By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Two major topics and several quick updates highlighted the Morgan Community Association‘s quarterly meeting last night. MoCA president Deb Barker facilitated the online meeting.
SKATING AT MORGAN JUNCTION PARK ADDITION: The site north of Morgan Junction Park has “been such an eyesore for so long,” why not do something with it? That’s the contention of the community members who went rogue and built a makeshift skatepark last year. This was a hot topic at the last MoCA quarterly meeting in October; last night, MoCA again heard from the West Seattleites who turned the long-vacant site into an unofficial skatepark and are campaigning, as “Let The Kids Skate,” for that use to be included in the permanent plan. (The site’s been owned by the city for almost nine years, but its development as a park stalled during COVID.) One supporter, John, said Parks asked them for concepts to incorporate a “skate dot” into the pre-existing design for the park addition. Another, Zac, presented some of their ideas. Parks has shut down use of the community-built features on the site, but it might be another six years until the park is developed, though; they contend that’s too long to wait while the site sits vacant. They think the south part of the site is the best spot for a skate dot – the north end has some conflicts with neighboring residents, although they contend that could be mitigated. He showed some concepts:
Truly activating the site could be a draw for Morgan’s growing business district too, they contend – reasons to come and stay, rather than leaving – so they hope business owners will get excited about the idea too. Zac said the group likes Option 3 best. It would include features that don’t exist at current skating areas in West Seattle. Here’s a closer look:
He said their rough schematics would be pretty easy to use to springboard to a cost estimate – and that community fundraising is one option. Their next steps include soliciting community feedback, as well as Parks’ commitment to redesigning the site. Community support is vital – this group is all-volunteer, and if they don’t have support, they’re not going to keep pushing it indefinitely, they said. The site, meantime, is awaiting soil remediation, but Let The Kids Skate has been told that’s not imminent – no contract’s been awarded.
Among those on hand for the meeting was Matt Johnston, a West Seattleite who’s been involved in past skatepark projects, including development of a citywide plan to which he says Parks is “still beholden.” This site is not on the plan, but Alki and Hiawatha are, for example, and Johnston said that the city’s been known to remove one location and add another if that works. “They should be interested in opportunities to do what they said they were going to do,” he said.
2023 MORGAN JUNCTION FESTIVAL: MoCA’s Michael Brunner presented a recap of past years as the group looks ahead to bringing back a full-day festival for the first time since before the pandemic. “It takes a lot of work,” he noted, and that includes lots of volunteer power. Here’s some of what it’s entailed in the past:
A date hasn’t been finalized yet – June 18th is a leading candidate – but planning meetings need to start soon. Here are some of the roles with which they welcome assistance:
If you can help make this festival happen, firstname.lastname@example.org.
FUTURE EV SITE: Environmental cleanup of the site at 42nd/Morgan was completed in November. Barker said they’d asked Seattle City Light questions including whether the site could be used before development. Yes, with conditions, she was told.
COMPREHENSIVE PLAN UPDATE: If you haven’t yet been to a meeting for input and information about this citywide plan, an online meeting is set for January 30.
DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITY: 6007 California SW, proposed for a four-story mixed-use project, is “on hold … stalled over funding issues,” Barker said she was told by a project team member … 6314 41st SW, a 34-apartment project, is still going through land-use review … The California/Brandon Aegis Living proposal, as we’ve reported, goes before the Southwest Design Review Board on February 2nd.
NEW BUSINESS: West Seattle Wonder Dogs is now in Morgan Junction (6040 California SW). Proprietor Erika Abrahamson says, “We’re really loving the new location.” Their offerings include dog day care and training.
PREPAREDNESS: As discussed at the last meeting, Gatewood Elementary will have a special emphasis on this during this month’s Parent Education Night, as a sort of pilot for future wider-community meetings.
FRIENDS OF MORGAN JUNCTION PARKS: This group is planning an April volunteer-work-party event for Morgan Junction Park and will be seeking volunteers.
MoCA BOARD: Openings remain, including the vice presidency. Email email@example.com if interested.
NEXT MEETING: April 19th, 7 pm, likely still online.