West Seattle, Washington
(photo by WSB contributing photojournalist Christopher Boffoli)
During commutes like this morning, when something goes wrong with The Viaduct or the high bridge, many eastbound West Seattle commuters flock to the low bridge. Just one glitch with that: It sometimes opens for vessel traffic during peak-commute hours. That’s a sore spot for drivers such as WSB’er Jennifer, whose question about the situation was featured here last November. West Seattle-dwelling City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen has been pushing for rush-hour restrictions, especially as traffic-affecting work on the Spokane Street Viaduct section of The Bridge gets closer, and talked to WSB about where this stands:Read More
We just talked with Don Jordan, executive director of the Seattle Animal Shelter, to find out what will happen to the owner of the two pit bulls shot by police in Westwood last week, as well as what will happen to the one that survived. Jordan confirms the dogs’ owner has a history with animal-law enforcement, but not involving the same two dogs from this incident. At the very least, though, the owner will be given citations that Jordan says will total more than $1,000 in fines — for violations including allowing a dog to menace/bite, allowing a dog to roam, and expired tags (neither of the dogs had a current license). Once the city investigation is concluded within a week or so – Jordan says they have two witnesses left to interview – the case will be sent to prosecutors for review to see if any criminal charges are warranted. If not, Jordan says he still has an “administrative process” he can trigger to determine whether or not the surviving dog would have to be returned to the owner. (Previous coverage: Original report the night it happened; followup with more details from the police report; update last night from the man who was attacked, along with his Chihuahua.)
Thanks to Eddie for the tip, which is verified by Traffic.com: Accident on northbound Viaduct near Seneca. One lane’s closed. 6:49 AM ADDITION: Adding the camera showing the eastbound bridge at the Viaduct exit, so you can check how things look before you leave (the Viaduct remains cameraless). 7:23 AM UPDATE: We can see northbound 99 traffic from the eastbound bridge, and it’s definitely crawling. 8:04 AM UPDATE: No change as we looked onto 99 while heading back on the bridge westbound. 1st and 4th said to be busier than usual but not too bad. Radio traffic report says repairs might keep that Viaduct lane closed all day (we’ll check with SDOT later). 8:20 AM UPDATE: We’re heading downtown ourselves for a while; will leave this item atop the page so you can share comments and check cameras (find more on our Traffic page). Damage photo and original crash info here. 10:25 AM UPDATE: We’re just back from downtown. Traffic still looks sluggish northbound; heading in, we took 1st and 4th to get to the south edge of downtown, and it took half an hour to get from the 1st offramp to 5th/Cherry! Will post a separate update when we find out from SDOT what’s expected for the rest of the day.
West Seattle gas prices are now as high as they ever got during last spring’s price pump-up — the top posted price for regular is $3.49 (Lincoln Park 76, photo at left), which is where it peaked in WS (at that station and 35th/Holden Chevron) last May. The top posted price for premium is $3.83 (Admiral Chevron), and the top posted price, period, is $3.95 for diesel at two Shell stations (Delridge and Roxbury, photo at right). The lowest posted gas price in WS is $3.25 for regular (Delridge Arco, photo at left). All this is from our survey late last night; with prices now matching last year’s high, we thought it was time to take baseline checks of the price range at all WS stations:Read More
Unless you are following the heated pit-bull debate on the comment thread for our followup on last Tuesday’s officer-shoots-pit-bulls incident in Westwood, you will miss this, so we’re reposting this note from the man who was walking his Chihuahua when those dogs attacked:
dear wsb.com readers, I am the person who along with my little dog was attacked tuesday evening. I like the officer who was forced to shoot felt that I and my 7lb. dog were in real danger. To those who wished to donate for help with vet bills the good news is that my little Rosie, while sore had no bad injuries. (I still canâ€™t believe that I prevailed in that battle.) perhaps those who still wish to help could help a family license a pet so some child in a family going through tough times wonâ€™t be forced to lose a beloved animal. That kind of karma can move a long ways forward.
We are now sending a note to “dwr” to ask how HE is doing.
One of the city council’s newest members, Tim Burgess, blogged tonight about the light sentence given to West Seattle rabbi Ephraim Schwartz for the November 2006 47th/Admiral crash that killed Tatsuo Nakata — who worked as chief of staff for the then-councilmember that Burgess defeated a year later, David Della. In his blog post, titled “Wrist Slap for Traffic Death,” Burgess (left) — a former detective — recaps our city’s pedestrian-vehicle crash stats, as well as calling the Schwartz sentence “inappropriate.” (Side note: Before publishing this, we looked to see which other city councilmembers blog; looks like only Sally Clark. Her newest post is mostly about Burgess’ blogging, which she seems to be saying he does too often; not sure what that’s about, since if you scroll down his main page, you’ll see he doesn’t even post daily.)
Just announced at the end of the week – if your property taxes are paid by your mortgage company, meaning you don’t get an itemized statement showing exactly where the money goes, the county’s going to send you one anyway; they’ll start showing up in the mail in a few weeks. (Hmmm, wonder if the county could find a way to save paper and postage and e-mail it instead?)
Per the Times, the West Seattle High School boys’ basketball team fell short in their game against Seattle Prep this afternoon. And the Seattle Lutheran High School boys and girls didn’t make it to the final rounds of the tournament in Spokane. Nonetheless, we want to send out a hearty “congratulations” for the kids, their families, coaches, and supporters; good job! SUNDAY NIGHT UPDATE: Here are the brackets for the tournament WSHS is in; thanks to David for pointing us to that site where the Wildcats can be tracked through the next rounds. They play Squalicum at 9 pm Wednesday, KeyArena.
Reminder that you are invited to the Alki Bathhouse 4-7 pm today to help celebrate the life of longtime West Seattle Herald reporter Tim St. Clair, who died earlier this week after battling cancer. Two other notable passings have come to our attention in the past few days: WSB regular Jan reports that well-regarded guitarist and West Seattle native Rick Novito died this week (he played most recently with Leroy Bell, whose MySpace site has a few tributes); Jan says Rick’s memorial is set for Thursday at Holy Rosary (Sunday night update: 4 pm, according to this published obituary), and there are efforts to organize a jam in his honor afterward. Here’s a photo of Rick sent by his family:
Thanks to Bob for the tip that the design/construction firm Pb Elemental is re-selling the above-pictured Alki house that it bought along with the neighboring Shoremont, $875,000. (Most recent WSB coverage here; we checked with Pb after Bob’s note, and they say the re-sale was part of the plan, and that they will share renderings of the Shoremont-site plan shortly.) Also notable: The building going up at 35th/Avalon (most recent WSB coverage here) appears to have a name – we came across this space-leasing listing referring to it as Avalon Square. The listing says it has two rentable retail spaces of about 1,300 sf each. (That’s in addition to 60 apartments, per the city permit files.)
So much happening today that we have another round of reminders to come in a few hours — but first, some events that begin this morning: 9 am, the West Seattle High School Class of 2008 fundraising car wash starts at the WSHS parking lot; 10 am, the West Seattle Family Wellness Fair starts at High Point Community Center; also at 10, the Sanislo Elementary used book sale and bake sale gets under way. Much more on the Events page.
More future West Seattle development news, this time from Admiral Neighborhood Association president Mark Wainwright: He says a representative from Safeway has contacted the ANA because, according to Mark, “They would like to start the process of redeveloping the Admiral store, and want to talk to the community. … No specifics at all right now, but it’s great that they’ve reached out to us early on.” It is indeed considered ideal for neighborhood associations to get first word of something major like that, and it’s another good reason to be involved with the association that represents your neighborhood — to see if there is one, check the WEST SEATTLE NEIGHBORHOOD GROUPS list in our sidebar.
Just saw a major medic call at 35th/Graham on the 911 log and got a simultaneous reader report — “terrible accident, motorcycle hit by a car and destroyed.” Heading over to check it out. 4:17 PM UPDATE: Got there within minutes of the original post; the motorcycle was upright but clearly damaged (will add a photo in a minute); no car in sight, except for two police cars bookending the motorcycle, before a tow truck arrived moments later. The road was open. Our original tipster said the motorcycle rider appeared “hurt” but “was moving around.” 4:21 PM UPDATE: Photo added:
As we briefly reported yesterday afternoon, Harbor Properties not only is building Mural in The Junction and proposing a residential/commercial building on the ex-Huling land it’s just bought at 38th/Alaska, it’s also “under contract” to buy West Seattle’s only motel — the former Travelodge, now Seattle West Inn and Suites. This morning, we have more details — on all three — after talking with a Harbor Properties executive:Read More
At left is design option D for 5020 California, aka Spring Hill (not the restaurant), which got the best reviews from the Southwest Design Review Board tonight at Denny Middle School during a semi-rare second round of “early design guidance,” mandated because the first round didn’t go well (WSB coverage here). One of the main concerns that architect David Hewitt was asked to address with this 6-story, 90-unit apartments-and-retail building was the fear it would leave the single-family neighborhood behind it with their alley-facing back yards staring at a big hulking wall. Board members’ consensus tonight was that the revised proposals removed that concern, and also moved more of the building’s “mass” onto the California SW street front, as they also had asked. The dozen or so neighbors who attended tonight’s meeting voiced fewer concerns than the larger group who showed up last month; one outspoken neighbor, Nancy Woodland, noted that reps from the developer, BlueStar (which is also handling Fauntleroy Place, aka the Whole Foods project), had even come to her house for a first-hand survey. Next step for Spring Hill will be the “recommendations” Design Review meeting. Before re-reviewing Spring Hill tonight, the SWDRB got its first look at 9030 35th SW, smaller but not without controversy:Read More
Thanks to Marybeth for sharing that sunset photo from Alki, and this one:
Thanks to Paul Cozens for the latest update:
In a hard-fought battle which went down to the last second, the West Seattle boys beat Cleveland 56 â€“ 53 Thursday night at Bellevue Community College (BCC.)
West Seattle now plays Seattle Prep for third place in the Sea-King District. The game is at 3:00 PM on March 1 at BCC. Win or lose, the Wildcats are going to the state tournament!
Letâ€™s see how many fans we can pack in the BCC gymnasium Saturday.
Go West Side!
Per KOMO website: Ephraim Schwartz, the West Seattle rabbi who hit and killed city council aide Tatsuo Nakata at 47th/Admiral in November 2006, must pay a fine and do community service, and loses his driver’s license for 2 years, but no jail time. 10:36 PM UPDATE: Many more details in this P-I story, including City Attorney Tom Carr calling the sentence “outrageous” and the judge calling Schwartz “a lousy driver.”
That’s a photo sent to WSB by a man who lives in the Westwood neighborhood where police shot two dogs, described as pit bulls, night before last. (Original WSB report here.) The neighbor believes those are the same dogs – even if not, he says there’s a dog problem — irresponsible owner problem, maybe more like it — in his neighborhood: “I have called Animal Control AND Police on these dogs NUMEROUS times. I have photos attached of the dogs hunting/stalking during the day right in a neighborhood where children play outside all day and walk to and from school. … I have many, many photos of these and other loose dogs stalking my neighborhood day and night.” On the night of the police/dogs confrontation, we heard scanner traffic indicating a history of previous trouble with the dogs that police shot. Now we’ve seen the full police writeup of what happened Tuesday night, and thought you might be interested in additional details:Read More
5 months after we reported townhouses are planned for the site of that 95-year-old house at 5232 California (across from West Seattle Nursery), the demolition permit has just been granted.
A few blocks north, 5020 California — the “Spring Hill” mixed-use proposal — gets its next Design Review Board hearing, featuring the new design options shown above (full details reported here), 8 pm tonight @ Denny Middle School Library (after the 6:30 pm review of 9030 35th).