West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Some promising news emerged on multiple fronts at this month’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting.
CRIME DROP: WWRHAH was briefed by Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith. The area covered by this community group, he said, has had 56 incidents in tracked categories compared to 119 a year earlier. That includes one fewer robbery, one more aggravated assault, 7 crimes against persons compared to 5 – but property crime is down dramatically – one more burglary, one more commercial burglary (3 compared to 2), but larceny (much of it shoplifting) is down dramatically, about a fourth of what it was. Also: 15 car prowls compared to 17, 8 car thefts compared to 13. 49 property crimes in all – less than half it was at this point last year. Police continue working harder to get repeat offenders kept in jail – including for example making sure the “(law enforcement) objects to release” box is checked on reports.
The subject of the arrest of officer-assault suspect Jorge Cruz-Benitez two nights earlier came up; he was allegedly first spotted doing graffiti vandalism in the area (Delridge/Henderson). Lt. Smith echoed what we noted in a previous discussion, that not all tagging is gang-related. (This meeting was on Tuesday night; one night later, on Wednesday night, Cruz-Benitez was released from jail, according to the KC Jail Register.)
(Southwestern side of Roxhill Bog – WSB photo from 2014)
ROXHILL PARK AND BOG: WWRHAH has been pushing forever to get the bog water-flow fixed –
here’s an extensive report we published in 2014 – and is making progress. Your involvement can accelerate things. First:
The Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition usually meets on first Tuesdays – but not tonight, given the proximity to the holidays. However, WWRHAH is helping coordinate these two special upcoming community discussions that you’re encouraged to be part of. First – imagine more events in Roxhill Park!
On Tuesday, January 9, from 6:30 to 7:30 at Southwest Library, we’ll join Parks Commons and Arts in Parks Coordinator Randy Wigner to discuss ways Roxhill Park could be a good location for this program. The goal of the Parks Commons Program is to develop community capacity and civic engagement in event production, and the program is assigned to parks that experience long-term public safety issues and where those issues would be improved by increased community use of these parks. We’ll discuss park needs and if the program is a good fit.
Next – looking ahead to the RapidRide H Line, but not about the buses or routing:
On Thursday, January 18, community members and kids are invited to join artists from Oakland’s WowHaus studio for a discovery walk to help inform art projects coming to our neighborhood as part of the redevelopment of the 120 into the Metro Rapid Ride H line. Around 2:30 pm, we’ll meet at Roxhill Elementary under the main entry awning, then walk over to the 26th and Roxbury stop and hop on the 120 bus to the stop at Trenton and Delridge (so bring your bus fare). Members of the public can also meet at between 3:30 and 4 at the corner of Delridge and Henderson (where the largest concrete triangle is located in the right-of-way), and join the walk from there. What ideas do you have? Join us and share! Learn more about our selected artists here.
In case you missed last week’s community meeting about the recent Arroyos/south Arbor Heights power outage and related trouble – what you see above is the slide deck explaining what Seattle City Light has planned for the area. A project spanning multiple blocks of South Arbor Heights is expected to last about a year and scheduled to start next March. (The slide deck includes a map you can also see here.) SCL says it’ll be putting in “new electrical conduit and cables” to replace “underground, direct buried cables (that) are approaching the ending of their life.” Besides this month’s outage, the area’s relatively recent outages included last April, August 2016, and May 2016.
STOLEN CAR FOUND: Thanks for the text about a sizable police presence at 16th and Henderson this past hour. Officers were questioning someone after finding a stolen car.
Two reader reports:
CAR PROWL: From Cheryl:
Wanted to let you know that I filed a police report on 12/12 regarding a break in of my car parked in front of my apartment building (in the 3500 block of) SW Ocean View Drive, Arbor Heights. They took several personal items including leather gloves (which were in a compartment), my phone holder, CDs (in the trunk) and my handicap parking permit (in the side compartment of my door). Other silly items taken as well.
ABANDONED BICYCLE: Lisa says this has been on a Fauntleroy corner for almost two weeks:
Yours? Let us know.
Back in March, we mentioned three West Seattle sidewalk projects were in the works for this year; the city-provided map above accompanied the announcement. With the year almost over, we found that two of them have slid to 2018: The city is currently seeking bids to build the sidewalk along 35th SW between SW 100th and SW 106th in Arbor Heights and a shorter stretch near Sanislo Elementary on Puget Ridge, plus a project outside West Seattle in the same solicitation. No word on the status of the third project, one block of SW 104th in Arbor Heights.
Weekend before last, more than 100 homes in The Arroyos and South Arbor Heights lost power. The unrelated but concurrent Trader Joe’s outage overshadowed it in our headlines, but it’s not the first time an equipment problem took out the power for southwesternmost West Seattle, and so Seattle City Light is having a community meeting Thursday to answer questions and explain “future electrical infrastructure upgrades” in that area. Bring your questions/concerns to the meeting at 6:30 pm Thursday (December 14th) at Westside School (10404 34th SW; WSB sponsor).
Thanks for the tip: We just checked with Seattle Public Utilities about a reported water break in Arbor Heights. SPU says a 4-inch main broke and water was welling up in the 11400 block of 35th SW. They “partially closed a valve to reduce the flow” while making repairs; water should be returning to the 58 homes and four hydrants that were temporarily affected.
P.S. If you have water problems, such as no service or discoloration, 206-386-1800 is the SPU hotline. And thanks for then letting us know too, so we can check on the big picture of what’s going on.
4:33 PM: Seattle Fire has a “full response” headed for a house in Arbor Heights, in the 9900 block of 37th SW. More to come.
4:49 PM: The log shows most of the SFD units have been dismissed from the call, so it’s not major. We are en route in hopes of finding out.
5 PM: Last SFD crew (Engine 37) left just as we were arriving in the area and the call is officially closed. No one else around to ask but note that 99th is blocked off in the area – looks like downed wires/cables of some kind, on the other side of the yellow “caution” tape.
SUNDAY NOTE: Lynn explains here what happened.
Quick toplines from this past Tuesday night’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting at Southwest Library:
CRIME TRENDS: Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith said a major problem in the area – shoplifting at Westwood Village – is down significantly, after months of emphasis patrols. (More on that in our upcoming Southwest District Council report.) SPD’s work at Westwood will soon be enhanced by an observation station.
SAFETY: WWRHAH member Earl Lee reported that the long-awaited lighting of the bus stop across Barton from WW Village is up and working:
HALA UPZONING APPEAL: As reported previously, WWRHAH is participating in the citywide coalition that is appealing the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed upzoning in the city’s HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability plan. The coalition is now awaiting hearing dates, planning to go door to door to talk with neighbors, and raising money for legal help.
NO GENERAL MEETING IN JANUARY, BUT … Since the first Tuesday is the day after New Year’s, no general WWRHAH meeting until February. But watch wwrhah.org for TBA details of a January 9th meeting about Roxhill Park.
Thanks for the messages about the power outage in the south Arbor Heights/Arroyos area; Comcast is reported to be out, too. Seattle City Light‘s map shows the outage as an extension of the one that started yesterday, though now it’s listed as 127 customers, about 30 more than when last we checked Sunday night. If you’re out and not shown on the map, be sure to let City Light know (206-684-3000).
Two big events are coming to Arbor Heights because of this partnership that Westside School (WSB sponsor) has just announced:
Westside School is excited to announce our temporary partnership with Town Hall during their reconstruction project.
We are honored to host Beverly Tatum, who will present her research on Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting In The Cafeteria Together this Sunday, December 3 from 2 – 4 p.m. in Westside School’s theater. This event is open to the public and is sold out (320 tickets).
We have contacted SPD Lieutenant Smith to send a traffic officer or two, during arrival time on Sunday to ensure positive traffic flow. Westside will put out no-parking signs in front of the houses located directly across from our site to keep people from inappropriately parking. Additionally, Westside School staff will be present to assist in directing people to the site.
We are super excited about this Town Hall partnership and we expect this event to be positive for the West Seattle community.
The second Town Hall event set for Westside School will be at 7:30 pm January 22, “The German Art of Raising Self-Reliant Children” with Sara Zaske. Ticket information and other details are on the Town Hall website.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Outside of 911 calls when there’s trouble – what resources can police offer you to address chronic crime/safety problems?
A primer of sorts was presented at Tuesday night’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting, led by co-chair Kim Barnes.
The discussion started with Joe Everett, who is the (relatively) new City Attorney’s Office liaison to the Southwest Precinct. He explained that the position is meant to “address chronic problems as they are emerging … before they turn into really big incidents.”
Live, work, study, shop in Westwood, Roxhill, and/or Arbor Heights? Be one of the neighbors making things happen via the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition, which gathers Tuesday night, 6:15 pm at Southwest Library. Neighborhood safety is a big topic for tomorrow night, with guest speakers Community Police Team Officer John O’Neil and Southwest Precinct city-attorney liaison Joe Everett, who will talk with you about “empowering the community and leveraging city resources to deal with chronic neighborhood issues” such as abandoned houses (with or without squatters) and problem houses. Also from SPD, Operations Lt. Ron Smith will have the area’s newest crime trends/stats. And lots of “quick discussion items” (see them all in our calendar listing – and bring your own!). Just go to the upstairs meeting room at the library, which is at 9010 35th SW.
Our second report today of sizable items taken in a car prowl. This report is from Paul in the 3500 block of SW 98th [map] in Arbor Heights, where the theft happened sometime this weekend:
The main thing that was stolen was a large gear bag (black PGA golf bag with wheels) that contained kite-surfing gear:
10 and 12 meter kites
Bar and line
Long board skateboard
About $2500 worth of stuff to the right person but worthless to most people
I also lost a black briefcase that had my entire financial life in it and an old MacBook Pro.
Hopefully the criminals just dumped it all somewhere and I can recover it soon.
If you have any information, the SPD incident # is 17-410552.
3:57 PM: If you’re noticing the police response in Arbor Heights right now – they’re searching for a suspected burglar. Seattle Police tell us the break-in was reported by someone who was home at the time in the 10500 block of 39th SW. A preliminary description distributed via radio communication was that of a man in his 30s, possibly “Hispanic or Samoan,” about 250 pounds, red short-sleeved T-shirt, black knit cap, dark jeans, boots, tattoo on his left forearm, possibly headed east to 35th and then north. Call 911 if you think you have any helpful information.
4:16 PM: They’re still searching – no additional information.
It’s an Arbor Heights Swim and Tennis Club tradition – after the pool is closed to people at season’s end, invite the community to bring their dogs to swim, as a fundraiser for AHSTC swim teams. Today was the fifth and final session, and Jamie Kinney shared photos:
Whether the dogs dove from the board, or jumped from the deck, Jamie reports a great time was had by all:
You can see many more of Jamie’s photos from today by going here.
Thanks to everyone who messaged us about a big police response in Arbor Heights that blocked off Marine View Drive for a while near SW 104th. We just got here a few minutes ago and the response is wrapping up; police tell us they were called to deal with what turned out to be a person in crisis, who was initially very combative, and that’s why they called in extra backup. The person has since been taken by ambulance for an evaluation, and the road has reopened, with most of the police departing.
P.S. Because Seattle Fire wasn’t called in for this, it never showed up on the SFD real-time 911 log, so e-mails were the first tips we got. The fastest way to reach us 24/7 is always text or voice at 206-293-6302 – consider adding us as a contact on your phone. Thank you!
It’s the news that dog people await every fall – the chance for their pups to go swimming at Arbor Heights Swim and Tennis Club! The photo and announcement are from Cori Roed:
Dog Days at the Arb!
It’s time to bring your dog for a swim …
11003 31st Ave SW
Thank you for driving slowly on 31st!
Tuesday, Sept 19th through Friday, Sept 22nd, 5-7 pm
Saturday, Sept 23rd 11 am-1 pm
Dogs in the pool
Owners must remain at the pool and maintain some semblance of control
Dogs must be healthy, up to date on shots, and well socialized to people and other dogs
NO PEOPLE IN THE POOL! ~ NO LIFEGUARD ON DUTY
Please come prepared to scoop your dog’s poop!
Running on the pool deck is encouraged : )
$10 donation per dog for the day or $25 per dog for an all-access pass is very much appreciated!
Your donations allow our self-funded teams to purchase equipment while keeping team fees affordable.
Thank you for supporting Otter athletes!
*****NOTE that this event is AFTER the facilities are closed for the season*****
If you use SW 106th/107th between Arbor Heights and White Center, you might have seen the signboard for road work coming up next week. We did, so we asked King County Roads for details; here’s what we just received from spokesperson Brent Champaco:
We are taking the road from two lanes to a three-lane configuration that will feature:
· Left –turn lanes at 26th Avenue SW
· Two-way, left-turn lanes around 25th Avenue SW
· Striped median in the S-curves between 22nd and 25th Avenues SW
· Two-way, left-turn lane between 17th and 22nd Avenues SW
The restriping work is scheduled to last 3-5 days, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. All lanes of traffic will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m., and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. At other times, at least one lane will remain open with flaggers directing traffic. No parking will be allowed along this part of the road during the project.
If you live/work near that stretch, you’ve probably already seen this flyer (or a similar door-hanger card), part of the outreach Champaco says was done for people in the area.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The fall neighborhood-meeting season kicked off with the September session of what’s now the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition.
Kim Barnes and Jenny Rose Ryan are interim co-chairs of WWRHAH; Barnes led Tuesday night’s meeting at Southwest Library.
At the heart of this meeting was a “focus group”-style conversation about crime/safety issues in the area, to be sure its micro-community policing plan is up to date:
No daily highlight list today because of the stabbing coverage, but crime and safety are at the center of one major event tonight we want to be sure you know about: The Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meets at 6:15 pm at Southwest Library (9010 35th SW). Major agenda item: If you live/work in any of the WWRHAH neighborhoods, your feedback is needed in a fact-finding session about the local micropolicing plan – Southwest Precinct research assistant Puao Savusa will be there to hear from you (see the questions here). Also expected, SW Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith with an update on area crime stats. WWRHAH also is scheduled to hear from City Council candidate (at-large position 9) Pat Murakami. And open-discussion items include the future RapidRide H Line as well as the recently announced cut to the Chief Sealth Walkway Improvements Project (our original report is here, and followup here), plus other area pedestrian safety/accessibility issues. See the full WWRHAH agenda here. (And see other listings for today/tonight on the frequently updated WSB West Seattle Event Calendar.)
First Lorraine in Arbor Heights sent that photo, reporting, “Kia car hood on lawn, just west of California SW and SW 98th, after loud scraping and crash noises early this morning.” We asked for a larger version before publishing, and that came in this afternoon with an update: “The rest of the completely stripped Kia car, sans engine, was dumped a couple blocks down the hill on 44th Ave SW, and the police have already taken action.”
Just as we were headed over to Arbor Heights to find out why police were searching for someone, we got word they had found the suspect they were seeking. Police at the scene tell us the call started as a report of possible domestic violence, and as they arrived, the suspect took off running. They found him, with the help of a police K-9, near 37th SW and SW 97th. We’re told the suspect has an arrest warrant in an unrelated case, so he’s being taken into custody in connection with that, for starters. No injuries in the original call, so far are we know.