Northgate Link update: Big Red crane work on Sunday, UW campus monitoring work

Roosevelt Station

Roosevelt Station construction site at 3:30 PM on Friday, August 15, 2014. (Click to visit the current view.)

Roosevelt Station construction site at 3:30 PM on Friday, August 15, 2014. (Click to visit the current view.)

1. Capitol Hill Station’s big red crane has been disassembled and the pieces trucked up to the Roosevelt Station construction site. Assembly has already begun during normal construction hours; however, Sound Transit will be adding a Sunday work day this weekend, on August 17, to put together the crane’s jib and hoist it into place.

Work will occur during daylight hours and start at 9 AM. And you should totally go check it out when it’s being hoisted because it’s gonna be something to see.

2. As soon as Monday, August 18, construction crews will start work installing a drainage line from the construction site to a sewer line in NE 67th Street. This project is expected to take up to three weeks, with work occurring between 8 AM-5 PM on weekdays.

Crews will work westward starting from just east of Roosevelt Way NE on NE 67th Street. Roosevelt Way will be reduced to one lane from 9 AM-3 PM for approximately two days during the first week of work.

Once the work has traveled to the west side of Roosevelt Way, the sidewalk and parking lane on the south side of NE 67th Street will be closed during work hours. Access to residents and businesses will be maintained, but minor delays during work hours should be expected.

 

U District Station

U District Station construction site at 3:30 PM on Friday, August 15, 2014. (Click to visit the current view.)

U District Station construction site at 3:30 PM on Friday, August 15, 2014. (Click to visit the current view.)

The Northgate Link tunnel boring machines are not yet near the University of Washington campus, but a whole bunch of monitoring equipment is about to arrive.

Sound Transit will start installing equipment for 16 monitoring sites around the UW campus over the next couple months, starting here in August. The equipment will monitor the ground, utilities, and buildings located above the light rail alignment during tunneling on campus.

If you’re on campus during this work, here’s what you can expect:

  • Hours: Activities between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.
  • Drilling Activities: Drilling into grass, asphalt or concrete, removing ground material and installing the monitor. Drilling will sound similar to a truck running with occasional hammering sounds. The vacuum truck will make noise while soil material is being removed (during the first few feet of drilling at each location). Drill rigs and support equipment may be temporarily stationed on streets or parking lots overnight during this work.
  • Equipment: Drill rig, trucks, traffic signage and cones, vaccum trucks, ladders
  • Access: Pedestrian, bicyclist, and motorist traffic will be maintained. Some locations may require temporary lane or sidewalk closures. There may also be impacts to street parking. Traffic cones, No Parking signage, roadway signage, and flaggers may be used when travel lanes or parking areas are affected during this work.
  • Stickers on buildings: Building monitoring stickers, called structural settlement points, are 3″x3″ stickers that crews affix to the outside of buildings and check regularly for any movement.

Between the U District Station up on Brooklyn and the University of Washington Station down on Montlake, nearly one mile of tunnel will pass under the university’s campus. TBMs are expected to arrive at the U District Station in late 2015.

Public comment meeting TONIGHT on potential Theodora redevelopment (LIVE COVERAGE; PHOTOS)

On Thursday, August 14, representatives from the City of Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development will be collecting public comment on the land use application to redevelop the Theodora Apartments (6559 35th Avenue NE). The meeting is being held at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Avenue NE) from 7-8:30 PM.

Prior to the meeting, at 6:40 PM, the Theodora Rescue Committee and their supporters will be marching from the Theodora to the RECC.

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Land Use Application information

The owners of the Theodora, the Volunteers of America (VOA), have agreed to sell the property to Goodman Real Estate, a private real estate developer. The apartment building is one of two buildings that the VOA owns in Western Washington and has been used as housing for low income elderly and disabled people. In redeveloping the Theodora and converting the building from low income senior housing, Goodman intends to:

“alter and change the use of existing two story, 62,937 sq. ft. 113 room congregate residence (The Theodora) to a 64 unit apartment building and to allow a 35,361 sq. ft. addition for new apartments (45 units) for a total of 109 units. Parking for 56 vehicles will be located below grade.”

Additionally, Goodman is seeking landmark status for the building. The Landmarks Preservation Board will be considering the nomination at their meeting on Wednesday, August 20, at 3:30 PM in the Seattle Municipal Tower (700 5th Avenue, 40th floor, Room 4060).

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Additional information

Tenants With Disabilities Filing Suit Over Sale Of Seattle Apartment Building (KPLU, July 3, 2014)

Ravenna-Bryant Community Center information on Theodora sale and redevelopment (various posts from 2013-current)

Permit and Property Records and Documents for Project #3017233 (includes public comments already submitted)

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We’ll be providing live coverage of the meeting below, starting just prior to 7 PM.

UPDATE (Friday, August 15): First, a few pictures from last night.

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Marchers from the Theodora Apartments arrive at Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center around 7 PM. The banner reads “GOODMAN REAL ESTATE BACK OFF OUR HOMES.”

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Peter Metzger, a member of the Theodora Rescue Committee, speaks at the public comment meeting. Metzger held up part of Goodman’s landscape plan, which includes the removal of trees on the present Theodora property. Then he held up the Seattle Times A section from Thursday (same day as the meeting) whose cover story was about Seattle’s dwindling tree canopy.

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Another speaker (this one with Real Change) takes his turn. In the background, Jerry Sudor (with the Department of Planning and Development) writes down parts of of all speaker’s comments. Carly Guillory (seated; also DPD) looks on.

Below are the notes that Sudor took during the public comment period (not in chronological order, however). Click on any of the images to view the larger, readable version. The full phrase on the last on the last sheet (partially blocked by a reporter’s shoulder) is, “Portland/Bellevue better keeping trees.”

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Northgate Link update: Capitol Hill’s big red crane a-comin’

Capitol Hill Station's big red crane is on the move northward to start work at Roosevelt Station. (Photo by Capitol Hill Seattle. Used with permission.)

Capitol Hill Station’s big red crane is on the move northward to start work at Roosevelt Station. (Photo by Capitol Hill Seattle. Used with permission.)

Roosevelt Station news

A big ol’ tower crane used to help construct the Capitol Hill Light Rail Station is finished with its job on Broadway and is shortly headed north to the Roosevelt Station construction site. Sound Transit plans to start delivery of Big Red* early Sunday morning on August 10. Due to the size of the loads, the crane parts must be delivered at night to minimize traffic disruptions and such.

Delivery times are as follows:

  • 2-6 AM on Sunday, August 10
  • Midnight-3:30 AM on Monday, August 11 through Wednesday, August 13.

Residents may hear “intermittent truck noise” as the crane parts arrive and are off-loaded at the construction site.

From CHS’s pre-crane-removal coverage:

The Krøll 1800 (Capitol Hill’s is the metric model) was set up with its enormous 250-foot jib about 100 feet off the ground. The model can be as tall as 200 feet. It can lift more than 30,000 pounds at full extension and more than 130,000 when operating at a shorter radius, according to the manufacturer.

Some pictures of Big Red’s assembly can be seen here. The crane was installed at the Capitol Hill Station construction site back in late January, 2011.

Visit Sound Transit’s Roosevelt Station project page here.

*My nickname for the crane. It is big and red, after all.

U District Station news

The U District Station construction site is a busy one. Look for this trend to continue in August.

1. The L-shaped pedestrian pathway between NE 43rd Street and Brooklyn Ave NE (around the NW corner of University Manor) is complete! But it has business hours: 7 AM-6 PM, Monday through Friday. Outside of those hours and on weekends, your options for getting around the construction site are:

  • 12th Avenue NE to NE 42nd Street or NE 45th Street
  • Brooklyn Avenue NE to NE 42nd Street or NE 43rd Street
  • University Way NE to NE 42nd Street or NE 45th Street

2. Drilling along the shoring walls is almost complete! Only the south shoring wall is left (currently 75% finished), and expected to finish up by the end of August.

3. Station excavation has already started on the north end of the site. (Brenda IS on her way, after all.) Trucks are hauling station box dirt and such off-site down Brooklyn Avenue NE. More on station box excavation:

As crews dig down, they will install long nails, called tie-backs, into the soil to secure the underground station walls. Crews will also be installing long metal beams, called struts and wales, across the top and sides of the box. These braces hold the soil during station excavation. Crews will dig until they reach about 95 feet below ground. Excavation will be ongoing through spring 2015.

Visit Sound Transit’s U District Station project page here.

Northgate Link update: Brenda now 500 feet closer to Roosevelt

Today’s Northgate Link Extension news from Sound Transit includes a tunnel boring machine (TBM) update.

Maple Leaf Portal/tunnel boring news


View TBM Brenda’s current position (as of July 31, 2014) in a larger map

Sometime today, Thursday, July 31, TBM Brenda will have chewed her way through 500 feet of Maple Leaf soil on her way south to Roosevelt Station. Another TBM now being assembled at the Maple Leaf Portal will start carving the southbound light rail tunnel sometime in October.

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I’m guessing Brenda is a bit dirtier these days.

Roosevelt Station news

Station box wall construction now complete, the main work at the Roosevelt Station construction site is now the *excavation* of said station box. Crews are digging down about four feet at a time, removing soil from the station box area, pausing to stabilize the station walls that have been newly revealed, and then digging some more.

The station box needs to be fully excavated by the time Brenda arrives, sometime in early 2015.

And now for some NE 65th Street detour news:

In mid to late August, drivers heading past the Roosevelt Station site on NE 65th Street during the day may be detoured due to a project to install water lines under the road at the intersection of NE 65th Street and 12th Avenue NE. The signed detours will be in place from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays. Westbound drivers can expect detours via 12th Avenue NE, NE 70th Street and Roosevelt Way NE and eastbound drivers can expect detours via 12th Avenue NE, NE 75th Street and 15th Avenue NE. Only one direction of travel will be detoured at a time.

These detours combined with the work on the Rooster Apartments on the west side of Roosevelt Way NE are making travel on NE 65th Street through the Roosevelt neighborhood a pain for all concerned (drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, etc.). We urge all travelers in the area to have some patience and practice grace-filled egress in the area.

U District Station News

This week, crews are digging holes in which to place piles that will make up the southern wall of the station: 76 holes, each between 50 to 105 feet deep. To help speed this work along, crews are now on site on Saturdays AND using two drill rigs.

NE 43rd Street east of Brooklyn Avenue NE is still closed to motorists, but what are you doing driving around in that area anyway it is a mess.

Northgate Link webcams

If you’re sitting near internet and wondering how construction is doing at any of the above locations, there’s a webcam (or three) for that:

Each page also has a “Stream Time-Lapse Movie” button on the left-hand side, for those who appreciate more action than a live shot once every 15 minutes.

20140731_SaturdayConcretePourUPDATE (2:17 PM): Just into the Ravenna Blog inbox is a Roosevelt Station construction alert for Saturday.

Saturday morning concrete pour at Roosevelt Station construction site

On Saturday, Aug. 2, construction crews working for Sound Transit will begin work at 7 a.m. for a concrete pour. Residents may notice noise from truck engines.

Crews will do everything within reason to keep noise to a minimum.

Why is this concrete pour happening on Saturday?

High demand for concrete resulted in limited schedule availability for the concrete pour at Roosevelt Station. Doing the work on Saturday morning will help keep the project on schedule by at least two weeks.

Road safety improvements coming to NE Blakeley Street / Union Bay Place NE

Some well-known traffic trouble spots near University Village are getting some overdue attention next month.

UnionBlakeleyProjectMap

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is in the process of designing the following safety improvements to the Union Bay Place NE/NE Blakeley Street area (projected to begin construction as early as August 2014):

  • 25th Ave NE & NE Blakeley Street: Modified signal timing and intersection design. New bicycle leaning rails* (allow cyclists to wait for light change without dismounting, placing one foot on the rail).
  • 30th Ave NE & the Burke-Gilman Trail: Raised pedestrian crosswalk and repaired sidewalks approaching this crosswalk along 30th Ave NE between NE 50th Street and Union Bay Place NE.
  • Union Bay Place NE between NE 45th St & 30th Ave NE: New paved and painted pedestrian pathway along both sides.


View Safety Improvements to NE Blakeley St and Union Bay Place NE in a larger map

This work is funded by mitigation from the University Village and the Village QFC as well as Pedestrian Master Plan improvements. You can read more about the mitigation funding of this project on page 17 of this SDOT analysis of QFC’s 2012 land use application (208 KB PDF) to expand the store and build a parking garage.

The pedestrian improvements are part of SDOT’s Sidewalk Development Program and funded by the voter-approved Bridging the Gap levy. The Program’s 2014 projects include these new sidewalk connections:

Questions?  Contact Maribel Cruz with SDOT at 206-684-7963 or maribel.cruz@seattle.gov.

***

*We are looking into the bicycle leaning rails to find out more about them (and see if these will be the first ones installed in Seattle).  We will update the post as we learn more!

Outdoor basketball court at the RECC getting a makeover

The outdoor basketball court behind the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center is getting some work done.

Weather and contractor permitting, over the next week or so (starting Tuesday, May 27), apshalt-cracking tree roots will be removed, the playing surface will be repaired and leveled, and new standard-height hoops will be installed.

RECC users and visitors: The small parking lot off Ravenna Avenue NE will be closed during the project for staging equipment.

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Workers began removal of the old basketball hoops on Thursday, May 22.

In case you’re not sure where it is, the RECC’s outdoor basketball court is tucked between the small parking lot off Ravenna Avenue NE and the tennis courts. The court lines are faded. The playing surface is uneven, cracked asphalt. The hoops are not set at a standard height.

RECC coordinator Tim Ewings tells us that last fall the Ravenna-Eckstein Advisory Council put the wheels in motion to get the project started, requesting funds for a 2014 capital project. The plan was approved (funds coming from the Associated Recreation Council who partners with Seattle Parks and Recreation to provide instructors), a project manager fleshed out the details, timing, and final pricing, and the work has begun.

In the event that the work schedule changes, we will post updates here.

So, about those boarded up houses at 15th and 65th…

With Tuesday’s Ravenna-Bryant Community Association spring community meeting roster including City Attorney Pete Holmes, we thought we’d take the opportunity to assemble some reading material about one Hugh Sisley.

We don’t know how much Holmes will be able to say about the city’s plans for collecting the three million dollars in fines owed by Roosevelt’s most well-known landlord. But we do know that there are strong feelings running very deep about Mr. Hugh Sisley, and providing a more focused review of the situation (in terms of current, property-related events) wouldn’t hurt.

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Graffiti on one of Hugh Sisley’s properties. The words on the right read. “I [heart] urban decay.”

The following information focuses on Sisley’s properties in and vision for his corner of the Roosevelt neighborhood, his position as a landlord in the area, and his relationship with the City of Seattle.

Map

We’ve spent a few weeks over at the King County Parcel Viewer, looking up publicly-available property information for the map you see below. The cool-colored markers (and accompanying brown shapes) are properties where the primary taxpayer is listed as either Hugh Sisley, Hugh and Martha Sisley, or the Roosevelt Development Group.


View Properties around Roosevelt High School in a larger map

For more information about the map, including the description of the all symbols used, please open the map in a new window.

We will continue to add to it as we find more owners of multiple properties in the area.

 

Seattle Weekly articles

Earlier this year, the Seattle Weekly published a duo of articles on Mr. Sisley and his dealings (or non-dealings) with the city in terms of his housing-code violation cases and fines:

Seattle Weekly (January 10, 2014) “The Reign of Seattle’s Most Notorious Landlord Could Be Coming to an End

The 86-year-old is facing a record $2 million fine that continues to increase at the rate of $1,600 a day, plus 12 percent interest. And now, after years of foot-dragging of its own, City Hall is finally moving to collect the debt. As officials launch a new initiative approved by the City Council to inspect every rental unit in town, City Attorney Pete Holmes is planning to recover what the stubborn rental king owes by confiscating prized Roosevelt properties held by the penny-pinching millionaire.

And then, a follow-up, just 10 days later: “Hugh Sisley’s Slumlord Tab Now $3 Million, City Says After Recalculation.”

Sisley, whose property is concentrated in the Roosevelt neighborhood, has amassed close to 200 code-enforcement cases dating to the 1980s, according to city records. Among them are violations for faulty wiring, unsafe conditions, insect infestation, junk storage, emergency situations, and unfit vacant buildings subject to demolition.

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RR Hardware, on 15th Avenue NE. “Total chaos envelopes the customer who bravely ventures into this 1940’s holdover,” says one reviewer on Yelp.

 

hughsisley.com

For a glimpse at Hugh Sisley’s vision for Roosevelt, we need only get on the internet and time travel a bit.

Although hughsisley.com is no longer up and running, the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine has some snapshots stored from the days when it was. Here is the full archived selection, but we’ll point out a couple links to the two different forms the website took while it was live:

View of the progress (and the lack thereof) along NE 65th Street. Taken at 15th Avenue NE looking west.

View of the progress (and the lack thereof) along NE 65th Street. Taken at 15th Avenue NE looking west.

As the Sisleys’ attorney Jeff Grant says in the first Seattle Weekly article mentioned above, “That’s really the story of Hugh and the Roosevelt Neighborhood today. Progress.” This sentiment is echoed strongly on the pages of the old hughsisley.com.

 

Old Fruit Stand block project

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Roosevelt High School standing in the background between two of Sisley’s properties on the NW corner of 15th Avenue NE and NE 65th Street.

The Roosevelt Development Group, which has long-term leases with the Sisleys on many of their properties, is currently working with architectural firm GGLO on a project on one of the three small blocks just south of Roosevelt High School (in orange on the map below).


View NE Seattle Large Development Tracker in a larger map

Project #3013244 at 6505 15th Ave NE is described as a “seven story, 220 unit residential building with 8,000 sq. ft. of retail use at ground level. Parking for 267 vehicles will be located below grade. All existing structures to be demolished.”

Roosevelt High School stands in the background between the two buildings proposed for the Old Fruit Stand block. This view is looking north from NE 65th Street through the half public, half private plaza area. Taken from page 30 of the February 3, 2014 design proposal (click to download; 17 MB PDF).

Roosevelt High School stands in the background between the two buildings proposed for the Old Fruit Stand block. This view is looking north from NE 65th Street through the half-public, half-private plaza area. Taken from page 30 of the February 3, 2014 design proposal (click to download; 17 MB PDF).

The project is currently in the Review phase, and has been presented twice at Northeast Design Review meetings (Early Design Guidance meeting on August 6, 2012, and a Recommendation meeting on February 3, 2014).

You can view the project’s current permit activity and associated documents here. The design proposal presented at the February 3, 2014 meeting can be downloaded here (17 MB PDF).

At this time, initial information has been collected for a new construction permit, but not a demolition permit.

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A graffito adorns a previously graffitied spot on the recently officially shuttered Funtiques (1512 NE 65th Street). We believe it is missing a question mark.

Brenda the Boring Machine rededicated at Maple Leaf Portal (PHOTOS)

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On Monday, April 28, the first of two tunnel boring machines (TBMs) that will carve the underground portion of the Northgate Link Extension was dedicated at Sound Transit’s Maple Leaf Portal site.

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This was the last close-up opportunity for Brenda as the TBM is readied to start her journey underground to Roosevelt Station in June.

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Brenda is not Big Bertha’s younger sister. No. Brenda is a veteran TBM, having already carved the paths between between Capitol Hill and the downtown transit tunnel wall in 2011-12.

She looks pristine on the outside now, but…

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…on the inside, you can see Brenda’s experience.

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Here’s where Brenda will start her journey: The Maple Leaf Portal, where the elevated light rail track leading south from the Northgate Station will head underground.

The right side of the wall pictured above is the southbound tunnel starting point where Brenda will shortly be moved to and start boring into in June. (Here’s Brenda starting to chew on the wall at the Capitol Hill Station a few years ago.)

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The TBM’s 21-foot-diameter cutter head (the large green and yellow disc on the front of the TBM) is covered with teeth and holes, turns at a rate of 0.1 to 2.5 revolutions per minute, and can excavate an average of 40 feet of tunnel per day.

It’s also great for posing with.

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View inside the cutter head. Here the tailings that have passed through the openings in the cutter head will fall, be carried out by this red screw conveyor, and moved through the body of the TBM.

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This is the “trailing gear” that follows behind the TBM. It carries equipment for the boring machine and helps carry the spoils away from the machine. Altogether, the TBM and the trailing gear stretch out to the length of a football field.

As the TBM and the trailing gear carve the route to Roosevelt and beyond, supply trains will ferry equipment from the outside world down into the tunnels. Chief among their cargo will be the pre-cast concrete segments that compose the finished walls of the tunnel as well as provide a surface for the TBM to propel herself forward.

It is these supply trains, running along on metal rails down in the tunnels, that were judged responsible for the noise and vibrations experienced by residents in Montlake back in November 2011.

Good news for those living and working (and attending the UW) above the Northgate Link Extension tunnels: Vehicles equipped with rubber tires will be used this time around for underground deliveries.

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Worm’s perspective of the cutter head.

Sound Transit has a great little video showing how tunnel boring machines work. It includes a cross-section graphic of the machine in action, as well as footage from previous excavations.

And here’s where we pause the photo essay to share with the Roosevelt neighborhood some potentially great news.

The old plan for tunneling south was for Brenda to dig one side of the route to Roosevelt Station, be trucked back up to the Maple Leaf Portal, and begin digging the other side of the route. Then a second TBM-to-be-named-later would join her in Roosevelt, where the pair would start their journey south to the University of Washington Station. Muck from the tunneling would travel up to the Maple Leaf Portal site and be hauled away there for Brenda’s solo drilling, but would be hauled out of Roosevelt Station for the remainder of the project.

Sound Transit’s Bruce Gray tells me that this may no longer be the case. Via email:

In the new plan the Contractor has proposed two TBMs going from Maple Leaf.  The performance of the tunneling and the muck haulage will be closely monitored during the initial drive from Maple Leaf to Roosevelt.  If all goes well, the two machines will continue on to UW with spoils removal and haulage continuing from Maple Leaf the entire time.  If the new proposal does not perform as planned there could still be muck haulage and/or a third TBM launched from Roosevelt in order to meet the project schedule.

What this would mean for the Roosevelt neighborhood is that after the dump trucks bearing away the soil from the station excavation are gone, they’d be GONE. Muck from the entire Northgate Link Extension would come out the Maple Leaf Portal and be hauled away there.

Again, this new plan is not a given. And it’s going to be a while before anyone knows the contractor’s final decision. Once Brenda gets digging in June, it will take her 10-12 months to reach Roosevelt Station (via Sound Transit’s Gray). If the second TBM launches from the Maple Leaf Portal five months later in October, the pair won’t see each other in Roosevelt until August 2015 at the earliest.

To be continued…

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Hey, Roosevelt: Remember when you rallied to bring light rail closer to the neighborhood’s core at 12th Avenue NE (over a station closer to I-5 on 8th Avenue NE)? On January 27, 2005, the Sound Transit board agreed with you, and the Roosevelt Station Alignment was chosen. Here, some stickers from that campaign pose with the machine that’s making it a reality.

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A fragile bottle of dedicatory Washington apple cider sits in the shade along with TBM-signing Sharpies and commemorative pins.

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The assembled crowd listens to officials during the dedication.

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Sound Transit Board Member and City of Everett Councilmember Paul Roberts, and 46th District Representative Jessyn Ferrell, share a laugh during the dedication speeches.

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Councilmember Roberts anoints the cutter head with a refreshing non-alcoholic beverage.

Then the signing began. Gathered participants were encouraged to write on the machine.

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Some just signed their names.

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There were a few drawings. And more than a few children’s names.

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Stephen’s self-translated message read: “wish tunnel boring success!”

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Representative Farrell’s signature joins the others on Brenda’s flank.

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“Go straight. Go on-line. Go safely.” writes this Sound Transit staffer, as photojournalist Josh Trujillo also takes a picture.

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A selection of signatures and good wishes for Brenda’s journey.

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Sound Transit workers at the site wanted to get back to work, but didn’t mind standing around for a picture or two.

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Members of the Sound Transit Northgate Link team pose en masse.

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Onward.

Help Sound Transit develop light rail station symbols

What single image would you use to represent the Roosevelt Light Rail Station? Or rather, what three adjectives and three landmarks you would use to describe the station area?

Sound Transit is developing “pictograms” to identify the new transit stations that are opening in 2016 and beyond. You can help by completing their Pictogram Questionnaire, open now through Monday, April 14.

First section of the Sound Transit Pictogram Questionnaire (click to start the survey).

First section of the Sound Transit Pictogram Questionnaire (click to start the survey).

From the survey:

Pictograms are intended to be station identification symbols for non-English audiences, primarily those that use a non-Roman based alphabet. To be effective, Sound Transit’s Link light rail station pictograms must meet these requirements:

  • Simple in form, and are an easily recognizable symbol
  • Readable at many scales; including signage, print material, online and mobile devices
  • Are individually distinguishable and read as a family

The pictogram may reflect the nature of the environment: neighborhoods, landmarks, geographic locations and may include points of interest around the stations.

Existing station pictograms — Westlake Station all the way south to SeaTac/Airport Station — were developed from points of interest around the station and in the community. Those points of interest were connected like stars in a constellation, and an image representing the station was developed.

The International District Station is a dragon. Pioneer Square is a ship. SoDo is an anvil. Westlake is… a tiara? I’ve always been curious and a little confused by these pictograms and admit to being pretty amused by this extremely thoughtful process (which we’ve heard that Sound Transit is NOT continuing for the new stations). Check out the “Stellar Connections” brochure explaining these transpo-constellations (1.1 MB PDF).

The University Link extension (Capitol Hill and University of Washington stations) are expected to open in the first quarter of 2016). The Northgate Link extension (U District, Roosevelt, and Northgate stations) are expected to be open for service in 2021. Approximately 8,000 daily riders are projected to board the train by 2030. 

The other station on the pictogram survey is Angle Lake Station, set to open in 2016 south of the SeaTac/Airport Station at S 200th St.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station construction (PHOTOS)

Blessed with some clear skies and lovely spring sunlight, we set out on Friday, March 21 to take some photos of the two Northgate Link sites seeing the most action right now: The Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station construction sites.

We’ve done our best to explain each scene and the work being done to the best of our knowledge. We will, of course, add additional information for more expert sources if possible.

Each of the photos below can be enlarged with a click of the mouse (or tap of the finger, mobile users).

Maple Leaf Portal

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 01

View from the NW corner of NE 92nd Street and 1st Avenue NE, looking north through the length of the Maple Leaf Portal (MLP) construction site.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 02

View east from the same corner. Double dump truck headed to I-5 up NE 92nd Street.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 03

View to the north from the NE 92nd Street overpass. The nearly reassembled tunnel boring machine (TBM) patiently waits its turn. (Here’s a Sound Transit picture of the inside of the TBM during reassembly.)

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 04

Zoom from the same location. Sound Transit recently set up webcams at the active Northgate Link construction sites. The camera surveying the scene at the MLP can be seen on the far left side of the photo above. To see what’s happening from the camera’s viewpoint, visit this here EarthCam page.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 05

View from the NE 92nd Street overpass of northbound I-5 drivers all wishing they could be riding a train instead of driving. Another double dump truck headed out with muck from either the MLP or Roosevelt Station sites is traveling with them.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 06

On 1st Avenue NE now. No construction wall here to obscure one’s view of all the equipment and work being done. Looking south a bit here at the TBM.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 08

Looking north at a very large excavator depositing soil into a double dump truck.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 09

Close up of the TBM’s teeth, catching the spring sunlight.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 10

View of the whole cutter head of the TBM, with a worker conveniently seated on the ground nearby for scale.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 11

Street sweeper in action. Common sight, cruising near both the MLP and Roosevelt Station construction sites. Part of the overall construction mitigation plan (457 KB PDF).

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 12

One of the pleasant side effects of doing reporting with a toddler around is that sometimes the construction folks wave and/or make faces. Thanks, guys.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 13

Should you have any of your own small children or other construction vehicle fanatics in your circle of friends, there is a lovely viewing point on 1st Avenue NE at NE 95th Street which includes a cement wall perfect for sitting on. Perhaps with a sack lunch. Or a froyo.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 14

Another nice side effect of carrying a cute kid around and using a big zoom lens is that people walking by say HI and ask what you’re doing. And sometimes these people are nice and understanding, and help you get even better pictures from their four floor apartment building. (Thanks, Tom!)

This is looking southwest at the “head wall” of the Maple Leaf Portal. You can see the NE 92nd Street overpass in the background. This head wall is where the TBM will begin its journey down to…

Roosevelt Station

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 15

Red crane “rabbit ears” behind the Dwell Apartments. This shot is taken from the parking lot of Roosevelt Square, looking north. We’ve been able to spot these red cranes from all over Northeast Seattle.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 16

Hugh Sisley sighting.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 17

Red cranes again. We’ve seen these machines used to move assembled slurry wall rebar cages from one area of the construction area (the Roosevelt Way NE side) to the others.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 18

This is a large hydromill, used to dig the 130-feet-deep-plus slots into which the rebar cages are later lowered. Then cement is pored in, creating the “slurry walls” that make up the outer walls of the underground station. The walls of the station are built underground BEFORE excavation happens!

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 19

One of the rebar cages in some state of assembly.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 20

Unlike the Maple Leaf Portal site, the Roosevelt Station area has many thick and tall construction walls up already. This is great for local residents — part of the construction mitigation which lessens noise and reduces dust — but not so great for taking pictures. Looks good, though. A Roosevelt High School-inspired green.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 21

O HAI, double dump truck. Looks like you forgot to cover your load. *wags finger*

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 24

Construction-related vehicles have two entrances/exits at the Roosevelt Station site: One on 12th Avenue NE, and the other on Roosevelt Way NE. Above is a large truck backing out of the Roosevelt Way NE side with the help of a flagger.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 25

A little local flair/signage on the site’s chain link fence. This temporary fencing along 12th Avenue NE will be replaced by more thick, green construction wall in the future.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 26

Excavation work being done at what will be the southern entrance to the finished light rail station, on the NW corner of NE 65th Street and 12th Avenue NE. The piles of soil were steaming in the cool spring sunshiny air (though we suspect that part of this is due to heated water used in the excavation process — looking into it).

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 27

Another, smaller hydromill, working in the NE corner of the construction site (near where the northern station entrance will be located). Here, the jaws just emptied a load of soil into a mostly hidden dump truck.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 35

Close-up, post dump. Look at those chompers!

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 28

Lots of cement trucks on this day. They were queued up three or four deep, waiting to their turn to pour.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 37

 

Cement truck during a pour near the center of the construction site.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 31

All vehicles leaving the site get a wheel washdown, another piece of the construction mitigation package.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 39

Close up after the pour was finished.

 

 

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 29

Happy little cloud.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 30

Cozy bit of sidewalk along the east side of 12th Avenue NE. The cement wall on the right side is the west side of the Roosevelt High School track and field.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 32

Another part of the construction mine field that is now the Roosevelt neighborhood is a new 42-inch sewer main under 12th Avenue NE. You know those metal plates you drive over? This shot shows you how deep the hole goes underneath your tire.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 33

Soil excavation at the southern end of the construction site, along NE 65th Street.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 34

Excavated soil being transferred into an awaiting dump truck.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 36

View from the east side of the site of the rebar cage construction.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 40

More steamy soil, moving out.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 41

Close-up of steamy soil. (It looked really neat in real life, as the clouds of steam were carried away by the breeze. Trust me.)

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 42

The NW corner of NE 65th Street and 12th Avenue NE. Decidedly closed sidewalk, but that doesn’t always stop Roosevelt High School students trying to cross the street at open campus lunchtime.

Maple Leaf Portal and Roosevelt Station March 21 43

An empty double dump truck headed up 12th Avenue NE, ready to fill up with another load of excavated soil.