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Move Seattle: The NE 95th ST Sidewalk Project

If you live in North Seattle, you know all too well that an evening walk with the intention of staying on the sidewalk can be a bit of a guessing game. Some blocks are great, others with no sidewalk at all, and sometimes you end up thinking you’re on a sidewalk and before you know it you’re walking in someone’s front yard (I’m looking at you… 75th and 40th).

Regardless, one of the worst offenders is 95th street, connecting Lake City Way and 35th, two major arterials for commuters, and the street that yours truly walks almost daily after hopping off the 312 bus. Walking up 95th can feel a bit like Frogger, running between sections where the sidewalk is non-existent to get on more protected pedestrian territory. In recent winter months, I have instead opted to walk up the hill as soon as possible and use 94th as it seems like a safer alternative, perhaps on occasion swinging into Fiddler’s Inn to have a quick beer before heading home.

However, there is new hope for safe foot traffic between these two arterials! In 2011, the city worked with local residents to improve foot traffic safety on 95th. The plan called to fix one of the worst sections of the street, with a full sidewalk rework between 32nd-35th, and more room for street parking. After years of delays and budget issues, the project is now on track, and slated to be finished in May if weather holds (there have been a few delays due to heavy rain this winter).

Below you can see some of the progress of the project:

I spoke with a resident who lives in-between the project’s construction zone, and she was very excited about the upcoming change. She mentioned that the city has covered the cost of the re-landscaping, giving several of the houses a fresh rock wall (as seen in the photos above). No property had to be purchased from residents to start this project, but there was some community outreach conducted to ensure that the locals wanted this fix to take place.

Between the street and sidewalk there will be a small easement where the city plans to plant trees, which should improve the look and feel of 95th in this section as well.

The strange thing about the project is that it only stretches between two intersections. 95th is a very long street for pedestrians, and while there are sections have have some sidewalk, for the most part this project seems to shortchange the majority of the street. It would be nice to see the project connect the entire Lake City – 35th corridor to drive more foot traffic safely between these two thoroughfares.

Regardless, this project is taking care of one of the worst parts of the street, so it’s exciting to see this progress.

This article was written by Rob Toledo, editor at exstreamist.com and sportfacts.org.

The Growler Guys: Giving New Life to a Lake City Icon


It seems Seattle is at a crossroads of identity. On one side, there are locals who’ve lived here their entire lives hesitant to the change. On the other, 1,100 transplants per week moving to the Seattle metro area eager to leave their mark on the city.

While some Seattle neighbors have taken to the mantra, “Stop envisioning Ballard”, one business owner has received nothing but praise from all sides. Our North Seattle Contributor Tyler Davis Jones recently sat down with Growler Guys co-owner Kelly Dole, a 22 year Maple Leaf resident leading the charge towards positive community growth in North Seattle through delicious craft beer.

Northeast Seattle has always trailed more popular Seattle neighborhoods with infrastructure, establishments and identity. So when looking for a location for Growler Guys, Kelly looked at some of the typical hot spots like Ballard, Fremont, Magnolia and downtown.  But something kept him coming back to North Seattle. When the opportunity arose to lease the old Ying’s Drive-In on Lake City Way, Dole knew he’d found his new home.

 

The Building

The Growler Guys building (formerly Ying’s Drive-in) was designed by Roland Terry.  One of the Northwest’s most famous architects, Terry is more recognized for designing the Canlis building, his work at Nordstrom downtown and Sun Mountain Lodge.

Built in 1961, the building was virtually original with only one permitted change over the years.  In fact, it had fallen off the registry of Roland Terry buildings.  Designed as a night-club, the property was used as a drive-in for decades.  Likely because Terry demanded it, the materials used for the building were of the highest quality.  So when Kelly showed up, the building was in great shape for a property with few changes since 1961.

Screen Shot 2017-04-03 at 2.24.27 PM

 

Growler Guys

The hip, circular mid-century building plays well to the vibe and service of Growler Guys.  The bar is massive and wraps around multiple sides to accommodate their 60+ tap handles, 300 bottles as well as wine.  Kelly is proud of the customer experience at Growler Guys and wants beer lovers and non-beer lovers to enjoy themselves.

When you show up, you’ll definitely get FREE beer.  Growler Guys let’s you sample small tastes as much as you want.  They want you to love your drink.  So if you know what you want, they’ll even encourage you to try other beers to see if you’ll find a new favorite.

Whether you’re a local or new to the area, Growler Guys is truly a place where we can all get along. As Kelly looks forward into the future, he hopes that Growler Guys will encourage other small businesses, restaurants, music venues and more to land in NE Seattle.

You can see what’s on tap at Growler Guys by visiting www.thegrowlerguys.com or you can drop in 8500 Lake City Way Seattle, WA 98115.

This article is by Our North Seattle Contributor Tyler Davis Jones, a North Seattle Real Estate agent.  He is a loving dad, husband, and Wedgewood resident who is investing in Seattle through his business, his writing, and his podcast, Rise Seattle.

Power Outage Affecting Morning Traffic in Lake City and Northgate

A large power outage affected Lake City and Northgate traffic and residents this morning, most likely due to the heavy winds that are sweeping through the region. Seattle City Light is aware of the problem and is Investigating, according to their website.

Traffic is backed up on Lake City Way between about 145th and Northgate Way and parts of Northgate Way are also backed up.

Here’s a map of the outage:

Lake City Power Outage

Mayor Murray Releases Lake City Urban Design Framework Today

Today, Mayor Ed Murray and District 5 Councilwoman Debora Juarez released a new Urban Design Framework for the Lake City corridor.  There is already one in existence for Northgate, so this doesn’t come as much of a surprise.

However, this is a welcome change for people living in the Lake City community.  This corridor renewal has long been fought for by some active community members (some of whom I have already had the chance to digitally meet since launching this blog).

The following is directly from the City of Seattle’s site on the new Urban Design Framework, specifically regarding key outcomes:

Strengthen Community Partnerships

  • New integrated approach to community development
  • Coordinated community outreach
  • Only in Seattle grant for Lake City Future First (LCFF)
  • LCFF business district support
  • LCFF design and planning committee
  • Green Seattle Partnership

Build a Healthy Community

  • 33rd Ave NE park design
  • Virgil Flaim skatepark
  • Thornton Creek restoration
  • Little Brook Park public restroom open all year
  • Improve connections to Meadowbrook Community Center
  • New recreation programming
  • Access to healthy food
  • Fred Meyer Community Garden
  • Natural Drainage Systems
  • NE 130th Street beach access

Enhance Community Safety

  • Intersection improvements around the Lake City Civic Core
  • Sidewalk installation
  • LCW Traffic Safety Corridor project
  • Public safety

Building for the Future

  • Workforce Housing for Families
  • Lake City preschool
  • Human services
  • New development standards
  • 28th Ave NE festival street plan

This is a huge step forward for our community and a big congratulations is in order for the people who have fought for this tirelessly for years.

Read the full press release here.