Broadway bikeway bollard braces

Never mind the bollards (Image: @checkereddan via Twitter)

(Image: @checkereddan via Twitter)

From the start, there were problems with the artful blue plastic bollards supposedly protecting riders in the Broadway bikeway.

Tagging was less of an issue than how easily the protective elements were moved despite being filled with hundreds of pounds of sand.

After one of the more concentrated failures of the bollards last week, SDOT is now working on a plan to secure the needle and thread inspired bollards with large metal bracings.

A picture of the new braces was shared on Twitter by city traffic engineer Dongho Chang:B-u1PAxUsAAKPSuWe’ve asked SDOT for information on when the new braces will be installed and what it will cost.

In the meantime, the new Seattle Bike Map is out. Check it out, below. Continue reading

All Pilgrims ready to grow $200K Same Love Garden on Broadway

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Next week, Broadway’s All Pilgrims will host a forum on anti-LGBTQ hate crime. It’s the kind of community role the venue often plays in the busy commercial core of Capitol Hill. The 1906-built house of worship is also ready to move forward with its new plan to create a different kind of community space — a Same Love Garden green space surrounding the Broadway at Republican church “that has been a leader in the recognition of the full acceptance of persons of gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender identities.”

“With increased residential density on Capitol Hill, and the coming of light rail and trolley service to our neighborhood, All Pilgrims wants this garden to be a reflection of the character of our neighborhood and a place of celebration that will serve our growing community,” All Pilgrims pastor Greg Turk said in the announcement of a new fundraising campaign to help pay for the project.

All Pilgrims is seeking to raise $100,000 from the community to match the $100,000 it is putting into the project with a name inspired by the Macklemore and Ryan Lewis song celebrating marriage equality. Part of the community campaign includes a $20,000 online giving goal — You can give here via Indiegogo:

We seek $100,000 from friends like you to match our own $100,000 investment to create a garden memorial to the success of the marriage equality movement and the hope it represents for positive social change. Continue reading

Man injured in assault in front of Broadway Dick’s

(Image: Tim Durkan)

(Image: Tim Durkan)

A dispute reportedly involving Broadway panhandlers in front of Dick’s Drive-In sent a man to the hospital after he was reportedly attacked with a baseball bat. UPDATE 2/25/2015: As of commenter Waste of Space so helpfully points out, video recorded by a witness shows the suspect punch the victim but not strike him with the bat-like object he is carrying.

Police and a Seattle Fire medic unit responded to Broadway — with a news helicopter not far behind — as a large crowd gathered at the scene of the assault.

The victim in the attack was placed in a neck brace before being transported to the hospital. It was believed he suffered additional injuries when his head hit the pavement after witnesses said he was struck by the bat in the altercation. His injuries were not believed to be life threatening, according to responders at the scene.

Police searched the area and Cal Anderson for a man described as Native American and wearing a black and white jacket who was seen leaving the area with the bat after the attack. There were no immediate arrests.

Capitol Hill food+drink | Euro Pub and bottle shop will bring ‘the best beers of Europe’ to Broadway

Witold Szczepaniak will put his 16 years of experience importing “the best beers of Europe” with a new pub and bottle shop project in the heart of Broadway that has seemingly popped open out of nowhere on Capitol Hill.

“I was hoping to keep it a little quiet, you know,” Szczepaniak told CHS as we talked to the importer earlier this week about his plans to open Euro Pub on Broadway sandwiched between Phoenix Comics and the Perfect Copy shop just down from Dick’s Drive-In.

“We’ll have European snacks,” Szczepaniak said, “But the beer is most important.” Continue reading

After 90 years at the Harvard Exit, Woman’s Century Club finds a new First Hill home

8446263966_1144f4da8f“Woman’s Century Club” may remain engraved on the Harvard Exit for years to come, but the women of 124-year-old organization have left the building.

On Friday, the Woman’s Century Club will hold its annual organizing meeting — the first in decades to be held without the group’s Harvard and E Roy home. The meeting will take place at The Dearborn House, the club’s new base on First Hill. The 1907-built Spring and Minor house serves as the full-time headquarters for Historic Seattle.

The Harvard Exit was originally built as the Women’s Century clubhouse in 1925 and was transformed into a movie theater in 1968. Through an agreement with theater owners, the club continued to meet monthly in the building’s lobby until last month, after developer Scott Shapiro bought the Exit to transform it into an office and restaurant project. The Exit’s last film showed on January 8th.

Given that the modern-day club only used the space a few hours a month, club president Mimi Sheridan is confident the roughly 40-member organization will continue to press on.

“We were tied to it emotionally and it was important part of our history, but we can live on without it,” she said.

In addition to holding monthly events that feature a variety of speakers, the club also sponsors a scholarship program and charity events. During Friday’s annual meeting, Sheridan said the group will discuss plans for the upcoming year, including new programming and the future of the club without the Exit. That future won’t include the Steinway piano that stood for years in the Exit lobby, which the group is now selling.

Shapiro previously told  CHS a restaurant or cafe will likely take over the building’s 1,500 square-foot lobby, while he envisioned a bar moving into the 2,200 square-foot basement. The rest of the building will become “creative offices,” including the two 5,000 square-foot theater spaces and two upper floors of existing offices.

Once a restaurant opens, Sheridan said club members hope to make it their unofficial hangout.

Neon Taco: Nacho Borracho’s new partnership takes Broadway bar food to new level

(Image: Alex Garland for CHS)

Neon Taco icon Monica Dimas (Image: Alex Garland for CHS)

By Emily Muirhead – UW News Lab/Special for CHS

Past sugar skulls on Broadway, hanging red pepper lights and under a glowing yellow sign sits the aptly named Neon Taco.

“The idea is we’re doing Mexican street food while having a symbiotic restaurant-bar relationship,” chef and owner Monica Dimas tells CHS. “It has the best drinks with really great food to go along with it.”

This new Mexican kitchen is located at the back of Capitol Hill’s Nacho Borracho bar, which after a year of success with late night crowds has upgraded with the new in-house taqueria.

This culinary collaboration started this month just in time for Nacho’s one-year anniversary. The food is accessible to patrons through a small kitchen window where one can order and pay for food, while running a separate bar tab. It’s a model that worked for Nacho’s sister down on E Olive Way where Montana features the ridiculously delicious Kedai Makan walk-up as its related but independent drunk food (and sober eater) provider.

Dimas, 30, previously focused her cooking on pop-up gigs around the Seattle area, including making Mexican hangover soups for Nacho Borracho’s Saturday brunches. Although the bar and kitchen share a roof and patrons, they are independently run. Dimas aims to enhance traditional Mexican food with contemporary twists, surpass standards of subpar bar food, and complement the mostly Mexican-themed drinks served on tap just a few feet away. Continue reading

Revival fashions vintage opportunity from tiny store above Broadway

Busacca (Images: CHS)

Busacca (Images: CHS)

DSC_8756As Red Light Vintage prepares for one last liquidation sale on Broadway before leaving its space and making way for Lifelong Thrift, another source of recycled fashion and style is settling into Capitol Hill. Nestled atop Jai Thai on the western corner of Thomas and Broadway is Revival, a “one-stop-shop” boutique offering to buy, sell, and trade an array of items such as clothes, furniture, home accessories, and and jewelry.

Though the shop has been on the block for around half a year already, it still is somewhat of a “secret spot,” due to its above-street-level location, according to co-owner and San Francisco transplant Ashley Busacca.

“People are like ‘I live across the street and I had no idea you were here, when did you open?’ I’m like ‘six months ago!’” Continue reading

Last of the Capitol Hill phone muggings? Man charged for Broadway robbery as ‘kill switch’ tech reportedly making dent in London, SF, NYC

We’ve gotten used to street robberies around Broadway and Pine but there was something notable about this early morning Saturday, January 10th phone mugging near the intersection: somebody got caught. It might be even more noteworthy in coming months. Reuters is reporting that phone theft stats in three major cities — London, New York, and San Francisco — have plummeted with the rise of anti-theft “kill switches.”

From the report:

The number of stolen iPhones dropped by 40 percent in San Francisco and 25 percent in New York in the 12 months after Apple Inc added a kill switch to its devices in September 2013. In London, smartphone theft dropped by half, according to an announcement by officials in the three cities.

That didn’t matter, police say, to 28-year-old Subeyr Qasim. The Central District resident is charged with second degree robbery in the January 10th, 3 AM attack in which the victim says he was hit in the face multiple times until he lost consciousness on the street near Broadway and Pine. “Just take my phone. I don’t have anything else,” the victim pleaded, according to a witness.

Police say Qasim grabbed the victim’s $500 phone and tried to walk away and blend into the scene around Neighbours. The victim and witnesses identified Qasim as the suspect to police and he was taken into custody though the phone was not recovered. He is also being charged for allegedly dealing crack cocaine in Belltown after a May, 2014 arrest.

Qasim is currently out of jail on a conditional release.

Attention Pike/Pine lovers: Castle announces its plans for E Pike move

B9mHCAnIcAAatYJThe Arizona-based “megastore” chain known for mass-merchandising lube and nipple clamps still hasn’t confirmed our report but the sign doesn’t lie. Broadway’s Castle sex store is leaving Capitol Hill’s main drag for a new berth on E Pike in a former tattoo shop.

Sandwiched between the Wildrose and Bimbos, the buildout is in the early stages of the new 2,000 square-foot store. In November, the new Out of the Closet thrift store and the new home AHF Pharmacy joined Lifelong in a new retail, health, and office facility across the street from where Castle is readying its new home. Around the corner, longtime Pike/Pine purveyor of kink The Crypt still lurks. Down E Pike, Babeland celebrated its 20th anniversary on the Hill in 2013. Meanwhile, Doghouse Leathers is expanding on upper E Pike.

Castle joins a thriving and sometimes tumultuous Pike/Pine nightlife economy still coming to grips with the Woo! Girl and what feels like an influx of not always sensitive new visitors.

CHS reported on the planned move in December after the retailer’s management had toyed with an on again, off again move from its longtime Broadway home citing public safety issues on Broadway and the poor maintenance of Castle’s building.

Broadway, meanwhile, will need to deal with another gaping retail hole after the OfficeMax chain confirmed it is closing its Capitol Hill location after only one year of business.

Blotter | Broadway and Harvard ave street robberies investigated — Meanwhile, Pike/Pine robbery case ‘cracked’

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

  • Broadway robbery: An early Tuesday morning street robbery in the 400 block of Broadway E is not being investigated as a hate crime despite the suspect’s reported anti-gay statements. According to the report on the 2 AM incident, the victim told police he was robbed and called “faggot” but did not believe he was targeted in the attack because of hist sexual orientation:Screen-Shot-2015-02-05-at-1.27.47-PM-600x209 Continue reading

What the 16-story Broadway Whole Foods development will look like

(Image: Tiscareno Associates)

(Image by Tiscareno Associates)

(Image by Tiscareno Associates)

(Image by Tiscareno Associates)

Probably.

Though its first round in the Seattle design review process isn’t slated until March, city planners are getting their first looks at the plans for the new Whole Foods grocery store and 16-story apartment tower planned for the intersection of First Hill and Capitol Hill at Broadway and Madison.

Developer Columbia Pacific Advisors and the architects of Tiscareno Associates are preparing plans for a 160-foot-tall, 288-unit apartment building featuring a two-level 40,000 square-foot street-level “urban grocery,” and five stories of underground parking for 374 motor vehicles and 98 bikes.

“The four sides of the project site face different neighborhoods. The design responds to these different areas with one unified concept. forms and materials wrap the corners to create continuity,” a draft of the “early design guidance” document for the project reads. Continue reading

The Pike/Pine bucket drummer honor code

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 2.08.31 PMSPD has its own problems to solve right now. And while there are bigger questions about our neighborhood identities, and smaller but important questions about those identities, too, CHS has another riddle of living in the big city to solve: At what hour should the bucket drummers of Pike/Pine cease operations?

Here’s an email we received from a reader:

I live on the corner of E Pine and Broadway.  Bucket drummers have been playing at all hours and the SPD have done nothing about it. This has been going on since the summer.  I figured that when the weather turned cold it would cease but that has not been the case.   It is my impression that during the day this may be legal but that noise ordinances kick in at 11pm.  Last night they started at 10:30pm and ended a little after 4am.  This has become the norm.  Sometimes they start around 1am or so.  Myself and other tenants have called the police many times (including last night) and nothing is ever done.  I have asked officers about how this gels with noise ordinances and have not once been given a straight answer.  Can you assist? Can you throw this problem out there so more people who are affected by it can chime in?

Continue reading

Capitol Hill Pride Festival to add rally, Broadway parade in 2015

Capitol Hill Pride Festival 2014 including plenty of sunny people watching on Broadway (Images: CHS)

Capitol Hill Pride Festival 2014 including plenty of sunny people watching on Broadway (Images: CHS)

Slowly but surely, Charlotte LeFevre is bringing Pride back to Capitol Hill.

Growing steadily from its grassroots start in 2009, plans for this summer’s Capitol Hill Pride Festival announced this week detail an event that continues to expand in scope and purpose. This time, the longtime curator of north Broadway’s long-gone Museum of Mysteries is bringing a Pride parade back to Capitol Hill:

10-11am Capitol Hill Pride Festival March Seattle Central Campus to Main Stage on Harrison St. “Never Forget” 1969 Stonewall with speakers and history. The Capitol Hill Pride Festival March will be an all ages, all orientations, all gender/transgender civic march with no fees open to the public. The march has no fees as the Directors of the festival feel an individual should not have to pay a fee to march, demonstrate or show civic and community pride.

“Seattle has not had an all gender inclusive LGBT march for many years since the Parade started charging fees thereby shutting out individuals and low budget organizations. Marchers are encouraged to bring hand written signs,” the announcement of the 2015 event notes.

Organizers say SPD estimated 25,000 people attended the Broadway festival in 2014.

The 2014 Seattle Dyke March -- More pictures here (Images: CHS)

The 2014 Seattle Dyke March — More pictures here (Images: CHS)

Continue reading

After 15 years, Metro Clothing is closing but won’t leave another hole in Broadway retail

Changing neighborhood dynamics and shifting fashion styles have conspired to end Metro Clothing’s 15-year run of selling alternative and goth clothes on Capitol Hill.

Last week, owner Angel Theurer began putting up signs announcing a liquidation sale in order to bring on new line of spring clothing. But Theurer and Metro founder Carl Medeiros have now decided to close Metro and start fresh with a new clothing store in the same space.

“A lot more New York influenced, edgy but not gothic, and definitely low price points,” is how Medieros described the new direction he wants to take. Medieros said the new offerings will be a higher-end complement to Panache, his clothing shop next door. Continue reading

First Hill Streetcar delays are prompting SDOT director to visit Czech manufacturer

The most useless Seattle transit tracking app ever -- Vesselfinder.com shows the Maltese vehicle carrier Tiger underway to the States with one of Seattle's streetcars aboard -- Check out the latest position at vesselfinder.com

The most useless Seattle transit tracking app ever — Vesselfinder.com shows the Maltese vehicle carrier MV Tiger underway to the States with one of Seattle’s streetcars aboard — Check out the latest position at vesselfinder.com

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 7.19.09 PM

SDOT director Scott Kubly (far right) meets with the City Council transportation committee.

City Council member Tom Rasmussen is not happy about delays with the First Hill Streetcar. While his office never responded to CHS as we broke the news last week that streetcar service won’t be started as late as the end of July, Rasmussen did have a lot of questions for the director of the Seattle Department of Transportation during a Tuesday council meeting.

When pressed about why the manufacturer Inkekon had still not shipped three streetcars from the Czech Republic, SDOT’s Scott Kubly said the delay was more about poor timeline setting. Inekon had to redesign several key components from their stock streetcar model and Kubly said the city had not anticipated the extra manufacturing time.

However, Kubly’s heavy handed response to the delay suggests he and SDOT are taking an even more serious response to the issues.

Kubly said he began holding daily phone calls with the CEO of Inekon last month and that he is planning a trip to the Czech Republic in February to inspect production and press the importance of delivering the cars as soon as possible.

“This is frustrating,” Rasmussen said during the meeting. “How do you know they’re just not putting you off and not making excuses, and if they really buckled down they could get this thing done sooner?” Continue reading