Washington State Governor Jay Inslee signs tougher DUI bill into law (VIDEO)

While Wednesday’s joint Mayor’s Office/Seattle Department of Transportation press conference was held at the intersection of last March’s DUI tragedy, the topic was overall street safety along NE 75th St and the SDOT proposed street design changes.

The next day, however, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee signed DUI legislation (SB 5912) into law down in Tacoma at the Washington State Patrol District 1 headquarters.

Screen grab from SeattleP-I.com's coverage of Governor Jay Inslee signing new DUI legislation into law. Click through to read the whole article, and see more photos from the event by Associated Press Photographer Ted S. Warren.

Screen grab from SeattleP-I.com’s coverage of Governor Jay Inslee signing new DUI legislation into law. Click through to read the whole article, and see more photos from the event by Associated Press photographer Ted S. Warren.

Dan and Marilyn Schulte both attended on their family’s behalf, and were joined at the signing by over a dozen legislators and law enforcement leaders, as well as family members of a woman killed by a drunk driver in 2010.

About the bill, Associated Press reporter Rachel La Corte wrote:

Under the new law, a driver suspected of a second impaired driving offense faces mandatory arrest and will have an interlock device installed on their vehicle within five days of being charged.

The state also will begin a pilot program in as many as three counties and two cities not in those counties to conduct daily alcohol monitoring of anyone convicted twice under the DUI law. Additional money will be put toward ensuring that local jurisdictions prosecute and punish more offenders more quickly.

The final version of the bill was passed unanimously by both the House and Senate.

Most of the law will go into effect on September 28 of this year; however, the monitoring program and a few other components will not go into effect until January 1, 2014.

You can read more about the path to the bill’s final version here (“How budget constraints narrowed Olympia’s DUI crackdown,” June 26, 2012, Seattle Times,” and read the full signed bill here (near the bottom, the link titled “Bill as Passed Legislature.”)

Video of the bill signing event was broadcast live by TVW, the “C-SPAN of Washington state” (our words), and also available below. Dan Schulte begins his statement at about the seven minute mark.

 

SDOT releases NE 75th St rechannelization options (PHOTOS, UPDATES, POLL)

[UPDATE (Friday, July 19): We've added a poll! Read about the design options below, vote for your preferred design, and then discuss in the comments.

And one more thing: Tom Fucoloro over at Seattle Bike Blog showed us this nifty online tool that lets you play around at redesigning a road for yourself: Streetmix. Choose a road width of 40 feet for NE 75th St, and give it a shot!]

At a press conference this morning at 33rd Avenue NE and NE 75th Street, Mayor Mike McGinn and the City Traffic Engineer Dongho Chang announced four different design proposals for a safer NE 75th St for all users.

[More information about this morning's press conference to come -- check back here later.]

ALL four proposed designs include marking the lanes off distinctly (“defining channelization”). Speaking prior to the press conference this morning, Chang said that this feature of a future NE 75th St was very strongly desired by residents, according to the community feedback the Seattle Department of Transportation had collected prior to the design phase.

Here is the full NE 75th ST design proposal (500 KB PDF) for you to read. But we’ve also taken the liberty to talk about the changes below ourselves.

 

Existing Conditions

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Existing conditions on NE 75th Street (between 15th Ave NE and 35th Ave NE)

The above graphic shows existing conditions along NE 75th ST, between 15th Ave NE and 35th Ave NE: Two undefined lanes in each direction, with off-peak parking in the outside lanes.

And now, the four different proposals, combining various new roadway configurations to reduce speeds and improve safety, and in order of increasing changes and safety features.

Proposal 1

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Proposal 1 for NE 75th Street (between 15th Ave NE and 35th Ave NE)

Proposal 1 is exactly what we have now, but with the painted white lines clearly indicating travel/parking lanes (“defining channelization”). Parking along both sides of NE 75th St would not be affected.

Some of the safety limitations SDOT sees in this design are that roadway crossing distances for pedestrians are not reduced, the efficiency of the roadway is not improved, cyclists are still mixed in with motor vehicle traffic, and little to no change to vehicle speed is expected.

Proposal 2

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Proposal 2 for NE 75th Street (between 15th Ave NE and 35th Ave NE)

Proposal 2 sees one lane only in each direction of NE 75th St, but in wider travel lanes. Parking on both sides of the street would have no restrictions, and would be well marked with white lines (again, “defining channelization”).

Pluses for safety with Proposal 2 includes a reduced crossing distance for pedestrians and a likely reduction in vehicle speed.

Limitations with this proposal include no separation between cyclists and motor vehicles, again, and no designated left turn lanes (decreasing the efficiency of the roadway).

 

Proposal 3

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Proposal 3 for NE 75th Street (between 15th Ave NE and 35th Ave NE)

Proposal 3 continues the defining channelization theme, and includes separated lanes for cyclists. As in Proposal one, there is one travel lane in each direction (again, slightly wider than lanes are currently), with permanent parking on one side of NE 75th St only*.

Safety improvements in Proposal 3 include reduced crossing distance for pedestrians, separated cycling lanes, and a likely reduction in vehicle speed.

Left turns are once again going to decrease the efficiency of the street.

 

Proposal 4

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Proposal 4 for NE 75th Street (between 15th Ave NE and 35th Ave NE)

Proposal 4 combines all of the safety improvements we’ve seen so far — defining channelization, one lane travel each way (reducing pedestrian crossing distance), separate lanes for cyclists, a likely reduction in vehicle speed — and adds a designated left turn lane down the center. Roadway efficiency is said to be improved as left turning vehicles are removed from moving traffic.

Downside? Well, what is missing from the graphic above?

Parking.

The goal for the NE 75th Street Road Safety Corridor Project is, yes, safety. But what vehicular amenities will Northest Seattle residents be willing to surrender in the name of safety? Find out by attending one of the two community meetings next week to discuss these proposed changes to NE 75th St. If you are unable to attend either of those meetings, Ravenna Blog will have live coverage of the meeting on Wednesday, July 24 (available here the day of the meeting).

 

Poll!

UPDATES: Of course, we weren’t the only ones at the press conference this morning.

9:03 PM: Here’s Q13FOX’s coverage which, of the evening newscasts below, was the most on message about the proposed changes to NE 75th St. [Video removed for now, due to auto play.]

6:58 PM: Here’s KOMO 4’s coverage, which included some thoughts from Marilyn Schulte, daughter of Judy and Dennis Schulte:

Here’s KIRO 7’s evening coverage of the Mayor/SDOT press conference this morning:


*The SDOT PDF lists the south side of NE 75th St as the side of this proposed all day parking; however, it is our feeling that with Eckstein Middle School’s location also on the south side of NE 75th St, this may be in error. We will attempt to clarify this point prior to the meeting on July 27 (or bring it up there).

Bike-to-School Day ride and rally at Bryant Elementary (UPDATES, VIDEO)

Wednesday, May 8 was Bike-to-School Day, and Bryant Elementary School students and family turned out in force.

Participating cyclists started their ride to school at the Wedgwood Top Pot Doughnuts, who provided morning treats. About 40 minutes later, and under Seattle Police escort, the group headed south on 35th Avenue NE toward Bryant Elementary (on NE 60th Street).

Once at school, everyone gathered on the playground for a rally and press conference. Speakers included:

    • Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Dr. José Banda
    • Seattle City Councilmember Sally Bagshaw
    • Seattle School Board President Kay Smith-Blum
    • Cascade Bicycle Club Education Director Julie Salathé
    • Bryant Elementary School Principal Kim Fox

And Ravenna Blog was there! Taking lots of pictures.

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 View from the Top Pot driveway off NE 70th Street as families gathered.

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Lesile Loper (AKA The Bike Fairy) in blue, next to Seattle Schools Superintendent Dr. José Banda in bright green. On the left in red is Michele Solis with her son, Linus (who I think had just taken a bite of a powdered sugar doughnut).

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 Overflow bike parking at the Wedgwood Top Pot along 35th Avenue NE.

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 This pink beauty was the first bike here this morning, as you can see in the tweet below:

 

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Clint Loper (Walk.Bike.Schools co-founder, Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board member, father of Bryant and Eckstein Middle School students, and husband to The Bike Fairy) was handing out these smiley bike pins. (The eyes are the wheels, get it?)

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A gaggle of bikers walks their rides through the crosswalk at NE 70th St and 35th Ave NE.

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KOMO TV morning photographer Fred Veinfurt let a few kids check out his camera gear while he was on scene with reporter Kelly Koopmans. Here’s Fred and his “students” from another angle:

 

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Many of the kid’s bikes were decorated. This one is even sporting a Seattle Children’s Bike to Work Month seat cover.

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 GIRLS RULE indeed.

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Another view from the NE 70th Street side of Top Pot, as the crowd swelled (in numbers and with doughnuts consumed).

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Here, Clint Loper (in black, with the bullhorn) thanks Bike to Bryant attendees for coming, and Top Pot Doughnuts for supporting the cause.

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Seattle Bike Blog‘s Tom Fucoloro (center) interviews Car Free Days‘ Anne King (right) while Robyn Ellis (behind the camera) records the conversation.

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Members of the Seattle Police Department line 35th Avenue NE and look for the start of the ride.

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The front row of riders get a briefing just before heading out onto 35th Avenue NE. Cascade Bicycle Club Education Director Julie Salathé is in the yellow jacket at right.

A *lot* of riders, no?! For contrast, here is the first Bike to Bryant Donut ride:

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And they’re off! Banda and The Bike Fairy lead the way.

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A number of Cascade Bicycle Club members were along for the ride, wearing red, white and black wool cycling shirts. The rider on the yellow bike here happens to be Kathy McCabe, Deputy Director of the Cascade Bicycle Club.

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Cyclists of all ages and sizes, heading to school.

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No worries: Her dad had the other wheel. (Two unicyclers in the family!)

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 Cyclists fill the streets while the media lines the sidewalks.

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The Seattle Bike Blog people-powered news van on its way to the rally.

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Back of the pack. Clint, armed with his cowbell, is on the far left.

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And Michele Solis and her moving sculpture-style ride brought up the rear.

The Cascade Bicycle Club has a video of the start of the ride, as well as a sped-up version of the route to school:

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One the primary school peloton arrived at Bryant Elementary, everyone cruised around to the playground behind the school for the Bike to School Day rally.

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Ready to ring, or tweet, at a moment’s notice.

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 Bryant Elementary School Principal Kim Fox addresses her students.

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Cascade Bicycle Club recorded Superintendent Banda’s speech, and you can view it below:

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This is Brian Dougherty, the Safe Routes to School Coordinator with the Seattle Department of Transportation, dressed for the occasion.

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Here, a KIRO TV photojournalist gets an exclusive with The Bike Fairy.

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I took a picture of this balance bike, thinking it was an ancient family heirloom. Talking to the family that owns it revealed that the bike was only about two years old — it gets USED.

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 Councilmember Sally Bagshaw spoke to the crowd as well.

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And here’s Seattle School Board President Kay Smith-Blum speaking to the kids from the podium, the younger ladies literally hanging on her every word.

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Shots from the PACKED bike racks behind Bryant.

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Who doesn’t love a miniature vanity license plate?

 

Tim King of Bike Free Days tallied the kid’s bikes at the end of the ride:

 

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UPDATE (Thursday, May 9): Here’s Q13FOX’s coverage of the event (not embedded here due to its autoplay feature).

And here is the video of the event that the Seattle Bike Blog put together. Includes an interview with Car Free Days’ Anne King:

And here’s KIRO TV’s coverage, including the video of the event once it reached Bryant Elementary:

“Tragedy of the preventable kind” — Schulte siblings and Harborview doctors speak to the press (UPDATE)

 

Members of the media clustered around Dr. Francois Aspesberro, Marilyn Schulte, and Dan Schulte (left to right) at today's press conference at Seattle Children's.

Members of the media clustered around Dr. Francois Aspesberro, Marilyn Schulte, and Dan Schulte (left to right) at today’s press conference at Seattle Children’s.

At Seattle Children’s Hospital this morning, members of the Schulte family spoke to the media about the current medical conditions of Karina Ulriksen-Schulte and Baby Elias, the survivors of the DUI-related tragedy that occurred at 33rd Avenue NE and NE 75th Street on Monday, March 25.

Dan Schulte, husband of Karina and father of Elias, was joined by his sister, Marilyn, and two of the doctors involved in the care of Karina and Elias.

Dan and Marilyn’s parents, Judy and Dennis Schulte, died at the scene.

While the community has been able to follow medical updates on Karina and Elias’ conditions on their CaringBridge site, this is the first time that detailed medical information on the pair has been released.

UPDATE (5:51 PM): KIRO 7 has kindly made their footage of the entire press conference available (Flash player required):


More on this story on Ravenna Blog:

Memorial service in Indiana for Judy and Dennis Schulte (last updated on Thursday, April 11)

Arraignment of NE 75th Street DUI homicides suspect on Thursday (last updated on Thursday, April 11)

Timeout to say THANK YOU, on behalf of the Schulte family (last updated on Sunday, April 7)

Hundreds walk to remember, honor the Schulte family (PHOTOS) (last updated on Monday, April 1)

Prayer Vigil for mother and child this Thursday night (PHOTOS) (last updated on Friday, March 29)

Memorial to the family at NE 75th St grows (PHOTOS) (last updated on Sunday, March 31)

Memorial and medical funds set up for victims of Monday’s traffic tragedy (last updated on Thursday, March 28)

Suspect in Monday’s traffic fatalities no stranger to DUIs (last updated on Sunday, March 31)

Details of local purse snatcher’s arrest; arraignment on Thursday (UPDATE)

We’ve obtained a copy of the charging documents filed on Friday, March 1 against Robin McDougall-Treacy, the area man arrested after stealing a woman’s purse and thought to have robbed five other individuals, at knifepoint.

McDougall-Treacy will be charged with robbery in the second degree for the Tuesday, February 26 attempted robbery of a woman in Roosevelt. His arraignment hearing is scheduled for Thursday, March 14, and we will there to cover it. (UPDATE BELOW.)

Seattle Police Department investigators are also working on linking McDougall-Treacy to five other “striking similar armed street robberies” that occurred in our area between February 2 and the date of his arrest.

Here’s KIRO 7 News’ report from their 5 PM newscast that aired on Tuesday, February 26 about the arrest earlier that day:

Along with the charging documents, we also have the case investigation report, which includes the details of the burglary and arrest of McDougall-Treacy on Tuesday, February, 26.

February 26 Burglary and Arrest

At about 1:30 PM, several calls came in to 911 from neighbors in the 7100 block of Roosevelt Way NE. They reported variously that a woman had just been robbed on the street and the suspect could be seen, knife in hand, running through yards. He was described as a white male, in his 20s, with a heavy build, wearing a black hoody and a black scarf around his face.

Officers apprehended the suspect about eight minutes later in the backyard of a house on the 1000 block of NE 71st St. He was found hiding in an alcove, and had a red and black backpack with him.

A witness who had been chasing the suspect stated to officers that in the backyard of a nearby house, “he (the witness) slipped and fell, losing sight of the suspect,” who had been wearing a black hooded sweatshirt. Moments later, the suspect, still running, was seen wearing a red sweatshirt.

Several witnesses and the victim herself participated, separately, in a “show-up” at the scene (to identify the suspect as the person who was seen stealing the purse and fleeing). The witnesses variously stated that the suspect was the man seen robbing the woman earlier and that his clothing (pants and shoes) matched those of the suspect.

When interviewed by an officer about the crime, the woman who was robbed explained that she had been walking down the sidewalk at approximately NE 71st St and Roosevelt Way NE when an unknown white male wearing a black hoody and jeans confronted her from behind. She felt a tug on her purse, turned around, and saw the suspect holding a knife sheath in one hand while he used the knife to cut the shoulder strap. The victim said that she and the suspect ended up on the pavement in the struggle for her purse, causing some pain to her elbow. As the suspect fled, the victim started screaming and gave chase, as did several other people (males) in the area.

The victim described her purse and the contents, which included her phone. Her phone number was dialed by a detective at the scene, which then caused a phone to ring from inside McDougall-Treacy’s backpack. However, her other stolen items and McDougall-Treacy’s black sweatshirt and knife were not found by officers in the area.

The day after his arrest (Wednesday, February 27), McDougall-Treacy’s backpack was searched and the victim’s missing items were located within, as were “a black jacket with hood, a black neck fleece gator, a black knit cap, a pair of black and grey gloves” and a three-to-four-inch silver-bladed folding knife. All of these items were placed into evidence.

The Storage Unit

When McDougall-Treacy was asked by a detective for the address of where he was living, “[McDougall-Treacy] said he could not stay at his parents’ house,” but added upon further questioning that he kept his belongings in a storage unit in the Roosevelt neighborhood. Among the items suspect had on him at the time of the arrest was a keychain that had the address and name of the storage facility on it.

When a detective called the storage facility, the assistant manager said that he was familiar with McDougall-Treacy who uses a storage unit rented out under his mother’s name. The assistant manager also said that their records indicated that the suspect had been at the facility on a day when one of the other robberies had taken place about two blocks away from the business (on Wednesday, February 20). The first robbery that day occurred at approximately 2:10 PM, and McDougall-Treacy was recorded visiting the storage facility at 2:13 PM. (The second robbery on February 20 occurred at approximately 2:55 PM near NE 65th Street and 36th Avenue NE.)

A search warrant was obtained for the storage unit which was searched the day after the suspect’s arrest. Detectives recovered “two folding knives, a black hooded sweatshirt, a pair of white sneakers and a brown purse (strap intact).” One of these knives resembles the weapon described by the victim of one of the other robberies.

Custody, Charging, and Next Steps

On Friday, March 1, Robin McDougall-Treacy was charged with Robbery in the Second Degree (for the robbery which occurred the day he was arrested) by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s office. Bail was set at $250,000.

At his arraignment today, Thursday, March 14, McDougall-Treacy entered a plea of not guilty to this second degree robbery charge.

McDougall-Treacy (far left) at his arraignment hearing at the King County Courthouse on Thursday, March 14.

McDougall-Treacy (far left) at his arraignment hearing presided over by Assistant Chief Criminal Judge Jim Rogers at the King County Courthouse on Thursday, March 14.

Additionally, the suspect was charged with robbery in the first degree for the robber by knifepoint that occurred on Wednesday, February 20, around 2:55 PM. The suspect entered a plea of not guilty for this charge as well.

The next date of activity in this case is a case setting scheduled for Thursday, March 28. A case setting is “an informal hearing where the prosecution and the defense have an opportunity to discuss the case.”

Fifth, possibly sixth purse snatching yields an arrest in Roosevelt (UPDATES)

At 1:29 PM this afternoon, KIRO 7 alerted us to some Seattle Police Department information indicating a fifth local robbery. And now it appears that there has been an arrest, prior to during a sixth attempt.


View Robberies by knifepoint in February (6) in a larger map

From the Seattle Police Department’s twitter feed:

And this one, from half an hour later:

Screen grabs from KIRO’s Chopper 7 live feed of the arrest scene (near NE 71st St and 12th Ave NE; via twitter)

We will update this post with more information as we get it. BIG THANKS to our friends at KIRO 7 for their help today.

UPDATE (2:56 PM): The SPD Blotter has a post up now, with all the info known up to today, including the newest robbery, which happens to have been the very first:

The first robbery was reported on February 2nd, by a 91-year-old woman, who said a man armed with a knife had stolen her purse as she was walking up the steps to her home near NE 75th and 39th NE.

UPDATE (4:59 PM): Here is the recorded live feed from KIRO’s Chopper 7 during the arrest of the suspect (Flash required):

UPDATE (6:44 PM): Tonight’s KIRO 7 News segment on today’s attempted purse snatching and arrest (Flash required):

City Hall Chapel Cam live streaming on Sunday; watch it here

UPDATE (Sunday): Today’s events are also being live-blogged on the marriage.seattle.gov site.

And if you have an iOS device (and the Seattle Channel live feed below is causing you trouble), KIRO 7 has another live feed that should work for you.

____________________

One hundred and forty weddings are scheduled for City Hall this Sunday, December 9 — the first of their kind in Washington State, thanks to the passage of R-74 which legalized gay marriage.

Four chapels have been made available inside City Hall (for those who RSVP’d in time) for weddings after the three day marriage license wait period. And outside city hall, there’s a party. For everyone. Via married.seattle.gov:

Come join the celebration at City Hall Plaza from 10 AM to 5 PM, on Fourth Avenue downtown between James and Cherry streets.

Congratulate and admire the newlyweds coming down the steps from City Hall and enjoy food trucks, coffee and festivities. Don’t miss this historic day in Seattle!

For those of us in the rest of the city unable to make it down to City Hall to take part in the celebrating, the Seattle Channel has a solution: “You can follow the day’s progress by watching livestreams of City Hall lobby and of the procession of new married couples exiting City Hall towards the plaza,” says the city’s marriage website.

Says the Seattle Channel: “We’ll have two views: a wide shot of the lobby with ceremonies in progress and close-up coverage with commentary from newlyweds via our ‘couple cam.'”

On Sunday, grab a box of tissues, and enjoy:


And if you ARE downtown — either for the parties or for your own wedding — learn how to share wedding day/celebration photos with the city here.

And if you’re from Ravenna, we’d love to hear about your special day, too.

Roosevelt QFC demolition has begun (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”

The Roosevelt QFC (6618 Roosevelt Way NE) — the first QFC in the chain — is meeting its end as we speak, as the grocery store gives way to Sound Transit light rail station construction.

We went by with our camera this afternoon, and recorded some of the destruction.

Video of some of the demolition

From 12th Avenue NE (east side)

 

 

 From Roosevelt Way NE (west side)

From NE 66th Street (south side)


From the Roosevelt High School track (above 12th Ave NE)

North Precinct ‘Safe Commuities’ meeting Wednesday night (UPDATE, VIDEO)

UPDATE (Thursday, October 11): Seattle Channel recorded last night’s opening remarks by Seattle Police Chief John Diaz and Mayor Mike McGinn:


As a part of the Seattle Police Department’s 20/20 Plan — the package of reform initiatives for the SPD crafted in response to the Department of Justice Investigation which concluded that “police accountability in Seattle was ‘broken'” — the department has scheduled a event for residents of each precinct to share their safety concerns with officers.

The North Precinct event is tonight, Wednesday, October 10, from 7-9 PM. The event is being held at neighboring North Seattle Community College (9600 College Way North).

The description of the Safe Communities outreach initiative, from its homepage:

Public safety is a high priority for the people of Seattle. The Seattle Police Department is addressing the recent wave of violence with emphasis patrols and other actions specific to each precinct. But it will take more than law enforcement alone to build communities that are safe. It’s time to look at the roots of violence and address longstanding neighborhood concerns. That’s why the Mayor’s Office and the Seattle Police Department are working together on the Safe Communities Outreach Mission. Part of the SPD 20/20 Plan, Safe Communities seeks to ensure the City is meeting our goal of reducing crime and creating the safest possible neighborhoods. We will do that by bringing residents and officers together in living rooms, cafes, barber shops and community centers across Seattle to develop a list of priorities to address community concerns. Those priorities will then guide the actions the City, SPD, and the neighborhoods will take together to protect public safety. We are committed to building safe communities. We’re looking forward to hearing your ideas and developing an action plan with you.

If you cannot make tonight’s meeting, you may enter your information and describe your safety concerns using this form.

And you can download a chart describing the Safe Communities portion of the 20/20 Initiative here (175 KB PDF).

 

Friends and neighbors say goodbye to Yancy Noll near Roosevelt Reservoir

Word started getting around on Saturday that the victim of Friday night’s shooting at 15th Ave NE and NE 75th St was Yancy Noll.

Noll lived nearby, and worked as the wine steward at the Broadway Market QFC on Capitol Hill.

KIRO 7 was at the scene on Saturday night as people stopped by a growing memorial to pay their respects (segment starts after ad):







Folks who knew Yancy have been leaving remembrances on this Capitol Hill Seattle post.

I stopped by the memorial on Sunday night, and took the following pictures:

Peace to be to his memory.