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WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Catalytic-converter thief speeds off (photo, video added); backyard barbecue stolen

Two thefts in West Seattle Crime Watch – starting with one that just happened:

CATALYTIC-CONVERTER THIEF SPEEDS OFF: We heard the dispatch for this Arbor Heights theft moments before Lisa called our hotline to report what happened a short time ago. Somebody was taking the catalytic converter off a neighbor’s Honda Element – they could hear the tool, and see the sparks – and neighbors went out yelling at the thief, who, Lisa says, hollered back, before getting into a white sedan and speeding away, even as the 911 call was going out. Only description she has is that he was wearing a red hoodie.

ADDED 2:15 PM: The car’s owner has provided a security photo and video. First, here’s the getaway car:

Second, video of the entire incident. Of particular note, after a lookout person runs away, the would-be thief remains alongside the car – until its owner (2:20 in) runs up, wrestles him away, and then chases him off:

The car’s owner says that just off camera, the thief pulled a gun as he got away. He also clarifies that they did NOT get away with the catalytic converter – but they “cut it both sides and now it’s just dangling from the bottom of my car.” He says

(back to original report) BACKYARD BARBECUE THEFT: This report was sent by Jordan Sunday night:

I wanted to report a theft from our backyard of a Traeger BBQ (in the 5000 block of) 26th Ave SW. They accessed our backyard from a back alley and must have known it was there because I left for 30 minutes for a run and it was gone when I got back. Pretty unbelievable, but just wanted to get the word out to avoid anyone else losing something.

DELRIDGE PROJECT: Here’s what’s planned this week

August 8, 2021 12:13 pm
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 |   Delridge | West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

(Delridge Way north of SW Graham)

Southbound Delridge Way SW has reopened between Thistle and Trenton, but other work continues for the paving/utilities/etc. project that’s preparing for the RapidRide H Line conversion next year. Here are the upcoming week’s key ooints spotlighted by the SDOT project team:

*Final channelization and overnight lane striping (began) this weekend at SW Orchard St and SW Andover St. We’ll stripe the remaining sections of the corridor later this month.

*We have started installing the new sidewalk on SW Hudson St and will continue these upgrades through next week,

*We will begin spot sidewalk upgrades between SW Holden St and SW Thistle St on the east side of Delridge Way SW as early as August 12.

*We will also be returning to SW Thistle St to adjust one of the curb ramps in the area later this month.

The full preview of this week’s work is here.

WEST SEATTLE WEEKEND SCENE: First-ever Low Rider Block Party

While you can’t drive on the block of 17th SW immediately north of Roxbury this afternoon, you can admire cars on display at the first-ever Low Rider Block Party.

Along with the cars, there’s an abundance of art – some being made, some being sold:

Performances too! The mini-festival continues until 6 pm (and has a vaccination booth on the south end of the block until 5). The Low Rider Block Party was organized by nearby Nepantla Cultural Arts Gallery, with support from the city.

5 years after fire, construction begins for new Lam Bow Apartments

Construction of the new Lam Bow Apartments (6935 Delridge Way SW) has finally begun, almost five years after a three-alarm fire gutted one of its buildings. In 2019, the Seattle Housing Authority decided the remaining building should be replaced too. Here’s a rendering of the 82-unit affordable-housing building that will replace the two original buildings.

(The project went through Administrative Design Review – public comment but no meetings; here’s the packet by SMR Architects, if you’re interested in design/layout details.) When the city first put the project out to bid last year, no one bid. So they tried again this year, and Walsh Construction was the winning bidder; SHA spokesperson Kerry Coughlin says the contract is for $32 million and that the building is expected to open by spring 2023.

UPDATE: Fire callout on 24th SW

6:57 AM: Seattle Fire has sent a full response to the 6900 block of 24th SW.

6:59 AM: SFD says the fire was “quickly put under control by responding crews.”

7:17 AM: No injuries reported. The cause is under investigation; the Red Cross is being called to assist the family who lives there.

7:22 AM: Our crew has spoken with firefighters at the scene. They say it was a small fire in the basement, out now. Photos added.

TRAFFIC ALERT: Tree down at Delridge/Orchard

August 1, 2021 11:31 am
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 |   Delridge | West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

Thanks for the photos. As shown above, there’s tree trouble at Delridge/Orchard – beware if you’re planning to head through that area.

ROAD-WORK UPDATE: No full closure of Delridge Way the next 3 days after all

Just in from SDOT – an update on the Delridge Way repaving/utilities/more project – NO full Delridge closure starting tomorrow after all:

Weekend street closure cancelled between SW Henderson St and SW Cambridge St. Upgrades are now scheduled for the weekdays.

At this location, we have changed the full closure on Delridge Way SW to a northbound lane closure only. We have updated our construction plans and will now maintain southbound access on Delridge Way SW during street upgrades. These upgrades will begin as early as Monday, August 2.

People traveling north along Delridge Way SW will detour to 16th Ave SW or 18th Ave SW while this work takes place. Please view the detour map for details. This detour will be in effect for approximately 2-3 days.

Thank you to the businesses and residents in the area for working with us and providing feedback while we planned this work. We appreciate your continued patience during construction.

ROAD-WORK UPDATE: SW Thistle finally reopens east of Delridge

After more than four months, SW Thistle east of Delridge has finally reopened. This is one of the side streets that’s had work done as part of the repaving/utility project in preparation for next year’s conversion of Metro Route 120 to the RapidRide H Line. But now there’ll be another east-west pinch point – SW Trenton was scheduled to close east of Delridge as soon as Thistle reopened. The southbound Delridge closure is also moving southward, to Trenton-Henderson (with SB Delridge reopening Holden-Trenton), but that hadn’t happened yet when we checked Thistle at noontime; we’ll be making a full corridor check later this afternoon,

Delridge wading pool closed today for repairs

July 26, 2021 12:17 pm
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 |   Delridge | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

(Added: WSB photo)

Seattle Parks says the Delridge wading pool – the only one scheduled to be open in West Seattle on Mondays – is closed today for repairs. Parks says it needed “an emergency concrete repair that requires a day to set.” They expect it to reopen tomorrow. If your kid(s) need somewhere else to cool off, Highland Park Spraypark is open until 8 pm as usual (1100 SW Cloverdale).

DELRIDGE PROJECT: See what’s closing, and reopening, soon

SDOT‘s weekly update on the repaving-and-more project preparing for the RapidRide H Line is complicated this week – some continuing closures, some new ones, some reopenings. First the good news:


*Southbound Delridge between Holden and Thistle, “by Monday,” and with that, the following:

*Long-closed SW Thistle east of Delridge – the project team says, “The east side of SW Thistle St will reopen as soon as we are done with upgrades on Delridge Way SW between SW Holden St and SW Thistle St. The final upgrades and subsequent reopening of SW Thistle St are planned to happen by Monday.”

*SW Henderson east of Delridge – this too is expected to reopen by Monday


*Once the aforementioned work is done and southbound Delridge reopens between Holden and Thistle, southbound Delridge then will close between Thistle and Henderson (24/7)

*SW Trenton will close east of Delridge once SW Thistle has reopened

*26th SW northbound, between SW Barton and SW Roxbury “soon” (this is King County work, no start date yet, more info expected next week)

*”For the weekends of July 30 – August 1 and August 6 – 8, all travel lanes on Delridge Way SW between SW Henderson St and SW Cambridge St will be closed to people driving and taking transit.”

The full weekly preview for the entire project zone is here.

UPDATE: More road work on SW Genesee; here’s why

4:12 PM: Just in from Seattle Public Utilities, for a project starting tomorrow:

Starting as soon as Tuesday, July 20, Seattle Public Utilities will be working on a drainage structure in the 2600 block of SW Genesee Street. SW Genesee Street will be down to one lane as crews remove soil and material from a nearby drainage structure; flaggers will control alternating one-way traffic.

2600 block of SW Genesee Street between 26th and 30th Avenues SW.

Work hours are Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Work is expected to start July 20 and take about a week to complete.

Traffic on SW Genesee Street will be reduced to one lane; flaggers will control alternating one-way traffic. There will be parking restrictions in the area and construction-related traffic, noise, dirt and vibrations. Lane closure information may change based on project needs.

ADDED 8:32 PM: Here’s more information on the reason for this work – maintenance of what SPU calls “Genesee Pond.”

DELRIDGE PROJECT: SW Genesee not closing this weekend after all, but more south-end closures ahead

SW Genesee west of Delridge is NOT closing again this weekend after all, according to SDOT. (Added 1:33 pm – SDOT clarifies that it IS closed today, but will reopen when work is done and will NOT close Saturday-Sunday.) The work at that intersection was will be completed ahead of schedule. The RapidRide H Line preparation project‘s weekly update has just arrived and here are the other key points:

*Street and sidewalk upgrades between Delridge Way SW and Puget Blvd SW/23rd Ave SW to begin as early as next week

*Street demolition and paving along Delridge Way SW between SW Holden St and SW Thistle St to continue through next weekend, July 24-25. Southbound traffic along Delridge Way SW should continue to detour around this area via SW Holden St, 35th Ave, and SW Trenton:

*SW Trenton St closed at Delridge Way SW to complete intersection upgrades as early as July 26. Once SW Thistle St is upgraded, we will reopen the street to traffic. SW Trenton St will then close for upgrades. We’ll have more information and a detour map for this work next week.

*Full closure of Delridge Way SW from SW Henderson St to SW Cambridge St to complete street upgrades beginning as early as July 29. This work will continue through the weekend, with night work planned for July 30. We anticipate reopening the street by Monday, August 2. A full closure is required because of how narrow the street is through this area. We’ll have more information and a detour map for this work next week.

*Intersection upgrades at SW Henderson St continue through next week

See the full project preview for the week ahead by going here.

ROAD-WORK REMINDER: Southbound Delridge Way closure starts this week

That’s southbound Delridge Way SW just south of SW Holden, and we wanted to remind you tonight that SDOT says it’ll be closed for about two weeks starting as soon as tomorrow morning. The southbound closure between Holden and Trenton is part of the ongoing work to prepare for the RapidRide H Line; while crews have this blocked off, they will “demolish and rebuild” that section of the road. 35th SW is the recommended detour route between Holden and Trenton. (Here’s reroute information for Metro Route 120.) Work hours are 7 am to 7 pm, but the southbound closure will continue during the non-work hours too. Other continuing road closures include SW Thistle and SW Henderson on the east side of Delridge.

UPDATE: Fire in South Delridge

2:15 PM: Big SFD response for what’s described as a fire in a vacant building in the 9400 block of 18th SW. Many of the responding units have been dismissed but five are still on the call; we’re on our way there to find out more.

2:23 PM: “Small exterior fire,” says SFD.

2:38 PM: They believe the fire started with someone cooking at this abandoned house (photo added above), but nobody was there when firefighters arrived; no injuries reported.

ROAD WORK: Roxbury repaving ahead; plus, Delridge project adds another closure

We’ve already reported on two road-work closures this weekend – SW Genesee west of Delridge, and westbound SW Alaska west of California. A roundup of alerts from SDOT today include two more worth noting:

SW ROXBURY REPAVING: First, the good news. Hard to see in the early-evening shade but our photo above shows a rutted section of SW Roxbury between 24th and 25th that SDOT plans to repave later this month:

In partnership with King County, SDOT crews will repave SW Roxbury St between 24th Ave SW and 25th Ave SW. Expect traffic slowdowns on Monday, July 19 and Tuesday, July 20.

Work hours are 7 a.m. to 4 PM Monday, July 19 and Tuesday, July 20. For people driving, traffic will be reduced to one lane with crew members directing drivers. Please go slow when driving in the area. Watch for people biking and walking, follow signs, and expect delays. For people walking, rolling, and biking in the area, sidewalk access will be maintained.

In addition, tree pruning will occur on Wednesday, July 14 through Thursday, July 16 in advance of the paving work. This shouldn’t impact traffic flow, but there will be crew activity in the area. This tree pruning effort is to make room for the large paving equipment to ensure that we don’t damage the trees or the equipment.

The once-planned major Roxbury repaving project remains on indefinite hold, but spot projects like this come up now and then – in May 2020, for example, Roxbury was repaved between 16th and 18th.

DELRIDGE DETOUR: The weekly update on the Delridge Way work preparing for the RapidRide H Line has a new addition – southbound Delridge Way will be closed “as soon as 7 am Monday” (July 12th) between SW Holden and SW Trenton. SDOT says, “The street will remain closed for about two weeks as we work to safely demolish and rebuild both the northbound and southbound travel lanes on Delridge Way SW.”

The full list of this week’s highlights for the Delridge project – starting with the SW Genesee closure that’s already under way west of Delridge – is here.

ROAD-WORK UPDATES: 36th/Oregon repairs end early; new detour map for SW Genesee closure

July 8, 2021 8:34 pm
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 |   Delridge | Triangle | West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

Two road-work updates:

36TH/OREGON: Repairing this heat-damaged stretch of street was expected to take up to two weeks, but instead, it was done in one. The closure continues tonight while the new concrete finishes drying, but SDOT plans to reopen the street “as soon as crews have verified that the concrete has finished hardening, which will likely be tomorrow morning.”

SW GENESEE CLOSURE: Reminder – this closure west of Delridge Way (previewed here) starts at 7 am tomorrow. SDOT sent a new detour map today:

The street is expected to remain closed until early Monday, the first of two consecutive weekend closures, for “street upgrades” related to the RapidRide H Line preparation project. SDOT says that during the closure, “For people wishing to travel between Delridge Way SW and SW Avalon Way, we encourage them to detour to SW Orchard St during this closure. The streets marked in black will be open to local traffic only.”

BIZNOTE: Delridge Grocery Co-op adds third day of in-store shopping

As of this Friday, the Delridge Grocery Co-op storefront at 5444 Delridge Way SW is open three days a week for shopping.

The Delridge Grocery Co-op is excited to announce the addition of a third day of open market hours. Starting July 9, the DGC will be open on Fridays from 3–7. We’re also open on Saturdays from 9:30–1:30 (when we are also packing and distributing DGC Essential produce boxes) and on Sundays from 11–3.

We’re adding more inventory to the store this week, including Bob’s Red Mill quinoa and grits, Bragg apple cider and nutritional yeast, Dr. Bronner’s soaps and toothpaste, as well as jams, salsas, noodles, marinara sauce, and more.

This next Sunday (July 11) is also our monthly Owner-Member Discount Day, when those who have paid full or partial ownership shares in the Co-op will receive a 10% discount on in-store purchases. A full ownership share costs $100 per household. Learn more about becoming and owner-member of the Delridge Grocery Co-op at our website.

We also continue to offer our weekly DGC Essentials produce box, full of 9 to 11 pounds of fruits and veggies, as well feature local products as add-ons. This week we’re partnering with West Seattle-based Milpa Masa Company to offer their freshly made organic yellow corn tortillas and organic fresh masa (for making your own tamales and tortillas at home).

DGC started store hours with Saturdays two months ago, then added Sundays a month later

DESIGN REVIEW: Mixed-use plan for 9208 20th SW gets board’s final approval

The Southwest Design Review Board gave its approval Thursday night to the project that now carries the address 9208 20th SW [map], formerly 9201 Delridge Way SW. No public comments were offered, and board recommendations were few; most of the changes proposed at the previous meeting in October (WSB coverage here) had already been incorporated into the design presented during the online meeting.

Four SWDRB members were present – chair Scott Rosenstock, newly appointed members Patrick Cobb and Johanna Lirman, and member Alan Grainger. The city was represented by planner Tami Garrett, who’s handling the project, and Design Review program manager Lisa Rutzick. Read More

DELRIDGE PROJECT: Early warning of 2 weekend closures ahead for SW Genesee

That’s the detour map provided by SDOT for closures of SW Genesee coming up the next two weekends – Friday, July 9th, until early Monday, July 12th, and the same timeframe July 16th-19th. Genesee will be closed between Delridge Way and 25th SW for “street upgrades” as part of the ongoing project to prepare for RapidRide H Line. Here are other key points of the weekly preview:

-Street demolition and paving along Delridge Way SW between SW Holden St and SW Thistle St to begin as early as July 12
This work includes upgrading several sections of the street in both lanes of traffic. We’ll share more details and a detour route for this work soon.

-Overnight and weekend demolition and paving in select areas between SW Henderson St and SW Cambridge St to begin as early as July 16
We will mostly work near Boss Drive-in and Two Fingers Social.

-Intersection upgrades at SW Henderson St continue into July. We are still working to upgrade the street at this intersection. Once this work is complete, we will begin upgrading sidewalks. We anticipate keeping the street closed during sidewalk upgrades due to the narrow width of the street and needing space for our equipment to operate.

Other details of upcoming work along the corridor are here. Still no estimate of how much longer SW Thistle, on the east side of Delridge, will remain closed.

See what South Delridge project team will show Design Review Board on Thursday

That’s 9208 20th SW, formerly 9201 Delridge Way SW, which goes back to the Southwest Design Review Board for an online meeting at 5 pm Thursday (July 1st). That meeting will include the opportunity for public comment on the design of the project, which would replace a former auto shop with what the project page on the city website describes as “a 5-story, 77-unit apartment building with 73 apartments, 4 small efficiency dwelling units, and office.” No offstreet vehicle parking is planned. See the meeting design packet here. This is potentially the final review meeting for the revised project; the previous one was last October (WSB coverage here). Under a different architect/ownership team, and before a zoning change, the site originally was planned for redevelopment as a self-storage building. Thursday’s SWDRB meeting will be accessible via a video link and dial-in number that you can find on the official notice, which also explains how to send written comments in advance.

Longfellow Creek polluted by suspected paint spill

(Department of Ecology photo)

An investigation is under way into the source of a spill that has polluted Longfellow Creek in east West Seattle. First, here’s what Seattle Public Utilities spokesperson Sabrina Register tells us:

About 10:30 am yesterday, SPU Spill Response responded to a call about a white substance in Longfellow Creek. SPU inspectors determined the substance to most likely be some of latex paint. The amount is unknown but estimated to be in 5-20 gallon range.

Per protocol, staff called Department of Ecology and Department of Fish and Wildlife and consulted with them on the best course of action. While SPU has captured and disposed of some of the contaminant in the pipe, the two agencies determined last night that a full-scale cleanup of the water would cause more harm than good and recommend leaving the water undisturbed. The water in the creek may be a milky white for a few days to come. SPU Inspectors will continue to source-trace to see if we can find the responsible party and will continue to monitor the creek for several days.

The affected area is centered near 24th/Thistle, a greenspace just east of the Chief Sealth International High School campus, but the spill was followed to an “upstream pipe,” according to information from Ecology that was forwarded by Puget Soundkeeper, which is also monitoring the situation. The Ecology report says part of the reason that pumping out the polluted water isn’t recommended is that it could dry up the creek, which is already in a tenuous situation this time of year, as it’s part daylit, part undergrounded along its path from Roxhill to the Duwamish River.

DELRIDGE PROJECT: Now the RapidRide H Line bus-station work begins

(25th/Barton RapidRide station rendering)

As the repaving/utility work along Delridge Way gets closer to concluding, a new phase of RapidRide H Line preparation begins – bus-station construction. The first two West Seattle/White Center work locations are about to get started, with this work ahead in next three to four weeks:

SW Barton St (SW Barton St and 25th Ave SW intersection, and the crossing between 26th Ave SW and 29th Ave SW)
-Storm, sewer, and utilities work
-Sidewalk and curb ramp installation
-Demolition and electrical work on northbound and westbound stations at SW Barton St and 26th Ave SW

SW Roxbury St and 15th Ave SW
-Storm, sewer, and utilities work
-Sidewalk and curb ramp installation
-Traffic signal modifications
-Demolition and electrical work on northbound and southbound stations at SW Roxbury St and 15th Ave SW

Crews also will be working at station locations further south in White Center and Burien. See more info on the Metro website. The H Line’s multiple-times-delayed launch is currently set for fall 2022.

As for the ongoing Delridge work, here are the highlights for the week ahead:

-We are continuing to work at SW Findlay St. We have recently completed some sidewalk upgrades in the area, but will remain near the intersection to install a new RapidRide bus station on the east side of the street.

-SW Willow St will be closed at Delridge Way SW for upgrades to the street

-The stairs near SW Holden St between Delridge Way SW and 20th Ave SW remain closed while we continue to upgrade lighting

-Intersection upgrades at SW Henderson St will continue for several weeks as we rebuild the street. We are also upgrading sidewalks as part of this work, which will take place in July.

-In the coming weeks, we will return to SW Barton Pl to upgrade the sidewalks on the west side of Delridge Way SW

This week’s full preview can be seen here.

DELRIDGE PROJECT: The median plan, and this week’s work zones

(WSB photo)

Tonight we have a two-part update on the Delridge Way repaving/utilities project that’s preparing for the conversion of Metro Route 120 to the RapidRide H Line next year.

THE MEDIAN PLAN – AND PLANTING STRIPS: As part of the work, medians have been created along several stretches of Delridge. The concept for these dates back long before the RapidRide plan – neighborhood advocates had envisioned Delridge as more of a “boulevard.” But as the project progresses, the median spaces have lain empty, and readers have wondered what’s the landscaping plan, including maintenance. We took the question to SDOT, and here’s their response via spokesperson Madison Linkenmeyer:

We will install landscaping in the medians that will ensure year-round evergreen coverage, including species that are low-growing and derived from Pacific Northwest native plants. These plants were chosen due to their tolerance to mowing, which can help protect the plants from invasive weeds. This vegetation will be maintained by our contractor and the Urban Forestry maintenance team for the first three years after planting to ensure that the landscaping has been properly established in the medians and crossing islands.

After this three-year period, we will continue prioritizing maintenance in areas to ensure sightlines are clear for people traveling along the corridor. This maintenance includes trimming trees in the planting strips and other public right of way as needed. This type of maintenance is consistent with all landscaping throughout the city. We will mow and control weeds as needed in the medians.

In addition to the landscaped medians, the planting strips between the curbs and sidewalks along Delridge Way SW will be restored with grass lawns. Grass lawn is the standard type of landscaping to be used for permanent erosion control in Seattle. As with all properties across Seattle, it is the property owner’s responsibility to maintain the planting strips adjacent to their property. For people living in apartments or renting, it is the responsibility for the property owner/landlord, property management team, or homeowners association to maintain the public right of way. You can read more about these responsibilities on our website.

If residents are concerned with maintenance of the grass lawn, they are able to request that we look into installing wood chip mulch in the planting strip instead of grass. A planting strip with wood chip mulch would limit the maintenance needs and be helpful to those without lawn mowers. Residents would be responsible for planting their own landscaping in these planting strips in order to help with erosion control.

THIS WEEK’S PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS: Here are the key zones for this week’s work:

*Final channelization in Zones A and B will be wrapping up next week
-We will begin painting lane markings south of SW Orchard St later this year

*We are continuing to upgrade sidewalks, curb ramps, and electrical utilities at SW Findlay St through July, and will begin demolishing the sidewalks between SW Juneau St and SW Graham St through June. Paving for this work will occur later this summer.

*Bus stop upgrades at SW Myrtle St and SW Holly St continue. We will begin pouring the cement bus pads next week.

*Bus stop, sidewalk, and curb ramp upgrades at SW Thistle St on the west side of Delridge Way SW continue next week
-Additional sidewalk and curb ramp work will happen at SW Thistle St later this summer. The street will remain closed as we rebuild sidewalks and relocate pedestrian signal poles in the area. We will reopen the street as soon as possible.

*We will begin restoring the street between SW Holden St and SW Thistle St next week
-Driveways will be temporarily closed while we pour concrete in the street

*Intersection upgrades and road closure at SW Henderson St continue
-Please reference this detour map for additional details

Full details for this week’s work zones and closures can be found here.