The Central District harvesters of Alleycat Acres plant seed of idea for neighborhood pocket farms

IMG_4078IMG_4092The plan for developers Lake Union Partners to build a second mixed-use apartment project at 23rd and Union means change and some amount of displacement. But the farmers of the Alleycat Acres land at 22nd and Union, a patch of neighborhood farmland maintained by community members, seem ready for change.

“Our understanding and agreement with the developer is that they want us to stay there till the last responsible moment,” said Fisher Qua, farm coordinator of the space at 22nd and Union, told CHS. “They want the site to be active till they bring the bulldozer.”

The farm at 22nd and Union has been in existence since 2010 and has helped the community come together to produce and build relationships as well as fresh produce. The farm has yielded a variety of crops like potatoes, beans, garlic, flowers and northwest plants. Whatever is harvested is shared amongst the community members and then whatever is left is then donated to the community partners. Leftovers are often shared with various food banks and preschools and the farm in the past has even partnered up with the YWCA. Continue reading

What’s open on Capitol Hill Thanksgiving 2014 — Plus, Hill thanks thread

If you want to rest this Thanksgiving holiday, we hope you are resting. If you want to work, we hope there is a lot of work. And friendly, holiday tipping.

Below, we’ll collect a selection of notes about what is open for those of you looking to get out and about on the holiday. In the comments, you’re welcome to leave a note or two of Capitol Hill thanks. We’re thankful, for one, for a neighborhood that continues to give us so many great stories to cover.

Things to add, etc.? Message us via Twitter @jseattle or call/txt (206) 399-5959.

Happy Thanksgiving. Continue reading

Seattle Fire quickly knocks down E Crescent house fire

A fire reported in a two story, single family home on E Crescent Dr above Interlaken Park was quickly knocked down and extinguished by Seattle Fire Wednesday afternoon.

Arriving units found flames coming from the exterior of the house in the 2000 block of E Crescent. It was believed the fire only burned on the exterior of the home.

The fire marshal was called to investigate the fire’s cause.

The flames were first reported about 1:45 PM as multiple callers alerted 911 to the emergency.

There were no reported injuries.


Stateside’s take on French Vietnam by way of Capitol Hill joins the mix in Melrose

(Images: Stateside)

(Images: Stateside)

When CHS stopped by former Rookie of the Year Mamnoon (now growing into Melrose MVP status), the street in front of the new-era Middle Eastern restaurant was torn to hell as a City of Seattle crew installed a new gas line for a new restaurant around the corner that will likely be the next bright young superstar to emerge at the bottom of Capitol Hill.

Stateside has its utilities — with help from the mayor *and* the governor — and is ready for its debut on Pike with a soft opening this Thanksgiving weekend. Bring your opening weekend patience and prepare for a trip to Viêt-Nam. Continue reading

CHS Re:Take | Thank Quinault for all the fresh, dried and smoked fish

It’s not clear why the 1925 apartment building at Boylston and Mercer was named Quinault. Was it named after the tribe in Grays Harbor County in an attempt to give thanks to native peoples? If so, it’s no longer much of an honor.

The building was fabulous to begin with. An article announcing its opening in the 1925 Seattle Times had this to say:

“The most attractive, comfortable and modern apartment it was possible to produce. The Quinault presents many advanced ideas in planning and engineering… Each apartment is equipped with Murphy in-a-dor beds with double deck coil springs, said to be the last word in sleeping comfort. The corridor doors are of genuine Philippine mahogany of Laminex construction, their vertical ribbon grain harmonizing with the general interior. Halls are unusually wide, while each stair landing forms a lobby.”

The brick facade still looks attractive from the street. But the decades haven’t been kind to the interior of the Quinault. In a 2006 article titled Uneasy Living The Stranger writer Eli Sanders described it unflatteringly: “The building’s coherence ends at the front steps. Inside, a thick orange-and-red carpet with a loud 1970s geometric pattern spreads out…” A commenter named Quinault Ruined My Life added to the post in 2009, “The place is a dump, nothing is ever fixed, there’s dog shit in the hallways.” Continue reading

On the List | Shop the Hill, The Seattle Collective, Indies First Day, Seattle Marathon

Joining 50+ Capitol Hill merchants (and a great selection of bars and restaurants) offering holiday shopping deals and promotions this weekend for Shop the Hill 2014, The Seattle Collective will be the latest holiday popup to come to the neighborhood. The new addition to the temporary shopping scene will take over the 5,000-square-foot space at Melrose Market Studios Sunday November 30th from 11 AM to 6 PM and provide a cozy environment of 22 of vendors from all over the city under one roof.

While some of the smaller holiday markets and bazaars are the best way to discover new artists — quick nod to the local makers who attended the Savvy Marketplace at Melrose Market Studios earlier this month and will display their gifting goods again December 20th at Sole Repair for any last-minute shopping needs — the Seattle Collective pop-up will boast established local talent.

“You’re going to get to speak to all the owners and designers,” said event organizer Melissa Riddington. “Most events are so busy, so rammed with people, what’s special about this event is you can have a drink, have a shop, and chat with the designer.” Continue reading

‘This is a peaceful rally’ — At Broadway and Pine, calls for a federal investigation in Ferguson

(Images: CHS)

(Images: CHS)

IMG_6328A second day of protest in Seattle over the decision to not charge a Ferguson, Missouri police officer in the shooting death of Michael Brown brought out a much younger crowd of students and organizers for a march from 23rd and Union across Capitol Hill to downtown’s federal courthouse.

“This is a peaceful rally and anybody that’s going to be part of this is gonna be peaceful,” an organizer shouted through a bullhorn as the march paused in the intersection of Broadway and Pine before continuing downhill Tuesday afternoon.

Many of the students protesting Tuesday called for a federal investigation of Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for the August slaying. CHS spoke with students from area schools Garfield High School and the Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences participating in the march. Seattle Public Schools said that more than 1,000 students walked out at Garfield Tuesday afternoon.

Monday night’s protests were mostly peaceful until later in the night when crowds pushed their way onto I-5 and tangled with police resulting in five arrests.

Tuesday’s rally and march was organized by the King County Seattle NAACP.

Monday night, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray issued a statement on the grand jury decision:

My message to the young African American men in Seattle today is this: While we do not have the answers today, we in this city are listening to you. Your city hears you. And your city loves you.

UPDATE 9:40 PM: A smaller group of around 75 protesters marched again from downtown to Capitol Hill Tuesday night. As of 9:30 PM, there were no reports of arrests.

Celebrating two years on Capitol Hill, Mamnoon’s Middle Eastern cuisine thrives on a transforming Melrose block

Racha and Wassef (Image: Alex Garland for CHS)

Racha and Wassef (Image: Alex Garland for CHS)

Mamnoon was in no way destined to succeed. Two years ago, CHS asked tech entrepreneur Wassef Haroun if he was sure about his ambitious plans for his first restaurant — a  Middle Eastern venture on Melrose Ave.

Two years later, customers waiting for open tables during a busy Tuesday lunch answered that question (and that was despite a street closure just outside Mamnoon’s door to prepare a gas line for newcomer Stateside).

Even with Mamnoon’s success, Haroun said he and his wife Racha still feel like outsiders among the lifetime restauranteurs that populate the neighborhood. “We’re the black sheep of the restaurant industry,” Haroun said. Continue reading

Blotter | Police looking for pistol-packing trio who pulled two stick-ups in midst of Capitol Hill protests

See something others should know about? Email CHS or call/txt (206) 399-5959. You can view recent CHS Crime coverage here.

  • Gunpoint hold-ups reported: Police are investigating at least two armed street robberies that went down around Capitol Hill just after midnight as Seattle Ferguson protests marched through the area. In the first incident, the victim told police he ran from an armed male who attempted to hold him up near Harvard and Union around 12:20 AM Tuesday. The victim ran three blocks before he was able to contact police who managed to arrive quickly despite the busy night of protests. He described the suspect in the attempted armed hold-up as a black male in his 20s, around 5’5″ with a thin build and wearing a grey hoodie and grey sweatpants.

    Continue reading

Pike/Pine auto row-era home of Value Village makes it over first bump toward landmark protection

Screen Shot 2014-11-18 at 12.24.22 PMWith a boost from a neighborhood community group dedicated to Pike/Pine preservation and development issues, the auto row-era building home to Capitol Hill’s Value Village was deemed worthy of consideration for Seattle landmark protection.

The Seattle Landmarks Board voted last week to move the 1917-built Kelly-Springfield Motor Truck Company building to the next phase in the process. The members of the Ellison family behind Value Village and real estate developer Legacy Commercial are planning a 75-foot tall office building above street-level commercial space that would incorporate elements of the old structure and the neighboring White Motor Company building at the corner in exchange for development incentives in the Pike/Pine Conservation Overlay District. “We are hoping that the site is not determined to be a landmark to provide us the opportunity to realize our vision and the neighborhood’s vision for the block,” a spokesperson for the developer told CHS before last week’s vote. Continue reading