USPS to hold meeting on East Union post office ‘relocation’

Long gone — but maybe coming back? (Image: CHS)

After telling customers their best bet was to head to Capitol Hill for mail services, the United States Postal Service is now talking relocation when it comes to a post office near 23rd and Union.

USPS officials have scheduled a May 2nd public meeting to talk about a new Central District location. USPS real estate specialist Greg Shelton will be in attendance to discuss options.

The session appears to represent big change from the beginning of the year as the post office made way for coming redevelopment at Midtown Center. “We will return once the re-development has concluded,” a spokesperson told CHS at the time. “In the meantime, we are suggesting that our customers go to the Broadway Post Office for their mailing needs.”

It isn’t clear if that timeline has changed but District 3 representative Kshama Sawant, with the 2019 race for her City Council seat heating up, is calling on supporters to join her at the May 2nd meeting. 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.

An ‘unheard of concession’ in the Central District at The Chateau apartments

A resident at The Chateau and the building’s long-broken lift
(Image: CHS)

District 3 representative Kshama Sawant was back outside The Chateau apartments Wednesday to announce victories for the building’s tenants and what she says is a tenants movement in Seattle inspired by the work of her City Council office and her Socialist Alternative political group.

Sawant’s Wednesday rally also included an unusual finale — a four-member team from the Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections there to follow-up on a massive roster of repairs identified in what has become a staircase by staircase, frayed wire by frayed wire, and missing and or defective smoke detector by missing and or defective smoke detector battle pitting the city councilor against developer Cadence Real Estate.

Calling the 19th Ave building and the Central District the “core of Seattle” and the “epicenter of the crisis of economic evictions,” Sawant announced that her efforts to shed light on Cadence’s acquisition and planned redevelopment of the Section 8 building had “forced” the developer to meet with residents and make several concessions including allowing the Section 8 tenants to remain in their units in coming years until the building is eventually demolished to make way for a new microhousing project with 73 “small efficiency dwelling units.”

Sawant also announced what she said was an “unheard of concession” — $5,000 from Cadence to every household living in the building on top of legally required relocation assistance. The small group of tenants and representatives from groups like Be:Seattle that have also been working with the building’s interested residents gathered with Sawant cheered at the notion of the $5,000 checks. Sawant said the agreement with Cadence, as of Wednesday, still needed to be written down. Continue reading

LoJack: Why police and the Sheriff’s helicopter were searching for a parked Lexus in the Central District Saturday night

Saturday night, Seattle Police were searching through the streets just south of E Madison as the King County Sheriff’s helicopter roared above. The search went on for 30 minutes as officers combed the area, street by street. They must have been looking for somebody — or something — very important.

They were. They got a LoJack hit.

“We want to find stolen cars,” an SPD spokesperson tells CHS.

Details of how exactly the system works are a bit of a secret — “We don’t want people working around it,” the SPD representative says — but here are the basics. Continue reading

Seattle’s increasingly modest plans for new bike projects include seven across Capitol Hill, CD — UPDATE

This page from the council presentation on the bike plan implementation update oddly includes an image of a Capitol Hill rider on perhaps the most un-pedal friendly in the neighborhood.

Seattle is criss-crossed by 1,547 lane-miles of arterial streets and 2,407 miles of non-arteries. In recent years, the city has added new bike infrastructure to only about 10 miles of those streets per year.

Tuesday afternoon, the Seattle City Council will begin the latest process to shake out the next five years of Seattle bike infrastructure investments. Following the relatively paltry output of the last couple years, the proposed plan includes projects that will likely add up to even less than 10 miles per year. But there are still some new improvements on the list for Capitol Hill, the Central District, and the nearby. Continue reading

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.

Ethnic studies leader Hagopian says losing teaching position at Garfield High

Jesse Hagopian, the Garfield High teacher who has led the way in creating an ethnic studies program across the Seattle Public Schools district, is losing his teaching position for next year’s 2019-2020 school year due to budget cuts based on expected lower enrollment at the Central District school.

“I have been displaced from my second home, Garfield High School—the school I went to as a (student) and have taught at for almost a decade,” Hagopian writes in an update posted over the weekend.” With budget cuts and under enrollment—due largely to families being pushed out of Seattle because they can no longer afford to live here—some 13 teachers are being displaced from my school.” Continue reading

‘Replanting’ — Liberty Bank Building’s opening hoped to be new start in the Central District

More than 100 new affordable homes — and the start of what many hope will be a wave of equitable development across the Central District — are now full of life in the Liberty Bank Building. The development led by nonprofit developer Capitol Hill Housing and community development group Africatown celebrated with a ribbon cutting, party, and tours Saturday at 24th and Union.

“This neighborhood and this street means so much to me,” building contractor, neighborhood activist, and, now, Liberty Bank Building resident Ted Evans said. “It’s just surreal to be able to live here and raise my son and be part of this redevelopment and being part of this creation that we’re starting, you know, to bring it back home. This is where I started — I was born here.”

“There is power here,” Evans said. Continue reading

‘Emmett’ — Family remembers man found dead in 14th/Yesler apartment fire

The young man who died in early Monday morning’s two-alarm fire inside a 14th at Yesler apartment unit has been identified by family as 23-year-old Emerson “Emmett” Davis.

“To whom have met him, know him and loved him, it’s a devastating loss in the world,” his family wrote about the young man. “Our angel left too soon! His passion for life, friendships and living through experiences was contagious. He’s laugh and smile….well you know what it brought to a room of friends and family.”

The family is raising money to help take care of expenses. You can learn more and give here. Continue reading