The wall is finally coming down pic.twitter.com/7GdUlKZWoh
— matt (@mmitgang) May 4, 2021
With May Day passed and a large security fence now erected around the building, city crews worked at removing the East Precinct’s cement block wall Tuesday after nine months of the barricade at 12th and Pine.
CHS reported here on SPD’s announcement last month that it was beginning the process of taking down the protective cement wall added around the 12th and Pine building in the wake of CHOP.
Work was underway Friday on a new, tall, black fence rising outside the Capitol Hill precinct that SPD says is “temporary.” A department spokesperson said that full removal of the security installations would depend on “whether the building again becomes a target for arson and property damage.”
CHS reported here in August as the Seattle Department of Transportation installed concrete “eco-blocks” and a wire fence along Pine and 12th Ave, blocking sidewalks and crosswalks and obstructing bike lanes.
In addition to antagonizing activists, the wall was an eyesore and many complained about blocked sidewalks and safety issues related to the structure. Central Seattle Greenways documented the wall’s dangers for pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers here.
The Seattle Police Department said the barrier was necessary amid ongoing protest and arson threats after reclaiming the building following the CHOP sweep.
It’s not clear how significant those threats were — and remain. In the most high profile arson attack on the building, a 19-year-old was hit with federal charges for a fire started outside the building in August. That week, the barrier went up around the precinct. Later incidents were more like this October attack in which a handful of protesters were arrested after dumping trash over the barrier wall. Others have been taken into custody for what SPD has said was graffiti with paint and chalk on the wall.
Saturday’s May Day marches and demonstrations were followed by clashes between police and black bloc protesters on Capitol Hill though most arrests took place away from the precinct.
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