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FOLLOWUP: Lowman Beach Park night work continues

Thanks to Mike Munson for the photo of a delivery today at Lowman Beach Park. His photo and an area resident’s report of bright lights overnight last night are reminders that night work on the shore-restoration project continues, as previewed in a Seattle Parks announcement two weeks ago. We asked Parks today what’s happening now; spokesperson Karen O’Connor replied, “The night work started last week. The Contractor was working on shoring and preparation around the area for the new precast seawall. This week, a few more night shifts will occur to set precast wall and cap in place.” They’re working during late-night low-low tides. If anyone in the area has questions about the night work, she said, they can email lowmanbeach@seattle.gov.

P.S. A brief update on the project is also planned during Wednesday night’s quarterly Morgan Community Association meeting, 7 pm online – viewing/participation info is in our calendar listing.

Also at Lincoln Park: Unusual bird sighting

Before sunset, we got multiple reports (thanks to Megan for the photo) about that rooster, seen and heard in upper Lincoln Park. Not likely it’s a lost pet, as they’re against city rules. We advised reporting to Seattle Animal Shelter but they’re closed for the holiday.

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Car broken into in park lot

Heads up if this afternoon’s sunshine has you planning on driving to a local park. Just sent by Franki:

We wanted to share that sometime from 11:40 to 12:40 this morning our car was broken into while we were strolling in Lincoln Park. We parked our car in upper parking lot along Fauntleroy. The right side window was smashed and my mom’s purse was stolen. We are a bit befuddled on how this happened because there were so many people around in the parking lot! Just remember to stay safe and don’t leave belongings visible in your car.

General advice is not to leave anything in your car, visible or not – thieves have been known to break in on spec.

YOU CAN HELP: Lincoln Park forest restoration for MLK Day of Service weekend

Looking for a way to volunteer on Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend? The West Seattle High School Green Team, Friends of Lincoln Park, YMCA, and Green Seattle Partnership invite you to a youth-led urban-restoration event at Lincoln Park, 10 am-1 pm on January 15th. All are welcome – they’ll be meeting near the north map kiosk by Fauntleroy Way SW and SW Rose. Here’s the flyer with the QR code for registration, and contact information if you have questions.

LOWMAN BEACH: Nighttime work ahead

(December photo, by Mike Munson)

Three and a half months after work to remove the crumbling Lowman Beach Park seawall began, Seattle Parks says night work is ahead so the project can stay on schedule. Here’s the announcement:

Seattle Parks and Recreation and McClung Construction have reached a milestone with the Lowman Beach Park seawall and beach restoration project. Two main components of this project are complete: demolition of the existing failed concrete seawall, as well as drilling and installation of the steel piles that provide structural support for the new seawall.

The next critical phase of work involves installation of the new precast concrete seawall. This work will occur between January 11 – 24, 2022 and must be performed at night to take advantage of the low tides. The installation of the precast concrete seawall must occur before February 15 when the in-water work window that protects fish and shellfish habitats closes. The time limitation for work is a requirement of Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the workable low tides in January and February occur outside normal working hours.

Two night work windows at low tides will occur for:

-Preparing for the permanent installation of new seawall segments which will require up to four nights of work, however, could possibly be completed in one or two nights.

-Installing the precast wall panels, which is expected to take another three to four work nights.

Our Temporary Noise Variance Permit is currently approved for work between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. starting Tuesday, January 11, 2022, and must be completed by Monday, January 24 at 7 a.m. Although the permit allows for 14 nights of work, we expect to work a maximum of eight nighttime shifts.

McClung Construction will do what is feasible to minimize noise levels as much as possible.

Thank you to the neighbors for their patience and cooperation during the Lowman Beach Park seawall and beach restoration project.

Project background is here.

FOLLOWUP: This may finally be the year for long-delayed Don Armeni Boat Ramp project

(WSB file photo)

The long-delayed dock replacement at Don Armeni Boat Ramp is getting closer to reality. This past week, the city published notice of a key approval for the project, opening a window for appeals (as explained in the notice). But that’s not what’s been holding up the project, which we first reported on almost five years ago. The Seattle Parks project page says federal permitting has held up the project: “The Army Corps of Engineers and National Marine Fisheries Service were confronted with several emergent priority projects (West Seattle Bridge) and regulatory changes.” But they’re expecting the federal permit in time for this summer/fall’s “in-water construction” season. The $1.5 million project proposes sturdier, larger replacements for the existing floating docks and pilings. According to the current description, 16-inch steel pilings will replace the current 12-inch wood pilings, and the docks’ square footage will increase by a third, adding 691 square feet more “over-water coverage” to the existing 1,869 square feet. To compensate for that, Parks says, it will reduce overwater coverage at Pier 63 downtown. Parks promises to keep Don Armeni open to boaters during the work: “We will not shut the facility down during construction, we will replace the floats one side at a time.”

WEST SEATTLE WEATHER: Lincoln Park tree trouble

Thanks to Tom Trulin for the photo – another big tree down in Lincoln Park. Rain and wind kicked up for a while overnight. The weather’s not expected to get too dramatic for the rest of today or even tomorrow – still no alerts/advisories for our area. The National Weather Service‘s “forecawt discussion” should be updated again in a few hours, but in the meantime, it’s not projecting the temperature drop to start before Sunday, and the prospect of serious snow remains iffy.

P.S. If you encounter fallen trees or any other Seattle Parks maintenance problem, the after-hours number is 206-684-7250.

WEST SEATTLE BIRDS: Christmas Day walk

Thanks to Jon Anderson for the woodpecker photo. If you love birds, and will have free time on Christmas afternoon, one of your neighbors is organizing a bird walk in Lincoln Park, 1 pm to 3 pm Saturday. “No experience necessary; all levels of expertise are welcome!” says volunteer naturalist Merle, who sent the announcement. We’re mentioning it in case you miss it among all the holiday info in our calendar. Full details here, including where in the park to meet.

FOLLOWUP: Alki Beach’s new restroom building finally opens

A short time ago, Seattle Parks workers took down the fence and finally opened the long-complete comfort-station replacement at 57th SW and Alki Avenue SW. We’ve been trying for two weeks to get a status update and were most recently told last night by Parks spokesperson Rachel Schulkin that this was the latest hangup: “We are working on new technology for automatic locking doors to better address onslaught of vandalism currently occurring at restrooms throughout the city’s park system.” Then this morning she sent word that the restroom building (aka comfort station) would open this morning. This comes three months after Parks had told us the new building was “very close to opening,” Before that, there was an estimated opening date in late July, as they awaited structural-steel materials. Construction of the $638,000 three-stall comfort station began in late January, which in turn was about a year behind the original (pre-pandemic) schedule. This building replaced an old two-stall brick building that had accessibility challenges.

VIDEO: High Point celebration lights up trees and hearts

A crowd gathered tonight at High Point Commons Park for a first-ever seasonal celebration. It was billed as “Fruit Tree Lighting,” but the lights extended beyond the tiny trees planted last spring as the start of a community orchard. As shown in our video above, community builder Ella McRae led the crowd in a countdown that ended with attendees switching on battery-powered handheld tea lights, as well as the illumination of the little trees. The event also included a community resource fair with a variety of organizations participating, and music from the West Seattle High School Band. The orchard is near the West Seattle Bee Garden on the north end of the park.

SAVING ROXHILL BOG: First, fix ‘the bathtub’

(Images from meeting presentation – above, Roxhill Park and Bog)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Imagine you want to take a bath – but not only can you not draw enough water to fill the tub, the water you do get keeps draining out.

That’s the problem with Roxhill Bog, experts and advocates believe, and as unveiled at this week’s community meeting, they have a plan that might fix it.

“Might” is the important word here – so they’re going to try an experiment on part of the endangered wetland, which is all that’s left of a 10,000-year-old peat bog that once stretched far beyond the remnant that exists – dry as it is – mostly on the south side of city-owned Roxhill Park.

Wednesday night’s meeting had many of the same participants who gathered more than a year and a half ago – just before the pandemic shut down in-person meetings – to accelerate the effort to keep the bog from being lost forever.

This time, interested and/or involved parties gathered online to talk and hear about what’s been learned and what happens next.

Read More

WEST SEATTLE WEATHER: Southwest Pool opening late because of power trouble

12:29 PM: Southwest Pool would usually be open by now for its first lap swim of the day, but Seattle Parks says it’s opening late today “due to power outages this past weekend … Crews are working to get the boilers back online.” The weekend’s major power outage on Sunday didn’t stretch that far west, so we’re checking with Parks for more information.

2:04 PM: Parks spokesperson Rachel Schulkin didn’t have outage-specific info but tells WSB, “The power outage had an impact on the pool’s boilers and the pool and shower temperatures are reducing. Our HVAC crews are coming out to get it fixed and hope to have it open later today or tomorrow, but we won’t know exactly until the HVAC crew gives us a time estimate.”

4:19 PM: The pool is open again, but may be a few degrees cooler than usual.

ROXHILL BOG: Resuming the struggle to save a 10,000-year-old ecosystem

(WSB photo, April 2019)

Just before the pandemic wiped most other concerns off the map for a long time, in February of last year, a “stakeholders meeting” shone the spotlight on endangered Roxhill Bog (part of Roxhill Park). Now the struggle to save it is back on the front burner, and another community meeting is planned. Here’s the announcement/update from the Duwamish Alive Coalition:

The second public meeting for the community led restoration of Roxhill Bog will be held online November 17th from 6:30 to 8:00 pm, to provide an update on the hydrology study of why the wetland has been drying out and possible solutions along with the results of the community survey that was conducted. The online link to the meeting can be accessed by registering through DNDA.org or Duwamishalive.org

Roxhill Bog is one of the last peat wetlands of the historical 26 within Seattle, dating back 10,000 years and home to a unique ecosystem of plants and animals. It’s also the headwaters of Longfellow Creek and an important community asset where the community can experience and learn about nature. Over the last couple decades, it has been drying out, which has significantly degraded its ecosystem – with increased invasive plants, loss of wildlife, and unsuitable usage of the area creating safety concerns.

Community members, alarmed about the loss of this community treasure, created a collaborative partnership with the Delridge Neighborhood Development Association, Duwamish Alive Coalition, Roxhill Champions, and American Rivers to help restore the bog wetland. With help from Seattle Councilmember Lisa Herbold and King County Councilmember Joe McDermott. the partnership was able to acquire funding for the hydrology and soil studies and the community survey, which received over 260 responses, and restoration design.

The November 17th public meeting will review the results of the studies, and community survey and seek input on the restoration design. This is an important opportunity for the community to provide comments about the project and their hopes for the wetlands’ future.

For backstory, see our report on last year’s meeting. There’s also a lot of background on this webpqge assembled by the now-dormant Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council.

FOLLOWUP: Changes for Westcrest Park Off-Leash Area users as drainage project begins

November 3, 2021 6:09 pm
|    Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Changes for Westcrest Park Off-Leash Area users as drainage project begins
 |   Highland Park | Pets | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

Three weeks later than originally announced, the drainage project at Westcrest Park has begun. We had been checking on it after reader reports that the work wasn’t happening, even though the city had announced it would begin in mid-October. Today a reader texted that the main off-leash area is closed and the temporary OLA is open. The work is expected to continue until spring of next year.

VACCINATION VERIFICATION: Seattle Parks facilities starting Monday, too

Monday, October 25th, is the date set for vaccination-verification requirements at many establishments/facilities in King County. This morning Seattle Parks has a reminder about what that means for people using its facilities:

As directed by Seattle King County Public Health, Seattle Parks and Recreation will require proof of vaccination, or proof of a negative test, for entry to all recreation facilities starting Monday, October 25. 

These facilities include: 

-All community centers 
-All public pools 
-Amy Yee Tennis Center 
-Volunteer Park Conservatory 
-Environmental Learning Centers 
-And all indoor rental facilities owned by Seattle Parks and Recreation (community centers, pools, and event facilities) 

For visitors ages 12 and above, staff will check for the following acceptable forms of vaccination upon each entry to a recreation facility: 

CDC vaccination card or photo of vaccine card. 
Documented proof of vaccination from medical record or vaccine provider. 
Printed certificate or QR code (available at the end of September) from MyIRMobile.com.
You do not need to show identification with proof of vaccination. 

People who are unvaccinated or cannot prove vaccination status will be required to show proof of a negative PCR COVID-19 test taken in the last 72 hours. Documentation must be from a testing agent such as a laboratory, health care provider, or pharmacy. Self-administered rapid tests (also called at-home tests) will not be accepted. 

Vaccination exemptions will not be accepted. Proof of a negative test can be shown for those who cannot be vaccinated.

Proof of vaccination will be required for each entry to a recreation facility, for every visit. Vaccination proof will not be stored.

Read the full announcement here.

PROGRESS REPORT: Lowman Beach tennis-court tearout

Thanks to Mike Munson for another photo of the work at Lowman Beach Park, removing the seawall and tennis court to restore a more-natural shoreline, as was done with the south side of the park long ago. The project’s been in the works for more than four years; work is expected to last until next spring.

P.S. A brief update will be part of the Morgan Community Association‘s quarterly meeting, online at 7 pm Wednesday.

FOLLOWUP: Long-planned Westcrest Park work starting soon, city says

Another long-planned Seattle Parks project is about to get started. Here’s the announcement we received late today:

Seattle Parks and Recreation awarded the construction contract for the Westcrest Park Off-leash Area Drainage Improvements project to OMA Construction Inc. The contractor will mobilize and set up construction fencing the week of October 18.

The main off-leash area and the north parking lot will be fully closed during construction. In response to community input in 2019, SPR will construct a temporary off-leash area to the north of the existing site and west of the small/shy dog area in a space that is currently lawn. It will be set up prior to closure of the existing off-leash area for public use. The existing shy/small dog area will remain open. People interested in accessing the temporary off-leash area can access it through the south parking lot.

We anticipate reopening the parking lot and improved off-leash area in spring 2022. After construction, the contractor will restore the temporary OLA back to lawn.

Over the past few years, the maintenance project has grown from a simple drainage improvement project to a $505,000 project that will address drainage, access, and erosion. Funding is provided by the Seattle Park District Major Maintenance and Asset Management Fund. For more information, please visit seattle.gov/parks/about-us/projects/westcrest-park-drainage-improvements. If you have questions about the project please contact the project manager, Janice Liang at Janice.Liang@seattle.gov.

While not mentioned in the announcenment or on the project page, the city told us back in May that the closed play structure would be replaced as part of this project.

FOLLOWUP: Lowman Beach Park crews dig in

Thanks to Mike Munson for the photo from Lowman Beach Park, where crews are in their third week of what’s expected to be an eight-month project, removing the failing seawall and the adjacent tennis court, and restoring a more natural shoreline, as was done on the south end of the beach years ago, We asked project manager Janice Liang about this work, and she explained that it’s related to another component of the project, daylighting the end of Pelly Creek: “The Contractor is currently installing new storm drain structures (as seen in the photo) to connect to the existing 18″ Pelly Creek storm drain on the uphill side. The pipe will be daylighted at a pipe outfall midway of the site, with exposed stream beds connecting down to the beach.” For a view of what the finished project is supposed to look like, you can find design documents here.

REOPENED: Programming returns to High Point Community Center

Seattle Parks and Recreation community centers continue the process of gradually reopening for programs and services. High Point Community Center (6920 34th SW) wants you to know it’s ready to welcome your participation again, HPCC’s Paula Pablo emailed to say they’re offering a variety of options, including:

Adult Tae Kwon Do
Dance classes for ages 2-6
Senior classes
Winter Activity Camps
Drop-In Basketball

Best way to find out more is to call 206-684-7422.

FOLLOWUP: Work under way at Lowman Beach Park

September 16, 2021 1:43 pm
|    Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Work under way at Lowman Beach Park
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

In case you haven’t been to Lowman Beach Park since work on the shoreline-restoration project began, here’s what’s happening:

Construction fencing stretches across the entire north-south length of the park – no shore access. Through the fence, you can see crews working on the north side of the to-be-removed tennis court and seawall:

The swings, however, are still open and accessible (and are NOT part of the project zone):

McClung Construction is the contractor for the $1.2 million project, which is expected to last at least eight months.

YOU CAN HELP! Forest restoration with Friends of Lincoln Park

September 14, 2021 9:00 am
|    Comments Off on YOU CAN HELP! Forest restoration with Friends of Lincoln Park
 |   How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

On Sunday (September 19th), Friends of Lincoln Park would be happy to have your help. From forest steward Lisa McGinty:

Urban forest restoration volunteer opportunity at Lincoln Park! Registration and event details can be found here. .

When: September 19, 2021, 9 am-11 am

Please be sure ALL volunteers are pre-registered (including youth). If event is full, you can find other event dates here: greenseattle.org/get-involved/volunteer. Search for Lincoln Park or any of your favorite Seattle green spaces! Large group or other questions? Please reach out to flip98136@gmail.com.

FOLLOWUP: Alki Beach Park back to regular hours

While the days are getting shorter, at Alki, they’ve also just gotten longer. Tonight is the first night that Alki Beach Park‘s closing time is back to 11:30 pm, after two months of closing at 10 pm. The early closing time was ordered in early July – first as a holiday-weekend experiment, then as a two-month trial run – days after the shooting that killed 22-year-old Tilorae Shepherd. We confirmed with Seattle Parks this afternoon that there had been no last-minute decision to extend the early closing time. One note: Though the beach is open later now, the fire pits are supposed to be closed for the season as of tonight.

Lowman Beach tennis court’s days are numbered: Six

If you want to play tennis at the Lowman Beach Park court one last time before it’s removed as part of the shore-restoration project, you have six days. Seattle Parks says its contractor McClung Construction will be starting work next Monday (September 13th) and that means, according to project manager Janice Liang, “The park will be partially closed during construction including the beach, tennis court, and the gravel walkways. The play area and the part of the lawn area close to the street will remain open.” The $1.2 million shore-restoration project will remove the failing seawall on the north side of the park, creating more beach space, and daylighting the stretch of Pelly Creek that currently leads to an outfall pipe in the seawall. The work is expected to last at least eight months. Earlier this summer, Parks ruled out building a replacement tennis court elsewhere in the park, but said it would consider allowing something smaller, like a pickleball court – provided community fundraising covered the cost; nothing is planned so far.