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CLEANING IN THE RAIN: ‘Small but mighty’ effort by South Delridge Community Group

Thanks to Connie Wolf for the photos and report!

A small but mighty group of neighbors got together on this drizzly morning to pick up litter around Westwood Village.

For the past two years, the South Delridge Community Group has been meeting monthly to clean up in and around our neighborhood. Got a suggestion for which main streets, side streets, and alleys we should tackle next? We’d love to hear it! Even better, join us at a cleanup – we always meet the second Saturday of each month from 10-11 am. It’s a great way to start the weekend, keep our streets clean, meet neighbors, and build community!

Send your suggestion to sdelridgecommunitygroup@gmail.com.

FOLLOWUP: Fairmount Ravine neighbors’ 26th annual cleanup, beneath and atop the bridge

(First two photos courtesy Fairmount Ravine neighbors)

Back on Thursday, we previewed the 26th annual Fairmount Ravine cleanup, and neighbors’ plans to hold the city accountable for taking care of the publicly owned greenspace and right-of-way. Above are the volunteers who showed up to pitch in on Saturday, including Matt Algieri, who tells us how it went:

15 interested area residents each donated three hours of their time, cutting ivy from trees, cleaning Admiral Way Bridge sidewalks and removing garbage and debris from under the bridge.

There was a lot of garbage under the East side of the bridge, more than we anticipated. That generated most of the 40 bags of garbage collected and shown in the pictures.

Many ravine trees had ivy removed, ensuring their health and vitality, and both bridge sidewalks are now clean and clear. 15 people working three hours gets a lot of work done!

One note, Seattle Public Utilities sent a crew at 8:30 AM Saturday morning, the start time of Ravine cleanup, to paint over graffiti under the bridge. Yes, 8:30 am, the Saturday before Easter. John Lang asked a person, who we believe was the crew supervisor, about the crew’s work and timing of the work order for this work, and did not get a specific answer. In any case, we worked around the crew and experienced no problems.

Overall the event was a great success. The next step is obtaining Seattle City ownership removing garbage and debris under the bridge.

Here are links to our coverage from past years – 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008.

Highland Park Action Committee: Crime; camp; Find It, Fix It followup…

April 1, 2018 7:02 pm
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 |   Highland Park | Neighborhoods

Toplines from the monthly Highland Park Action Committee meeting, last Wednesday night at Highland Park Improvement Club:

CRIME-TRENDS UPDATE: First up, Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith, with updates on Highland Park trends.

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GOT ANSWERS? Fauntleroy Community Association survey closes in a few days

March 30, 2018 10:35 am
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 |   Fauntleroy | Neighborhoods | West Seattle news

You’ve got answers – they have questions. The Fauntleroy Community Association‘s every-other-year neighborhood survey is closing soon, Shannon Ninburg from the FCA board reminds us:

If you live in the Fauntleroy area, you still have until the middle of next week (April 4th) to participate in the Fauntleroy Community Association’s survey. Every two years the FCA conducts a survey to ask community members about issues important to them. The results help guide the FCA’s focus over the next couple years. Fauntleroy area residents can take the survey via the FCA website. We’d love to hear from you!

The community is also always welcome at FCA’s monthly board meetings – next one 7 pm April 10th at Fauntleroy Schoolhouse (9131 California SW)

FAUNTLEROY FOOD FEST 2018: Honors, volunteers, and samples

March 21, 2018 10:25 pm
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 |   Fauntleroy | Neighborhoods | West Seattle news

(WSB photos by Patrick Sand)

Above are Fauntleroy Community Association president Mike Dey and Irene Stewart, one of two people honored last night at FCA’s annual Fauntleroy Food Fest membership meeting. Until recently, Irene was volunteer website and social-media manager for FCA. Also honored: outgoing FCA board member and Ferry Advisory Committee liaison Gary Dawson:

We mentioned Gary’s departure announcement in our coverage of last week’s FCA board meeting. He’s been on the board for more than 20 years. The honors were a reminder that community groups run entirely on volunteer power – countless hours given by people including Judy Pickens:

Judy is editor of the FCA newsletter, which we’re fairly sure is the last printed-and-mailed community council news publication in West Seattle. She was at the FFF on behalf of the Fauntleroy Watershed Council and its new stewardship fund. Other volunteers there, talking with community members, included Cindi Barker and FCA’s Gordon Wiehler on behalf of the Emergency Communication Hubs:

As for who put the “food” into the Fauntleroy Food Fest – local purveyors included Lonjina from Wildwood Market:

And from Endolyne Joe’s (WSB sponsor), Annette and Kelsey:

The turnout:

And, the FCA board elected last night:

If you live/work in Fauntleroy but didn’t get to the FFF to renew (or start) your membership, you can do it online here.

Tackling the triangle, park, road, and more @ Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition

March 19, 2018 10:34 pm
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 |   Arbor Heights | Neighborhoods | West Seattle news | Westwood

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council continues to evolve.

Co-chair Kim Barnes says it’s now meant to function as more of a “support group for committees” – each one, small now and hoping to grow, taking on a particular area of interest. If any are of interest to you – or if there’s something else you’d like to help make happen in the area – jump in!

Among those areas of interest discussed at this month’s WWRHAH meeting:

ROXHILL PARK: The recent kickoff meeting for getting Roxhill into the Park Commons project went well. This would be a two-to-three-year project, Barnes said, “for us to develop ways and means” – some through assistance, some through guidance – “to create more interactive activities in the areas of the park that are less utilized and need ore positive activities in them.”

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VIDEO: Sub Pop party discussion #2, plus HALA upzoning appeal, @ Alki Community Council

Two big topics on the agenda for last night’s Alki Community Council meeting, and we have video of both. First – the week’s second discussion of Sub Pop Records‘ August 11th Alki Beach 30th-anniversary megaparty:

“We’re really excited,” declared Sub Pop CEO Megan Jasper as she led the briefing and discussion, as she had at the Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting two nights earlier. Most of the details were the same – as reported in WSB coverage that night – but we heard a few other details, as well as Alki residents’ questions:

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FAUNTLEROY COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION: From Food Fest to farewell

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The Fauntleroy Community Association‘s always-popular annual membership meeting – known as the Food Fest – is days away. And that was one of several major discussion items at last night’s FCA board meeting – as well as an unexpected announcement.

FAUNTLEROY FOOD FEST: The annual FCA membership meeting is set for 6 pm Tuesday, March 20th, at The Hall at Fauntleroy. So far, eight confirmed food vendors and a multitude of community groups. The bites are free but the big point of this gathering is for Fauntleroy residents, businesses, etc., to renew their annual memberships, and to vote for officers. FCA will also be collecting non-perishable food donations, so bring something for the White Center Food Bank (which serves West Seattle from SW Myrtle southward). The Seattle Police Mobile Precinct is scheduled to be there too for visitors to tour. And Gary Dawson, Fauntleroy’s longtime liaison with Washington State Ferries, says Jon Vezina from WSF will be the first WSF rep at the Food Fest in years. Stop by, ask questions about the forthcoming dock replacement, or anything else. They’re also considering having a HALA upzoning info table too.

JOSLIN BUILDING UPDATE: FCA continues to closely monitor the potential redevelopment of the 9250 45th SW site in the Endolyne business district (first reported here last October).

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SUB POP’S ALKI PARTY: New details revealed at Admiral Neighborhood Association

As previewed last week, Sub Pop Records is visiting two community councils in West Seattle this week to talk about its big 30th anniversary party at Alki on August 11th (first announced here in January).

First up – tonight’s Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting, where Sound Transit light rail and a for-sale greenbelt were discussed too, but Sub Pop’s party was the big story. Lots of new information:

Megan Jasper, CEO of Sub Pop, led the briefing. “We live here,” she said, noting that – as mentioned in the original announcement – many Sub Pop employees and managers live in West Seattle and want to do their best to make this an event their own neighborhood can be proud of.

The band lineup is currently planned to be unveiled May 29th. Now that we have that question answered, about the crowd estimate:

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Highland Park Action Committee: New meters and new leaders

One more community-group update from this past week: Highland Park Action Committee, which elected a new chair and co-chair, as well as getting a briefing from Seattle City Light.

But first: Outgoing co-chair Gunner Scott said he’s going to keep Mayor Jenny Durkan to her promise to visit Highland Park. He extended the invitation at her West Seattle “town hall” last weekend:

And she accepted it. Scott says he hopes to have her visit for coffee, donuts, and a look at Highland Park’s infamous traffic trouble (the one for which a roundabout is being sought).

Speaking of city business – City Light’s new meters will be installed in West Seattle soon:

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Check your mail! Maybe you got Amy’s envelope

Case of theft, or delivery to the wrong address? Amy posted in the WSB Forums that she is hoping the manila envelope USPS says was delivered to her residence really turned up somewhere else instead, so if you by some chance haven’t looked at your Saturday postal mail … take a look when you can, and if you got her envelope, the post includes her contact info (or – in this case or any other time you get someone else’s mail – you can drop it back in a mailbox with a note attached “wrong address”).

Light-rail impacts, the morphed Multi-Modal Corridor plan, and more @ Delridge Neighborhoods District Council

February 23, 2018 10:29 pm
|    Comments Off on Light-rail impacts, the morphed Multi-Modal Corridor plan, and more @ Delridge Neighborhoods District Council
 |   Delridge | Delridge District Council | Neighborhoods | West Seattle news

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Seems like Sound Transit West Seattle light rail is Topic A everywhere.

One night before Thursday’s West Seattle Transportation Coalition presentation/discussion, it was also a big part of the agenda at Wednesday’s Delridge Neighborhoods District Council meeting – including another potentially loud voice supporting tunneling along at least part of what’s been drafted as an all-elevated route.

So that’s where our report begins:

(From the draft map for Sound Transit’s West Seattle light rail)

CITY REP ON SOUND TRANSIT 3 LIGHT RAIL: Interested in some tunneling on the West Seattle light-rail line, now in the “early scoping” public-comment mode through March 5th? The city may be on your side. Lyle Bicknell came to speak with DNDC on behalf of the city’s interest in the ST3 planning process – he’s with the Office of Planning and Community Development – and talking about how to minimize the impacts of the upcoming light-rail project.

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TUESDAY: New day, time, place for South Delridge Community Group

Live/work in South Delridge? You’re invited to check out the South Delridge Community Group at 7 pm tomorrow night at 2 Fingers Social (9211 Delridge Way SW) – a new place, day, and time as the group resumes meetings. All ages are welcome at 2 Fingers until 8 pm, so you can bring your kid(s) to the meeting if you want/need to. Read more about the SDCG by going here.

Crime drop, bog progress, park future @ Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition

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:

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FIRE STATION OPEN HOUSES: 4 open in West Seattle for Neighbor Day visits

February 5, 2018 2:01 pm
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 |   Neighborhoods | West Seattle news

(WSB photo from Station 32’s open house last November)

This Saturday is Neighbor Day around the city – and one of the most popular aspects is the chance to visit local fire stations during Neighbor Day open houses. They’re not all open for the occasion but here are the ones on the list this time – 11 am-1 pm Saturday (February 10th) – in West Seattle:

-Fire Station 11 in Highland Park (16th/Holden)
-Fire Station 29 in North Admiral (2139 Ferry SW)
-Fire Station 32 in The Triangle (38th/Alaska)
-Fire Station 37 in Sunrise Heights (35th/Holden)

More about Neighbor Day as the week goes on!

P.S. Though the list on the city website does not include Station 32 right now, we doublechecked with SFD and they say the new station WILL have an open house too.

Junction Neighborhood Organization focuses on HALA and Sound Transit, after pre-meeting Fauntleroy Boulevard news

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

When a meeting room at the Sisson Building/Senior Center filled to overflowing last night for the Junction Neighborhood Organization‘s quarterly meeting, the biggest news was already a couple hours old – SDOT‘s announcement that the Fauntleroy Boulevard project is on hold.

For those who hadn’t already heard, JuNO director Amanda Sawyer recapped it at the start of the meeting. (SDOT did not send reps to talk about it, as had been the original plan before the suspension was announced.) She and West Seattle Junction Association executive director Lora Swift both stressed that since SDOT is saying it will reallocate the project funds – last described as $15 million to $18 million – to other WS projects, feedback to Councilmember Lisa Herbold is important. (Send yours to lisa.herbold@seattle.gov.)

So that left the meeting devoted to two other big topics affecting The Junction – the HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability upzoning proposal that has just gone into City Council review, and Sound Transit planning for West Seattle light rail, which is just starting its formal community-outreach process.

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Highland Park Action Committee: Needle cleanup, natural drainage, neighborhood help…

From the Highland Park Action Committee‘s January meeting:

‘I FOUND A NEEDLE, NOW WHAT?’ The Sharps Collection Pilot Program from Seattle Public Utilities gave a presentation. It was basically Needle 101 – where do discarded needles come from? Not just IV drug users – could be people with medical conditions that require injections, even pets that need shots, or allergy sufferers. In Seattle, it’s illegal to just throw needles in the trash, “for the safety of sanitation workers,” said the SPU presenters.

If you find a needle on public property:

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FAUNTLEROY BOULEVARD PROJECT: Update next week at Junction Neighborhood Organization

(Fauntleroy Boulevard ‘final design’ – click here to see full-size image on city website)

You might recall that the Fauntleroy Boulevard project was long described as likely to start in “early 2018,” according to SDOT. Early 2018 is here, and not only is construction not imminent, some key project points haven’t even been announced yet – such as, whether Fauntleroy Way will be one-way or two ways during construction. But new information might be days away – for the first time in eight months, SDOT is scheduled to present a public update next Wednesday (January 31st). It’s on the agenda for the next Junction Neighborhood Organization meeting.

Also planned for the 6:30 pm meeting at the Senior Center/Sisson Building, updates on the Avalon Substation site, HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability upzoning, what’s next for Sound Transit light-rail planning (including the speculative renderings first shown here earlier this month), and volunteering opportunities. The meeting is open to anyone and everyone who’s interested.

Alki Community Council: 59th/Admiral; beach signage; more…

Toplines from last night’s Alki Community Council meeting:

(WSB photo, December 2017)

59TH/ADMIRAL: The ACC discussed the intersection as a followup to recent changes made by SDOT as part of the ongoing Admiral Way Safety Project, as well as advocacy by the Traffic Safety Task Force set up by parents at nearby Alki Elementary. A key point of discussion was getting a full traffic signal – which the parents want – versus keeping the pedestrian-activated light on Admiral and stop signs on 59th. ACC president Tony Fragada will ask that the SDOT project manager come to their next meeting; he’s also hoping to talk with West Seattle-residing at-large City Councilmember Lorena González, who chairs the committee that oversees safety.

NOISE ENFORCEMENT: Jesse Robbins, who initiated the project that eventually led to Councilmember Lisa Herbold‘s survey showing a high level of vehicle-noise concerns in the area, was back to visit (backstory is in our coverage of November’s ACC meeting). As previously reported, he and colleagues are working on a potential technology solution to the challenges that police say get in the way of enforcing noise laws (needing to hear/record/prove the violation, for example). He said they’ll be testing at an Eastside park twice in the next two weeks. Meantime, as previously reported, SPD is under orders to report to the City Council in March about enforcement-related issues; Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith said those contributing to the report include the City Attorney’s Office, regarding the state of noise laws and how they could be amended, and financially focused personnel to look at how the issue might be addressed in the SPD budget. Robbins says they would like to run a test at Alki this summer, but that depends on how the SPD report turns out.

CRIME TRENDS: Nothing of note to report so far since the start of the year, Lt. Smith said, but 2017 did bring a bigger reduction in crime in the Southwest Precinct than other precincts in the city, he said. (You can crunch crime numbers from neighborhood level to citywide level any time by going here.)

MORE ALKI SIGNAGE? This was a community-member-led discussion on whether Alki might benefit from more signs, whether to remind people about the laws prohibiting dogs on the beach or to educate people about birds in the area (similar to The Whale Trail and Seal Sitters signage about marine mammals). Department of Neighborhoods rep Yun Pitre suggested this could be proposed for funding via the Your Voice, Your Choice process that’s under way now. The ACC will look into having a Seattle Parks rep come to a future meeting to discuss not only signage but also chronic issues with trash pickup at the beach.

The Alki Community Council meets on the third Thursday most months, 7 pm at Alki UCC (6115 SW Hinds).

SUMMER CONCERTS AT HIAWATHA: Now seeking 2018 performers!

(WSB file photo)

As mentioned in our coverage of the Admiral Neighborhood Association‘s recent meeting, organizers of the ANA-presented Summer Concerts at Hiawatha are gearing up to plan this year’s series. This announcement is just in from Stephanie Jordan:

The Admiral Neighborhood Association (ANA) is now accepting performer submissions for our 2018 Summer Concert Series at Hiawatha Park!

The ANA Summer Concert Series at Hiawatha is a free, family-friendly outdoor concert event held outside the Hiawatha Community Center on Thursday evenings in the summer. The series is produced by the Admiral Neighborhood Association in partnership with Seattle Parks and Recreation, the Associated Recreation Council, and through the generous sponsorship of community businesses. Last year’s lineup can be viewed on the ANA website.

We are seeking performers for the following dates: July 19th, July 26th, August 2nd, August 9th, and August 16th.

Interested artists should provide:

1. a brief description of your musical style
2. links to website/music/video or other resources that will help us know your music better
3. contact information, including email
4. your fee for a 90-minute set
5. preferred dates (and any dates you are unavailable)

Please send all information to HiawathaConcerts@gmail.com . The committee will accept submissions through February 28th, 2018.

If you or your business is interested in sponsoring the 2018 ANA Summer Concert Series at Hiawatha Park, please contact Dave Weitzel at dave@weitzelconstruction.com.

We would also love to hear from community members! Tell us what you’d like to see more of, recommend your favorite performer or style of music, or just say hello!

You are welcome to comment below with recommendations, and/or e-mail the same address mentioned above – HiawathaConcerts@gmail.com – to reach Stephanie and the committee. This will be the 10th year for the series, launched in 2009!

Morgan Community Association: From HALA and mural money, to where Lowman Beach’s crumbling seawall stands

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The lower-level meeting room at The Kenney was full for tonight’s Morgan Community Association meeting, and everybody there had the chance to vote on some big decisions – including spending thousands of dollars:

MORGAN NEIGHBORHOOD FUND: MoCA has no dues but does have this fund that resulted from the settlement of the neighborhood appeal of the project that became the Viridian Apartments. In settling the appeal, its developers agreed to donate $25,000 to MoCA, though the organization was not a party to the appeal. MoCA has never done anything with the money, but now has two applications for a share of it.

Vice president Phil Tavel presented the applications – one for restoring and protecting the mural behind the California/Fauntleroy Starbucks/Peel & Press/etc. building.

(WSB file photo)
P&P (WSB sponsor) proprietor Dan Austin has been exploring the project for 2+ years; the family that owns the building has committed some money, and told Austin they have no plans to sell the building. The family says it’ll contribute $3,000; the total cost, Austin says, would be about $10,000 – $8,500 with a discount the artist has offered – and he’s applied for $5,000 from the fund.

The other proposal to spend some of the money was for contributing to the HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability Final Environmental Impact Statement citywide-coalition appeal, which MoCA and dozens of other community groups around the city are supporting. The coalition has raised about $15,000 so far; MoCA is proposing contributing $5,000 from the fund.

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WEDNESDAY: Councilmember Herbold, HALA, Lowman Beach seawall at Morgan Community Association

City Councilmember Lisa Herbold is the latest addition to the agenda for the Morgan Community Association‘s quarterly meeting Wednesday night (January 17th). She’s scheduled for a briefing on District 1 (West Seattle/South Park) issues close to the start of the 7 pm meeting. MoCA also plans a discussion of HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability upzoning – it’s one of 30+ groups citywide appealing the Final Environmental Impact Statement – and potential changes to the city Comprehensive Plan addressing how it conflicts with the longstanding Morgan neighborhood plan. Plus, Seattle Parks is scheduled to update the Lowman Beach Park seawall situation, seven months after a public meeting about the options for replacing it (or not), and one month after releasing this feasibility study:

Wednesday’s meeting is at The Kenney (7125 Fauntleroy Way SW). The full updated agenda is in our calendar listing.

Admiral Neighborhood Association’s biggest question for City Councilmember Lisa Herbold

Transportation questions dominated Q&A with City Councilmember Lisa Herbold at this month’s Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting.

Top of the list – the Admiral area’s dearth of Metro service, compared to West Seattle’s other urban areas. More than one attendee wondered why residents aren’t seeing return on the additional city taxes they’re paying for transit service.

Herbold said the city decided to go along with the county’s spending guidelines when the city-county partnership began, so right now, Metro’s priorities are focused on adding services to busy routes, and there’s no discussion of what to do about underserved areas. She thinks better metrics are needed to identify who needs better service. One suggestion: Invite Metro to Admiral for an open house, which could be a step toward showing what the area needs.

As she’s done at other community meetings, she also talked about the Alki-and-vicinity community survey that showed major concern about vehicle-noise issues; SPD is due to send a report to the council in March that will pave the way for working on enforcement, or on changing the laws to better facilitate it. Enforcement of the existing cruising ordinance is in the spotlight too.

And as she told the Southwest District Council last week, Councilmember Herbold mentioned the possibility of a West Seattle town hall with new Mayor Jenny Durkan. She says she’s confident it will happen, so watch for updates.

Also at the ANA meeting (which was held Tuesday night at The Sanctuary at Admiral):

SUMMER CONCERTS AT HIAWATHA: Planning for this year’s series is about to begin; committee members are needed to help out. The first concert is set for July 19th.

MEETING SCHEDULE: ANA’s been talking for a long time about cutting back on the slate of monthly meetings, and is now looking at meeting every two months.