April 28th, 2016 by Mike
Update: The Seattle Times has an editorial column on the gold-plated Seattle City Council.
Mentions The Pronto vote, too, in the fourth graph.
Eight of the nine Seattle City Council members voted this week to add an additional staffer per council member – potentially bringing their individual staffs to four each.
Only budget chair Tim Burgess, who said the cost will be an extra half-million dollars annually, voted “no.”
The rationale: Now that seven of the council members represent neighborhood districts, they actually have more work to do. Erica C. Barnett has a post: Council: Smaller Districts Require Larger Staffs.
From Seattle Council Insight’s piece here:
Council members Lisa Herbold and Debora Juarez, who hold district-based positions (unlike Burgess whose seat is city-wide), were the vocal proponents for the change this afternoon….
Juarez, (who represents the vast majority of Maple Leaf), took the point further, claiming that when voters passed the initiative switching the Council to seven districts, it was because “the voters wanted someone to advocate for them, while keeping in mind the greater good of the city of Seattle.” She rattled off a long list of issues she and her staff have needed to deal with in their first 100 days on the job, saying “you can’t expect three people to be expert in all that.”
Burgess disagreed. From The Seattle Times:
Council members in similarly sized U.S. cities with district council members have only one to three aides, according to a 2014 report by the City Auditor, Burgess noted, mentioning Austin, Boston, Denver, Jacksonville, Fla., Oakland and San Francisco.
The Times story is here (including the information that in addition to council-member aides, the council is supported by more than 20 shared “central staff” policy analysts).
Meanwhile, Juarez continues to prioritize pushing for another light rail station at Northeast 130th Street.
In two separate emails yesterday she issued a “130th Street Station Call to Action.”
If we are going to see some an amendment to the Draft ST3 Plan we need you to write in and tell the Sound Transit leadership that we need a commitment to build the 130th Street Station!
I am not sitting around hoping there will be a change, I am out here pushing every button and looking for all the possible ways to get North Seattle what it needs.
She’ll be at the Sound Transit board meeting this afternoon, 1:30 at 401 S Jackson St., and wants you to be there, too.
Here’s her full post, including a suggested letter to send Sound Transit.
Tags: 130th Street Station, city council staff, Debora Juarez, district elections, light rail, Pronto, seattle city council, sound transit Share
April 27th, 2016 by Mike
Cafe Piccolo, which closed in February, is being replaced next week by a second location of Capitol Hill’s Americana.
Cucina Americana’s Facebook page (and menu) is here. It features tapas, pasta and entrees.
On its web site, it states:
During his search for a new Americana location in Seattle, executive chef Jeffrey “Cheffrey” Wilson discovered a charming Italian restaurant in the Maple Leaf neighborhood. Its cozy vibe and local feel made it the perfect spot for his new restaurant. Cheffrey was inspired by the atmosphere and menu so much that he decided to put an Italian twist on his new venture, and thus Cucina Americana was born! The menu is inspired by home cooked, rustic Italian cuisine. It puts an Italian twist on American comfort food.
The restaurant is set to open Monday, May 2nd, at 9400 Roosevelt Way Northeast (although the sign on the door offers dinner Tuesday through Saturday).
In other restaurant news, the now-defunct Ying’s Chinese Drive-in at Lake City Way Northeast and Northeast 85th Street, will apparently be replaced by a location of The Growler Guys, according to an email from Vivian and posts on Nextdoor Northgate/Maple Leaf.
Tags: Cafe Piccolo, Cucina Americana, Growler Guys, Maple Leaf restaurants, Ying's drive-in Share
April 26th, 2016 by Mike
Here come the spring plant sales!
* This Friday and Saturday Olympic View Elementary School holds its 15th annual plant sale at the school, Fifth Avenue Northeast and Northeast 95th Street.
Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on April 29th and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m on April 30th.
Nathan Hale High School’s spring plant sale is the following week, at 11051 34th Ave. N.E.
And the annual Master Gardner sale is May 7th and 8th, with a preview on May 6th, at the UW’s Center for Urban Horticulture, 3501 N.E. 41st St.
Tags: Master Gardner, Nathan Hale, Olympic View Elementary School, plant sale, UrbHort Share
April 25th, 2016 by Mike
The car-pedestrian accident that’s taken up most of the afternoon.
From Seattle Police:
Detectives are investigating after a 33-year-old man was struck by a truck along Lake City Way Northeast today.
Officers were dispatched to Lake City Way NE and 18th Avenue Northeast after a caller reported a large commercial truck hit a man along Lake City Way NE just before 2:30 P.M.
Officers arrived and found the man with life-threatening head injuries lying in the road. Seattle Fire Department Medics transported the man to Harborview Medical Center for treatment.
Detectives are now speaking with witnesses and the driver, who is cooperating with investigators. Traffic collision detectives will continue to investigate this incident and make a final the determination of cause.
Tags: accident, crime, Lake City Way Northest, police Share
April 24th, 2016 by Mike
After two shootings on Saturday, Seattle Police this weekend announced they are stepping up patrols using overtime and reassigned officers.
But not here.
The announcement, originally posted to Nextdoor, (where it had a mixed response), states:
Chief Kathleen O’Toole has directed the Seattle Police Operations and Investigations Bureaus to accelerate summer staffing deployment levels in an ongoing effort to deter and prevent gun violence. Starting tonight, Seattle residents can expect to see extra police officers in neighborhoods, nightlife districts and hotspots detailed in our SeaStat crime analysis reports.
(Credit to whoever runs SeaStat for this extremely un-Seattleish language.)
However, The Seattle Times has a story specifying the patrols will go elsewhere.
The areas targeted include central Seattle, Second Avenue and Yesler Way, and South Seattle, Chief Kathleen O’Toole said in an interview Saturday. Both plainclothes and uniformed officers will be deployed in neighborhoods with shooting hot spots.
She noted that each precinct has its unique problems; the North Precinct has endured a rash of property crimes recently.
“We have made a lot of arrests and recovered a lot of property. Now in other neighborhoods, we are concerned about shots fired.”
The map shows property crimes reported to police in Maple Leaf since April 1.
Also in the Times, and speaking of north Seattle:
* Councilwoman Debora Juarez, elected to represent north Seattle, continues her quest for another light rail station at Northeast 130th Street.
I RAN for Seattle City Council because I was tired of North Seattle being ignored in citywide and regional matters….
The Northeast 130th Street station was given a “provisional” designation in the Sound Transit 3 draft plan, with zero guaranteed funding and no targeted completion date. All the ongoing community efforts came to a screeching halt. Once again, North Seattle was ignored.
Her op-ed in the Times is here.
* In today’s paper: “RAVE to Recology CleanScapes and Seattle Public Utilities for providing 50 Little Free Libraries to Lake City, Northgate, Pinehurst, Maple Leaf and Victory Heights as a reward for good recycling.”
Hang on a minute. We’re paying for this?
Tags: crime, Debora Juarez, little free libraries, police Share
April 21st, 2016 by Mike
On the Maple Leaf Community Council - the elected body that represents our neighborhood – five of the c0uncil’s nine positions will soon be vacant.
That news came in the newsletter distributed this weekend – yet it’s scarcely news.
We wrote about it here, in January, and here, a year ago.
The election is at the council’s general meeting, 7-9 p.m. April 27th at Olympic View Elementary School, 504 N.E. 95th St.
From our earlier post:
The community council has a long and honored history representing our neighborhood. We’ve written about it before:
“The Maple Leaf of today did not just happen but instead reflects hundreds of volunteer hours dedicated on behalf of the Maple Leaf neighborhood.”
Tags: maple leaf community council Share
April 16th, 2016 by Mike
Disappearing dive bars? Our news partner The Seattle Times has a piece on funky neighborhood bars that are slowly becoming extinct.
Two that remain in Maple Leaf are The Rez (the Reservoir Tavern, 8509 Roosevelt Way N. E.) and the Old 5th Avenue Tavern, 8507 Fifth Avenue N. E.
The full story is here .
Tags: Old Fifth Avenue Tavern, reservoir tavern, The Rez Share
April 4th, 2016 by Mike
The city today filed paperwork allowing 80 assisted living units to be built by Aegis Living in a three-story building on the site of the old Waldo Hospital, 8511 15th Ave. N.E.
The property has been abandoned for over a year.
The plan includes underground parking for 32 vehicles.
The trees on site would be preserved.
(Thanks, Valarie, for the tip.)
Tags: Aegis, Waldo Share
April 2nd, 2016 by Mike
This evening I found this sweet, shy dog strolling along 12th Ave NE between NE 98th and NE 100th St. She has a collar but no tags.
After spending 90 minutes trying to find her home or someone looking for a lost dog in the neighborhood, I brought her to the emergency hospital on Lake City Way. Sadly she does not have a chip so we do not know where her home is.
Perhaps one of your readers will recognize her and we can reunite her with her people. We will keep her overnight but will need to bring her to a shelter if her people don’t come forward.
Matthew Brown, 206.499.2910
Tags: found dog, lost pet Share
March 30th, 2016 by Mike
Thanks to Thor for emailing:
Today I got a mailer about a meeting tomorrow about safety improvements to Banner Way. It’s at the Fairview Church at 844 N.E. 78th St. from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Maybe it’s worth a post?
Seems like it should be. (Banner Way is the street in Maple Leaf that in part parallels Interstate 5 on our western border.)
Little hard to say, though. Here’s the link, the meeting is tonight.
Here’s the (gist of) the text from SDOT:
Following the collaborative work with the community for the NE 75th Street project, we’re continuing this work through Banner Way NE to implement the Pedestrian Master Plan and Bicycle Master Plan. We are committed to building a transportation infrastructure that supports a safe and vibrant community.
We’ll work with the community to consider changes to this street in an effort to bring down speeds and make the roadway safer for neighbors and all travelers, as part of our Vision Zero plan to end traffic deaths and serious injuries on Seattle’s streets by 2030.
Together, we will determine the specific nature and design elements of these changes through the process described below. New safety measures may include, but not be limited to: signage improvements, arterial traffic calming, roadway design changes, traffic signal modifications, pavement repair, and safety enhancements for people walking and biking.
Tags: Banner Way, master plan, NE 75th Project, SDOT Share
March 26th, 2016 by Mike
Update: Seattle Transit Blog has an overview here.
Speaking of transit; two things:
1) Sound Transit this week released preliminary proposals for a $50 billion expansion that would cost homeowners an average of $400 annually – apparently forever.
From The Seattle Times:
This fall’s Sound Transit 3 ballot measure would deliver light rail to Ballard as late as 22 years from now, while Everett would wait 25 years, under a draft the agency’s governing board issued Thursday.
The Sound Transit board stressed yesterday that there are some “early wins” to address immediate transportation needs (and presumably to get voters excited about something that’s happening sooner than your grandson’s bris) such as improvements on the Rapid Ride lines.
2) Meanwhile, Debora Juarez, the Seattle city councilwoman who represents almost all of Maple Leaf, criticized the proposal because it doesn’t prioritize a light rail station at Northeast 130th Street. (This is one of her top three priorities.)
The draft Sound Transit 3 proposal designates the potential boon of a NE 130th Street Station as a “provisional” project. This means that no funding is currently included in the package, and that the Sound Transit board would need to secure funding to make this station a reality. This is unacceptable.
Her full post is here.
Tags: Debora Juarez, light rail, sound transit, taxes, transit Share
March 26th, 2016 by Mike
We do have a mural in the park, but also:
“Speaking of art in the park, how about the new 3 graffiti tags on the hitting wall, on the river stones on SE corner, and one stone on path outward to 88th? ‘GI’ is the tag. Kind of a bummer,” says Jarvis on our previous post.
On the same post, An Observer says: “I have seen an uptick in tagging along Northgate Way, and Lake City Way close to Nathan Hale. Seems every five years or so a new crop of taggers comes along only to be otherwise engaged (jail, work, or adult responsibilities) soon enough.”
And over at Nextdoor Northgate/Maple Leaf, Grace is leading the charge:
I am so sick of seeing graffiti on everything now. Idiots tagged one of the beautiful rocks at the north entrance of the park that leads to 12th. The more we get used to graffiti the more it will proliferate.
Before I wait around for city officials to clean up graffiti I’m ready to do it myself to get rid of it before more people get ideas. I’m happy to try to clean off that rock if anybody can suggest to me what I can get that will do it.
And she’s getting support, from these and eight other responses:
I would happily offer up some elbow grease, i.e. join in on efforts to clean it up, just name the time this weekend and I should be able to be there. I agree with the comments about being persistent with getting rid of it; if left it looks like no one cares it is there. Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point has a fascinating chapter all about graffiti – best way to combat it is quickly and consistently remove it.
I have a hand held water jet cleaner. Works quite well for cleaning rough surfaces. If you get your hand in front of the pinpoint stream you can draw blood and much language.. Is the approximate address NE 89th and 12th Ave NE ?
Here’s the best way to report graffiti at the park.
Tags: graffiti, Maple Leaf Reservoir Park Share
March 25th, 2016 by Mike
Update: Here’s another shot at this from The Seattle Times.
“The time has come,” the Walrus said, “To talk of many things.”
The time has come to note that bus service changes as the week ends.
Trying to talk about those changes is a thankless task.
Exhibit A: Comments on our last bus post. (See: “No clue.” Also, there’s a lot of good information in those comments.)
Exhibit B: This befuddling series of videos from Metro about the changes.
Fact is, there are enough changes that folks need to scowl at their own routes. Here is Metro’s site for changes beginning March 26nd.
Bottom line: Some bus routes that until now went downtown will instead go to Sound Transit’s newly opened University of Washington light rail station.
Is that good? Here, in the above comments, is Lisa’s report from Tuesday:
I tried a “dry run” today to see what it will entail to get from downtown to the corner of 85th and 15th NE by using the link light rail to transfer to the 73. Looks as if ST has worked its usual magic of making a 25 minute or so trip now take 45-50 minutes with a 1/3 mile walk included (this would be for riders taking the 73 from downtown)….
I’ve contacted Metro and Debora Juarez’s office’s office about this – neither have responded to email. This change is definitely for the worse …. I don’t know if we can get anywhere, but this is a real nightmare scenario with four buses (66, 68, 72, and 73) in our area being eliminated entirely and others reconfigured to connect at the UW station.
More positively, the Seattle Transit Blog has a piece here: ULink Bus Restructure Begins Saturday: More Service, More Transfers, Faster Trips.
Let’s not lose the sheer magnitude of Metro’s bus restructure, the largest in decades and one that will change tens of thousands of daily trips, mostly for the better.
The basic theme of the restructure, especially in NE Seattle, is higher frequency service paid for with a reliance on ULink and increased transfers. The ease and reliability of these transfers is an open question, and their success or failure will largely determine the public’s view of this restructure over time.
Tags: bus route changes, bus service, Debora Juarez, light rail, Metro transit, Seattle Transit Blog, transit Share
March 25th, 2016 by Mike
The mural at Maple Leaf Reservoir Park. Spring returns today, followed by rain Saturday night.
Remember the community Easter egg hunt here Saturday at 11 a.m.
Tags: Maple Leaf Reservoir Park, pumphouse, weather Share
March 20th, 2016 by Mike
Debora Juarez, the Seattle city councilwoman representing virtually all of Maple Leaf, has posted this guest column over at CityLiving.com: A lot accomplished in first 100 days.
Specifically three things:
In our first 100 days in office, we set out with three goals to deliver on the promise of district representation. First, we aspired to create momentum around the three major capital projects planned for our district. Second, we planned district tours of major enterprises in North Seattle. Third, we opened a district office, where our constituents could speak with my staff and myself without the need to travel downtown to City Hall.
The district office is at North Seattle College, College Center Building, Room 1451, though I can’t seem to find a link to it on her web site.
The capital projects are:
1) The new north police substation at Northeast 130th Street and Aurora Avenue North.
2) The oft-discussed pedestrian bridge between North Seattle College and the Northgate Transit Center. From the city’s web site:
With the passage of the Move Seattle Levy, the Northgate Pedestrian and Bicycle Bridge project has acquired full funding for the construction of the bridge. The project team will continue to refine the design of the bridge.
3) “Finally, I have been advocating for our district’s second light rail stop, slated for Northeast 130th Street and Interstate-5. This station would serve the Lake City, Bitter Lake and Haller Lake communities.”
There is no mention of Pronto, which surprisingly, continues to be a flash point over the city budget (see comments at link).
Her guest column is here. Juarez’s own blog features “Happy International Women’s Day.”
Tags: city council districts, Debora Juarez, Pronto Share