The long-delayed Findlay Street Christian Church project at South Bayview Street and 14th Avenue South on North Beacon Hill may be moving forward after all, so they are hosting a benefit concert to celebrate and raise funds for the project.
The church, previously located in Hillman City, sold its property some years ago, planning to move to Beacon Hill and develop what they have described as “an ambitious, forward-looking, mixed-use building that included worship space and multi-unit affordable housing.” But in January of this year, a church statement said “Unfortunately, we have run into a number of unforeseen setbacks and have so far been unable to get the project off the ground.”
Now that things are moving forward, they plan to celebrate (and raise funds) this Friday, November 9, with a concert featuring two a cappella groups, 545 Express and Shot in the Dark. Along with the music, guests will be able to see a large Lego rendering of the planned building, created by one of Findlay Street’s youth members.
The concert is at 7 p.m. this Friday, November 9, at Mt. Baker Park Presbyterian Church, 3201 Hunter Blvd. S. The suggested donation is $10.
Findlay Street Christian Church sent us this announcement Tuesday:
Findlay Street Christian Church has desperately wanted to move into the Beacon Hill area for years and this weekend (January 29th), we’ll be holding a trial service at The Garden House (2336 15th Ave. S.) 10:30am to check out the space and to introduce ourselves to the neighborhood. All are welcome—we have been an open and affirming congregation since 1987—and we’d love to meet you!
If you didn’t make it to the NBHC meeting Thursday night, here are a few things you missed:
Al Terry and Barb Graff from Findlay Street Church presented the plans for their new sanctuary with affordable housing to be built at 14th and Bayview. You can see the slides on the church’s website. Some concern was expressed about parking impacts, but by and large the proposed development appeared to be welcomed.
Cheryl Sizov from the Seattle Department of Planning and Development presented an introduction to the DPD’s process of revising the Seattle Citywide Design Guidelines, originally created in 1993, used in the design review process, and used as the baseline for the various neighborhood design guidelines since. Largely, it’s a simplification and clarification measure, reducing the five original categories to three and the 31 original guidelines to 13, but bringing extra attention to the “sub-issues”, increasing them from 19 to 50. See the proposed revisions on the DPD website. Public comment is accepted until March 31st.
A motion was made to provide a vote of support to Glenn Herlihy’s 12-acre multi-focal gardening project on the western edge of Jefferson Park along 15th Ave S (some details in the forum), for use in applying for $250,000 in grants to advance the project. There was hesitance expressed by several attendees about issuing formal support for a project most of the council wasn’t terribly familiar with, and the motion was tabled until the April 1st NBHC meeting. Hopefully, there will be more details about the plan available here or in the forum by then.
David Gackenbach and Andrew Abian presented some initial thoughts about submitting for Parks funds for a project that would add to the open green space on Beacon Hill by using grant money to negotiate the purchase of the entire block at 17th and Walker, currently occupied by a single home, and converting it to a park. Expect more details about this project to appear here on the blog soon.
A neighbor involved with the 12th and Stevens power pole situation reported having their best meeting yet with Seattle City Light last Thursday, and that they are feeling optimistic. NBHC Chair Judith Edwards said “City Light is actually bending!”
This was another well-attended meeting, with likely more than fifty neighbors turning out. Next month, expect an appearance by City Council member Sally Bagshaw, speaking about parks and open space. Hopefully we’ll see you there!
(Melissa attended the design guidance meeting held Tuesday, February 23 at the Wellspring building on 23rd and Rainier. Approximately ten Beacon Hill residents were in attendance, and an additional five people were in the audience from the Findlay Street Christian Church congregation. Findlay Street Christian Church is the property owner and hopes to develop 18 residential units on top of a combination church/community space on the corner of Bayview and 14th.)
Introductions and clarification of process
Michele Wang introduced Board members and Holly Godard (206-615-1524), the DPD staff contact for the project. Godard explained that this was a preliminary design review only and emphasized that this is not the appropriate venue for sharing SEPA concerns—including concerns regarding parking, traffic, etc.
Bev, a congregation member, shared information about the congregation, focusing on their history, philosophy and goals. She opened with a slideshow. The church is interested in developing 18 units of affordable housing—Bev clarified this was not subsidized or low income housing. The location was chosen in large part because of proximity to light rail and the church hopes to attract professionals (teachers, nurses, etc.) who will use mass transit. The congregation also hopes to create a space the community will use. She mentioned the potential of using the sanctuary as a theater or meeting space. Bev noted that the congregation is currently meeting in Mount Baker and has about 80 regular attendees, with a goal of about 125 maximum. They are intentionally a smaller congregation, not a “big project church.” Findlay Street Church was established in 1906 and has a long history in SE Seattle. When they sold their Hillman City property, they sold the parking area below market rate for use as a P-Patch to promote green space in perpetuity. They are currently meeting in Mount Baker while they develop their new, permanent space.
When questioned further about why the congregation had chosen North Beacon Hill, the response was that the site was available, affordable, and met the needs of the church. The congregation is also attracted to the vibrancy of Beacon Hill and is interested in being part of the community. Continue reading 14th and Bayview design guidance meeting notes→
Several meetings are coming up in the next week for groups of neighbors with big plans for Beacon Hill. Robert Hinrix writes:
Calling all Beacon Hill Artists!
We’re investigating starting an Arts Council for our neighborhood. While there are some artists groups up here on the hill, there is none willing to tackle the issues of how to schedule and promote the Lander Festival Street. We also want to promote other arts-related events up here on Beacon Hill—how about a craft market, or an outdoor cinema? And we want to create a forum for artists and musicians to share information: about grants, shows, projects, and ideas. Our first meeting will be next Monday, March 1, 6:30 at the Beacon Hill Library (2821 Beacon Avenue South). If more discussion is needed after the library closes, we’ll have to retire to our friendly neighborhood pub!
Let me know if you’d like to be included in future events but can’t make the meeting.
One thing we’re trying to do up here is start a Beacon Merchants Association. This would replace the Chamber of Commerce which is essentially defunct. Better communication among existing businesses could help them and the greater community. We’re just in the process of forming, having had one preliminary meeting. Our next meeting will be this Friday at noon at Baja Bistro (2414 Beacon Avenue South). Our intent is to capture home businesses as well, so if you’re a business owner drop by to get more info and contribute your ideas. Anyone wanting to be added to the list can contact me directly.
The North Beacon Hill Council’s March meeting will include a presentation from Findlay Church regarding the development at 14th and Bayview. Another presentation will be given by the Department of Planning and Development regarding proposed new development guidelines for the City of Seattle.
The NBHC meeting is on Thursday, March 4, 7:00 pm at the Beacon Hill Library. It is open to all who wish to attend. Here’s the agenda:
7:00 pm: Welcomes and introductions
7:05 pm: Presentation by Findlay Street Church on proposed construction of church and market rate housing on 14th Avenue South
7:20 pm: Questions and answers
7:35 pm: Presentation by the Department of Planning and Development on proposed city development guidelines
7:40 pm: Questions and answers
8:05 pm: Update on Public Safety: South Precinct Seattle Police Department