Monthly Archives: December 2013

2nd Early Design Guidance Meeting Necessary for Childrens Home Development

After the Early Design Guidance meeting on December 18th for the plans for the old Seattle Childrens Home site, the Design Review Board decided more clarification was needed. A second Early Design Guidance meeting has not yet been scheduled, however the Queen Anne News reported on the outcomes of this first meeting last week.

At the Queen Anne Community Center on the 18th, three design options were presented to the Design Review Board (click here for the full proposal). That presentation from CamWest/Toll Brothers development company was followed by board questions and 20 minutes for community comments and questions. According to the Queen Anne News, there was standing room only.

This project has seen a lot of community controversy, particularly from the group Future Queen Anne. The group and other community members are concerned about the increased density and traffic the development of 60 townhomes will bring to such a small area.

“Four representatives from the group Future Queen Anne spoke in opposition to specific aspects of the plan and asked the room to raise their hands if they shared the concerns; nearly every hand in the room was raised,” reported Sarah Radmer for the Queen Anne News.

After CamWest/Toll Brothers had completed their presentation of the Early Design proposal, and the community had a chance to air their concerns, the Board deliberated. During this time, they determined that a second Early Design Guidance meeting was necessary to address some key issues:

  • More specifics on the topography of the site.
  • Compatibility with the streetscape (addressing the community’s density concerns).
  • Access for vehicles and parking, including the possibility of underground parking.
  • Clarified designs with more density on 10th Avenue and less on 9th (all three designs were similar in this regard).
  • Architectural designs should not be too uniform, however not too variant either.
  • Refined plans for landscaping and root protection.

Click here for more details on the developers’ current plans and three presented options.

The second Early Design Guidance meeting has not yet been scheduled, to our knowledge, but we’ll update the blog when a date has been set.

Featured photo from QueenAnneNews.com, credit Natalie Price.

Queen Anne Events: 7 Things to Do in January

What are you up to in the New Year? There are several fun neighborhood and family happenings going on. Read below for the Queen Anne events coming up in January…

  1. Wednesdays in January – Wine Wednesday Tastings at Twirl Café: Enjoy dinner or a crostini plate with three hand-selected wines from rotating regions! This weekly event at Twirl Café is from 5 – 8 p.m. and costs $5 per tasting. Wines by the glass are $2 off. RSVP-optional, but RSVPs get entered in Twirl’s monthly raffle. RSVP here.
  2. Fridays in January – Movie & Pizza Night at Twirl Café: Rotating pizzas and movie snacks will be available at Twirl’s weekly movie and pizza night. From 5 – 8 p.m. on Fridays, Twirl will serving pizza and dinner specials for a $7 rotating pizza selection, or $4 cheese pizza. They be playing a G-rated movie (movie starts at 6 p.m.) presented by Video Isle, and kids are encouraged to wear their PJs. RSVP-optional, but RSVPs get entered in Twirl’s monthly raffle. RSVP here.
  3. January 5 – Swedish Pancake Breakfast at the Swedish Club NW: On Sunday, January 5th, the Swedish Club Northwest is hosting a special pancake breakfast from 8 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. There will be music and dancing, plus authentic Swedish pancakes with lingonberries, ham, and all the right toppings. The cost is $9 for guests, $7 for SCC members, and $5 for children 5–12.
  4. January 8 – Storytime at Twirl Café: On the second Wednesday of each month, Tegan from Queen Anne Book Company is at Twirl Café for a fun storytime. From 10 – 10:30 a.m. in the upstairs area at Twirl, kids of all ages can enjoy this monthly event.
  5. January 16 – Queen Anne Chamber January Luncheon: The Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce meets on the third Thursday of every month. Join the chamber guests and members for networking with other Queen Anne business owners, updates on the events and happenings within the chamber and neighborhood, and words from an occasional speaker. The luncheon takes place at the Best Western Plus Executive Inn at 200 Taylor Ave. N, from 11:15 to 1:00 p.m. on January 16th. The cost is $25 for members, $30 for non-members. RSVP required, to contact@qachamber.org.
  6. January 24 – Scandinavian Folkdance & Lesson at Swedish Club NW: The Swedish Club Northwest’s Pat McMonagle will be teaching a folkdance at 7:30 p.m., followed by dancing to live music from 8:15 to 10:30 p.m. at the Swedish Club Northwest on January 24th. Lesson: $5 members, $7 guests. Dance: $8 members, $10 guests.
  7. January 27 – Monday Madness at Twirl Café: On the last Monday of the month, Twirl Café hosts a FREE open play all day! To redeem, you must mention ‘Monday Madness’ when you arrive. This is Twirl’s way of saying ‘thanks’ to their customers.

Featured photo from blogs.SeattleTimes.com.

 

Seattle Townhome Plan Continues to Cause Community Push-Back

The city’s Design Review Board met last night at 8 p.m. at the Queen Anne Community Center to discuss the Seattle Children’s Home site on west Queen Anne. Another community meeting occurred the night before, on Tuesday. Both meetings this week were held to continue the discussion about the planned Seattle townhome development by Toll Brothers for the site – a plan that has controversy in the community.

On Tuesday, neighbors to the property discussed the changing face of Queen Anne as a whole. The neighborhood and the city are growing, which residents of the area understand and appreciate, however they want to ensure that growth is done responsibly and with maintenance of the things people love about where they live.

“Seattle is booming. I happen to think that’s a really good thing,” said Terri Johnston, who has been living in Queen Anne for more than 20 years. “This is about how our neighborhoods are respected and treated as growth happens.”

Currently, the new owners of the Seattle Children’s Home site are planning to have Toll Brothers developers tear down the six old buildings on the property. The structures will then be replaced with 11 three-story townhouses – with about 60 townhomes in total. Plans for the site were released ahead of the design review meeting on Wednesday night – we reported on those last week.

“We’re taking a Berlin Wall-style building and putting it into the heart of a residential neighborhood,” said Susan Allen, another 20-year resident of Queen Anne. “It’s urban sprawl right in the heart of the city.”

The Future Queen Anne group continues to raise awareness for the project and gather signatures to try to have the plan modified to be less dense.

At the design review meeting last night, information and early design concepts were shared, public comments were taken, and high priority design guidelines were provided (in preparation for the Master Use Permit application). We are now waiting to see the Department of Planning and Development’s Early Design Guidance report, which will be sent to attendees of last night’s meeting.

Click here to view the project’s full design review proposal.

Featured photo from Seattle.gov.

 

November – December Monthly Queen Anne Crime Recap

As we prepare for the holidays, there were a few instances of criminal activity in the neighborhood last month, which you should be aware of. Read more here for last month’s Queen Anne crime recap…

  • Nearby SPD and KCSO Units Target Westlake Gangs and Drug Dealing: Westlake Center is several blocks from lower Queen Anne, however the crime that was taking place there affects our neighborhood. In recent weeks, the Seattle Police Department and King County Sheriff’s Office have completed more than 30 arrests of drug dealers and suspected gang members after months of undercover operations. The goal was to clean up the streets in time for the holidays. As the SPD blotter reports, “For months, police documented hand-to-hand drug deals and purchased crack cocaine, powder cocaine, pills, and marijuana in the downtown core and developed cases against 40 people.” As of November 20th, 31 people had been taken into custody.
  • Home Burgled While Occupant Was Home: A man returned to his home in the 1600 block of 2nd Avenue N on November 30th to find that it had been ransacked. His daughter had been home and upstairs, and she had heard banging and crashing downstairs, but she assumed it was her father. When he arrived 20 minutes later, he found drawers and doors opened, with their contents spread all over the downstairs rooms. The victims did say that it didn’t look like anything was missing. The backyard door was unlocked, and they found a first-floor bedroom window forced open with the lock broken. Police looked for prints without luck. Three other house burglaries occurred on Queen Anne on November 30th, click here for details.
  • Woman Runs Over Husband with Car: At about 11:10 p.m. on December 7th, a couple attended a holiday party for their office. They left when they began to argue, and when the argument became heated in their car (which was parked in the 2000 block of 15th Ave West), the husband decided to get out of the vehicle. He then noticed that his wife was driving toward him, so he moved behind a small tree. She then drove over the tree and ran over him before speeding down the road. Luckily, a state trooper was nearby and saw the suspect driving recklessly, so he stopped her. SPD responded to the scene and arrested the 24-year-old woman (she also had a blood-alcohol level of 0.15 – well above the 0.08 legal limit). Medics arrived to treat the 34-year-old male victim for non-life-threatening injuries, before transporting him to Harborview.

Featured photo from Telegraph.co.uk.