Weather gods again target Pike People Street, this time with threat of Seattle snow

A snow morning on E Pike circa February 2011 (Image: CHS)

A snow morning on E Pike circa February 2011 (Image: CHS)

It’s time to admit it. The final pilot of the Pike People Street program is cursed. Though if the last weather-related cancelation is any indication, you won’t actually have 2 to 5 inches of Seattle snow to worry about Thursday afternoon.

Forecast models for Thursday are going a little nuts but there is the possibility for three to five inches of snow up and down the I-5 corridor — including Seattle. The storm could also bring high winds and freezing rain. UPDATE 8:50 PM: The situation has now been escalated to a National Weather ServiceWinter Storm Watch” —

A WEATHER SYSTEM WILL MOVE FROM SOUTH TO NORTH OVER WESTERN WASHINGTON ON THURSDAY AND THURSDAY NIGHT. COLD AIR WILL BE IN PLACE AT THE SURFACE WHEN PRECIPITATION BEGINS. THE PRECIPITATION IS LIKELY TO BEGIN AS SNOW…THEN CHANGE TO RAIN. AROUND 12 HOURS OF SNOWFALL IS POSSIBLE AT MOST LOCATIONS IN THE INTERIOR LOWLANDS. FOUR INCHES OR MORE OF SNOW IS POSSIBLE. THE HOOD CANAL AREA…WHERE STRONG EAST WINDS WILL ADD AN UPSLOPE COMPONENT TO THE SNOW…COULD GET SEVEN INCHES OR MORE. THE NSET OF SNOW…AND THE CHANGE TO RAIN…WILL BE EARLIER IN THE SOUTH AND LATER IN THE NORTH. BY FRIDAY MORNING IT IS ANTICIPATED THAT SNOW WILL HAVE CHANGED TO RAIN EVERYWHERE.

While SDOT’s coordinator for the pedestrian pilot program Seth Geiser is hoping for a “little winter wonderland” to accompany Thursday’s Capitol Hill Art Walk-coordinated street closure in the heart of Pike/Pine, the Spokane native is ready for a cancellation if his department needs to swing into action for a serious storm. Continue reading

Lowell Elementary S Path remains ‘temporarily closed’ as officials weigh options

img_9619A self-imposed deadline for Seattle Department of Transportation officials to sort out a plan with Seattle Public Schools for what happens next to the “S Path,” the curving public sidewalk between Federal and 11th Ave E that has been fenced off since the start of adjacent Lowell Elementary’s school year, has come and gone.

SDOT’s Genesee Adkins, chief of staff for the department, tells CHS that city representative have met with schools officials and heard the district’s requirements for reopening the route to the public right of way:

We met with the school district a little more than a week ago to understand what they want to do going forward. Now we’re working internally at the city to see how quickly we can make some of those options happen on the ground. I know I’m not giving you too much specificity, but we’re still in flux at this moment. We had hoped to have a long-term solution identified by the end of November, and I don’t think we’ll be too far off of that, but I’m afraid we’re not quite there yet today.

CHS reached out to the school district to learn more about its requirements. A SPS spokesperson said district representatives met on Friday to discuss proposals but we haven’t yet heard back on specifics. Clearly, they have bigger issues to sort out.

Lowell Elementary serves children from across Central Seattle and is home to the district’s program for medically fragile students. Parents said they have been cleaning up garbage and dangerous needles from addicts and homeless campers left along the path for months. Adkins said that the situation had reached an “acute” level and the closure to start the school year was the only prudent course of action to take while longer term solutions were addressed.

City officials met with community members and school parents this fall to hear from some their concerns about the path’s dangers and other’s their desire to restore the public route near the school.

Capitol Hill food+drink | Elysian plans ‘brewing amphitheater’ overhaul on Capitol Hill

After 20 years of making a name for itself, Elysian Brewing can now focus on other goals, like a complete overhaul of its Capitol Hill location to keep up with the neighborhood’s increasingly impressive craft manufacturing investments.

Elysian cofounder and CEO Joe Bisacca tells CHS there will be some major changes throughout the E Pike brewery, but the main objective is to make the craft the focus.

“We want to bring the brewing aspect to the forefront in that space,” Bisacca said.

Bisacca said plans include tearing down a wall, opening up and reconfiguring the brewery portion and adding five fermentors. The vision is to create a “brewing amphitheater” with stadium seating and comfortable tiers of tables so customers can enjoy the brew while they cheer on the brewmaster.

“The idea is when we’re brewing customers can sit and have a beer pretty much right in there with us,” Bisacca said. Continue reading

First look at Capitol Hill Station development designs — Seven stories, 427 units, and a new Broadway plaza

Here are the first official public design proposals for the four seven-story buildings including a combined 427 market-rate and affordable apartment units and more than 59,000 square feet of commercial and community space slated to rise surrounding Broadway’s Capitol Hill Station.

The proposal represents a decade of planning and public process that is set to further reshape Capitol Hill’s Broadway core and make new housing for hundreds while adding a new community plaza adjacent Cal Anderson Park. The full review proposal is at the bottom of this post.

As the project is lined up for its first design review next week, master developer Gerding Edlen will meet with residents, and business and community group representatives who will neighbor the massive — and massively important — development in an open house Tuesday night:

Capitol Hill Station development open house

The open house is designed as drop-in event with opportunities to speak with Gerding Edlen representatives — and practice your feedback on the project’s planned 668 334 parking stalls. The 1.5 0.78 stall to unit ratio is just a little higher than pretty much in line with recent trends across the city. UPDATE: Sorry for the error!

Continue reading

You can soon ‘Go’ to Amazon’s new automagic grocery store on your way back to Capitol Hill

Only a mile from the crowd around the self check-out kiosks at the Harvard Market QFC, a new shopping experience — probably worked on by a few Capitol Hill residents who have stood in that crowd — will be unveiled early next year on 7th Ave.

Amazon Go will be a “self driving” grocery store in Seattle’s burgeoning new Amazonia neighborhood where shoppers can walk in and walk out with anything they like — without having to wait to ring up their purchases.

“What if we could weave the most advanced machine learning, computer vision and AI into the very fabric of a store, so you never have to wait in line,” the promo video released Monday morning asks. “No lines, no checkout, no registers — welcome to Amazon Go.”

The company’s secret grocery project comes as the retail giant has laid claim to around a third of the country’s online holiday spending this year and many industry watchers have been predicting advances with delivery technology like drones. The company is also planning drive-up grocery stores with a prototype nearly ready to open in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood.

While the planned Amazon Go debut in 2017 at 2131 7th Ave has garnered a lot of buzz, we’ll be more impressed when the retailer shows its new system can work on Broadway where many grocery shoppers have been employing a version of “just walk out technology” for years.

“Take whatever you like. Anything you pick up is automatically added to your virtual card. If you change your mind about that, Cupcake, just put it back…”

Happy Hill-a-days: Holiday in the Park, Art Walk Pike People Street, Broadway window murals

(Image: Tatiana Gill via Flickr)

(Image: Tatiana Gill via Flickr)

As December started, CHS told you about where to get your Capitol Hill Christmas tree along with a roster of early holiday highlights. This week brings more holiday happenings to Capitol Hill.

Thursday, get ready for a doubleheader with the return of Holiday in the Park at Volunteer Park and a special December Art Walk edition of the Pike People Street:

Holiday in the Park

Pike People Street December Art Walk

This weekend, you’ll see some busy elves working to decorate neighborhood merchants thanks to the chamber and artists from Urban Art Works: Continue reading

Join the Capitol Hill resistance — Neighborhood Action Councils form across Seattle

Groups began organizing at a November event at Capitol Hill's V2 (Image: CHS)

NAC groups began organizing at a November event at Capitol Hill’s V2 (Image: CHS)

You can join a Capitol Hill anti-Trump resistance group. In fact, you might be able to join a few of them.

Following a meeting last month where the ideas behind the push were born, Seattle organizers announced a successful citywide gathering over the weekend to continue shaping a local “resistance” effort in preparation for life under a Trump administration.

Representatives for the new Seattle Neighborhood Action Coalition met Sunday at the International District Community Center to begin forming neighborhood groups across the city “to protect targeted groups under a Trump Administration.” Continue reading

Across from Capitol Hill Station, Zoom+Care plans second Broadway clinic

Considering Zoom+Care clinics don’t accept Tricare, Medicaid or Medicare — they’ve been accused of focusing on focusing care on young and healthy patients — it makes sense the company would open a second Capitol Hill location. But this new location will also draw patients from a wider range thanks to proximity to Capitol Hill Station.

The company, which provides urgent, primary and specialist care, has submitted a plan to the city of Seattle to take over empty space in the new construction of the Hollywood Lofts building at 127 Broadway E, turning it into a clinic with four universal care rooms, a support room, and a pharmacy lab. Zoom officials told CHS they would be in touch last week but haven’t provided additional information on a second planned clinic on Broadway. Continue reading

Thousands take to streets of Capitol Hill as ‘Seattle Women March Against Hate’

(Images: CHS)

(Images: CHS)

Thousands of women — and those who love them — gathered in Volunteer Park Saturday afternoon for a march against hate organized to counter a tide of misogyny and stand up against efforts to roll back women’s rights under the incoming Trump administration. Here are a few glimpses from the crowd and images from CHS for the day’s rally and procession from Volunteer Park to Cal Anderson via 12th Ave and Broadway.

Police estimated between 3,000 and 4,000 marchers participated.

“When we see bigotry and when we see discrimination, we need to have the courage, the strength, and the passion to denounce it,” organizer Kelsey Coleman said as she addressed the crowd waiting in Volunteer Park before the start of the march. “And to show people of all ethnicities, all orientations, all genders, and all religions that we stand beside them.”

An idea first hatched by a group of friends with a start a little more than a Facebook invite, organizers said Saturday’s event grew under its own power as women sought a local opportunity to speak out against the outcome of the election. Demi Wetzel told CHS she and the other organizers were overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, offers of help, and media interest in the event.

Chants during the march rattled off buildings on the chilly afternoon. My body, my choice. Black lives matter. Not my president.

More images and coverage of the march are here.

Snowy Monday ‘Winter Weather Advisory’ for Seattle — UPDATE: Snowing on Capitol Hill

First Seattle snow!

A video posted by Kait Lawler (@thefoxconfesses) on

UPDATE 8:20 AM: Snow started falling on Capitol Hill and across the Seattle area just after 8 AM with temperatures hovering around 33 F. For now, sticking mostly to parked cars, grass, and trees, the snow hasn’t yet completely snarled the morning commute. Metro reports “normal” operations at this time. Have pictures? Let us see.

Here are a couple CHS pages you might find useful this week:

UPDATE: 2:50 PM: There’s a chance Tuesday morning could be cold and messy:

Forecasters say we could see a more significant snowfall later this week before it all turns to rain by Thursday afternoon:

  • Wednesday Night: Snow likely, mainly after 4am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 28. Chance of precipitation is 60%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.
  • Thursday: Rain and snow likely, becoming all rain after 10am. Cloudy, with a high near 40. Chance of precipitation is 70%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.

Snowing in #seattle, let the #freakingout commence

A video posted by Amy Bergsieker (@bergieamy) on

Snow in #Seattle. #kitty

A photo posted by Cynthia (@castanich) on

Continue reading

Would a Vancouver-style tax on empty houses help Seattle?

Anyone hoping to flee a Trump administration by moving to Vancouver should be prepared for some sticker shock. As expensive as housing is in Seattle, Vancouver, B.C. is the most expensive market in North America.

Much like City Hall here, Vancouver has been searching for policies to try and moderate the increases, and in November, the city council there implemented its latest attempt, a tax on vacant homes.

Vancouver will impose a 1% tax on vacant properties based on the value of the home. There are some exceptions for people who might be traveling, having medical problems, or at least trying to rent or sell their home. Properties are vacant if there’s no one living there for at least half of the year. Renting it out will allow the owner to avoid the tax, but the rentals must be for at least 30 days at a time basically precluding Airbnb-style weekend rentals.

Would the plan work in Seattle? Continue reading