Victrola expanding coffee roasting operations off Hill but Pike’s small-batch beans will stay

Inside Pike Victrola’s roasting room (Image: Victrola Roasters)

Capitol Hill remains fertile ground for coffee bean roasting but the area’s tight quarters will mean one player is downsizing its on-Hill operations. Victrola has announced it is moving its largest roaster to Lynnwood to focus its growing wholesale production in a new facility:

One of Seattle’s original specialty coffee roasters is getting a strong shot of focused energy and experience with the addition of Torsten Gohre as Director of Wholesale, as well as the establishment of a new production facility. Tor joined Victrola in July 2017, bringing his talents and expertise from 10 years as Western Region Sales Director for a Fortune 500 corporation, where he managed a portfolio of business across 13 states, contributing to 20% year-over-year growth for 10 consecutive years. Tor’s role at Victrola is to define and implement an optimal structure for wholesale operations and oversee all client relationships, including day-to-day service, education and new accounts. He will lead all business development and account management strategy, with a focus on expanding into new market segments such as lodging, airport, college and university, business and industry, and healthcare channels.

Victrola owner Dan Ollis tells CHS “space has become a real concern” at Victrola’s Pike roastery and cafe. “I’m sure you have seen the loading/unloading craziness,” he writes. “The Bigger Roaster will move, and the original roaster will stay in its place at 310 East Pike St.” Continue reading

Under new leadership, Capitol Hill Community Council aims to build on its unusually progressive legacy

Natalie Curtis, seated, at last year’s Capitol Hill Community Council open house at Vermillion

An anomalously diverse body as far as Seattle’s community groups go, it is also a time of transition for the Capitol Hill Community Council: As it prepares for its annual winter open house where it gathers face to face community input on what the organization’s priorities should be for the new year, council president Zachary Dewolf will hand over the reigns to the current vice president Natalie Curtis.

“I’m really excited to see Natalie Curtis lead this really critical volunteer-led community organization,” Dewolf told CHS.

Dewolf, who has been with the council since early 2013, won a decisive victory in his bid for the Position 5 seat on the Seattle School Board and is leaving the council to focus on his new duties.

Curtis, a 32-year-old Texas transplant who has served on the council’s board in various capacities over the last four years and is currently completing a master’s in nonprofit leadership and public administration at Seattle University, says she wants to increase community involvement and build on the various progressive causes and initiatives that the the organization has championed in recent years.

Capitol Hill Community Council December Open House

“I want to focus on ways to really get the pulse of the community,” Curtis said. “I’m hoping to get the community more engaged and more on board in 2018.”

Among the issues that Curtis wants to prioritize are activating the public spaces surrounding the eventual new housing developments at the Capitol Hill light rail station (such as bringing the farmers market to the development on a regular basis), working with the Seattle City Council on improving the City’s policies towards un-sanctioned homeless encampments, increasing opportunities for community members to volunteer in the neighborhood, and establishing a supervised consumption site in Capitol Hill.

“Safe consumption sites are really at the top, top top of my radar,” Curtis said. “I really want to get those going.” Continue reading

December Capitol Hill Art Walk: $100 and under art, La Croix art, Noble Neon art

Empty that Amazon shopping cart and head out Thursday night for a stroll through the Capitol Hill Art Walk and a collection of venues putting on special shows as part of the holiday edition of the monthly neighborhood event.

The weekend, meanwhile, brings another handful of holiday fun including the The Seventh Annual March of the Mistletomosexuals. You can check out the CHS Happy Hilladays Calendar for more.

FoodArt Collection: La Croix

Annual Hundred and Under Group Art Show Opening Reception


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Blotter | Victim reports hate crime in Broadway pepper spray assault

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

  • Broadway pepper spray assault: A man reported a possible hate crime after a pepper spray attack last Thursday night on Capitol Hill. Police and Seattle Fire were called to CC Attle’s on E Olive Way around 8:30 PM on December 7th to a report that a man had been pepper sprayed in the face. The victim told police he believed he was attacked because he is gay:

    Police say the victim described his attacker as an unknown race male, 5’10”, with a slim build and dreadlocks. He was wearing a dark overcoat at the time of the assault. Seattle Fire responded but the victim did not need to be taken to the hospital. SPD is investigating. There were no immediate arrests reported.

  • QFC ‘crack’ assault: An employee at the Harvard Market QFC suffered an unusual assault after trying to deal with an unwanted visitor to the Pike and Broadway store last Friday. Police and Seattle fire were called to the scene just before noon to a report the employee was feeling dizzy after having what he believed to have been crack cocaine smoke blown in his face while trying to remove a trespasser from the property. SFD was called to treat the employee. We do not know what the substance was determined to be. There were no arrests.

Pike/Pine shop hosts Affordable Care Act workshop to help battle enrollment challenges

A Seattle cancer survivor’s RV road trip across Western Washington to raise awareness about the shortened enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act made a stop Tuesday on Capitol Hill.

Julie Negrin, who says she has survived four separate battles with cancer, set up her latest workshop with information and help for people looking to sign up at E Pike’s Retail Therapy. Continue reading

‘Pick two of your favorites from these images’ — Take this survey to help shape the next decade of Capitol Hill development

In November, CHS reported on the process to update the Capitol Hill Design Guidelines — Rule #1: No ugly buildings, we quipped. The guidelines, which haven’t been updated since 2005, serve as a neighborhood-specific vetting framework for projects that go through the city’s broader design review process. These guidelines inform how design review boards evaluate the exterior aesthetic of proposed projects (the guidelines include metrics such as building materials and building shape).

Community groups and neighbors highly engaged in the effort have provided feedback to shape the update — but officials are also collecting preferences from respondents via this Capitol Hill Design Guidelines Update survey:

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Design review: Pratt Fine Arts Center development in the CD, ‘upscale’ small efficiency project on Capitol Hill

A development set to create market-rate housing and reshape a key block of Central District arts and culture and a project that proves Capitol Hill microhousing is not dead will both take their debut bows in front of the East Design Review Board Wednesday night.

1900 S Jackson
The plan announced in spring to create a full-block expansion of the Pratt Fine Arts Center in conjunction with a six-story, 160-unit mixed-use will move forward Wednesday night as developer Daniels Real Estate brings its proposal up for early design guidance.

CHS reported in April on the Pratt project as the Central District cultural center that serves more than 4,000 art students a year marked its 40th anniversary by announcing the venture with Daniels Real Estate. The art center today has 19,000 square feet of studio space in its two existing buildings, which will remain open during the expansion. The expansion will grow the campus by adding 75% of the block between S Jackson and S Main and 19th and 20th Aves. Underground parking will have space for 100 cars. Continue reading

Sawant to chair City Council’s new committee dedicated to homelessness services, renters rights

Seattle City Council fans, grab your popcorn. The new committee assignments are out and you’ll be seeing some familiar faces in new roles in council business in 2018.

District 3 representative Kshama Sawant will start the third year of her four-year term with a new assignment for the council as chair of the newly formed Human Services, Equitable Development, and Renter Rights Committee. The HSEDRR will “work on issues relating to services provided by the Human Services Department, including programs that meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable people in our community.” Sawant’s new committee will also consider “matters involving public health” and Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) as well as renter rights, “including but not limited to legislation intended to protect renters facing gentrification, economic evictions, excessive background checks, and unaffordable rent.

In a crucial but challenging role, Sally Bagshaw will step into the council’s budget chair. Bruce Harrell, meanwhile, has been voted to continue serving as the body’s president.

City Hall’s full details on the committee assignments are below.

Council Sets 2018-19 Committee Assignments

Seattle – The Seattle City Council today adopted Resolution 31789 establishing committee assignments for 2018 and 2019. Each Councilmember is responsible for chairing a Councilcommittee and managing legislation related to the committee’s respective subjects. In addition, each Councilmember serves as vice chair, member and alternate on three additional committees. Continue reading

CHS Pics | Hillary Clinton draws a crowd — and cookies, capes, and cheers — on Seattle’s Capitol Hill

Bigly loser Hillary Clinton still has lots of fans on Capitol Hill. Readers carrying her new book, What Happened, lined up on a chilly Tuesday outside 10th Ave’s Elliott Bay Book Company where the politician who nearly became the nation’s first woman president made a signing appearance.

Plenty of Capitol Hill luminaries found a place in line. Some like Linda Derschang whose Little Oddfellows operates inside the bookstore, came armed with gifts like HRC cookies. Others let their Hillary Clinton super capes do the talking.

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Seattle labor opposition continues for New Seasons plans at 23rd and Union

Pro-labor advocates opposed to the grocery chain’s planned arrival in the Central District gathered outside the office of Lake Union Partners Monday afternoon to hand over a letter asking the developer to reconsider plans for Portland-based New Seasons to anchor the East Union mixed-use project.

“As​ ​more​ ​upsetting​ ​news​ ​surfaces​ ​about​ ​New​ ​Seasons,​ ​we​ ​ask​ ​that​ ​you​ ​work​ ​with​ ​members​ ​of the​ ​Good​ ​Jobs​ ​Coalition​ ​who​ ​live​ ​in​ ​the​ ​Central​ ​District​ ​to​ ​address​ ​our​ ​concerns​ ​about​ ​New Seasons,” the letter reads.​ “​We​ ​don’t​ ​believe​ ​New​ ​Seasons​ ​is​ ​a​ ​good​ ​fit​ ​for​ ​our​ ​community,​ ​and​ ​we​ ​want​ ​to​ ​work with​ ​you​ ​to​ ​find​ ​a​ ​solution​ ​that​ ​meets​ ​the​ ​needs​ ​of​ ​long-time​ ​Central​ ​District​ ​residents.” Continue reading