Category Archives: News, etc.

Lake City Halloween, Christmas decorations in need of a home

Holiday decorations are put up along Lake City Way in 2013. (LCL photo)

Holiday decorations are put up along Lake City Way in 2013. (LCL photo)

The holiday decorations that make Lake City come alive each Halloween and Christmas are in need of a new home. Pierre Auto Centers loaned a house to the Lake City Lions for storage of the Christmas street decorations and some Halloween items. For the last three years the space was provided for free.

But this summer the house was remodeled for use as a rental and all the decorations had to move. The decorations have since been kept in a storage locker for the short term, but at the end of September they will need to move again.

A new, free space is being sought for storage of the decorations. Ideally about 800-1000 square feet so there is room to repair the wreaths and bells as well as store them, said North Seattle Chamber Executive Director Diane Haugen.

If a new home for the decorations cannot be found it is feared that they may be lost.

You can contact Haugen via email if you have a lead on a new storage spot for Lake City’s decorations: northseattlechamber@gmail.com

Seattle Mayor, local leaders participate in Lake City ‘Find it, fix it’ walk

Mayor Ed Murray and community members at the Lake City Mini-Park before the walk. (LCL photo)

Mayor Ed Murray and community members at the Lake City Mini-Park before the walk. (LCL photo)

Local leaders came to Lake City Monday night for Mayor Ed Murray’s sixth “Find it, Fix it” community walk. Previous walks have visited other Seattle neighborhoods and crime hotspots.

Murray, along with Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole, Seattle Fire Chief Gregory Dean, Sen. David Frockt, and other officials and City of Seattle department representatives, toured the neighborhood with about 50 local residents. The tour highlighted troubled areas and elements of the community that are in need of improvement.

The walks, as described in a press release, allow community residents, police, and city officials to “walk together to identify physical disorder and solve it.” The goal of the walks is to help Seattle City Light, the Seattle Department of Transportation, the Department of Planning and Development, and Seattle Public Utilities to make improvements in Seattle’s neighborhoods.

As noted during the walk, city departments often rely on reports from residents about transportation problems, crime, derelict properties and other issues in a community. One speaker said that if a problem area is not continually reported by the community, it is more difficult to deal with because it has to then be noticed by a department employee. And that can take much longer.

Community members gather near the intersection of 30th Avenue NE and NE 130th Street. (LCL photo)

Community members gather near the intersection of 30th Avenue NE and NE 130th Street. (LCL photo)

Reporting a safety or crime concern is easy to do with the City of Seattle’s Find it, Fix it mobile app (the app can be downloaded by clicking here for iOS and Android.) The app allows users to easily report graffiti, potholes, illegal dumping, abandoned vehicles, and other issues. You can also use the City’s website to report problems by clicking here.

During the Monday walk, plenty of those reportable items were found, and eight large trash bags of litter were gathered by volunteers from the North Seattle Family Center and Hunger Intervention Program.

Mayor Murray watches as young volunteers gather piles of trash from a lot at NE 130th and Lake City Way. (LCL photo)

Mayor Murray watches as young volunteers gather piles of trash from a dump site on a lot at NE 130th and Lake City Way. (LCL photo)

The walk with community members —and an earlier walk with members of the Lake City Neighborhood Alliance and city leaders— gave people a chance to air concerns about the community.

When a speaker from the City stood in front of the dilapidated Aqua Dive site to talk about graffiti removal, the structure provided a strong backdrop for the way some property owners have allowed their buildings to become eyesores and contributors to behaviors that negatively impact the community. The Aqua Dive and neighboring structures are know to be popular places for drug users and others that have been kicked out of homeless housing projects in the neighborhood. At one point, one of the leading advocates for Lake City’s homeless community shouted out that the structure needs to be torn down.

The dilapadeted Aqua Dive provides a backdrop for a talk about graffiti removal. (LCL photo)

The dilapadeted Aqua Dive provides a backdrop for a talk about graffiti removal. (LCL photo)

The walk also meandered over to the old Fire Station 39 and the Lake City Community Center —both city-owned properties in the core of Lake City that debate has swirled around their future use.

The City has proposed leasing the old fire station to the Pierre Auto Centers for two years, delaying development of the property. A previous proposal was to build transitional housing for formerly homeless people on the site. That proposal generated significant opposition and some would say was a catalyst for the formation of some of Lake City’s current active community groups.

City leaders and Lake City residents gather at the old Fire Station 39. (LCL photo)

City leaders and Lake City residents gather at the old Fire Station 39. (LCL photo)

The walk ended at the Lake City Community Center, where Mayor Ed Murray thanked community members for taking the time to walk around the neighborhood. Earlier discussion with the Mayor and Lake City leaders centered around the future of the building, its lack of amenities, and spaces that are not ADA accessible. The Lake City Neighborhood Alliance earlier sent a letter to the Mayor’s office advocating for a new, full-service Lake City Community Center to support the youth, families, and seniors in the Lake City Hub Urban Village.

People gather at the Lake City Community Center during the walk. (LCL photo)

People gather at the Lake City Community Center during the walk. (LCL photo)

The walk gave community members a brief moment to point out issues in the core of Lake City, a likely more effective way than trying to explain a problem in a meeting environment. General topics such as our overall lack of sidewalks —a topic that historically dominates community meetings here— was only discussed a few times as other specific problem areas prompted residents to enter discussions with representatives from the City of Seattle Departments.

Residents speak to the Mayor. (LCL photo)

Residents speak to the Mayor. (LCL photo)

The walk was led by Seattle Police officers and roads were shut down by officers for the group of pedestrians to safely walk on the streets —something that one resident pointed out is not available to pedestrians that regularly have to walk in Lake City streets.

As city officials and residents dispersed after the evening walk, another crowd started to fill in the Lake City Mini Park. The usual suspects were out there drinking tallboys, with one man pacing back and forth yelling at passing motorists. Officials from the walk watched the scene unfold as they returned to their cars near the Mini Park.

Construction kicks off on Olympic Hills Greenway

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Construction has kicked off on Lake City Greenways’ Olympic Hills Neighborhood Greenway with the installation of new speed humps on 25th Avenue NE, NE 127th Street and one block of 27th Avenue NE.

The project, largely led by community members, will try to create a safer street that gives more priority to pedestrians and bike riders. New features will attempt to enhance safety on the road. Speed humps, stop signs, bike sharrows and other safety improvement elements are part of the project.

The Olympic Hills Greenway is the first in a planned network of routes for cyclists and pedestrians in Lake City.

More about the project from the City of Seattle Department of Transportation:

Seattle is building a network of neighborhood greenways. Neighborhood greenways are safer, calmer residential streets for you, your family, neighbors and customers. On streets with low car volumes and speeds a greenway can:

- Improve safety
- Help people cross busy streets
- Discourage cut-thru traffic
- Protect the residential character of our neighborhoods
- Keep speeds low
- Get people to where they want to go like parks, schools, shops and restaurants

Neighborhood greenways are not car free zones, do not add bike lanes and there are minimal if any on-street parking impacts.

Photos: Lake City celebrates SalmonFest Seattle and Pioneer Days Parade

Lake City’s SalmonFest Seattle kicked into high gear Saturday —after a brief thunderstorm brought a bit of excitement to festivalgoers. And the grand Pioneer Days Parade wrapped up a day of fun in Lake City.

The popular annual salmon bake, a fundraiser for the Community Center, started serving tasty fish from Loki Fish Co. at noon as people browsed the street fair and car show that lined NE 125th Street and part of 28th Ave NE. The street fair will return Sunday from 10-5 pm —for the first time as a two day event— and the salmon bake will continue serving the tasty fish from 12 to 5pm.

On Saturday the Pioneer Days Parade brought thousands of spectators to Lake City Way. And the evening properly wrapped up with a spectacular sunset over Li’l Ol’ Lake City (see last photo.)

You can see all the fun in the photos below.

Brayden and Payten at SalmonFest Seattle

Brayden and Payten at SalmonFest Seattle

Tom works the salmon grill

Tom works the salmon grill

Dancing in the street

Dancing in the street

Anya enjoys bubbles at the festival

Anya enjoys bubbles at the festival

The car show

The car show

A wild Rainier

A wild Rainier

The Vigilantes

The Vigilantes

The SalmonFest street festival

The SalmonFest street festival

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The Pioneer Days Parade

The sun sets in spectacular fashion over Lake City.

The sun sets in spectacular fashion over Lake City.

Matthews Beach closed due to bacteria in water

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(seattlepi.com photo used with permission)

Seattle Parks and Recreation has closed Matthews Beach to swimmers because of elevated levels of bacteria in the water. The beach park regularly attracts geese and other waterfowl. The beach is also adjacent to Thornton Creek, which is know to have dangerous levels of fecal coliform bacteria.

The beach closure comes at a time of year when many would be enjoying the cool waters of Lake Washington.

From Seattle Parks:

On a recommendation from Public Health – Seattle & King County, Seattle Parks and Recreation has closed Matthews Beach Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. Routine weekly water quality testing revealed that the bacteria levels in the water were too high for swimming.

The water will be tested again on Monday and the beach could re-open as early as Wednesday, Aug. 6. For updated information, please visit http://green.kingcounty.gov/swimbeach/BeachData.aspx?locator=0818SB&CurrentYear=true.

Speed humps installed in front of Olympic Hills Elementary

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As part of a an effort to make the walking and biking route to Olympic Hills Elementary School safer, speed humps were installed by the Seattle Department of Transportation on NE 130th Street in recent days.

The speed humps are intended to slow traffic in the immediate vicinity of the school. The Safe Routes To School program and a grant from the Washington State Department of transportation also recently completed a segment of missing sidewalk on the route to the school along NE 130th Street. Previously students were regularly seen walking to school in the street.

Although many streets in the area of the school still lack sidewalks, the recent additions show government officials are paying attention to pedestrian safety in the neighborhood. The topic of pedestrian safety has been the dominant topic of public meetings in the Lake City area for decades.

More speed humps and other traffic calming measures are planned for a stretch of 27th Avenue Northeast, NE 127th Street, and 25th Avenue Northeast as part of the Seattle Neighborhood Greenways project to make roads more friendly to pedestrians and cyclists.

Armed, masked man robs Rick’s at DreamGirls strip club

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The Seattle Police Department reported on their Blotter website that a masked gunman robbed Rick’s on Lake City Way on Friday. From the Blotter:

Just before 10:30 AM on July 4th, the suspect approached the manager of Dreamgirls club as he was standing outside the business—which had not yet opened—in the 11300 block of Lake City Way.

The suspect pulled out a handgun and forced the manager to let him inside the business, where the suspect ordered the manager and a custodian to lay on the floor as he ripped phone lines out of the club’s walls and stole a large amount of cash.

The suspect—described as a white male wearing all black clothing, gloves, sunglasses and a bandanna over his face—then fled the scene in a blue or gray SUV.

If you have any information about this case, please call the SPD Robbery Unit at (206) 684-5535

Lake Washington beach access at end of NE 130th St no longer public, appeals court rules

This Lake Washington access point was ruled to be private property at the end of NE 130th Street.

This Lake Washington access point was ruled to be private property at the end of NE 130th Street.

A Washington State Appeals court ruled on June 30th that a beach on Lake Washington is private property and not a place the public can access the water. The ruling may change nearly 80 years of public use of the small property.

The court ruled 3-0 against the City of Seattle and King County and sided with property owners on either side of the land at the end of Northeast 130th Street.

Lake City Live first reported about the dispute in April 2013 after signs were placed on the property announcing coming improvements as part of a Parks and Green Spaces Levy. When the sign was erected announcing the street end improvements by Seattle Parks and Seattle’s Department of Transportation, the adjacent property owners filed a dispute of title, saying the land was private property. As the case made its way through court, the project at the site was put on hold.

The dispute stems from the 1926 purchase of property from the Puget Mill Company. In 1932 King County vacated the street that separated the properties. The timing of the street vacation led to the dispute.

Some residents advocating for public Lake Washington access have expressed their disappointment via a Facebook group, and are now advocating for the City of Seattle to condemn the property for public use.

Area resident David Pope wrote in letter to City leaders, “The North end of Seattle has very limited access to Lake Washington and it would be irresponsible to let this public beach be taken over by two land owners who already enjoy water access.”

The beach is the only public access to Lake Washington between Matthews Beach and the Log Boom Park in Kenmore.

You can see a Google Street view of the area below:


View Larger Map

You can see the Washington Court of Appeals ruling below.

Download (PDF, 710KB)

 

 

Taco Time restaurant planned for Lake City

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tt_contact_357x389The former site of Pierre Auto Center’s fleet and commercial sales and leasing is slated to become a Taco Time restaurant, according to permits filed with the Seattle Department of Planning and Development.

In recent weeks the fleet vehicles were moved from the location and workers have been seen preparing the building. Permits issued by the City of Seattle are for the building to be demolished and replaced with the new business. The proposal is for a 2,096 sq. ft. restaurant. No changes to the parking lot are noted in the application. The site is adjacent to Thornton Creek, where it flows under Lake City Way, see map below.