West Seattle, Washington
SDOT announced today that it’s set the date for a surface-traffic closure starting October 7th and lasting “approximately one week” to reinstall the cylinder removed last January. From the announcement:
… The next step in the maintenance process is to reinstall the turn cylinder that was removed from the low bridge’s east pier housing last winter for refurbishment. When the east pier’s cylinder was removed last December, preparations to overhaul all four of the bridge’s hydraulic turning cylinders were actually already underway as part of our comprehensive repair and maintenance effort. When the unexpected damage to the cylinder occurred, the planning work we had already completed enabled us to quickly jump into developing a response plan and likely allowed us to complete repairs sooner than if we had been starting from scratch.
The turn cylinder overhaul work will replace or repair these parts so that they can continue to function as originally designed, and can be readily replaced if needed, as part of our ongoing preventative maintenance work on this bridge.
From Saturday, October 7 through Saturday, October 14, 2023, crews will reinstall the repaired turn cylinder inside the east pier housing that was removed in early 2023. The remaining three turn cylinders will also be rehabilitated in the future. This operation will require us to close the low bridge for people driving, biking, and walking for approximately one week. Our work will be vital to keep the bridge reliably in operation for today and the future.
The announcement also says that free Transit GO credits will be provided so you can take a daily bus or Water Taxi round trip at no charge. (Metro had previously announced that the Water Taxi will be out of service October 14-15 for winter preparation, so we’re checking to see if the low-bridge closure is expected to end by October 14, or whether some overlap is possible.)
Sometimes we include this reminder in the daily preview list, but today we’re making note of it separately: The WSB Community Forums‘ Freebies/Deals/Sales board is our spot for listings of yard sales, other items for sale, and free items. In the latter category, there’s a new listing this morning for free wood, and two late-season yard-sale listings. The Community Forums are also home to our free listings for local businesses with job openings, and the Lost/Found/Non-pets board (pets have their own page here. To post in the Community Forums, you need to register – go here for that.
Usually we’ve moved on to other news and information by 10 am at the latest, but today the traffic roundup has been stuck at the top of the WSB front page for a few extra hours because of technical trouble that’s kept us from publishing anything new for the past few hours. Thanks to our tech team for sleuthing and fixing the problem so we can resume publishing!
Looking for a job that’s close to home? The WSB West Seattle Jobs Offered section of our community forums has lots of new listings – 19 local jobs listed in just the past week – so we’re publishing one of our periodic reminders, in case you were unaware of its existence. For local businesses/organizations, it’s free to post a job. You do need a (free) log-in for the forum section – and if you don’t already have one, you can get that here. You don’t need a log-in to browse the section if you’re looking for work, though – just go here.
This afternoon, state and local cleanup crews were at the encampment across from the Arrowhead Gardens senior-living complex on Myers Way in southeast West Seattle. After photographing what they were doing, we asked WSDOT how exactly today’s work fits into the “resolution” plan detailed at a meeting Tuesday night (WSB coverage here). Here’s what WSDOT’s Brian Nielsen subsequently said in an email update:
As mentioned on Tuesday evening, last Friday WSDOT posted notice at the Myers Way encampment sharing that all operable vehicles needed to move off the site, urging individuals who have challenges moving their vehicles to reach out to outreach teams on site for assistance. Work wrapped up yesterday to place barrier to eliminate access for any new vehicles to the site. The City of Seattle also posted “No Parking” signs on both sides of Myers Way.
This is a very important step in WSDOT and our partners’ work to manage access and inhibit growth within the encampment. We also know there are inoperable vehicles that will likely remain onsite and will be addressed once the encampment is resolved.
I’m also glad to share that the pool and associated wood fencing has been removed. I know this garnered a lot of attention and for many was a symbol of how firmly entrenched this encampment was. We were able to successfully provide housing for the individual associated with these structures. Related to some of our discussion Tuesday evening, this individual was not initially interested in moving, but felt differently after working with the outreach team.
In coordination with the City of Seattle, a significant amount of debris and trash removal also occurred today, allowing for better access and sight lines as well as removing potential flammable material. Ongoing trash pickup will continue.
Also from Nielsen’s update: “While the timeline to resolution doesn’t have exact dates, it is one based on proven results. The (state Right Of Way Safety Initiative) has successfully addressed 30 encampments statewide with over 800 housing offers matched to people’s individual needs. Of those, 694 people remain in their housing options – that’s an 85% success rate in keeping people living indoors.”
As much as many love classic cartoon characters Mickey and Minnie Mouse, their real-life rodent counterparts tend to evoke different sentiments – and for good reason. Public Health-Seattle & King County‘s Environmental Health Services team wants to know what you know about rodents in Seattle, so they are hoping you can spare a few minutes to answer this online survey. You can also access it via this QR code:
In the note asking that we share this with you, Public Health explains, “The information will be used to help us improve our programming and technical assistance offerings.” (Did you even know Public Health has a rodent program? Read about it here.)
Despite its name, the Senior Center of West Seattle is about far more than serving seniors. It’s also a public gathering and event space, a community service provider, and it has ground-floor business space, too. Now the center is at the crossroads of envisioning its future, and would like your thoughts on both what it’s doing now and what it should do in the future, via a strategic-planning process. Explains center executive director Amy Lee Derenthal, “Our board and staff are thinking big and long-term as we imagine the future of our organization and the community as a whole.” We previewed the survey, and it has open-ended questions, not just checkboxes; when you have a few moments, consider participating – the survey starts here.
Today we’re welcoming InterConnection as a new WSB sponsor. That means they get to explain to you what they do:
InterConnection is a Seattle-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization building digital equity by providing affordable computers and internet service to underserved groups. Digital inclusion is critical in today’s society, where access to information, education, health care, and employment opportunity is increasingly difficult without a computer and the internet. Since 1999, InterConnection has provided affordable computers to more than 300,000 people and prevented more than 6 million pounds of e-waste from entering landfills through environmentally sustainable computer refurbishment, re-use, and recycling.
Become a Business Partner, Enable Digital Equity in Seattle
Computers are often retired before their usable life is over. By partnering with InterConnection, businesses ensure that their computers are refurbished for reuse, or recycled instead of reaching landfills.
As the first U.S. nonprofit to earn R2 and ISO 14001 certification status, InterConnection provides sustainable IT asset disposition solutions for companies large and small. We follow industry best practices ensuring the confidential data and private information existing on IT assets is never compromised. InterConnection’s standard data destruction procedures are compliant with NIST 800-88 Guidelines for Media Sanitization and the Department of Defense 5220.22-M.
Drop Off Your Used Electronics for Reuse & Recycling
InterConnection proudly offers a secure, environmentally friendly way for community members to dispose of unwanted electronic devices and accessories at our Loading Dock in Fremont, Monday through Friday from 10 am-3 pm.
InterConnection has great deals on locally refurbished desktops, laptops, and tablets – complete with a 1-year warranty and free shipping nationwide!
We thank InterConnection for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
As discussed in comments following this morning’s traffic watch, the traffic camera that’s long shown West Marginal and Highland Park Way suddenly moved to another part of the city. Responding to our inquiry, SDOT explained that the move is part of an upgrade – that was a long-in-place portable camera, but now the permanent ones are activated, explains spokesperson Ethan Bergerson:
We have installed four new permanent traffic cameras in this general area (two intersections, each with two camera viewing angles). All of these cameras will now have the option for live video streams. We’re in the process of updating the Traveler’s Map (at this moment the view from the University District is still appearing in addition to the correct camera feeds, and you can use the “prev” and “next” buttons to switch to the correct cameras.).
Here are the locations:
W Marginal Way SW & Highland Pk Way SW (two camera angles):
2nd Ave SW & Highland Pk Way SW (two camera angles):
(To get the video feeds, you have to access the cameras via the SDOT map; the cameras and where they point are controlled by SDOT’s traffic center.) We’ll be adding these cameras to the WSB Traffic Cameras page too.
The state Attorney General’s Office is offering a new way to report robocalls – an online complaint form that is “specifically designed to assist attorneys and investigators to quickly react to complaints and stop the calls.” Along with that, they’ve also set up a new website “with descriptions of robocalls and telemarketing scams, including strategies for combating them.” Previously, you were only able to use the AG’s general consumer-complaint form to report suspicious calls. The new form is aimed at gathering information that will help state investigators “better track and discover patterns for robocalls in the state — and prevent other Washingtonians from getting more illegal calls.” Next time you get one, here’s the new form. Read up on robocalls (some of which ARE legal) and scams here. And if you want to report non-robocall types of scams/illegal telemarketing, you can do that here. And yes, the state has taken robocallers to court – today’s announcement notes three cases, including one in which a $10 million penalty was ordered.
Time for one of our occasional reminders that WSB has a section where local businesses can post job listings for free, so if you are looking for a new employee – or if you’re looking for a new job – check it out. The section is accessible via the JOBS link in the menu, whether you’re reading WSB in desktop/laptop or mobile format. It’s part of the WSB Community Forums, so you do need a login to post there. If you don’t have one, look for the box on the right sidebar in desktop/laptop/landscape-portrait view, or otherwise go to westseattleblog.com/log-in. If you post a job listing, please include direct contact info for applicants, as our software doesn’t offer direct messaging. If you’re looking for work, there are a dozen new listings just this week, from automotive-service adviser to kayaking guide – go look!
Lots of government-related news today. Just received one more announcement – an online event to which you’re invited tonight:
Your representatives in the State Senate, State House, and U.S. House of Representatives – all West Seattle residents – are inviting yo8u to a live online town hall at 6:30 tonight:
Join Sen. Joe Nguyen, Rep. Eileen Cody, and Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon, for a virtual town hall–featuring Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal!
The town hall will begin with an introduction by each participant, move into a conversation about the issues facing Washington in the build up to the 2022 Legislative Session, and end with questions from the audience.
The Legislators will also answer participant questions during the stream, but if you would like to submit a question ahead of time, please send an email to email@example.com with the subject line “34th Town Hall.”
You can see the stream here.
3:20 PM: CenturyLink service is down for us here in Upper Fauntleroy, and we’ve heard from other areas too, as far north as North Admiral. Private utility outages are harder to quantify – officially – than public utilities, so no official word of its boundaries so far. Let us know if you’re out too.
3:33 PM: See the comments – fairly widespread, outside West Seattle too. We’ve also heard in other channels from Sunrise Heights and Fairmount Park.
3:48 PM: A texter from Gatewood reached CenturyLink customer service online and got both confirmation of the outage and that they’re working on it, with an estimated restoration time of 7:17 pm (caveat, we don’t know if their restoration times are fact-based).
7:40 PM: Thanks for the updates in comments. Our service has returned in Upper Fauntleroy (not sure exactly when, as we switched to Comcast when it went out – have to have redundancy for the business). We’ll follow up with CL on Monday.
Thanks for the tips (including Mark, who also sent the photo): Southbound 26th SW has reopened between SW Barton and SW Roxbury. That’s the first time in almost four months that the stretch of 26th has been open both ways. It’s been rebuilt – one direction at a time – to better withstand the constant pounding it takes from buses. It’s been a years-long problem, with neighbors complaining their homes shook when buses passed on the flimsier pavement.
Three and a half months after a fire heavily damaged the century-old Highland Park Improvement Club community hub, its board is ready to talk about what’s next. They’ve announced an online town-hall meeting for 7 pm next Wednesday (October 13th): “Learn about the details of the fire, our plan to rebuild, what we are doing in the interim, and how you can help. Bring your questions!” Information for viewing/calling in/participating is here.
National Poetry Series winner Teresa K. Miller, who has deep West Seattle roots, has an online reading coming up Thursday (October 7th) and wants to let the community know. Miller is a graduate of Tilden School and while she now lives in the Portland area, her mother still lives in West Seattle. Miller was chosen last year as a winner of the National Poetry Series for her second full-length collection, “Borderline Fortune,” which will be released by Penguin this Tuesday. She will be launching the book Thursday via a virtual event hosted by Seattle’s Elliott Bay Book Company. The announcement says Miller’s new book “explores the ancestral legacy of the climate crisis,” and that the poet “seeks through these beautifully crafted poems to awaken from the intergenerational trance and bear witness to our current moment with clarity and attention, refusing the mind’s limits.” Thursday’s online event is at 6 pm; you can register here.
Jessica has been leading volunteer cleanups at Alki Beach on first Saturdays for more than a few months. When she sent us the announcement of the next cleanup this Saturday (October 2nd), she mentioned something more – the launch of a new coalition for volunteer cleanup groups, and a website where you can browse all their events. They’re welcoming others – “West Seattle, and ultimately beyond” – to get their cleanups on the list. The site is CleanupSEA.com, and that’s where you’ll find, for example, info about joining this Saturday’s Alki cleanup (10 am-1 pm). And if you have a cleanup and/or group to add to the site, here’s how to reach them.
Today seems like a good time to remind you about the West Seattle Jobs Offered section of the WSB Community Forums. This is where West Seattle, South Park, and White Center businesses are welcome to post job listings, free of charge. So if you’re looking for a local job, drop in and check once in a while! You don’t have to have a login to read the Forums (or any other section of WSB) but you DO need one to post – so here’s how to get yours: If you’re visiting WSB with a desktop or laptop, look for the box on the right sidebar to show you how to get one; if you’re mobile, go to westseattleblog.com/log-in. When posting a job listing, please include contact info, so prospective applicants can contact you directly.
Meet Niki Stojnic (left) and Nia Martin (right). We’re spotlighting these West Seattle writers on Labor Day because they are collaborating on a project that “focuses on the work, expertise, and stories of women in the greater Seattle area and how we impact and shape the city and Pacific Northwest region.” It’s a twice-monthly newsletter called Parts & Labor. Martin says, “We’ve gotten some great interviews over 31 issues — featuring accomplished women across the spectrum, from the new executive chef of Canlis, Aisha Ibrahim, and her partner on how they’re changing kitchen culture, to how Vivian Hua helped keep Northwest Film Forum going during the pandemic.”
Martin and Stojnic launched Parts & Labor just as the pandemic began, in fact – March 2020. Since both are West Seattleites, Martin says, “We frequently feature West Seattle women’s small businesses in our ‘She Made It’ short feature section and our ‘Attn’ section, which calls out timely events, businesses and organizations.” After almost a year and a half, they stopped down during August for a break but are now getting ready for their next issue – scheduled publication date, September 16th. You can browse past Parts & Labor issues here (that’s also where you can subscribe, free!). They also publish “featurettes” on Instagram.
If you use the Seattle Public Library, there’s a quick way you can help with the search for the system’s new leader. The announcement:
The Seattle Public Library’s Board of Trustees is conducting a local and national search for a new Executive Director and Chief Librarian to lead the organization.
Koya Partners, the consultant firm hired to lead the search, has developed a short survey to help inform the position profile of the job. The position profile is a recruiting document which helps potential candidates learn more about the position, institution and community. The position profile will be used to help recruit a pool of local and national candidates for the Library Board to consider.
The survey will run through Wednesday, Sept. 17. More information and a link to the survey can be found at spl.org/ChiefLibrarianSearch. For people who may lack access to computers or the internet or who may need staff assistance or language translation, paper surveys are available at all open Library locations and Library staff are ready to assist. Find a list of open Library locations at hours at spl.org/Hours.
The Library’s previous Chief Librarian, Marcellus Turner, took a new position with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library in Charlotte, N.C. at the end of March 2021. Tom Fay, the Library’s Director of Programs and Services, has since served in the role of Interim Chief Librarian.
With Seattle Public Schools opening for full-time in-person learning one week from Wednesday, families with questions about health/safety issues are invited to an online “town hall’ tomorrow. At 4:30 pm Tuesday, district leaders plan a community Q&A session. You can participate via Microsoft Teams, or watch live on platforms including YouTube – the links are here. You can read about school health/safety protocols and other new-school-year plans here.
Tomorrow brings the second episode of Tossed Popcorn, a weekly podcast co-hosted by West Seattleite Siena Jeakle. She describes it as “a comedy podcast about classic movies.” And it’s in a bright spotlight, since Jeakle and co-host Lianna Holston won the iHeart Radio network’s “Next Great Podcast” contest (under the working title Frankly, My Dear). Tossed Popcorn launched last week by taking aim at “The Godfather,” and the goal is to take on another movie every week from the American Film Institute’s “100 Greatest American Movies of All Time.” You can listen here – and Jeakle says you also can find it on the “iHeartRadio app, Spotify, and all other online podcast streaming services.”
Thanks to Ingrid for noticing that SDOT‘s Highland Park Way/Holden traffic camera has been showing a very non-West Seattle scene for at least a few days. We’ve had the camera image in our traffic-cam lists for months, and hadn’t changed the link; investigating further, we found the SDOT Travelers’ Map has also changed the view for that location:
So we checked with SDOT. Spokesperson Ethan Bergerson responded:
The portable camera was moved last week to NE 45th St and Roosevelt Ave NE in the U District to monitor detour traffic during the WSDOT Montlake Bridge closure. We plan to move it back to West Seattle when that construction project is completed in a few weeks. We had actually purchased a new portable traffic camera so that we could monitor conditions in both locations, but unfortunately the parts did not all arrive on time due to supply chain issues. So there’s some possibility we may be able to re-install a camera Highland Park Way SW & SW Holden St sooner depending on when the new camera components arrives.
The camera’s description as “portable” refers to its technically temporary status – it was placed at the intersection after the temporary signal was rush-installed the week after the West Seattle Bridge closure almost a year and a half ago. A permanent camera with upgraded technology is expected to be part of the permanent signal, now on hold until after the bridge reopens next year.