Elliott Bay Book Company-friendly buyer found for Capitol Hill’s Ford Building

(Image: Hunters Capital)

(Image: Hunters Capital)

Hunters Capital, owners of the Ford Building, which houses Elliott Bay Book Company, the Little Oddfellows cafe, and fashion retailer Totokaelo, have found a likely buyer for the property.

Jill Cronauer, Chief Operating Officer with Hunters, said the company has a letter of intent with a local buyer.

“It’s not some big, national conglomerate,” Mike Oaksmith, director of development at Hunters said at a Monday Pike/Pine Urban Neighborhood Council meeting.

The potential buyer’s identity and any agreements on price are under wraps for now. Continue reading

Parks board to consider making shorter Broadway Hill hours permanent

(Image: CHS)

(Image: CHS)

Following a nine-month pilot of shortened hours for Broadway Hill Park since its 2016 summer opening, the Board of Park Commissioners will consider making those hours permanent on Thursday.

Rachel Schulkin with Seattle Parks and Recreation said the pilot of opening the park at 6 AM and closing it at 10 PM was spurred by a mix of what parks employees were seeing in the park and complaints from area residents.

Staff reported finding beer cans and damaged benches in the park, graffiti had been an issue, 911 calls about loud, late-night activities were frequent, and members of the community reported feeling unsafe in the park in the evening. Continue reading

Long-term fix for First Hill Streetcar likely to take months, bill to be determined

IMG_0702The First Hill Streetcar went back into operation at 5 AM on Monday after a sliding incident on March 1 took it out of service. Short-term fixes and precautions have been put in place until a long-term solution is ready, which could take months. And, while a bill for the 20-day outage and repairs is still being tabulated, officials told a City Council committee Tuesday afternoon that Seattle shouldn’t be on the hook for the costs.

“If we go the direction that we’ve kind of talked about, some of those components have to be specifically ordered and manufactured, and that’s a two month period just to get the components made in Germany,” Michael James, with the Seattle Department of Transportation said. “So we’re probably talking months not weeks.”

SDOT did not provide an estimated cost due to the service failure, but James said it appears to be manufacturer Inekon’s or its insurance company’s responsibility to cover costs from the service closure, which could include work to get the streetcar operating again and bus service provided during peak travel times on the route by King County Metro. Continue reading

Seattle City Council approves nation’s first Renters’ Commission

Council member Tim Burgess

Council member Tim Burgess

Applause followed the City Council’s unanimous approval of an ordinance creating a Seattle Renters’ Commission on Monday.

“This was truly a grassroots effort that started up on Capitol Hill and will now benefit the entire city of Seattle,” Council member and prime sponsor Tim Burgess said.

“We just want to give renters a formal voice here at City Hall,” he said. “… Renters need landlords and landlords need renters, so if this commission can help bridge that relationship then that will be a positive move for our city.” Continue reading

‘Infancy’ — Officials still gathering data to determine where safe consumption sites can be located

An Insite "supervised injection site" in Vancouver, B.C. (Image: Seattle.gov)

An Insite “supervised injection site” in Vancouver, B.C. (Image: Seattle.gov)

At the end of January, King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announced they were moving forward with all of the Heroin and Prescription Opiate Addiction Task Force recommendations to battle the heroin epidemic at a local level, including launching two safe consumption sites.

Officials are currently gathering data and information and meeting with communities to determine where the two sites, one slated for Seattle and one for greater King County, should be located.

Brad Finegood, assistant division director at King County Behavioral Health and Recovery Division, told CHS the process is in its “infancy.”

“There are so many things to undertake in an effort like this where A) there’s none in the U.S. and B) there’s so many community groups to discuss it with,” Finegood said. Continue reading

SDOT plans changes to improve safety on Broadway — including an ‘all way walk’ at Denny

Some wanted an all-walk intersection, which would only let pedestrians through and then only allow motorists to go, at Broadway/John/E Olive Way, but they’re not getting one — at least not there.

Instead, after analyzing the intersection, Seattle Department of Transportation plans to give pedestrians an advance walk signal before concurrent drivers get a green light, put in left turn lanes on John and E Olive, and turn the intersection at Broadway and E Denny Way, a festival street, one block south into an all-walk.

The announcements are wins for organizations like Seattle Central Greenways and the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce who have been pushing SDOT to do more to address safety issues around Broadway’s increasingly busy core.

Continue reading

Starting on Capitol Hill, The Riveter creating coworking spaces focused on women

When working mothers and friends Amy Nelson and Kim Peltola couldn’t find a workplace the provide support and resources that empowered women and helped them to balance careers and self-care, they decided to create that space.

Their new venture, The Riveter, a coworking, wellness, and community space that focuses on women, but welcomes all will open May 1st on 12th Ave between Pike and Pine. The very real venture will take over an office space that temporarily became the home to a set of reality TV show cast members last summer.

Nelson, a lawyer, and Peltola, a social worker, met about three years ago when both were new mothers. They bonded over the challenges of balancing parenthood, work, and self-care. Continue reading

Club-focused 1923 Management, food-centered F2T Hospitality locate offices on E Olive Way (But you probably want to know about The Harvard and Olive Delicatessen)

A group specializing in Seattle’s nightclub scene and another working to bring farm-to-table food concepts to the city have located their shared office on E Olive Way between Broadway and Harvard Ave. There aren’t any plans for them to open another Capitol Hill nightclub, yet, but the two-headed set of businesses will bring a new menswear shop to the neighborhood — and an E Olive Way deli.

Signs went up for the Harvard and Olive Delicatessen earlier this week.

Matt Mead, marketing director for both 1923 Management and F2T Hospitality — two separate ventures aside from the connective element in Mead — said the groups have called Capitol Hill home to their management offices from about two months.

1923 Management’s management team has more than doubled from about four to five people to around 12 and working out of the company’s Aston Manor nightclub wasn’t functioning for the growing business. The former Liberty Tax Service location has provided them with enough room to sublet to friends at F2T Hospitality, which is in the process of opening three drinking and eating establishments — two in West Seattle and one on the Hill, conveniently enough, just down the street. Continue reading

Nikkita Oliver’s run for mayor: housing, education, and ending the ‘school-to-prison pipeline’

It's official. Nikkita Oliver turned in her paperwork Monday to enter the race to be Seattle's mayor

It’s official. Nikkita Oliver turned in her paperwork Monday to enter the race to be Seattle’s mayor

The newly formed Peoples Party of Seattle is putting all-in-one educator, attorney, spoken-word poet, and activist Nikkita Oliver forward as its candidate to take on Mayor Ed Murray for this year’s election.

Oliver’s decision to run and help launch the “community-centered grassroots political party” came after the election of President Donald Trump.

“I didn’t want to stand in a place of powerlessness,” Oliver said.

After the election, she started meeting people for coffee, talking about values and concerns. Oliver talked with the “aunties and elders” in her community about how people running on the same platforms yield the same results and maybe it’s time to try something different.

Over time, those conversations lead to the collective decision that “we need to transform our local government.”

The party formed and encouraged Oliver to run against Murray.

“I take what my community says to me to heart,” Oliver told CHS. “… I’m not going to act like I entered into this with ease. I take it very seriously.” Continue reading

Designs for new amphitheater at Volunteer Park nearing completion

FRONT STAGE IN USEORA Architects is finalizing the schematic design for Volunteer Park’s new amphitheater, which it plans to present to the public in the first week of April.

There may be a few tweaks to the project after the public presentation, but overall the concept is established, Emily Perchlik, with ORA, told CHS.

“It’s going to be a terrific addition to Volunteer Park,” said Eliza Davidson, chair of the Amphitheater Task Force. “… It’s blossomed into something that is a much bigger contribution to the character and use of the park.” Continue reading