Nature is healing: Seattle bumps up parking rates but Capitol Hill still far from $4.50/hour pre-pandemic levels

(Image: Ryan Packer)

By Ryan Packer

Capitol Hill’s on-street parking rates are going to stay pretty affordable, at least for the foreseeable future.

Last week, the latest adjustment to citywide metered parking rates took effect, as the Seattle Department of Transportation says it is trying to match demand as vaccination rates increase and businesses welcome more customers. But unlike other cities that have reinstated their old, pre-COVID parking meter rates, Seattle is keeping a base rate of 50 cents per hour and adjusting that based on demand. As a result, parking a car in Pike/Pine will actually be cheaper than it was when SDOT adjusted rates back in February.

Will you be paying early 2020 rates to park a car in any on-street spaces on the Hill anytime soon? Not likely. Pre-pandemic rates hit as high as $4.50 per hour during evening hours in the heart of Capitol Hill. Meanwhile, rates in First Hill are inching just a bit closer to their former peak rate of $5 per hour, with $2 per hour morning rate and $1.50 at mid-day.

Here are the new hourly rates as of June 1st: Continue reading

Karachi Cowboys, with Aloo Sliders, ‘vegetable forward bowls,’ and tamarind BBQ sauce, ready to settle in on 12th Ave

(Image: Karachi Cowboys/Kyle Johnson)

With Capitol Hill’s food and drink economy moving toward a full reopening, new opportunities — and new flavors — are emerging including a concept shaped by the Seattle food and drink pop-up scene ready to pony up and join the neighborhood with its first restaurant space.

Karachi Cowboys and its Pakistani soul food creations is ready to strap in and ride it out on 12th Ave. Natural wine shop Glinda will make room but is sticking around to be part of the new project.

Nasir Zubair says the spirit of Karachi Cowboys is born of his life growing up in Texas in a Pakistani home filled with Desi flavors and the African American food and drink culture of his mixed family.

“We take liberties, pick from here and there. We pick from all over India and Pakistan,” Zubair said. Continue reading

Capitol Hill Community Post | A New Little Free Library on Capitol Hill

From Sheila Hoffman [email protected]

We are fortunate on Capitol Hill to have more than 30 Little Free Libraries (LFL) scattered around our neighborhood. Each is a unique labor of love. I’ve lived on Capitol Hill since 1979. Over the years I’ve greatly enjoyed browsing these gems, mostly taking books and occasionally dropping off one or two.

There is now a new one to check out on 12th Avenue. Continue reading

CHS Pics | Why Seattle Police’s temporary East Precinct security fence is probably pretty permanent

The East Precinct’s cement wall is gone but the new “temporary” security fence that replaced it doesn’t seem likely to ever come down.

Thursday night after the final cement blocks making up the large barrier wall in place around the building were removed from 12th and Pine, police say a small group of “black-clad protesters” caused “significant damage” by smashing a dumpster into the facility’s parking garage door.

A 34-year-old Renton woman was arrested.

Thursday’s incident comes after Seattle Police finally responded to months of community complaints and crews this week removed the large cement barrier wall SPD installed around the facility last August as anti-police protests continued after a summer of massive Black Lives Matter demonstrations and rallies in the city including the CHOP occupied protest camp.

Incidents like it, SPD says, are the reason the building will remain clad in a tall security fence the department has described as temporary.

Bolted to the building, the fence means, while the sidewalks and street in front of the facility are finally clear, the East Precinct itself has been made a center of protest and the building’s connection to the neighborhood has most likely permanently changed. Continue reading

The East Precinct wall has come down (but now there’s a big fence)

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. Continue reading

Boon Boona Coffee — ‘paying respect to where coffee came from’ — now open on 12th Ave

Efrem Fesaha

Boon Boona Coffee has expanded to Capitol Hill.

“Our intention was to focus on Africa,” Efrem Fesaha told CHS Thursday afternoon inside the new location for his growing coffee company centered on the continent’s place as the birthplace of the caffeinated bean. “Putting that spotlight and more attention on those countries, as an African, is something I want to do.” Continue reading

12th Ave gas station robbed at gunpoint

Police are investigating an armed robbery at the 12th and Cherry Shell Station near Seattle University late Monday night.

According to the SPD report on the 10:30 PM hold-up, a clerk at the gas station reported the two suspects entered the store and milled about inside before approaching the counter with a handgun. Continue reading

No serious injuries reported after officer in police SUV collides with bicyclist outside East Precinct’s wall

Police and the Seattle Fire Department say the rider seen on video in a collision with an officer turning their vehicle into the 12th Ave entrance along the East Precinct’s barrier wall suffered minor injuries and did not require hospitalization Tuesday night.

In the video, the driver of the Seattle Police SUV can be seen turning across the path of the oncoming cyclist before hitting the rider just past the 12th Ave side of the large cement wall and fence.

Continue reading

Catch award-winning Ben’s Bread pop-ups at 12th Ave’s Southpaw

(Image: Ben’s Bread)

These days, pop-ups, takeout dinner kits, and ordering online are just some options restaurants, and consumers alike have had to navigate in the new pandemic-normal. For Ben’s Bread however, husband-and-wife duo Ben and Megan Campbell have been operating bread pop-ups for almost six years. Last year when brick-and-mortar establishments shuttered temporarily, to later transition to takeout, Ben’s Bread maintained their monthly pop-ups at Southpaw on 12th Ave. throughout the pandemic without missing a beat.

“When we first started . . . I remember having to explain to people, ‘Okay, you just order and you pay for it online, and you show up at this place and time where it’s ready for you. You don’t have to pay once you show up.’” Campbell said. “That was so much of our effort was convincing people that we were real people who weren’t trying to take their money, and they’d show up and there would be bread. Now . . . . People are used to looking online for where to get their food, planning it in advance, going out of their way and making a little extra effort to find something they think is going to be special. We were already set up to do that.” Continue reading

With birria and churros, Carmelo’s Tacos opens new, just a little bit larger 12th Ave location

The Asada Tacos at the new Carmelo’s

Born as as a walk-up counter with the slimmest of seating areas part of the Hillcrest Market, tiny Carmelo’s Tacos is getting bigger with its new 12th ave at Cherry location now open.

“It’s been fun. A lot of people are coming out to try the birria and new items,” manager Miguel Cruz says. “We feel the support from the community. We’re grateful.”

Cruz said the new location is picking up speed, serving 100 to 150 people a day — still nowhere close to the staggeringly busy pace the original location inside the quick mart at Summit and E Olive Way has kept up through the pandemic. Continue reading