Pikes/Pines | The secret goldfish pond below Stevens Elementary

It’s a peaceful, mostly quiet existence. And friends seem to drop enough granola bar bits from above to augment whatever goldfish chow exists naturally in the storm drain of a Capitol Hill elementary school.

It’s not exactly clear when or how they arrived, but two fish continue to make the Stevens Elementary campus near 19th and Galer their home. Continue reading

Bites of Bangkok, with Broadway bar connection, ‘coming soon’ to 15th Ave E

You can stop emailing CHS. Yes, we saw the sign, too. Somebody is getting ready to break the curse of the Bagel Deli. From what we know, the right people seem to be involved to get it done.

Just as CHS reported on the demise of the Mediterranean-flavored Olive Tree in the challenged 15th Ave E space formerly home to the deli, handmade signs went up announcing a new project — Bites of Bangkok, a “Thai Tapas” concept from Capitol Hill residents Jansri Parichat and Pranesh Sharma.

While the home for Bites might have faced a few struggles with its previous two tenants, what we know about the new restaurant might just set it up to rise above the off-the-street location on 15th Ave E. Sharma has been the highly respected bar manager that has helped Broadway’s Jai Thai punch above its weight class with a stronger than expected cocktail and comedy game. While he will be moving on from his Broadway post, hopefully Sharma gets to bring some spiked Thai ice tea and lychee martinis with him. Continue reading

Design review: ‘Upscale’ microhousing must play nice with neighbors on Harvard Ave E

Neighbor issues on Harvard Ave E

A project to replace what just might the simplest, saddest little two-unit apartment building on Capitol Hill with an eight-story, 71-unit development will take what should be its final bow in front of the East Design Review Board Wednesday night.

Design Review: 225 Harvard Ave E

Designed by Cone Architecture and developed by Highpoint Investments, the project in the 200 block of Harvard Ave E between E Olive Way and Thomas will rise an extra story with its plans for 66 “small efficiency dwelling units” and a set of five standard “efficiency units.” Continue reading

Water tower work joins busy time for construction in Volunteer Park

“If the red rectangle is closed to traffic, the yellow rectangle will be open and vice versa,” SPU says.

When you are a more than 100-year-old city park, you are going to need a little extra work.

Seattle Public Utilities announced it is getting ready to mount a four to six week construction project to upgrade drainage around the historic water tower inside the busy confines of Capitol Hill’s Volunteer Park.

SPU says work to repair crushed drain pipes and settlement around the base of the water tower will begin as early as November 4th: Continue reading

Gender Justice League announces founder Askini to step down

Askini at this year’s Trans Pride Seattle march

The Gender Justice League, a nonprofit with an important presence on Capitol Hill providing support and advocacy for transgender and gender diverse people, has announced executive director Danni Askini has stepped down from the organization she helped found:

Gender Justice League has been rapidly growing in size, budget, and influence. However, under our current model, we will not be able to sustain this rate of growth indefinitely. We are taking this opportunity to undergo a strategic restructuring of our organization.

Askini’s legal situation, meanwhile, is fraught. Continue reading

New indie fashion retailer Ritual plans to bring an edge — and conscience — to Pike/Pine

Two industry veterans are coming together to create a new fashion shopping experience on E Pike they hope moves beyond faceless, soulless big box retailers.

“We both became a little more disillusioned with faceless, fast profit, fashion companies,” William Rheinhardt tells CHS about Ritual, the new store he and business partner Sarah Randall Williams are creating in the 900 block of E Pike in the middle of the neighborhood’s nightlife and club scene.

After meeting in the trenches working on West Coast efforts for Swedish retailer H&M, Rheinhardt says he and Williams are breaking out after a combined 40 years in the industry to create their own fashion shop featuring clothing as well as household and lifestyle goods.

“We’ve been looking to partner with brands that have a social conscience,” Rheinhardt said. “We see that as the greatest need in fashion.” Continue reading

To boost the Seattle dream of an electric car in every affordable garage, public charging stations being added across city, including one on Capitol Hill

(Image: Seattle.gov)

Elon Musk wouldn’t be pleased with the delivery timeline but Capitol Hill is lined up to host one of the city’s 20 planned public electric car chargers hoped to, um, jumpstart the adoption of electric vehicles in Seattle and make the automobiles more accessible.

Seattle City Light is making plans to install 18 more of the DC Fast Chargers for electric vehicles at 10 to 15 curbside and off-street locations across the city one of which will be located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.

“We feel that as a public utility we have a responsibility to our ratepayers to invest in and implement solutions that support sustainability,” Jenny Levesque, community outreach manager for Seattle City Light, said at Monday’s Pike/Pine Urban Neighborhood Council meeting. Continue reading

What’s inside Seattle’s tentative deal with its police union

Mayor Jenny Durkan and city officials say the new proposed contract with its more than 1,300 Seattle Police personnel sets the department fully on a path of reform including:

  • Full implementation of body worn cameras by front line officers;
  • Management improvements in transfers and performance evaluations;
  • Improvements and clarity for the 180 timeline for investigations of police complaints;
  • Civilianization of OPA supervisor positions and a HR leadership role in SPD; 
  • Office of the Inspector General provided full and unfettered access to fulfill duties under the accountability; and 
  • The Guild will withdraw several pending Unfair Labor Practice claims.

The mayor sent the proposed six-year, 96-page contract (PDF) with Seattle Police Officers’ Guild to the Seattle City Council for approval Monday. CHS reported in September on the union’s approval of the deal that includes solid raises while also tying further reforms to the package. Continue reading

Captain of Capitol Hill rum bar set to commandeer Seattle ‘paddle club’ favorite Agua Verde

(Image: Agua Verde)

As the October Portage Bay kayak season stretches out with a sunnier than ever conclusion, a Capitol Hill restaurateur who brought the rum-y tropics to lower Pike/Pine is making plans for an investment in a longtime vacation-like Seattle food and drink favorite that calls the bay’s shore its home.

Travis Rosenthal who created Pike’s date-night classic Tango and neighboring rum bar Rumba is set to acquire Agua Verde, the “paddle club” Mexican restaurant just across Portage Bay from the backside of Capitol Hill. Continue reading

Why the Seattle Peoples Party held a King County Prosecutor candidates forum without any King County Prosecutor candidates

The Seattle Peoples Party said thousands tuned in for the live stream of the event Sunday night but it was a small crowd that came to see if the incumbent King County Prosecutor would show up for the group’s election forum.

Back when it was first planned, a forum on the Peoples Party home turf pitting challenger Daron Morris vs. Dan Satterberg would have made for a major challenge for the incumbent. But the reform-focused public defender Morris bowed out of the race in September citing medical reasons leaving Satterberg unopposed.

Sunday’s anticipated clash was not to be. Campaign spokesperson Kenneth Fockele told organizers and CHS that Satterberg would not be attending the Sunday night event at Langston Hughes: Continue reading