West Seattle development: Charlestown Court coming down

May 22, 2015 at 4:49 pm | In Development, West Seattle housing, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

3811californiaphoto.jpg

4:49 PM: Twice nominated, and rejected, for city landmark status, the Charlestown Court apartments across from the ex-Charlestown Cafe are coming down.

Townhouses will replace them, as we’ve reported previously.

5:40 PM: We’re adding images and backstory. And first – thanks to Bryce for the tip that demolition was under way; unexpected at 4 pm on a Friday going into a long holiday weekend. This site has been on our watchlist for many weeks, and we’ve driven by daily to check for signs of impending teardown, but hadn’t been by today, until that tip.

Next Friday, last ‘Laps With Lou’ before Pathfinder PE teacher & Make-A-Wish hero Lou Cutler retires

May 22, 2015 at 3:39 pm | In How to help, Pigeon Point, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | No Comments

It’s been one of our favorite stories to cover every year we’ve done this – but next Friday will be our last chance to report on another round of “Laps With Lou“: Pathfinder K-8 PE teacher Lou Cutler is retiring. For 12 years now, on a day close to his birthday, he has been joined by students and other members of the Pathfinder community in running one lap for each year he’s been on the planet, with pledges for Make-A-Wish, the nonprofit for which he’s spent almost 20 years volunteering. This year, Lou and friends will run 64 laps around the field. You’re invited to cheer him on, one last time, starting at 8:45 am next Friday (May 29th) on the field at Pathfinder (1901 SW Genesee on Pigeon Point). You can pledge/donate in advance, too – just go here.

One more transportation note: Use Delridge? Take this survey

May 22, 2015 at 1:34 pm | In Delridge, Transportation, West Seattle news | No Comments

One more transportation-related item: If you live and/or work and/or drive, ride, walk, run along Delridge Way SW, you’re going to want to take this survey. It was mentioned in the announcement of a June 6th city-led workshop regarding three projects – the Delridge Multi-Modal Corridor Study, the Delridge Action Plan, and Delridge Longfellow Creek Basin Natural Drainage Systems Partnership. The workshop is planned for 9:30 am-noon June 6th (a Saturday) at Southwest Teen Life Center (2801 SW Thistle)

VIDEO: Why the first Admiral Way Safety Project meeting won’t be the last after all

May 22, 2015 at 10:30 am | In Transportation, West Seattle news | 42 Comments

(Slide deck from last night’s meeting)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“Who can we contact to derail this program?”

That question was asked by one attendee at last night’s contentious meeting about the Admiral Way Safety Project, but could have come from almost anyone who spoke. We hadn’t planned to record the meeting on video but grabbed five minutes of public comment via phone; if you weren’t there, this is a taste of how it went:

This was the first standalone meeting about the project, and at one point during the meeting SDOT reps said it would be the only one – but before the meeting’s end, Admiral Neighborhood Association president David Whiting asked them to commit to another one, and they agreed.

The proposal for SW Admiral Way between California SW and 63rd SW is intended to improve safety by adding a bicycle lane and narrowing vehicle lanes. That would require removal of about 200 street parking spaces, per SDOT’s calculations, on alternating sides of the street. While SDOT initially contended that the proposal would still preserve more than the number of spaces they found occupied during their research, what has drawn ire is the timing of that research: They took counts last December, not during the warm-weather months that fill Alki-area parking spaces for blocks around.

The way in which this proposal emerged also has drawn criticism.

Click to read the rest of VIDEO: Why the first Admiral Way Safety Project meeting won’t be the last after all…

What will you get for $930 million? Read the proposed transportation levy’s fine print

May 22, 2015 at 9:47 am | In Uncategorized, West Seattle news, West Seattle politics | 10 Comments

The heart of the decision over this fall’s transportation levy: What will you get for your money? Two weeks after Mayor Murray and SDOT director Scott Kubly went public with the revised proposed $930 million “Move Seattle” transportation levy (WSB coverage here), it’s officially appearing on the City Council’s Introduction and Referral Calendar – which means that you can read the “fine print.” That includes the proposed “ballot title,” what you’ll see before you vote in November, assuming the language isn’t changed:

CITY OF SEATTLE
PROPOSITION NO. 1

The City of Seattle’s Proposition 1 concerns replacing funding for citywide transportation maintenance and improvements.

If approved, this proposition would replace an expiring levy and fund bridge seismic upgrades, transit corridor and light rail station access projects, pedestrian and bicycle safety projects, upgraded and synchronized traffic signals, street maintenance and improvements, freight mobility projects, and neighborhood street fund projects.

It authorizes regular property taxes above RCW 84.55 limits, allowing collection of up to $95,000,000 in 2016 and up to $930,000,000 over nine years. The 2016 total regular tax limit would be $3.60/$1,000 assessed value, including approximately $0.62 additional taxes.

Should this levy be approved?
Levy, Yes
Levy, No

You can read the legislation in its entirety here – keep in mind the City Council now will start its review, with public-comment opportunities along the way – including a 5:30 pm public hearing at City Hall on June 2nd – before a final version is sent to the county in August. (This link also includes info on how to comment on it right now. And a new stack of “public outreach” links has just been sent around by SDOT – you can find them here; the links on that page include the map we’ve embedded atop this story.)

West Seattle Friday: Garden Club; softball playoffs; bingo benefit…

May 22, 2015 at 9:00 am | In West Seattle news, WS miscellaneous | 2 Comments

(Male black-headed grosbeak, photographed by Mark Wangerin)
The holiday weekend is about to start! If you’re headed out, be safe and have a great time; we’ll be here covering what’s going on in West Seattle, as usual, including daily advance word of calendar highlights, like these:

WEST SEATTLE GARDEN CLUB: This month’s meeting starts with 10 am registration and continues until 2 pm, at Daystar Retirement Village. Bring your own lunch; beverage and dessert are included in the $5 registration fee. (2615 SW Barton)

FREE SOUP AND SANDWICH LUNCH: For the community – drop by Seaview Methodist Church any time between 11:30 am and 1:30 pm; details in our calendar listing. (4620 SW Graham)

SOFTBALL PLAYOFFS: 5 pm, it’s West Seattle High School‘s next game in the district playoffs, vs. Ballard HS at Southwest Athletic Complex. (2801 SW Thistle – ballfields are on the SW Trenton side)

‘DINGO’ FUNDRAISER: Dessert plus bingo at and for West Seattle High School, with a portion of the proceeds going to the Children’s Miracle Network, 6:30 pm “but it’s OK if you’re late,” organizers say. Details here. (3000 California SW)

LIVE MUSIC: Our calendar has listings for 5 pm at Salty’s (WSB sponsor), 7 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), and 9 pm at The Skylark. (Missing anyone? Please let us know at editor@westseattleblog.com – thanks!)

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Pre-holiday Friday updates

May 22, 2015 at 7:49 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | No Comments

(Four WS-relevant views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
The 3-day holiday weekend is almost here. No problems in/from West Seattle so far. Here are the Memorial Day reminders again:

MEMORIAL DAY TRANSIT NOTES: On Monday – Metro will be on its Sunday schedule; the West Seattle Water Taxi will also be on a Sunday schedule; and Sound Transit Route 560 too. Regular weekday schedule for the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth Washington State Ferries route; here’s the system-wide overview.

VIDEO: Lafayette Elementary students perform for Seattle School Board

May 22, 2015 at 7:47 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS culture/arts | No Comments

Encore performance this week for part of the cast of Lafayette Elementary‘s recent musical! From Luckie:

Lafayette Elementary was invited to performed a scene from this year’s school play, “The Barnyard Musical Mystery,” at the May 20 Seattle Public Schools board meeting in the John Stanford Center auditorium. It was broadcast live on Channel 26 (see the archived video above).

“The Barnyard Musical Mystery” is a one-hour play written by Lafayette Elementary parent Laurie Utterback, who also directed it along with fellow parent volunteer Joel Oltyan and Lafayette’s multi-arts teacher Melia Scranton. A cast of 80 students in third through fifth grade rehearsed after school once a week beginning in January, and performed the play on May 7, 8, and 9 at the Chief Sealth International High School auditorium.

The performers at Wednesday’s school board meeting:

Jane, grade 5
Daisy, grade 4
Audrey, grade 4
Millie, grade 4
Zhaiarah, grade 4
Mason, grade 5
Myah, grade 4
Stella, grade 4
Jordan, grade 4

Lafayette Elementary is very proud of the dedication, enthusiasm, and teamwork shown by all of its talented young actors!

PHOTOS: Scenes from sold-out Taste of West Seattle, raising $53,000 for WS Helpline

May 21, 2015 at 10:07 pm | In Fauntleroy, Fun stuff to do, West Seattle news | 6 Comments

(UPDATED Friday afternoon with fundraising total and more)

ORIGINAL REPORT, 10:07 PM THURSDAY: When you see the advance warning every spring that the Taste of West Seattle will probably sell out, so you’ll want to get your tickets early – it’s not just a sales pitch. Tonight’s benefit for the West Seattle Helpline sold out days in advance and the line above was just for ticketholders waiting to get into The Hall at Fauntleroy! Once inside, you had the chance to sample the tastes and sips brought by dozens of local food and beverage purveyors. From north to south, here’s who we photographed:

Up from Alki were Nadia and Inaam Khazaal from Phoenecia (WSB sponsor) – where giving back isn’t just something they do for occasions like this, but also on Give Back Tuesdays (which raised money for Helpline in March). From East Alki, Chef Paolo Carey-DiGregorio and Corporate Pastry Chef Douglas Taylor from Salty’s (WSB sponsor):

From North Admiral, Cary Kemp from Pizzeria 22:

Also from Admiral, Jude and Megan from Metropolitan Market (WSB sponsor):

From the north end of The Junction, Hotwire Online Coffeehouse (WSB sponsor) proprietor Lora Swift (below right) with Janie and Dan Jacobs:

From the east side of The Junction, at outer Jefferson Square, Dream Dinners (WSB sponsor) proprietor Leslie Thomson and assistant Amanda, with Brooks Riendl from the Helpline board:

Heading south to just north of Morgan Junction, members of the Harry’s Chicken Joint team:

Tom DiStefano from nearby West Seattle Cellars, which raised more than $1,300 for Helpline in honor of their recent 20th anniversary:

More than 40 participants in all – and about 500 people there to be delighted by what they ate and drank. We’re waiting to hear the final tallies on tonight’s Helpline-helping success and will update when we have the info.

ADDED EARLY FRIDAY: A popular feature of The Taste is voting to choose best bite and best sweet – Tuxedos and Tennis Shoes, which operates The Hall, won the former, while Stuffed Cakes for the third consecutive year won the latter.

ADDED FRIDAY AFTERNOON: The fundraising total is in from new Helpline executive director Chris Langeler, $53,000, the most for a “Taste of West Seattle” so far. That includes a $10,000 day-of donation from Metropolitan Market.

West Seattle road work: Schmitz Park Bridge inspection next week

May 21, 2015 at 8:49 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | No Comments

Before everybody (or almost everybody) starts checking out for the holiday weekend, an alert for next week, sent late today by SDOT:

Bridge engineers plan to conduct a routine inspection of the “Schmitz Park” Bridge on Admiral Way Southwest on May 27 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The U-BIT truck (provides access to the underside of the bridge) will be positioned on the shoulder of the bridge roadway and will not affect pedestrian traffic.

District softball playoffs: WSHS loses; plays Ballard again Friday

May 21, 2015 at 8:16 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 2 Comments

(WSB photo: WSHS’s Spritle Hirano in the foreground)
8:16 PM: At the district softball tournament tonight at Southwest Athletic Complex in Westwood, West Seattle High School lost to Lake Washington HS, 3-2. But they’re already guaranteed a spot in the state tournament, and they’ll play again tomorrow at 5 pm, vs. the loser of Ballard vs. Bainbridge Island, who are playing right now. More to come.

EARLY FRIDAY: It’ll be a rematch – WSHS vs. Ballard for the second consecutive Friday night. Last week, it was for the Metro League championship; this time, for third place in the district tournament. More of Thursday’s game details, courtesy of our partners at The Seattle Times:

Pitcher Gabby Wenn, above, drove in both WSHS runs before having to leave the game with a hamstring injury. Below, that’s Annalisa Ursino scoring the second of those runs,

The Wildcats, coached by WSHS athletic director Trevor Leopold, are 21-5.

West Seattle summer songwriting camp with Ivory Smith and Kelli Frances Corrado: New WSB sponsor

May 21, 2015 at 5:44 pm | In West Seattle news, WS culture/arts | 1 Comment

Looking for summer options for kid(s) 7-12? How about a West Seattle summer songwriting camp, taught by two acclaimed local musicians? They’re sponsoring WSB right now to get the word out, and here’s what they’d like you to know:

What makes this music camp unique, is that it’s the first of its kind, a SONGWRITING camp, for children this age. Kelli Frances Corrado (above left) and Ivory Smith (above right) worked for over six years at various rock camps and schools, none of which taught students how to write their own songs. While it is important to learn technique and theory, the value of empowering the individual creative voice is essential, not only in making music, but for childhood development.

We are pursued by parents not only because of our teaching history but our experience as songwriters. We are active professional songwriters. Our resumes cover a wide range of experience from college training, performance, touring, recording, radio play, to receiving grants. For example, Ivory has scored numerous pieces for performances at On The Boards and ACT Theaters, has vocal training from Cornish, and has written songs with many ensembles including her band Ivory In Ice World. Kelli is a touring musician who writes songs that have been featured on various radio stations from KEXP to BBC6, and in 2014 received a grant from the Seattle Office of Arts and Culture to teach a songwriting camp for young women.

Kelli and Ivory’s summer songwriting camp has two week-long sessions in West Seattle in August – get the details here, including how to register.

We thank the West Seattle summer songwriting camp taught by Ivory Smith and Kelli Frances Corrado 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.

Classroom to courtroom: Chief Sealth IHS students’ mock trial

May 21, 2015 at 4:49 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | No Comments

The photo and report are from Chief Sealth International High School teacher Noah Zeichner:

49 Chief Sealth International HS seniors participated in a mock trial (Wednesday) at the UW School of Law as part of the UW Street Law program. Students in my American Government classes have been preparing for several weeks, with the help of three UW law students. Students played various roles, including prosecutors, defense attorneys, witnesses, and bailiffs.

The case involved a high school senior who was charged with murder in the first degree. The defendant was found not guilty of all charges. The two judges were played by practicing public defenders and the jury was played by UW law professors.

Read more about the UW Street Law program here.

Congratulations! Five West Seattle HS student athletes honored

May 21, 2015 at 4:18 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 3 Comments

The photo is from West Seattle High School athletic director Trevor Leopold, who shares this report on a lunchtime event downtown today:

These West Seattle High School students were honored at The Washington Athletic Club by the 101 Club. From left to right are Carter Mensing, Annalisa Ursino, Charli Elliott, Isabella Burzynski, and Joey Kane. All the Metro League schools have students who were there and nominated. Charli Elliott was awarded a scholarship at the luncheon. She has a 4.0 GPA and 11 Varsity Letters. 4 Soccer, 4 Basketball, 3 Softball. She is attending Pacific University in Oregon in the fall and going to play basketball.

Congratulations to all!

(SIDE NOTE: Coach Leopold and athletes Elliott and Ursino take to the field at Southwest Athletic Complex with the rest of the WSHS softball team less than an hour from now – 5 pm – for a district-tournament game against Lake Washington HS.)

West Seattle development: Design Review date for 35th/Graham mixed-use building

May 21, 2015 at 3:41 pm | In Development, High Point, West Seattle news | 8 Comments

A Southwest Design Review Board hearing is now set for the mixed-use building planned on part of High Point’s most prominent undeveloped site, at 35th/Graham.

We last mentioned it here eight months ago, when it surfaced in the city’s online files. The outline on the project page hasn’t changed much since then; it now describes “a 4-story structure containing 89 residential units, 8,500 sq. ft. of office space and 1,500 sq. ft. of retail space located at ground level. Surface parking for 98 vehicles to be provided.” The “site plan” dated last month shows an L-shaped building stretching across all of the currently vacant 35th SW frontage, from the corner of Graham northward. The parking entry would be on the east side of the building. The rest of the sprawling site is still set for residential development – most if not all townhouses – but only the mixed-use building is involved in the Early Design Guidance meeting that’s planned for the SWDRB’s next meeting, June 25th at 8 pm at the Senior Center of West Seattle. (As reported here on May 5th, the 6:30 pm project review that night is for the CVS drugstore project at 4722 Fauntleroy Way SW.)

Six 7 ways to spend the rest of your West Seattle Thursday

May 21, 2015 at 1:25 pm | In West Seattle news, WS miscellaneous | 24 Comments

(Photo by Gary Jones: ‘Sea hawk’ [osprey] and prey, in Constellation Park area)

Quick look at the calendar for the rest of today/tonight:

ALKI ELEMENTARY FUNDRAISERS: First, the annual Alki-A-Thon fundraiser is on until 2 pm at Alki Elementary. (3010 59th SW) Then, 4-8 pm, Dine Out for Alki at Mission Latin Restaurant and Lounge (2325 California SW), where 20 percent of the net proceeds from food sales will be donated to the Alki PTA.

(added) SOFTBALL PLAYOFFS: West Seattle High School‘s next game in the district softball tournament is at 5 pm at Southwest Athletic Conference, vs. Lake Washington HS. Go cheer the Wildcats! (2801 SW Thistle)

TASTE OF WEST SEATTLE – SOLD OUT! Tonight’s West Seattle Helpline fundraiser at The Hall at Fauntleroy (6 pm VIP, 6:30 pm general) is sold out, just in case you were wondering. So even if you do have tickets, don’t be late! (9131 California SW)

ADMIRAL WAY SAFETY PROJECT: 6 pm at Alki Elementary, an “open house”-style meeting about SDOT’s proposal for changes on Admiral Way west of California SW – presentation at 6:30 pm. (3010 59th SW)

ALKI COMMUNITY COUNCIL: 7 pm at Alki UCC. The ACC is encouraging attendance at the aforementioned Admiral Way Safety Project event first, then make your way over to the church for topics also including the Don Armeni Boat Ramp parking enforcement and speeding problems on Beach Drive and 63rd SW. (6115 SW Hinds)

OPEN MICROPHONE – ‘UNPLUGGED’: It’s an open-microphone-style event for musicians who don’t need/want microphones and other electronics – come perform “unplugged” starting at 7 at C & P Coffee Company. (WSB sponsor; 5612 California SW)

BELLY DANCING: The monthly Alauda belly-dancing showcase is at 7:30 pm at The Skylark. No cover, all ages. (3803 Delridge Way SW)

Help fight hate crimes as a ‘Safe Place’: New program from SPD

May 21, 2015 at 12:47 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | No Comments

Just out of the WSB inbox:

Today Mayor Murray and Chief of Police Kathleen O’Toole announced SPD Safe Place, a public education and visibility campaign aimed at preventing and responding to anti-LGBT bias crimes.

“Seattle welcomes all people,” said Mayor Ed Murray. “There is no place for bigotry or harassment in our city. We developed Safe Place so that businesses and community organizations can visibly stand up against intolerance and provide shelter to victims.”

SPD Safe Place is a voluntary program that provides businesses and organizations with decals and information on how to report malicious harassment, more commonly known as hate crimes. Training for these organizations includes when and how to call 911, sheltering victims of crime until police arrive and proactive outreach about working with the SPD’s LGBT liaison officer.

“Seattle Police officers work every day with the diverse communities of Seattle to ensure safety. SPD Safe Place is another way of connecting and educating those who live, work and visit Seattle about how the SPD can assist in times of crisis,” said Chief Kathleen O’Toole.

Businesses, organizations and educational institutions can request SPD Safe Place placards or posters and learn about how to work with police to prevent and address anti-LGBT crime concerns at www.seattle.gov/spd-safe-place.

UPDATE: ’5-way intersection’ west of low bridge open again after propane tank triggers hazmat response

May 21, 2015 at 11:30 am | In West Seattle news, WS breaking news | No Comments

11:30 AM: Avoid the “five-way intersection” area west of the low bridge for now – Seattle Fire has it at least partly blocked off because of a hazmat response.

(Added: WSB photo – that’s the tank in the background, by a traffic-signal pole)
11:40 AM: We’ve just arrived at the scene, and SFD has just tweeted what it’s about: “HazMat response on W Marginal Way SW is a propane tank that fell off a truck and began leaking.” But, SFD adds, “the hazard (is) mitigated.” Side note: This is just yards from Station 36 – which was the original address on the call, later changed.

12:34 PM: SDOT says the intersection is fully open now, including the southbound lanes onto Delridge.

BIZNOTES: First day at the beach for Mountain to Sound; sign up for CSA boxes at The General Store Seattle

May 21, 2015 at 11:02 am | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

Two West Seattle biznotes to share this morning:

RENTALS AT THE BEACH: Thanks to Greg Whittaker for the photo and update:

Mountain to Sound Outfitters will be opening stand up paddleboarding and kayak rentals at 55th and Alki Ave today for the 2015 season. Come on by and enjoy the water!

CSA SIGNUP TIME AT THE GENERAL STORE SEATTLE: Last month, The General Store Seattle (WSB sponsor) proprietor Claire E. Jones put out the call for interest in qualifying her shop (3400 Harbor SW) as a dropoff site for CSA produce from Skylight Farms. She says, “We did it!” and now the next step is – sign up for weekly or biweekly pickups! All you have to do is go here and scroll to choose the West Seattle option. Claire adds, “The boxes will be available for pick up on Tuesdays from 4-7 pm starting in June and ending in October.”

West Seattle coyotes: Cat grabbed during the daytime

May 21, 2015 at 10:02 am | In Coyotes, West Seattle news, Wildlife | 11 Comments

In our seven-plus years of reporting on West Seattle coyotes, we’ve heard people often mention they bring outdoor cats inside at night, in hopes of avoiding coyote encounters. This report from Jaime is a reminder that coyotes roam in the daytime too:

I thought I should report this to the blog, even if not sure of proper procedure.

My neighbor reported to me that just last week after hearing a commotion outside his porch, opened his front door to find a young coyote who had the family cat in his mouth. He immediately yelled and tried to scare the coyote away, which did cause the coyote to drop the cat. But the cat was badly injured and subsequently died.

This was in the middle of the daytime at 50th and Hudson. My neighbor believed that the coyote had entered from the alley into their fenced front yard and grabbed the cat, who was sunning himself on their porch.

Biologists who have analyzed coyotes’ diets say this is only a small part of what they eat – more commonly, they consume rats and mice, among other things you can see listed here – but nonetheless, it can be a risk if your pet is outside, unattended, so we publish this as a neighbor-to-neighbors alert. (A wildlife agent was blunt about it in this report we published two years ago.)

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Thursday updates & holiday previews

May 21, 2015 at 6:58 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | 6 Comments

(Four WS-relevant views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
Nothing out of the ordinary in/from West Seattle so far this morning. We’ll be adding some holiday-weekend reminders while watching the commute.

ADDED 7:08 AM – MEMORIAL DAY TRANSIT NOTES: These are for **Monday** – Metro will be on its Sunday schedule; the West Seattle Water Taxi will also be on a Sunday schedule; and so will Sound Transit Route 560. The Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth Washington State Ferries route will be on its regular weekday schedule.

ADDED 7:29 AM – TRAFFIC THROWBACK THURSDAY: This week’s view – from the Seattle Municipal Archives – is an example of how some things don’t change, much:


From November 1960, that photo looks east across Fauntleroy Way from the Fauntleroy ferry dock. The photo apparently was taken for reasons involving landscaping in the bus-stop area. (Click the image to go to the page with the largest view.)

ADDED 8:05 AM – ADMIRAL WAY MEETING TONIGHT: Tonight is the first (and likely only) standalone meeting about the Admiral Way Safety Project, which SDOT has presented to the Admiral Neighborhood Association (WSB coverage here) and Southwest District Council (WSB coverage here). Here’s the flyer, which also includes project details:

It’s an “open house” style meeting, 6 pm at Alki Elementary (3010 59th SW), with a presentation at 6:30 pm.

VIDEO: 34th District Democrats make key endorsements

May 20, 2015 at 9:03 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle politics | 21 Comments

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“We all knew it was coming down to this anyway, so let’s give them a dual (endorsement) and take it to the streets.”

So said former 34th District Democrats chair Ivan Weiss – with current chair Marcee Stone-Vekich declaring it “the quote of the night” – just before the group took its third vote on an endorsement in the first-ever City Council District 1 race, resulting in dual endorsement of Shannon Braddock and Lisa Herbold (L-R photos above).

The voting had started with five of the race’s nine official candidates nominated for potential endorsement on the first ballot. No one ended up with 60 percent or more – Herbold received 63 votes, Braddock 60 votes, Chas Redmond 18 votes, Brianna Thomas 9 votes, Phillip Tavel 6 votes.

That sent the top two vote-getters to a second ballot, the results of which were Braddock 77, Herbold 70. And that set up the motion and the vote for a dual endorsement.

The other big vote was an endorsement in the West Seattle/South Park Seattle School Board race, which has three candidates, two of which were nominated for potential endorsement – incumbent Marty McLaren and challenger Leslie Harris. The results:


Harris declared herself “speechless.”

10:16 PM: The meeting has just wrapped up – endorsement votes for the two at-large City Council seats were delayed because the candidates were coming from earlier meetings to the north. Both of those races also resulted in dual endorsements – for Position 8, Tim Burgess and Jon Grant; for Position 9, Bill Bradburd and Lorena Gonzalez.

ADDED 7:51 AM MONDAY: Here’s our video (and embedded above) of the heart of the meeting – the hour and a half that involved the two aforementioned votes, among other business, and that started with the endorsement of King County Councilmember Joe McDermott, who is unopposed.

Added: Video from the Position 8/9 City Council speeches.

And ahead – play-by-play from the meeting, through the final District 1 results:

Click to read the rest of VIDEO: 34th District Democrats make key endorsements…

New movie ‘Tomorrowland’ co-created by West Seattle native Jeff Jensen

May 20, 2015 at 7:33 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people, WS culture/arts | 5 Comments

Planning to see the about-to-open movie “Tomorrowland“? You’ll be watching the work of a West Seattle native.

It’s co-written and executive-produced by Jeff Jensen, who grew up in West Seattle and went to Hope Lutheran School and Seattle Lutheran High School.

(Photo of Jeff Jensen, courtesy Mike Jensen)
That news is courtesy of Jeff’s proud brother Mike Jensen, who got to join his brother at the recent world premiere of “Tomorrowland” at the home of the film’s namesake, Disneyland. (The movie, starring George Clooney, is NOT about that part or any part of Disneyland, however.)

You might know Jeff Jensen already for his writing – which most recently has included what he called a “distant prequel” to the movie, “Before Tomorrowland.” He’s particularly well-known for what he’s written about the TV series “Lost.”

You will be able to watch this movie co-written by a West Seattleite without leaving West Seattle – it’ll be at The Admiral Theater starting Friday. (Jeff Jensen pointed that out on his Twitter feed.)

HAPPENING NOW: Walk the SW Roxbury project zone with SDOT

May 20, 2015 at 5:30 pm | In Transportation, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

5:30 PM: For the next 2 1/4 hours, SDOT’s project team will walk the SW Roxbury project zone – as was done with 35th SW last Saturday – with anyone who shows up to ask questions, voice concerns, or just look and listen. Here’s the schedule:

5:30 pm – 4th/Roxbury
5:50 pm – 8th/Roxbury
6:15 pm – Delridge/16th/Roxbury
6:45 pm – 26th/Roxbury
7:15 pm – 30th/Roxbury
7:45 pm – 35th/Roxbury

You can join anywhere along the way. We’re off to see what happens as it starts, and we’ll be back with an update.

6:03 PM: We met up with SDOT’s James Le at the 8th/Roxbury meetup point. He was alone. He told us one person did show up at the 4th/Roxbury starting point – but not to talk about the Roxbury project; that person wanted to know what was the leading option so far for 35th. (Project manager Jim Curtin had said during Saturday’s walking tour there that Option A was “looking good. Curtin is scheduled to join the Roxbury tour around 17th/Roxbury, about 15 minutes from now, said Le.)

10:03 PM: Here’s a photo from 30th/Roxbury, where we checked back on the tour. By that point, Curtin told us, they’d tallied about a dozen participants along the way, including those at this stop:

From left, Eric Iwamoto of the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council (and co-chair of the Southwest District Council), Chris Stripinis, who is the transportation point person for WWRHAH, Richard Miller from the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council and West Seattle Crime Prevention Council, Le and Curtin from SDOT. Work on the project is expected to start in mid-August.

West Seattle churches: New pastor announced for Holy Rosary

May 20, 2015 at 4:08 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle religion | 1 Comment

Thanks to the Holy Rosary parishioner who forwarded us the announcement made by the Archdiocese: A new pastor has been chosen to succeed Father John Madigan, who is departing after a decade. Father Matthew Oakland will come to Holy Rosary from St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Camas and Our Lady Star of the Sea Mission in Stevenson, both east of Vancouver, Washington. He is scheduled to start here on July 1st (here’s how he told his parishioners of his departure). Holy Rosary plans a farewell party for Father Madigan in its school gym on Sunday, June 28th, starting after 10:30 am Mass and continuing until 3:30 pm.

West Seattle Memorial Day: Where to find American Legion poppies this weekend; traditional Forest Lawn service on Monday

May 20, 2015 at 3:19 pm | In Holidays, West Seattle news | No Comments

Word of two Memorial Day traditions, from American Legion Post 160:

First, the post and Auxiliary Unit 160 will distribute Memorial Day poppies 8 am-4 pm both Saturday and Sunday at West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) at California/Fauntleroy/Morgan. The poppies “honor the dead and help the living,” reminds the Post 160 announcement, which adds that the poppies “are made by hospitalized veterans in V.A. hospitals or nursing homes … All money received during the distribution of these poppies is returned to the veterans through service programs of the American Legion and the American Legion Auxiliary. When you see someone offering a poppy, know that your donation helps veterans and wearing the poppy shows your support for those veterans.”

Then at 2 pm Monday, Post 160 presents the annual Memorial Day ceremony/service with, and at, Forest Lawn Cemetery & Funeral Home (WSB sponsor), which is in High Point at 6701 30th SW. All are welcome.

UPDATE: SolTerra planning 125-unit, LEED Platinum building ‘Perch’ at 1250 Alki Avenue SW

May 20, 2015 at 12:25 pm | In Development, West Seattle news | 17 Comments

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

ORIGINAL 12:25 PM REPORT: In a routine check of the city’s online files, we’ve found the first new triple-digit-unit development proposal in a while. This one’s on Duwamish Head, a 120-unit proposal planned for seven parcels, five of which currently hold single-family homes.

The project address is 1250 Alki Avenue SW [map] but the early-stage “concept” shows it stretches to 1262 Alki SW.

An unusual point: This is on the drawing board as a mixed-use building, with retail space included. That area of Alki Avenue has long been strictly residential. The early-stage information also mentions underground parking, and describes the building as 120 units and 4 to 6 stories, while also saying it’ll have to go through Design Review (no date yet). However, the “conceptual site plan” on file outlines:

+/- 125 RESIDENTIAL UNITS
MIX OF STUDIO, 1BR, 2BR & 3BR TBD
PERCENTAGE OF AFFORDABLE UNITS TBD
15′-0″ GROUND FLOOR RETAIL AND SUPPORT STORY (5) 10′-0″ FLOOR-TO-FLOOR RESIDENTIAL STORIES 6 TOTAL STORIES, 65′-0″ TOTAL HEIGHT

Documents show the property as in the midrise zone, which the city says allows “limited commercial uses.”

The development team is listed as Seattle-based SolTerra and Portland-based Design for Occupancy Architecture. County property records show that Solterra bought the property from three separate owners in February and March, for a total of more than $5.3 million. It’s described on its website as a six-year-old firm that began “as a residential solar, living wall and green roofing company.”

2:11 PM UPDATE: We’ve just spoken with Melinda Milburn at SolTerra to get more information.

No rendering yet, she says, because design is in the very early stages. But SolTerra, she explained, is just starting to build sustainability-focused apartment projects – all designed to be certified as LEED Platinum, including “living roofs” and solar arrays. She says the company is “changing the way development works by hiring architects and contractors and all the Pieces under one company … everybody works together and you can build more efficiently.” Then, she explained, SolTerra will continue to own and manage the buildings.

This one, they’re planning to call Perch – “the idea is, to find your perch – to provide unique views to the tenants.” The sustainability features, she says, will help keep the units more “cost-effective and affordable.” The design features, she says, will ensure it’s a distinctive building that’s “not a box.” (The underground parking will meet the Alki code, she said – 1.5 spaces required per unit.)

As for the retail – Milburn said it’ll be “small.” A little store? Coffee shop? Restaurant? We asked. Something like that, she agreed.

Depending on how the permit process goes from here, they aren’t expecting to start construction until early 2016. While they already have a couple buildings in Portland, she said, they’re growing into the metro area here – where their Seattle offices are in SODO, near the West Seattle Bridge – by breaking ground on a building in Newcastle next month, and then one on Capitol Hill.

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