Capitol Hill: First in nightlife, not necessarily first in the morning. The Mayor’s Office this Thursday announced new rules and procedure being put into place as part of the ongoing Seattle Nightlife Initiative.
We’ll have more on the noise code end of things in soon. In the meantime, starting Thursday night with a Capitol Hill-only rollout, Seattle parking payment machines with this blue and yellow label will allow drivers to pay for two hours the next morning for anybody with plans for overnight fun who doesn’t want to try to drive home in the wee hours. (UPDATE: Point of clarity — *all* pay stations in the city are enabled for the two hour grace period. We just got the promo stickers first)
One weak spot in the plan: You can’t buy the morning pass until 10 PM the night before. But we are also told the 24-hour-party people don’t really start motivating until midnight.
In the meantime, no update from East Precinct regarding the “meathead” ordinance designed to give officers a new tool to combat noisy late-night revelers with tickets and fines. Last we heard, enforcement of the rules on Capitol Hill was pending delayed training. So, in the meantime meatheads, please self police.
Here’s the announcement from Mayor Mike McGinn:
Mayor Mike McGinn today announced a pre-payment option for those who park their cars before going out. The mayor also updated the public on the Nightlife Initiative’s Code Compliance Team, taxi zones and a new Amplified Sound Rule for the city.
Starting today, April 21, people will see new blue and yellow informational stickers on the pay stations in the Pike-Pine and Capitol Hill neighborhoods. The stickers explain that after 10 p.m. two hours of parking for the following morning from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. can be purchased to give drivers more time to get home safely and retrieve their vehicles the next day. The stickers will eventually be applied to all pay stations.
“There is nothing that restaurant and bar owners want more than a safe and vibrant nightlife,” said Quentin Ertel, owner of The Saint and Havana. “The cornerstone of a successful business is return customers, and the key to return customers is having them arrive home safely. The pre-payment option is a brilliant idea that takes great strides toward the goal of having fun and being safe. It’s a win for everybody involved.”
In addition, the City of Seattle will work with property owners and businesses in Downtown, Belltown, Pioneer Square, Broadway, University District and Ballard to set up late-night taxi zones. These new zones will provide a safe and visible sidewalk location for people to hail a taxi. This work is scheduled to take place over the next two to three months.
Another component of the Nightlife Initiative is a new Nighttime Amplified Sound Rule, which sets a limit of 65db(C) on noise affecting residential dwelling units. The new rule is the product of extensive community input and consultation with nightlife businesses. It includes incentives for businesses to mitigate noise complaints before facing fines and enforcement action. McGinn will conduct an annual review going forward, to ensure that rules are fairly enforced.
“The Nightlife Initiative grew out of a need to support our local businesses, encourage a safer nightlife experience and build urban vibrancy in Seattle,” said McGinn. “That’s why a comprehensive approach is so important. The eight components of the initiative all work together to build stronger neighborhoods, public safety and nightlife in our city.”
The Nightlife Initiative’s Code Compliance Team (CCT) has been hard at work. After extensive negotiations with the State, the Washington State Liquor Control Board last week approved the City’s request to include new public safety conditions in a nightclub liquor license. Going forward, the City will request that each nightclub show that it has (1) a written safety plan on file, (2) professional training for security personnel, and (3) compliance with fire code occupancy requirements, in order to obtain or renew a liquor license. At the mayor’s direction, the CCT also worked closely with Seattle Police to address neighborhood complaints concerning a series of “rave” parties at The Citadel, near Othello station. SPD has sent a nuisance letter to the owner of the property, and the owner is working to address the community’s concerns.
Check out the Seattle Nightlife Initiative’s website to learn more: http://mayormcginn.seattle.gov/nightlife/