3,000 new residents and the need for ‘open green space’ on First Hill

Screen Shot 2015-01-24 at 7.19.36 PMFirst Hill might get a whole lot greener — at least in the spring and summer. 

Earlier this month, more than 150 residents of the First Hill community and representatives from the Seattle Department of Transportation, Seattle Parks & Recreation, and the Department of Planning and Development gathered at Town Hall Seattle to discuss ideas for revamping certain streets in the neighborhood to allow for more dynamic and multi-purposed public open green space. 

“Not only do streets need to function as mobility, but they need to be the front door, the place where people go to meet. They’re social spaces,” said Susan McLaughlin, project manager for the First Hill Public Realm Action Plan. 

“Over the last decade First Hill has grown by over 3,000 new residents,” said Lyle Bicknell, principal urban designer with DPD and one of the speakers leading the town hall. “These new residents and workers need quality green space, in addition to those who already live here.”

During the session, First Hill residents gleaned insights into how parts of their neighborhood might be transformed within the next few years. Continue reading

Capitol Pill | Re-Solve


We’ve asked Karyn Schwartz, owner of the Sugarpill apothecary on E Pine, to contribute to CHS about health and Hill living on a semi-regular basis. If you’re an expert and want to share with the community in a recurring CHS column, we’d like to hear from you.

I tend not to celebrate holidays when you are supposed to celebrate them. I am particularly not fond of New Years, which has always seemed to me like such a random day to stay up later than I want, drink shitty champagne and make promises that I don’t even know if I can keep.

Resolutions are hard enough; making them on the same date as a billion other people, in a state of post-holiday exhaustion seems a little crazy. I am always so grateful for the grace period between January 1st and my Capricorn-cusp birthday to actually think about what I want for my own New Year, and to consider what the habits are — either in actual practice or in thoughts or belief — that I am ready to contend with. Continue reading

This week in CHS history: Twilight Exit shooting, M Street Grocery closes, Unicorn is born

8473084494_d34cec0053_oHere are the top stories from this week in CHS history:

Crash leaves light pole leaning precariously on 23rd Ave Metro wires

IMG_7362IMG_7368A single-car crash that knocked a light pole onto Metro trolley wires near a troublesome curve in 23rd Ave near E Aloha caused no significant injuries but was set to take hours to unsnarl Saturday night.

Police and Seattle Fire responded just after 10 PM Saturday after a car struck the pole and sent it leaning on the dual wires used to power 23rd Ave Metro trolley routes 43 and 48. The car’s driver was not seriously injured but was taken into custody at the scene. A DUI unit was called to the scene.

Crews were being gathered to evaluate the leaning pole and the Metro wires supporting it but were expected to take up to two hours to complete the inspection. Traffic in the area was diverted off 23rd Ave during the response.

UPDATE: The road was reopened to traffic around 1 AM.

New at the Broadway Farmers Market: Central Seattle’s own Malus Ginger Beer

996496_596024903762173_281111596_nFour years ago, a ginger beer maker got her start on what has become a collection of Seattle food and drink venues with a table at the Broadway Farmers Market. Later this year, Rachel Marshall will open a Rachel’s Ginger Beer on Capitol Hill inside the 12th Ave Arts complex.

Sunday, a new creator of the spicy drink tells CHS he is making his debut at the market and joining Rachel’s which has continued to keep its place at the weekly event. Here’s John Struble on his Malus Ginger Beer:

Malus Fermented Ginger Beer debuts at the Broadway Farmer’s Market on January 25 and will return every other Sunday thereafter. Crafted with a strong regard for herbal history, Malus Ginger Beer is Seattle’s only fermented non-alcoholic ginger beer. Malus’s process of fermentation is what separates its ginger beer from our admired fellow producers, Timber City and RGB. The craft of fermentation, more closely related to the production of beer, wine, and kombucha, is the linchpin of Malus’s methodology. Malus uses organic ingredients, including Northwest wildflower honey.

ad-04The Central District resident touts his drink as the only non-alcoholic fermented ginger beer in Seattle. The beer lists only four simple ingredients: water, ginger, honey, and lemon. (UPDATE: Struble let us know he believes his is the only non-alcoholic fermented ginger beer being made in Seattle. We’ve clarified above.)

Struble says he plans to carry Malus beyond ginger. “Malus has unearthed a centuries old recipe that promises to taste unlike any other root beer,” he writes, “with healthful ingredients that epitomize Malus’s herbalist tradition and stout opposition to the heavily medicated culture created by the American Medical Association.”

In addition to the Sunday markets (11a to 3p at Seattle Central, Broadway at Pine), you can also find Malus at Bannister, Café Presse, Central Co-op, Chuck’s Hop Shop, E. Smith Mercantile, and Revolver Bar.

You can learn more at malus-seattle.com.

Lifelong Thrift readies for Broadway with sale, moving campaign

(Image: Lifelong)

(Image: Lifelong)

With plans to open in February March on Broadway in the former home of Red Light Vintage, Capitol Hill’s Lifelong Thrift is clearing the shelves and preparing for the move with a big sale and a fundraising campaign to boost the nonprofit’s move from E Union.

Saturday is the last day of business for the shop at 1017 E Union — you can find some sweet deals on the final day:

As you all know, out last day of operation at 1017 E Union will be Saturday Jan. 24th. So we will be having a store wide 75 percent off sale, starting Friday Jan. 23rd. Items that are .50¢ will not be further discounted.

Lifelong is also holding an online giving campaign to help with additional unexpected costs from a one-month delay in the move:

The Lifelong Thrift is a Seattle thrift shop institution known for awesome one-of-a kind items. It has resided on Capitol Hill since the 1980s when, at the height of the AIDS epidemic, it was a place of togetherness…a place the symbolized hope in a time of heartache. Today, it is one of the few, if not the only, thrift stores in Seattle that offers a voucher program to HIV positive individuals in need of basic living essentials, like warm coats, dishes, or even an outfit to wear to a job interview. The Lifelong Thrift has given $500,000 in vouchers through the years!

The thrift store is bursting at the seams and can grow no more in its current building while the number of clients served by Lifelong continues to grow. The good news is, the thrift store announced in the Fall that it would be relocating to a new location on Broadway in Capitol Hill — a space that is three times the size of the current space. The new space will allow the thrift store to double the amount of contributions back to Lifelong’s programs delivering food, housing, and health services to people living with chronic illnesses including HIV/AIDS.

If you give $2,500, you’ll get a fitting room in the new Broadway location dedicated in your name.

CHS Pics | This week in Capitol Hill pictures

The CHS Flickr Pool contains more than 18,000 19,000 20,000 21,000  22,000 23,000 24,000 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 –- our roster is full for general assignments but pitch us on an idea. Continue reading

911 | E Madison parking garage mugging, 19th/Alder fire

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

  • 22/Madison robbery: Seattle Police searched for the suspect in a reported strong-arm robbery inside the parking garage below The Summit apartment building at 22nd and Madison Friday night. We’re told the victim was a driver for a Capitol Hill pizza joint. According to police dispatch radio, the suspect took the driver’s keys, phone, and wallet in the robbery reported just after 11 PM on the lower level of the garage below the apartments and Safeway. The suspect was described as a black male in his 20s, wearing a Seahawks beanie, black jacket, and jeans. The suspect did not brandish a weapon in the incident. One local business owner sent out a Tweet overnight saying a Hot Mama’s driver had been robbed. We’ll see if we can confirm that this is part of the same incident. There were no reported injuries.
  • 19/Alder fire: Seattle Fire is investigating after an early Saturday morning garage fire that damaged a two-story house near 19th and Alder. Heavy smoke and flames were reported coming from the structure just before 5:30 AM as occupants attempted to put out the blaze with water. All occupants were reported to have made it safely out of the house as SFD initiated its response and brought the fire under control around 20 minutes later. The fire marshal is investigating the cause of the fire. Red Cross was called in to help provide assistance to the residents. There were no reported injuries.

Activists hold Trans Health Insurance Forum at Gay City

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Toby Hill-Meyer takes the mic at Saturday’s Trans Health Insurance Forum. (Image: Casey Jaywork)

In 2009, Danni Askini was raising hell to debunk “Gender Identity Disorder” from the official list of diagnosable mental illnesses. It’s not like concepts of disease are immutable, after all: Homosexuality was a sickness until 1973, when doctors suddenly agreed that it’s wasn’t. Why shouldn’t transgender people similarly shed the stigma of pathology?

“Oh, young me,” she laughs to the roughly 60 people packed inside Gay City’s tiny auditorium. “You didn’t know!”

Askini is speaking on a panel held last Saturday at the Trans Health Insurance Forum, orchestrated by the Coalition for Inclusive Healthcare. And she’s laughing because, in the past five years, she’s gone from decrying transgender diagnoses to sometimes promoting them, for two reasons. Continue reading

Blotter | Gunpoint robbery in Cal Anderson, no victims in Central District drive-by

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

  • Cal Anderson armed robbery: A victim told police the suspect in a gunpoint robbery inside Cal Anderson Park late Thursday night was apparently a hometown sports fan. According to the victim in the hold-up reported just after 11:30 PM near the park’s fountain, the suspect was a Hispanic male wearing a Mariners jacket and Mariners beanie and was carrying an orange drawstring bag as he tucked a pistol back into this waistband and fled the scene with an accomplice after the robbery. Police searched the area for the men last seen headed south on Nagle but no arrests were made. Community groups and the Capitol Hill Chamber are continuing to work on a plan to request funds for improved lighting in the park to quell ongoing robberies and assaults.
  • Midtown Center drive-by: Police were searching for suspect vehicles after a second night of gunfire around 23rd and Union’s Midtown Center. Thursday night just after 8:30 PM, police swarmed the area after reports of shots fired by a passenger in the backseat of a black Toyota Corolla. There were no reported injuries and it wasn’t clear who or what had been targeted in the incident. There were no arrests. SPD asked witnesses to call 911 with information. Tuesday night, a bullet is believed to have traveled more than a half-mile before landing in the door of a third-floor apartment unit north of a shooting incident reported near the center. There were no injuries reported in that altercation and there were also no arrests.
  • Shots fired stats: SPD released its most recent SeaStat report including a review of shots fire across the city in 2014. SPD says reported gunfire incidents jumped more than 20% compared to 2013:Screen Shot 2015-01-23 at 12.16.37 PM