Pratt Fine Arts Center plans expansion in mixed-use development

(Image: Pratt Fine Arts)

(Image: Pratt Fine Arts)

Pratt Fine Arts Center’s plans to expand are moving forward with designs in progress and money in the bank to anchor a six-story, mixed-use development on the block it calls home at 20th and Jackson.

“In order to achieve Pratt’s long term vision, we have worked tirelessly to find the best way to accommodate Pratt’s growing need for additional facilities to better serve art students and independent artists,” Steve Galatro, Pratt executive director said. “This multifaceted development will expand our capacity, unlock new potential, strengthen the connections to our neighborhood, and ensure that creativity thrives in a dynamic urban campus for many years to come.” Continue reading

Police chase down Grand Am after reported Central District drive-by

Two people were taken into custody after a swift and heavy response from Seattle Police to a reported drive-by shooting Monday morning near 25th and Jackson.

Police were called to the area just after 11 AM to a report that two people had been shot at by a passing vehicle near 25th and Jackson. With no reported injuries at the scene, police began searching for the gold Pontiac Grand Am reported to have been involved in the shooting.

The car was spotted by police headed north on Rainier and was chased to MLK before the Grand Am was eventually ditched near 31st and Bayview and at least three occupants fled on foot.

According to police radio dispatches, officers were able to quickly surround the area and begin searching backyards on the block where the car was ditched. Around 11:20 AM, an officer reported he had one person held at gunpoint. Officers soon reported two people were taken into custody. A K9 unit and the Sheriff’s Guardian One helicopter were also searching the area for a possible third person who may have been in the vehicle but that female suspect was not found. Police said two people were detained after the incident.

The incident comes amid increased concerns from community members and businesses about Central District gunfire incidents.

UPDATE: SPD has posted a brief on the incident:

Officers chased down two suspects Monday following a drive-by shooting in the Central District. Around 11:15 AM, police received reports that someone in a gold Pontiac had fired at two men walking on the street near 25th Avenue and Jackson Street. Officers spotted the suspects’ vehicle and followed it to 23rd Avenue and South College Street, where two suspects ditched their car and took off on foot. Police caught up to the men and took them into custody. No one was injured in the incident. Officers attempted to contact the victims following the incident, but they declined to provide statements to police. The SPD Gang Unit is investigating and asks that anyone with information call (206) 684-4585.

 

Sorry, Andrew Jackson, Seattle should rename its street named after you

In 1986, Ron Sims, the first black person to be a member of the King County Council, introduced a motion to repair his county’s recognition of history by changing its namesake from an obscure, pre-Civil War United States vice president and slaveholder to civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. The motion passed, barely, 5-4. With history’s twists as knotted as ever this Presidents’ Day 2017, CHS wonders if another namesake change is in order.

Today, Jackson Street runs from the Central District to the International District and honors the nation’s seventh president, Andrew Jackson:

King Street was named by David Maynard in his 1853 Plat of the Town of Seattle, one of the first three plats laying out the street grid. (The other two plats, north of Maynard’s, were filed by Carson Boren and Arthur Denny). Maynard, a staunch Democrat, named many of the streets in his plat for Democratic leaders, including Andrew Jackson, John B. Weller (Governor of California), and Joseph Lane (Oregon Territory’s Congressional delegate).

As was William Rufus Devane King, Jackson was also a slaveholder. Beyond his battlefield prowess, he is remembered for The Indian Removal Act. His populism and, apparently, temper have also become a historical model for the Trump administration. Continue reading

Med Mix preparing for Central District return

An excited reader sent in this picture of the good news on Jackson


A view from inside the old space at 23/Union. A new view on S. Jackson coming soon (Image: CHS)

A view from inside the old space at 23/Union. A new view on S. Jackson coming soon (Image: CHS)

Med Mix is finally ready to return to the Central District.

Owner Otmane Bezzaz confirmed with CHS Monday afternoon his new restaurant is under construction on S Jackson and says he is happy to be returning to the neighborhood after a 2013 arson fire destroyed his first Central District location at 23rd and Union.

“It’s been a three-year nightmare,” Bezzaz told CHS of the long, painful process of losing the 23rd and Union restaurant after just over a year of business at the corner. Continue reading

Beery good news: Central District’s Standard Brewing announces plans to expand on Jackson

(Image: CHS)

The Standard Brewing crew (Image: CHS)

In March, we stopped by to celebrate two years of the tiny Central District nano brewery:

It’s been 24 months since quietly opening the door at 25th and Jackson St with 8 taps and about 80 square feet of service area. Since then, we’ve expanded to 13 taps, doubled the space for folks to sit and drink, won a few awards, brewed over 60 different recipes, and shared a lot of good times with the neighborhood.

This week, the brew crew at Standard Brewing announced plans for an expansion that will septuple their beer output and add a bar space for enjoying the creations along with food and cocktails. Co-owner Justin Gerardy said the most important aspect as they planned the expansion was remaining in the Central District. “In our case, space is the constraint, but so are our ideals,” the Standard announcement reads. “Not wanting to leave the neighborhood leaves our options slim, but the choice to keep the brewery relatively small also affords us diversity and an experimental attitude.”

Gerardy said the expansion will play out over the summer with a project to overhaul the brewing facility coming first followed by Standard’s expansion into the neighboring Halal Mart to create space for the bar and kitchen.

Meanwhile, another Central Seattle beer project is moving forward at a deliberate pace on E Union at Broadway. This for the work underway at the under construction Optimism Brewing might be our favorite DPD permit in months:

Description of Work: INSTALL STEAM PIPING FROM BOILER TO: HOT LIQUOR TANK, MASH KETTLE, BREW KETTLE – MAIN FLOOR

CHS last checked in here on the Optimism project and its food truck courtyard as we said hello to 12th Ave’s Outer Planet Brewing.

The full Standard Brewing announcement — along with some behind the scenes notes on other locations Standard considered for a move including the former home of Catfish Corner — is below. Continue reading

CHS Pics | Second annual Jackson Street Jazz Walk

Alex Dugdale at Casa Latina (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Alex Dugdale at Casa Latina (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

For such an out-of-the-way place, Seattle has had a remarkable jazz history. The action began as early as 1918, when Lillian Smith’s jazz band played at Washington Hall. It kept going strong all through Prohibition, as an authentic black jazz scene developed around the hub of Jackson Street and Twelfth Avenue. Even Jelly Roll Morton stopped off to play in the district, in 1920; he later wrote a rag, “Seattle Hunch,” to commemorate his visit. — Jackson Street After Hours: The Roots of Jazz in Seattle by Paul de Barros

Outside Pratt Fine Arts Center

Outside Pratt Fine Arts Center

Saturday, the second annual Jackson Street Jazz Walk honored the street’s legacy and filled spaces up and down this edge of the Central District with music and performance.

Organized by the Jackson Commons community group, the free event is still fighting for attention at the citywide (CHS told you about it here) level but neighbors got excellent seats for acts like Industrial Revelation, Tubaluba, Congress, Syrinx Effect, Cornish Jazz, and Gail Pettis performing in a mix of community venues including Casa Latina, Wonder Cafe, Cheeky Cafe, and the Pratt Fine Arts Center.

You can learn more about this year’s performers and how to get involved in the event at jazzwalk.org.

CHS Pics | Standard Brewing celebrates two years of award-winning beer at 25th and Jackson

Justin Gerardy, center holding the mash paddle, with Darren Archer, left, and  Dustin Scott, right (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Justin Gerardy, center holding the mash paddle, with Darren Archer, left, and Dustin Scott, right (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Coffee isn’t the only manufacturing industry left in Central Seattle. We also make fantastic beer. The Central District’s Standard Brewing celebrated its second anniversary at 25th and Jackson last Friday. Sorry, but its batch of 2nd Anniversary Ale is long gone.

In 2013, we talked with founder and CD resident Justin Gerardy as he made the big leap from homebrew to pro in a small-batch brewery. It’s been a busy time since:

It’s been 24 months since quietly opening the door at 25th and Jackson St with 8 taps and about 80 square feet of service area. Since then, we’ve expanded to 13 taps, doubled the space for folks to sit and drink, won a few awards, brewed over 60 different recipes, and shared a lot of good times with the neighborhood.

It’s an orbit newly opened 12th Ave brewery Outer Planet and coming soon E Union project Optimism Brewing would be happy to achieve. Hopefully, Anheuser-Busch InBev doesn’t notice.

In the meantime, watch for Standard beer night dinners at Capitol Hill’s Cafe Barjot.

Standard Brewing is located at 2504 S Jackson. Learn more at standardbrew.com.

 

Capitol Hill Housing reaches agreement for 50 years of affordability in Squire Park Place deal

(Image: CHH)

(Image: CHH)

Capitol Hill Housing announced it has agreed with a Central District community organization to keep the rules governing affordable apartments in Squire Park Place for another 50 years in the building it acquired late last year.

CHS reported on non-profit developer Capitol Hill Housing’s plan to acquire the 18th and Jackson property last summer. Though the deal closed in December for $11.25 million, the, Capitol Hill Housing announced Wednesday it had reached an accord on a 50-year agreement “following several months of conversations” with the Central Area Development Association about “continuing the organization’s commitment to equitable development in the Central District.”

“Half of the apartments at Squire Park Plaza are reserved for working individuals and families earning between 50 and 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for King County,” the announcement on the agreement reads. “CHH will extend this affordability for a minimum of 50 years.” Continue reading

Lake Chad Cafe ready to prosper at 17th and Jackson

Africa’s Lake Chad feeds 30 million in the four countries it borders. Felix Ngoussou, owner of the Lake Chad Café on Jackson and 17th, hopes to feed his neighbors, too.

As the lake shrinks due to climate change. Ngoussou said he also wants to remind Seattle of the social implications environmental change can cause. He also wants his new cafe to play a connective role in the Jackson-area community.

“My coffee shop has another objective,” Ngoussou said, “I want to open a community place where all these small businesses around can come and meet… Now everyone is coming here.”

Continue reading