Category Archives: Syndicated

Olympic Hills Elementary Families Help Make Safer Routes to School

Little Brook crosswalk small

Neighbors try out the new crossing flags

Walking just got a little bit safer in Lake City, thanks to families who attend Olympic Hills Elementary School. New safety flags and flag buckets have been installed at 30th Ave NE and NE 137th St to help increase pedestrian visibility at that intersection.  The bright orange flags were decorated in both English and Spanish by Olympic Hills Elementary students. The project is just one part of a Safe Routes to School Grant the school received from the WA Dept. of Transportation.


Neighbors identified this intersection as a particularly difficult one along 30th Ave NE, where cars often speed and there’s little pedestrian infrastructure. It’s also located in Little Brook, a high-density micro-community sandwiched between 30th Ave NE and Lake City Way. The area falls just on the cusp of the Seattle School District’s cut-off boundary for bussing, leaving many kids in Little Brook with a long walk to school. The Seattle Dept. of Transportation has promised to mark a crosswalk at this intersection, tentatively scheduled to be completed by the end of January.


A Walking School Bus on its way to Olympic Hills Elementary

A Walking School Bus on its way to Olympic Hills Elementary

A parent-led Walking School Bus has traveled this route regularly throughout the school year. Other Walking School Busses are active in the area too. Families participate weekly, meeting each other at designated locations throughout the neighborhood then walking to school together. Feet First, a non-profit organization promoting walkability, has been partnering with Olympic Hills on this and other projects. If you’d like to help out, there’s an MLK event planned for January 20th. Volunteers will gather to help clean up obstacles on one of the Oly Hills walking bus routes. For more information, contact or call 206.652.2310 ext. 5.


The Safe Routes to School funding supports education and walk-to-school campaigns like these. Funding will also go to the construction of a new sidewalk, curb and street trees on NE 130th between 25th and 28th. Construction is just beginning and will provide a walkway connecting Olympic Hills Elementary to the Lake City Branch Library and Lake City’s retail core.

Lake City Events This Week

*Correction – Luminaria Walk is Sat. Dec. 7th

From pancakes to tree lighting, there’s lots happening in Lake City this week!


Holidays in the Park

This Wednesday, Dec. 4th from 7:00-8:00pm,  join your neighbors for Lake City’s annual Holidays in the Park. Bring your kids to the Lake City mini park at the intersection of 125th and Lake City Way for free photos with Santa!  The Ingraham High School band will be playing holiday tunes and there’ll be free hot cider, coffee, and cookies too!  See a video of last year’s event from the Lake City Neighborhood Alliance.


A Christmas Carol

This Friday, December 6th, Taproot Theatre will perform Dickens’ famous A Christmas Carol at the Lake City Community Center. Doors open at 7:00pm with a sweet and savory reception of tasty season goodies, including a chocolate fountain! The show begins at 8:00pm. Money raised by this event will help fund future programming at Lake City Community Center

Tickets are available by check or cash at Lake City Community Center, 12531 28th Avenue NE or on line at Adults $10 Seniors $9 Children under 12 FREE! For information, please call 206.363.3287.



Pancake Breakfast

This Saturday, December 7th from 9:00am – 11:00am, the Lions Club is hosting its annual pancake breakfast at the Community Center to raise money for Olympic Hills Elementary.  The Lions club will also be giving away free books for kids! Children of all ages can choose 2 free books from a wide selection. Tickets are available at the door: $6.00 for adults and $4.00 for kids.



Luminaria Walk at Meadowbrook Pond 

If you prefer an outdoor (and free!) experience, join neighbors this Saturday, Dec. 7th at 6:00 p.m. to enjoy a beautiful lighted walk through Meadowbrook Pond. Free cookies, hot coca, and Christmas caroling! Sponsored by the Meadowbrook Community Center and the Friends of Meadowbrook Pond.


Nativity Exhibit

This Friday through Sunday, Lamb of God Lutheran Church will host an exhibit of 800 different nativity sets from all around the world. The event is free and kids can participate in the Nativity Challenge to identify sets from various countries. 12509 127th Avenue N.E.


Nathan Hale High Celebrates 50 Years

Join Nathan Hale High School for its 50 year Birthday Bash this Friday, October 11th.  Starting at 3:00pm, a variety of food trucks will be on hand, serving everything from fish & chips to Moroccan dishes. The evening’s events will include a rededication ceremony, and of course, a Raiders Homecoming football game.


Starting at 3:00pm

  • Food trucks
  • Building tours
  • KNHC music & booth
  • Booster clubs
  • Raider gear booth

5:00 pm Rededication of Randy Raider on the old smokestack

6:00 pm Homecoming Game, Nathan Hale v. Sealth, Cost is $6.00


Visit the Nathan Hale Alumni Association page for more information.

Survey – What should we do with the Mini Park Port a Pot?

The following post comes from Douglas Park Cooperative, who is working with the North Seattle Chamber of Commerce and other organizations to gauge public opinion of the highly-visible Port a Pot in the Lake City Mini Park. Please fill out their survey below as the data will be presented to the Seattle Parks Department. Also, feel free to leave comments on this post.

Current location of Port a Pot at the Lake City Mini Park.

New property acquired by Seattle Parks and Rec on 33rd.

The Lake City Mini Park sits in the heart of Lake City’s business district at the corner of 125th and Lake City Way. Visually, the park consists of a paved area, an archway and a Port a Pot.
Lake City businesses and property owners would like the Port a Pot to be removed. They cite ongoing health and safety issues associated with it, including public urination and defecation —despite the availability of the Port a Pot in the center of the Lake City business district.

Homeless advocates have said in the past that the Port a Pot is the only place some have to use during the night.

A survey is being conducted to find out what the Lake City public would like to see happen with the Port a Pot. Both the park and the Port a Pot have a storied history. Please take a moment to familiarize yourself with the Port a Pot’s background before completing the survey. More info about the Port a Pot is below the survey.


Prior to 2003, the Lake City Mini Park included a water feature, plantings, and structural features. These provided quiet spaces at a busy intersection. However, they also provided limited visibility. Criminal and nuisance behaviors (drug use and dealing, public inebriation, urination and defecation) were a regular daily occurrence.

In 2003, the city spent $340,000 to redesign the park. During the redesign phase, the primary concern was how to reclaim the park from negative behaviors. The city’s solution was to remove all features that blocked visibility – hence the wide concrete open area that exists today.

When the park’s redesign was completed, the negative behaviors returned to the park. Lake City businesses documented a significant increase of human feces and urine found on their business doorsteps daily. The business community requested a Port a Pot be installed at the Lake City Mini Park to help end this public defecation/urination.

Around the same time, the Mennonite Church (located one block away on 125th) welcomed homeless individuals to use their church property. The Mennonites installed a Port a Pot on their property, but later removed it. The Mennonite Church continued to expand their work with homeless, many with addiction issues. They opened a drop-in facility for homeless individuals near the corner of 125th and 33rd Ave and are currently working with Community Psychiatric Clinic to provide a new and enlarged homeless drop-in facility.

Today, the issue of public defecation and urination in Lake City’s business district continues, even as the Port a Pot sits available. Businesses adjacent to the park report routinely cleaning urine and feces from their properties. Eye witness accounts document open urination and defecation within yards of the Port a Pot, as well as drug dealing associated with the Port a Pot.

There are only three other permanent Port a Pots in Seattle, one of which is in a business district – Pioneer Square. The service contract on the Port a Pot costs the City of Seattle $7,800 per year

75 Attend Lake City Visioning Project Open House

Saturday’s open house for the Lake City Visioning project was a great success. The event drew some 75 people (on a sunny day) to review the work of UW Architecture and Planning grad student Katy Haima on a vision for redevelopment of the Pierre family properties on Lake City Way.

Katy displayed her work in 3 stations, looking at Land Use and Programming; Urban Design and Density; Open Space and Circulation. A brief questionnaire helped attendees state preferences and generate their own ideas based on broad concepts and specific examples. Mapping exercises were set up, and Katy and other students gave brief presentations. There was also a display of some of the work of the Landscape Architecture students who recently worked in Lake City on creating and linking open spaces.

Visitors look at UW Architecture and Planning grad student  Katy Haima's work.

Visitors look at UW Architecture and Planning grad student Katy Haima’s work.

This event was an important milestone in the ongoing work by neighbors and by facilitators like Katy to create a vision for the future of Lake City Way. Katy’s work brought many of us closer to understanding how we can participate in the transformation of our community.

There will be more opportunities to work with Katy as she finalizes her project—and more ways to be involved as we get closer to redevelopment. Stay tuned.

Jackson Park Golf Course perimeter trail taking shape

The new Jackson Park Golf Course Trail, near 10th Avenue NE. (LCL photo)

The new Jackson Park Golf Course Trail, near 10th Avenue NE. (LCL photo)

Neighborhood website Families for Lake City has a good post on the new Jackson Park Golf Course perimeter trail. We decided to visit the new trail with our camera on Monday (photos above and below).

The new 2.2 mile trail is a perfect spot for an evening stroll, a place to walk your (leashed) dog or take the kiddos on an urban adventure. In fact, on Monday there were dozens of people, pets and children walking, running and exploring on the new path.

The Families for Lake City post says that area residents have been “so eager to utilize the trail that Dept. of Parks and Recreation (DPR) staff decided to implement a ‘soft opening.’”

From FFLC:

Even though the trail is still being tweaked and finalized pedestrians are allowed access to the entire loop. Garrett Farrell, DPR’s manager for the trail project, said that a formal opening will be scheduled for late spring or early summer. The finished trail will also include an art component created by Celeste Cooning which has not been installed yet.

The trail is made of compacted gravel with steps to help get up steeper areas.

You can read more about the trail in the FFLC post, including information on how to become involved in helping maintain the new public asset by clicking here.

More photos of the wonderful new trail below.


The trail just east of the golf course parking lot. (LCL photo)


The trail just east of the golf course parking lot. (LCL photo)


A view of Thornton Creek near the trail on the south end of the golf course. (LCL photo)


The trail shown on the south side of the golf course. (LCL photo)


A golf ball in Thornton Creek. (LCL photo)


The trail passes over Thornton Creek. (LCL photo)


A forested area near 10th Ave. NE. (LCL photo)

View Larger Map

Olympic Hills to be “Lab School” for Community

Curious about how reading is being taught these days?  Olympic Hills Elementary is hosting Seattle School District’s first ever “Lab School” for parents and community members showcasing Reader’s Workshop in action.   All parents and community members are invited to attend whether or not they have a student enrolled at Olympic Hills. Participants will be introduced to components of Reader’s Workshop and get to observe a classroom engaged in the workshop model from beginning to end.  This will be followed by a debriefing session with the teacher, school Literacy Coach, and the Principal.   The Readers Workshop curriculum provides a balanced literacy approach and is used at several Lake City area schools. This method of reading instruction was created by Dr. Lucy Calkins, a  literacy expert who continues her work at Teachers College, Columbia University through the Reading and Writing Project.   Due to the progression of topics covered, Olympic Hills administration requests that all participants attend the event for the entire duration.   Olympic Hills Elementary School Library 13018 20th Ave. NE Thursday, February 28th 9:00 am -10:30 am.

Residents discuss Lake City Greenway proposal at meeting

Janine Blaeloch gives a presentation during the meeting.

 Lake City residents gathered for a meeting on February 21st to discuss a proposal for a pedestrian- and bike-friendly "greenway" along 27th Avenue Northeast.

The route, which would run from NE 145th Street to NE 125th Street, has been proposed by the Lake City Greenways project with the help of community members searching for safer ways for pedestrians and bicyclists to negotiate our neighborhood and its lack of pedestrian infrastructure—sidewalks.

Most of the people that attended the meeting were residents that live on 27th Avenue NE and wanted to understand how the proposed greenway would affect them and to voice concerns about altering the quiet neighborhood street.

People were vocal at the meeting, both in support of the project and with many concerns—mostly about speed humps, emergency response times and the expense of altering the road.

Residents worried that the addition of speed humps, elongated and gentle traffic slowing devices, would encourage drivers to drive over gravel parking easements in an attempt to avoid the humps.

Residents discussed adding stop signs and speed-detecting cameras along the street. The benefits and issues with both were discussed. People at the meeting said they wanted safer access to the Lake City Hub Urban Village for elderly and disabled people. And proposals for street murals in Lake City were met with support during the meeting. There were many strong opinions shared during the community meeting.

"People want to understand better what it might mean for their street," said Janine Blaeloch, a neighborhood resident working with other community members to bring safe routes via greenways to our neighborhood. "Most people just want information," she said.

A presentation on the Lake City Greenways proposal is posted below. You can read a previous story we wrote about Lake City Greenways and how it can help transform some of our streets here.

Rotating Winter Shelter coming to Lake City Baptist

Lake City Baptist Church will begin hosting a winter homeless shelter starting next Wednesday, February 27th and running through March 15th. The shelter is for adults only and will be providing services between 7 pm and 7 am. The services include dinner, sleeping quarters for the night, and breakfast. Union Gospel Mission will be providing sleeping cots and staff to assist.

Rowen Headington and Hannah Olufs from the church are the contacts. Neighborhood group Douglas Park Cooperative asked what the community can do to volunteer hours and resources. Rowen indicated they may need help with cooking oatmeal and coffee around 5am. We will report back with more specifics on how members of the community can volunteer and what supplies they will need when we get more information.

Lake City Baptist Church on 125th and 25th
Eating / sleeping quarters on lower level of church