CHS Pics | Creatura House roars (and barks) to life on Capitol Hill

E Pike’s Creatura House celebrated its grand opening this weekend with a party that included neighborhood artists and creators — and plenty of the animal spirit behind the new gallery and shop from Rog La Rue creator Kirsten Anderson.

CHS stopped by Saturday as Creatura House marked its first days of business with a cute fuzzy buddy contest and visitors getting their first look at the gallery and its debut show from Montreal painter Peter Ferguson. Continue reading

Capitol Hill small businesses ready for 2018 bump, preparing for coming minimum wage jumps

An estimated 80,000 people who work in Seattle will be getting a raise January 1st as the city continues its long march to a $15 per hour minimum wage. That accounts for nearly 15% of the city’s workforce of 540,000. Even more could see other new benefits surrounding sick leave.

The wage increases are only part of the good news for workers. In 2016, Washington voters approved I-1433 expanding mandatory sick leave statewide. Some benefits in the initiative are more generous than those granted under city regulations, explained Karina Bull, of the city’s Office of Labor Standards.

Some of the new benefits include allowing people to take sick time to care for children of any age (the old rules only allowed for time to help minor children) and also to help siblings and grandchildren. The waiting period to qualify for paid sick time will be reduced from 180 to 90 days. Caps on the use of sick time will be forbidden. There will no longer be an exemption for employees engaged in a work-study program.

In some cases, the Seattle benefits are more generous, and will remain in place.

Bull said the City Council will likely soon consider an ordinance to implement the more generous state standards, where appropriate. Reviewing the city’s charts laying out the various changes (PDF) have become an end of the year Seattle small business tradition.

Meanwhile, in 2018, more workers will be getting more money. Continue reading

Victim arrives at Swedish Cherry Hill after 21st/Union shooting

A continuing wave of call and response gun violence across Seattle included a Sunday morning shooting at 21st and Union.

A male victim suffering from a gunshot wound arrived at the Swedish Cherry Hill emergency room early Sunday just minutes after 911 was “flooded with calls” about gunfire on E Union, according to Seattle Police radio dispatches. He was taken to Harborview for treatment. We do not know more about his condition.

According to SPD radio, callers reported multiple shots starting around 3:41 AM and arriving officers found shell casings in the 2100 block of E Union. A driver in the area told police he saw two cars involved in the shooting speed away southbound on 23rd Ave.

The weekend’s gun violence continued Sunday night when SPD reported a shooting incident on Rainier Ave. It follows the November murder of 45-year-old Carl Shears in a shooting at 24th and Spruce. A deadly December 8th shooting in Columbia City ended on the street outside First Hill’s Harborview while a victim survived being shot in the face in a downtown assault December 9th. In November, a large fight ended with gunfire in a Broadway parking garage while two people were shot late in the month at a show at 14th and Union’s Chop Suey.


Seattle Department of Transportation moving on without Kubly


Mayor Jenny Durkan’s new administration will not include Seattle Department of Transportation director Scott Kubly.

The Seattle Times reports the decision as a “mutual” agreement between Kubly and the new mayor but the Ed Murray selection to head the city’s second most visible department was carrying enough Seattle transit baggage to make the choice mostly unsurprising.

Kubly leaves Seattle City Hall having helped drive passage of the largest transportation levy in the city’s history while making measurable progress in lowering the rate of workers in single occupancy vehicles driving downtown. He took over the job as Sound Transit’s money powered the construction of the First Hill Streetcar which finally opened in January 2016 after more than a year of delays. Along the way, Kubly found himself dispatched to Europe to help sort out problems with the company manufacturing the trains. The First Hill Streetcar’s extension north on Broadway was dead on arrival. Other problems were of his own making. In 2016, Kubly admitted to ethics violations over the deal to bring the Pronto bikeshare system to life in Seattle. Pronto was dead three months into 2017. But Kubly’s relatively nimble department quickly ushered in the next era of floating, dockless bike shares run by private companies. Continue reading

Capitol Hill Historical Society | E Pine’s Colman Automotive on the National Register

Photo by Joe Mabel (Wikimedia)

Colman Automotive in 2014 (Photo by Joe Mabel / Wikimeda)

The Colman Automotive Building entered the National Parks Service’s National Register of Historic Places very recently — in 2013. It is not currently a City of Seattle Landmark, but the national listing is good enough for it to make our Landmarks Profile roundup.

The two-story commercial building covers the short block between Bellevue Ave and Crawford Place on the south side of Pine Street. It was lovingly restored by Hunters Capital in 2012. They took a useful building that was well-known for its first floor tenant Area 51 and turned it into an Auto Row gem that ushers folks up Pine Street and into the neighborhood. Continue reading

CHS History | Capitol Hill Station’s first Christmas, Tallulah’s born, dognapping

Here are the top stories from this week in CHS history:



As plan for seven-story development takes shape, community looks to future of 23rd and Union’s Midtown Center

Youth jail protest comes to Mayor Murray’s North Capitol Hill neighborhood

Capitol Hill Station’s first Christmas

Continue reading

CHS Pics | This week in Capitol Hill pictures

Glynda Goodness

The CHS Flickr Pool contains more than 35,000 photographs — most of Capitol Hill images, many glorious, some technically amazing. The pool is a mix of contributions from Capitol Hill — and nearby — shutterbugs. Interested in being part of it? If we like your photo and it helps us tell the story, we may feature it on CHS so please include your name and/or a link to your website so we can properly credit you. Interested in working as a paid CHS contributor for scheduled assignments? Drop us a line.

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CHS Pics | A happy hilladays Capitol Hill Art Walk

Thursday’s Capitol Hill Art Walk featured a small swarm of miniature art sales and a few shows with fun twists from La Croix to neon. Here are a few sugar-plum visions of a busy night for artful events around Capitol Hill.

For more things to get out and do this weekend, check out the CHS Happy Hilladays Calendar. And don’t forget to shop local — Shop the Hill. Continue reading

Here’s what owner Stowell says about closing Anchovies and Olives

(Image: Anchovies and Olives)

After eight years of business, Anchovies and Olives will close to end 2017. Seattle restaurateur Ethan Stowell, one of the city’s most prolific chef/owners, says not to try to read too much into the closure. It’s not always about trends and demographics. Sometimes, it’s just time for restaurants to close.

“We’ve loved this restaurant,” Stowell said Thursday after the announcement of its planned December 31st last night of service at 15th and Pine. “You never want to close down a business. You wish everything was a home run.” Continue reading

Westman’s Bagels and Coffee bringing ‘morning culture’ to E Madison

Highly anticipated Westman’s Bagels and Coffee is nearly ready to serve up its first boiled and baked masterpieces with just the right amount of schmear — maybe even opening in time to enjoy a few of the final days of Chanukah. Sometimes big expectations get packed into small spaces on Capitol Hill.

“People are passionate about their bagels,” Monica Dimas tells CHS. “Their expectations can be based on a perfect bagel they had in New York 12 years ago.”

Dimas, a big player in making small spaces work, and baker Molly Westman hope to meet some of those expectations and bring a little NYC to E Madison when they hope to finally debut the new streetside cafe and bagel counter next week after months of anticipation. Continue reading