStreet Bank employee confirms to us at the scene that they were held up. The branch is temporarily closed for the investigation. Photo added above. No word so far of a weapon being involved, nor are any injuries reported. If you have any information for the investigation, the SPD incident # is 23-024792.
12:37 PM: No further updates. Commenters note that two schools which are a few blocks north of the scene went into lockdown as a precaution.
3:25 PM: The only additional information released by police is that the robber “handed the bank teller a note that instructed her to give him the money. No weapon was seen or implied.”
The most common reason for auto theft is to use the vehicle to get to another crime scene. That’s what police have long said, and that’s what we’ve seen in practice so many times – a vehicle caught in security video turns out to have been stolen somewhere else. Such was the case with this pickup:
A texter sent that photo early Wednesday morning, noting “Dumped and stolen. Police and tow truck have come and gone.” It had been abandoned on SW Trenton near Westwood Village. Turns out the pickup, a 2001 Dodge Ram 3500 diesel, had been spotted just before noon Tuesday by someone else near Lincoln Park, casing and then breaking the window of a van parked on Fauntleroy:
They gave the plate number to police, who confirmed that checked to a stolen pickup. Through social media, the car-prowl witness later found out it was stolen in Normandy Park, and eventually connected with the owner. After getting word of the truck’s recovery, the owner told the witness that the truck was trashed inside and that a locked toolbox in the back had been drilled open. Missing items include new Milwaukee tools and $1,500 in blinds that had been picked up for a customer – so please speak up if you happen to see items like those dumped anywhere. (The car-prowl witness also has made contact with the van’s owner, so they know what happened.)
From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, here’s what’s happening in the hours ahead:
PIZZA FUNDRAISER: Dine at, or order from, MOD Pizza‘s 4755 Fauntleroy Way SW location today/tonight (open until 10 pm) and use the code in our calendar listing so part of the proceeds will benefit West Seattle High School boys’ basketball.
WEST SEATTLE UKULELE PLAYERS: All levels welcome, weekly 1 pm gathering. Email email@example.com to see where they’re playing today.
SOUND TRANSIT BOARD: Did you get one of those flyers? Today’s meeting is what it’s about. As previewed here, agenda items for the 1:30-4 pm meeting include a report on the “further study” items for the West Seattle light-rail extension, which include the possibility of shifting the Delridge-area routing and dropping the Avalon station. This page has information on how to comment as well as the link for the live stream; you also can go to the meeting in person at the board room downtown (401 S. Jackson).
THURSDAY FOOD-TRUCK POP-UPS: 4-8 pm at Highland Park Corner Store (7789 Highland Park Way SW), the NWTXBBQ food truck will be visiting.
HIGHLAND PARK RUN CLUB: Also at HP Corner Store, meet up at 6:30 pm Thursdays for a ~3-mile run.
RAPIDRIDE H LINE Q/A: Talk with construction-team members in an online drop-in Q/A session 5-6 pm. This story includes video/phone connection info.
HIGHLAND PARK ELEMENTARY OPEN HOUSE: Prospective families are welcome to visit the school (1012 SW Trenton) for tonight’s 6-7:30 pm open house.
WEST SEATTLE TRANSPORTATION COALITION: Tonight’s 6:30 pm agenda includes a low-bridge update from SDOT and a discussion of the Fauntleroy ferry-dock replacement project. It’s an online meeting; video/phone connection info is in our preview.
WEST SEATTLE DEMOCRATIC WOMEN: Tonight’s 6:30 pm online meeting includes a discussion of the “social housing” initiative I-135, which you’ll be voting on as soon as your just-sent ballot arrives. RSVP ASAP – the email address is in our calendar listing.
‘AN ENDLESS SHIFT’: New play at ArtsWest (4711 California SW; WSB sponsor) opens tonight, 7:30 pm:
Created from verbatim accounts of the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic by the Seattle nurses who were there, AN ENDLESS SHIFT is a tribute to the everyday heroes who were confronted with what would become the longest shift of their lives. Seattle theater artist Gloria Alcalá, in a solo tour de force performance, embodies and voices the multitude of perspectives on the harrowing journey Seattle nurses faced in an ever-shifting landscape. It is a journey of challenge, hope, and deep recognition of our common humanity, told in the firsthand words of the humans who were there.
Get your ticket(s) here.
Have something to add to our calendar? Email info to firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
9:47 AM: That’s the view from the new-ish Delridge/Orchard traffic camera, with police blocking southbound Delridge Way because of a crash. Few details except that a truck is involved and officers have called for an SDOT crew to clean up spilled dirt. Avoid the area for a while.
9:59 AM: At the scene, we’ve learned the incident with the spill is actually on 30th/Genesee, The crash blocking southbound Delridge is a collision where Sylvan meets Delridge; no serious injuries, and they’re awaiting tow trucks. Photo added above.
10:14 AM: Our crew then went over to check out the Genesee situation. A stuck truck spilled some dirt; eastbound is blocked at Avalon and westbound is blocked near the hillclimb section east of Avalon:
10:34 AM: The Delridge crash has cleared and all lanes have reopened.
10:41 AM: And on Genesee, there’s still dirt to clean up but officers just told dispatch “the truck is out of here.”
11:50 AM: Genesee has fully reopened.
Julia Douthwaite Viglione, a local educator/writer whose community involvement includes leading the monthly Classic Novels (And Movies) Book Club, is offering a free writing workshop for kids/tweens starting one week from today:
Write YOUR Story
Ages 8 – 12
Thursdays, February 2, 2023 – May 4, 2023
4:30 – 5:30 pm
High Point Community Center
6920 34th SW
Free writing workshop! As a peer group, you’ll evaluate 3 existing stories selecting one plotline as the basis for a brand new story. The group will then create a brand new story, and illustrate it before it is sent to print. For the second part of the program students will be working on their very own story with support and guidance from professional writers. The program ends with a celebration—a chance for each participant to share an excerpt from their work and play some games. Each participant will receive a spiral bound, color copy of the group book. Each registrant must be committed to attend all 12 sessions for the program to work. Enrollment required. To enroll, call 206-684-7422.
Here’s a flyer for the workshop.
9:40 AM: Incident at Delridge/Webster blocking southbound lanes of Delridge.
10:34 AM: Reopened.
6:01 AM: Good morning! It’s Thursday, January 26th.
Mostly cloudy, chance of rain, high in the mid-40s. While the sunset might not be visible, if you’re taking heart in the longer days, note that starting at 5:01 pm tonight, the sun sets after 5 pm (until November 5th).
TODAY’S TRANSIT STATUS
–Metro is on a regular schedule today but still running with fewer buses and fewer drivers – keep watching notification channels such as @kcmetroalerts for trip cancellations and route suspensions (far fewer of those alerts so far this week).
-The West Seattle Water Taxi is on its regular schedule.
-WSF’s Triangle Route remains on a two-boat schedule – check here for alerts/updates.
Delridge cameras: Besides the one below (Delridge/Genesee), cameras are also up at Delridge/Oregon, Delridge/Juneau, Delridge/Orchard, and Delridge/Henderson.
High Bridge – the camera at the top:
High Bridge – the view from its southwest end (when SDOT points the 35th/Avalon/Fauntleroy camera that way):
Low Bridge – open again:
1st Ave. S. Bridge – the south route:
Highway 99: – the northbound side at Lander.
MORE TRAFFIC CAMS: All working traffic cams citywide can be seen here, most with video options; West Seattle and vicinity-relevant cameras are also on this WSB page … Are movable city bridges opening for vessels? Check the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed.
If you see a problem on the bridges/streets/paths/water, please text or call us (when you can do it safely) – 206-293-6302.
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