West Seattle, Washington
We’re at City Hall, where the city Design Commission is about to hear a presentation on the Myrtle Reservoir park design, but just finished hearing and voting on the first presentation of the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza design (same design that’s been circulating through months of fundraising, but this is the first time it’s come before an official city voting panel). Bottom line: Commissioners say it needs to be a lot simpler, with the focus on the statue and its new base, rather than other elements, reminiscent of some community concerns voiced at the Alki Bathhouse meeting last September. (See some of the original design sketches on the sealady.org site.) Many more details later. 9:51 PM ADDITION: Here are those details, including a new timetable for completing the project:Read More
In case you were planning to attend the Seattle Design Commission meeting on Thursday where two major West Seattle park projects will be discussed — the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza and the Myrtle Reservoir park — you’ll want to know their times on the SDC’s all-day agenda have changed: Liberty is now at 2:30 pm, Myrtle at 3:30 (the Viaduct South End briefing comes first, at 1 pm). The meeting’s still in the Boards and Commissions Room (L2-80) at Seattle City Hall, 600 4th downtown.
Thanks to Stan Lock, Neighborhood District Coordinator at the city’s West Seattle Neighborhood Service Center in The Junction, for sending the agenda for this Thursday’s city Design Commission meeting, which will include a presentation of the latest schematic design for the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza (archived WSB coverage here) as well as a design-development update on the Myrtle Reservoir park, which as we reported a month ago is apparently definitely slated for some kind of skateboarding feature. Here’s the full agenda for Thursday’s meeting, which is open to the public; the Statue of Liberty comes up at 1 pm Thursday, Myrtle Reservoir at 2 pm (followed by a design update on the south Viaduct replacement project at 3 pm), all in room L-280 at Seattle City Hall (600 Fourth Ave. downtown). One more Statue of Liberty note – today’s the last day to order a brick for the plaza; find out more at the Plaza Project site.
Almost a month after announcing they surpassed their financial goals, leaders of the Seattle (Alki) Statue of Liberty Plaza Project gathered supporters for a celebration last night at Pegasus. And news was made, particularly co-chairs Paul and Libby Carr revealing the donation total is now well past what was announced in mid-January:
(video no longer available due to blip.tv shutdown)
That wasn’t all the news:
As we reported here last month, once the fundraising was over, the city came up with a preliminary timeline – and it stretched out a lot longer than what the Carrs had hoped, as they once envisioned a dedication on the Fourth of July. At last night’s party, Colleen Browne from the Seattle Parks Department said that timeline hasn’t changed, but still might:
(video no longer available due to blip.tv shutdown)
However, Mike Boyle — announced last night as planner for a gala regional celebration once the plaza is complete — says he’s got a different date in mind:
(video no longer available due to blip.tv shutdown)
9/11, of course, has historic significance for the Alki Statue of Liberty, dating back to the vigils of 2001, moving forward to the unveiling of the recast statue on 9/11/07 (WSB coverage here). Can the timeline move up? The picture should become clearer within a few months. Meantime, the Plaza Project expects to keep selling bricks a while longer — more info on their website — and is also talking about organizing a fundraiser at the Admiral Theater, showing Ken Burns’ Statue of Liberty documentary. No date set yet. They say the extra fundraising cushion is in case project costs go over, as well as to cover some added features such as bench backs; anything left over when all is said, done, and built will go to the organization that helped with fundraising and coordination, Urban Sparks, which would in turn spend the money on other local neighborhood projects. (US boss Jack Tomkinson was in attendance last night, as were Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis, City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, City Parks Superintendent Tim Gallagher, and Department of Neighborhoods director Stella Chao.)
As first reported here yesterday afternoon, city Parks Department reps have met with “stakeholders” in the project to build a new plaza for the Alki Statue of Liberty. Major developments from that meeting included a new, longer timeline for the plaza, some design revisions, and another round of public involvement in the process, including an expected public meeting in April. In the day since the meeting, we’ve gathered more reaction and further details on what happens next, starting with a detailed update — and call for action — from Seattle Statue of Liberty Plaza Project co-chairs Libby and Paul Carr:Read More
At an Alki meeting this afternoon, the Parks Department presented a new timeline for Statue of Liberty plaza completion: end of October. During the fundraising campaign successfully completed earlier this month (WSB coverage here), Statue of Liberty Plaza Project co-chairs Libby and Paul Carr had said they hoped the plaza could be built in time for a July 4th dedication this year, but that appears to be out of the question, as a “refinement” and review process is expected to take place over the next few months, and the timeline released today doesn’t even call for the project to be put out for bid until early August, with construction projected to start in mid-September. More tomorrow.
That’s what project co-chair Libby Carr told WSB by phone tonight, at the group’s deadline for wrapping up active fundraising. Co-chair Paul Carr followed up with this e-mail:
We dropped off a letter to the Mayor’s Office late today informing them that we have more than met the goal. Counting the money from the City ($50,000) and what NPA says they can throw in the pot ($10,550), we have almost $175,000. We’ve raised about $115,000 in the last four months. The benches and landscape plaques are all sold or spoken for, and we are going to continue the brick sale (including the “specials”) until the brick company calls for the brick order; we estimate that will be two weeks to a month. We’re doing that partly because people asked for it, and partly because all construction estimates are just that-estimates. Someone has already suggested adding some bench backs-those are not currently in the design. There may be other changes by the City. It would be terrific to have a cushion.
We will have a more formal report to put up on the Sealady website in a
couple of days …
You can find that site here. And to catch up on how this has all developed since last summer, check the WSB Alki Statue of Liberty coverage archive here.
Two days till the deadline for the Seattle (Alki) Statue of Liberty Plaza Project to finish fundraising and figure out if they have enough to cover the full plaza design that’s proposed. We checked in with the project’s co-chairs this afternoon to see where things stand:Read More
As the January 15th deadline for Seattle (Alki) Statue of Liberty Plaza Project fundraising draws near, organizers Paul and Libby Carr have issued another financial update this weekend regarding what they’ve raised and what they’re still trying to bring in:Read More
More than 50 people attended a cozy fundraiser upstairs at Duke’s on Alki tonight for the Seattle (Alki) Statue of Liberty Plaza Project. It marked the start of one more big push for the $57,000 that SSLPP leaders Libby and Paul Carr say they still need to pay for their group’s full vision of a plaza to surround the recast statue and its future new pedestal. They’ve already raised more than $100,000, including $50,000 from the city and other donations including this one announced by Walter Reese from Delridge’s Nucor steel mill (introduced by Libby Carr) at tonight’s event:
Here’s part of the opening remarks by KIRO Radio talk-show host Dave Ross, who emceed the evening, telling a story about appreciating the US – and its icons such as the Statue of Liberty and replicas like the one on Alki – after a trip in Eastern Europe long ago:
Other dignitaries who attended (but didn’t make speeches) included West Seattle-dwelling Seattle City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, his newly elected fellow Councilmembers Bruce Harrell and Tim Burgess, new city Parks Superintendent Timothy Gallagher, and West Seattle’s County Councilmember Dow Constantine. Here’s one more clip, as Paul Carr explains the state of the SSLPP finances:Read More
With less than three weeks to go till their fundraising deadline, Seattle Statue of Liberty Plaza Project organizers Libby and Paul Carr are gathering supporters and donors tonight at Duke’s on Alki (as first announced in a Dec. 3 e-mail). KIRO Radio talk-show host Dave Ross is billed as MC; at one point Mayor Nickels was expected to attend but had to cancel, according to an SSLPP spokesperson. New city parks superintendent Timothy Gallagher is still on the guest list, however; he’s already been to West Seattle at least once, as noted during our coverage of the Parks Department’s business-plan public-input meetings last month. In an update added to the comment thread of this post, Libby Carr reported last week that they hope to raise $60,000 more by the January 15 deadline; at least one major donation is expected to be announced tonight. The size and scope of what will be installed around the statue (last discussed in a September 13 public meeting) will depend at least in part on how far the fundraising goes; the SSLPP website has more details on the various ways they’ve been soliciting donations.
In comments last week on this post, the Seattle (Alki) Statue of Liberty Plaza Project organizers promised they would give the WSB community an updated $ accounting shortly. This afternoon, they posted it in that same comment thread, which is long gone from the home page, so we are reposting here to make sure everyone interested can see it:
Dear WS Blog:
I am sure many of you have been waiting for a financial update on how we are doing at this point in time with the fundraising efforts for the Statue of Liberty Plaza project. I was waiting for the most recent figures, so here it is:
As of Wednesday, December 12th:
$13,500 â€“ Funds raised thru Urban Sparks (Net)
$50,000 â€“ Grant from City of Seattle
$10,500 â€“ Prior fundraising balance
$74,000 – Total
+17,000 â€“ Pledges currently identified
More funds are continuing to be identified and pledged, so the rest of the money is in process and we could Use Your Help to Make It Happen!
Note: Expenses now accounted for include total $3,673.26 at this point in time. A 7% fee is charged by the fiscal sponsor, printing is already done for all promotional material (10,000 brochures, 5,000 inserts, 144 t-shirts), website expenses, postage & office supplies. No money has been expended for the volunteer time of the Carrs, or their committee members.
We think we are doing very well here and are optimistic that we will be successful in raising the rest of the money to build this design in 2008.
We have been in contact with the Mayorâ€™s office and we are in agreement that we will build as much of this design as we have the money for, so yes, it is very important that we finish raising all the money needed to build this design. We would even like to have a bit left over, just in case for any further contingencies such as adding some backs to some of the benches, a suggestion that came from the Sept. 13th meeting. Also, the existing families with benches at the site now are being offered the option of having one of the new benches in the new design at no charge.
We are now also focusing on names for the Major Donor Plaque for the pedestal ($15,000+), Benches ($5,000) and a new category of Landscape Plaques ($2,000).
In general, we are ramping up fundraising efforts with special Brick promotions (see website www.sealady.org) more print and live media exposure, more internet and blog exposure, a fundraising event at Duke’s on Dec. 27, and just lots more phone calls in general to Statue supporters. We have agreed with staff in the Mayorâ€™s office to wrap up fundraising efforts by January 15, 2008.
So, if you are one of the people whose been planning on buying a brick â€œone of these days,â€ that day has arrived! If you want to give a truly memorable gift this Holiday Season, there is probably no present that will last longer.
We know this community has the capacity to finish this project just as we have envisioned it now for 3+ years. Now is the time to step up and demonstrate what we can really accomplish together, and finish this project for generations of people to come.
Thanks, in advance, for your help!
Paul & Libby Carr, Co-Chairs of the SSLPP
The last official public meeting on the project was September 13 (our detailed report here), two days after the recast statue was returned to the existing pedestal at Alki on September 11 (WSB coverage, with video, here). All of our Alki Statue of Liberty coverage including those reports and this one is archived here.
-The biggest building project under way in West Seattle right now is dealing with a good dose of rainwater, according to the photos we found here.
-According to an e-mail just sent out on the Duke’s mailing list, the date is set for the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza Project fundraiser at Duke’s on Alki (as mentioned here last month): 6 pm December 27, hosted by radio talker Dave Ross, with promised appearances by two West Seattle political readers — here’s a screengrab from the e-mail:Read More
Holiday weekend’s winding down, time to get back to the news. We’ve got updates in the works on some ongoing major West Seattle issues/stories, including, right now, the latest on the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza Project. As we reported here last Monday, the approved ’08 city budget includes the $50,000 that city leaders announced for a new pedestal just before the recast statue was placed atop the old one in September. The group raising money in hopes of surrounding that new pedestal with a plaza has just updated its blog (read it here) with the latest on fundraising efforts for the plaza project (last public meeting about it was September 13; here’s our detailed report from that night). In the new blog update, project committee co-chair Paul Carr writes, “… we may need another $80,000 or so, just to be on the safe side”; we e-mailed to see if that meant cost estimates had changed. Paul’s reply to WSB: “The estimate is still the same; as far as we know, the $157,000 is the construction estimate. However, even though no one on our committee is making a dime (no salaries or other labor costs), there still are fund-raising expenses. The Fiscal Sponsor takes a small percentage for being the Fiscal Sponsor and keeping charge of the money, we have printing costs: brochures, etc. Bottom line: If we can raise another $80,000, we estimate we can safely do everything the community wanted.” The Sealady Blog update also mentions a “gala dinner” for the project in the works coming up in late December @ the Alki Duke’s. (If you are just coming in on the statue/plaza story, all our previous coverage is archived here.)
The $900 million-plus city budget for next year got unanimous approval from the City Council a few hours ago. That includes the Pedestrian Safety Initiative that councilmembers publicized with this event along Delridge just last week. Regarding specifics of interest to us in West Seattle — for starters, one note of interest from a newsletter sent by West Seattle-resident Councilmember Tom Rasmussen after the vote — he says the budget that was passed includes “Rental Assistance Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Added $350,000 for emergency rental assistance and homeless prevention to include renters being evicted due to the conversion of their apartments to condominiums.” Brian Hawksford from Councilmember Rasmussen’s office also confirms that the $50,000 for a new pedestal for the Alki Statue of Liberty (as announced at the 9/11/07 unveiling) is in the budget that won final approval, and he says Rasmussen got $ added to the budget to help bring two areas of the city, including ours, up to parity with the rest of the city regarding Parks Department programs for the physically and developmentally disabled. 5 PM ADDENDUM: Dueling press releases are out from the Mayor and Council — here’s his (noting his disappointment that they killed the 311 emergency-infoline proposal), and here’s theirs.
First update at the Sealady.org blog since just before the September 11th statue unveiling — they say they’re halfway to the $ they need for a plaza around the statue, and their new fundraising drive is “buy (plaza) bricks for the holidays.” This Alki Statue of Liberty mini-update gives us an excuse to reuse this photo Mark Bourne shared late last month, just ’cause we liked it so much:
As we mentioned in our detailed report about last night’s Parks Department-organized meeting on the proposed plaza — the remaining time for public comment appears to be short. The official person to send your thoughts to is project manager Pamela Kliment at Parks; but unofficial discussion will continue online at sites including WSB and the Seattle Statue of Liberty Plaza Project blog. Those following the discussion might be interested in a new anti-plaza letter to Parks, cc’d to us and others, from former Alki community leader Cindi Laws:Read More
Now that the recast Alki Statue of Liberty is watching over the waterfront, the time concern has fallen away from the debate over a new plaza at her feet, so a different concern emerged from several audience members at tonight’s Parks Department-organized meeting: Is the plaza plan too fancy for humble Alki Beach?
Listening to how the questions and comments were phrased, we couldn’t help taking the question a step further, especially after the word “gentrification” popped up twice — are some of us ambivalent about the evolution of WS beyond its simple, small-townish core?
Our full report will take a couple hours (wait till you hear about The Dots). In the meantime, here are a few headlines:
–Paul & Libby Carr’s group changed its name today to the Seattle Statue of Liberty Plaza Project.
-The full plaza/pedestal project would cost $156K; $90K of that remains to be raised.
-If that $ is raised by the end of the year, and other aspects of the project stick to a tight timeline distributed at tonight’s meeting, the SSLPP says the plaza could be done and dedicated next Fourth of July.
-If you have an opinion on new pedestal vs. new plaza and pedestal vs. neither, now’s the time to tell the Parks Department what you think, because the public comment window might close fast.
One night after the statue’s unveiling, a chance to pause — briefly — and look ahead to what’s next. First step, tomorrow night’s meeting (7 pm, Alki Bathhouse) described in the official city press release as a chance for “attendees to participate in the decision-making process that will lead to the community’s desired outcome for the statue.” But that’s not all; first, we pause for one more good look at the new statue (shown with West Seattle resident Councilmember Tom Rasmussen and Kevin Keating from the Bronze Works in Tacoma, where the statue was recast last year; photo courtesy Rasmussen staffer Brian Hawksford):
While decisions are made about the “new” statue’s surroundings, the “old” one is slated to take up residence at the Log House Museum; we’ve got messages out in hopes of finding out when. (Thursday update – the museum has canceledÃ‚Â its 9/22 fundraiser but is now focusing on a 10th anniversary fundraiser at Salty’s on November 3rd.) Meanwhile, Mayor Nickels will soon send his 2008 budget plan to the City Council, including $50,000 proposed for the plaza project; a public hearing on the budget already is set for October 10th. And plaza backers are now officially taking donations. But our favorite next step is the simple fact that everyone can now stroll Alki without having to face the empty base. Even those who don’t understand all the fuss.