Serious crashes on major arterials in Capitol Hill, Central District and First Hill area up from 2018, long road to Vision Zero, SDOT data shows

In April, a car seriously injured a bicyclist at the intersection of 24th Ave E and E Madison. A few months later, a driver was severely hurt in a crash just a couple of hundred feet up the street, on the intersection of 23rd Ave E and E John St.

The locations of these two crashes don’t just point to the places where lives were wrecked. They also offer a first glimpse into the traffic pain points on Capitol Hill, which have clustered on and near Madison in the first six months of 2019, data from the Seattle Department of Transportation show. The Seattle Times first reported on the data.

The two crashes are among the 98 serious or fatal collisions that happened in the first half of 2019. Ten people were killed in traffic. 88 were seriously injured, of which six on Capitol Hill, four on First Hill and eight in the Central District (including a sliver south of I-90). The dataset showed no fatalities in these neighborhoods in the first half of this year.

One important caveat, per SDOT: The data the department provided are preliminary. Usually, there’s a “pretty rigorous auditing process” in which SDOT works with officials from the Seattle Police Department, Washington State Department of Transportation, Washington State Patrol and hospitals to review and filter out discrepancies for a report that comes out at year-end, SDOT said.

Still, the data provides a glimpse into Seattle’s long road to Vision Zero, its plan to end traffic deaths and serious injuries on city streets by 2030, and problem zones for Capitol Hill, the Central District and First Hill, particularly on or near arterials.

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23rd Ave Vision Zero work not complete but street getting back to *new* normal in the Central District

(Image: SDOT)

After more than a year of construction as part of the overhaul of 23rd Ave from Montlake to the Central District, the southern end of the route is back open to vehicular traffic and the long project is moving into its final phases.

The Seattle Department of Transportation announced that 23rd Ave south of Jackson has been re-opened to two-way motor vehicle traffic though construction is still being wrapped up.

The so-called Phase 2 of the 23rd Ave Vision Zero plan began last spring to continue the effort of slimming down the corridor and adding sidewalk improvements including new paving, crosswalks, and upgraded pedestrian crossing signals, new landscaping and trees, and transit improvements including real-time arrival information and bus pullouts between Jackson and S Hill. Continue reading

Police announce arrest in 23rd and Cherry gas station shooting — UPDATE: Guns seized

Seattle Police say they have arrested a 25-year-old Renton man for his part in a shooting at a Central District gas station earlier this month that left a woman wounded after she was apparently caught in the crossfire.

CHS is not naming the man because he has not been charged but records show he was arrested and ultimately convicted in connection with this 2011 incident in which South Seattle gang members opened fire during a vigil for a 19-year-old who had been shot and killed. Continue reading

Move All Seattle Sustainably calls for more to be done more quickly to move buses around the city… more quickly

The Move All Seattle Sustainably coalition, the raft of community groups that came together last fall to push Mayor Jenny Durkan’s administration to act more quickly on transforming the city’s transportation infrastructure, are calling for support Tuesday as a Seattle City Council committee hears updates on levy spending and RapidRide implementation.

“We think the City needs to be more ambitious about prioritizing public transit on our roads,” MASS writes. “Buses carrying scores of riders shouldn’t get stuck behind a sea of single-occupancy vehicles!”

The $930 million “levy to move Seattle” had a lot going for it in improving transit across the city and in District 3 but some of the realities of the plan have fallen short of hopes. One example is the coming set of protected bike lanes on E Union where city planners are considering a setup that would include forcing bicyclists to ride on the sidewalk at key intersections. Continue reading

Black church puts $4.5M plan to exit 23rd and Union into motion

The exodus of a Black church from its Central District home is moving forward. The Mount Calvary Christian Center has put its third of an acre property home to its house of worship at 23rd and Union on the market for $4.5 million.

“Rare opportunity for land in the Central District commercial corridor. Zoned NC2P-75, this site allows for mixed use opportunities not easily found in this high demand neighborhood with vast amounts of pedestrian access,” the description from the Bascomb Real Estate Group listing reads. “Subject consists of two parcels and provides an opportunity for a full range of expansive projects with the value in the land; bring your investors, architects & builders, and take advantage of having a presence in the heart of the city. Buyer to verify land use requirements.” Continue reading

Dozens of shots but no reported injuries in shootout near 23rd and Jackson

There were no reported injuries as bursts of gunfire rattled the area around 23rd and Jackson and put nearby schools in lockdown Wednesday afternoon.

Seattle Police rushed to the reported shooting scene near 23rd and Main just after 2 PM after a report of dozens of gunshots. According to East Precinct radio dispatches, police were searching for two to three suspects reportedly armed with handguns seen by witnesses as the melee broke out. Some witnesses reported that the shooters appeared to be juveniles and at least one possible suspect was reportedly riding a bicycle as he fled the scene. Police were also looking for vehicles possibly involved in the shootout. Continue reading

No injuries reported in 23rd Ave shootout

A shootout involving multiple vehicles brought a large police response to 23rd Ave early Sunday but there were fortunately no reported serious injuries.

Police were called to the AMPM at 23rd and Cherry just after 4 AM to a report that a man had been shot in the leg in a nearby gun battle. Arriving officers found the silver Cadillac at the service station had been shot up but that the reported victim was not hit.

According to East Precinct radio dispatches, the shootout involving the victim vehicle, a back SUV, a possible third car, and a possible person on foot started around 23rd and Jackson with multiple shots and the sound of speeding vehicles reported.

Police were searching the area for vehicles involved in the incident but there were no immediate arrests.

Investigators say fire that damaged Central District barber shop was arson

Saturday’s early morning fire that scorched a Central District barber shop was intentionally set and Seattle Police are searching for the arson suspect.

Seattle Fire said its investigators determined the fire that damaged the Update Barber Shop in the 700 block of 23rd Ave E was set on the outside of the commercial building with flames spreading and doing some $200,000 in damage. Continue reading

Fire scorches barber shop at 23rd and Cherry

A commercial building at 23rd and Cherry burned overnight leaving a barber shop damaged but the neighboring longtime Central District florist mostly untouched.

Seattle Fire crews were called to the intersection’s northwest corner just before 4 AM and arrived to find the building in flames. Crews battled the blaze and were able to knock it down before the fire spread through the building and damaged the florist shop.

Flowers Just 4 U moved to the corner last year after leaving its longtime home at 23rd and Jackson to make way for new development.

Update Barber Shop appeared to have been badly damaged in the fire.

The intersection of 23rd and Cherry was closed to traffic during the response and remained closed into the morning due to electricity being shut off around the fire. SPD was on hand to allow Metro bus traffic to continue through.

Seattle Fire says the fire is under investigation. There were no reported injuries.

‘Rare central Seattle find’ — With $2.8M listing to sell some of its land, church neighboring Uncle Ike’s begins longterm plan for new home

Mount Calvary is selling land across the street on 23rd Ave for $2.8 million that will be the start of its plans to find a new home away from 23rd and Union

A $2.8 million real estate listing is a harbinger of things to come at 23rd and Union. The Mount Calvary Christian Center, which unsuccessfully battled the neighboring Uncle Ike’s pot shop in court, is beginning the process of finding a new home closer to the areas where most of its congregation now lives.

“We’re still very much a part of the community,” Nicole Bascomb of Bascomb Real Estate Group and a member of Mount Calvary tells CHS, “and we’re going to be there for a while.”

But change has begun. Bascomb, daughter of longtime Central District real estate agent Paul Bascomb, has listed her church’s Joshua Generation Teen Center property on the west side of 23rd Ave across from Mount Calvary for $2,824,250. Continue reading