Tag Archives: fire station

Shiny and new at Fire Station 13

New vehicles at Fire Station 13. Photo courtesy of Lt. Kyle White.
New vehicles at Fire Station 13. Photo courtesy of Lt. Kyle White.

Lt. Kyle White of the Seattle Fire Department tells us that Fire Station 13, in the historic building on the corner of Beacon Ave. S. and S. Spokane St., took delivery of two new vehicles this month. They received a 2015 Pierce fire engine that went into service on June 11. It replaces a 2003 American LaFrance that has been relegated to reserve status and will be housed at a fire station in Wedgwood. Earlier in the month, the station also took possession of a 2015 Chevy Suburban that will operate as a battalion chief’s vehicle.

(Thanks, Lt. White!)

A busy Beacon weekend ahead

Station 13 as it was in 2010. Celebrate its new renovation at a community open house this Saturday. Photo by Jason Simpson.

It’s a busy weekend this week, particularly on Saturday morning. Take your pick from several events, including:


The Seven Hills Seattle and Scandinavian history walk starts on Queen Anne Hill at 9 a.m. and finishes right here on Beacon Hill. Information here.

Fire Station #13 Open House from 11-1 p.m. will celebrate the station’s reopening after renovation. All are welcome. Information here.

Franklin Arts Festival from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m will feature music, art, and food for the whole family. Information here.

Beacon Hill animator Tess Martin’s short, Hula Hoop, will play at SIFF Cinema Uptown at 10 a.m. as part of the Seattle Times and SIFF 3 Minute Masterpiece contest. Admission is free. Information here.


All are invited to a Lewis Park work party to assist in improving the park. These volunteer events are every first and third Sunday, starting at 10 a.m. at the park, 12th Ave S and Golf Dr S. Tools, gloves, water, and refreshments are provided.

A bit later in the day is a cooking demo at El Centro de la Raza with chef Vincent Rivera of Jazz Alley, who will demonstrate how to cook carnitas, pozole, and ceviche. Information here.

And finally, the ROCKiT Community Arts board meeting is Sunday from 1-3 p.m. at the Garden House, 2336 15th Ave. S. The meeting is open to the public.

New, improved fire station reopens with public celebration

Station 13 in 2010. Photo by Jason Simpson.

Mark your calendars for a family celebration on Saturday, May 19 from 11-1 p.m., when the newly-remodeled Fire Station #13 holds a dedication and open house, sponsored by the Seattle Fire Department and by the Seattle Fire Fighters Union, Local 27. The event will include tours of the fire station, a chance to meet your local firefighters, activities for children, and refreshments.

The station, a Mission Revival-style building constructed in 1928, is a designated Seattle Landmark. From the outside, it looks much the same as it has for 84 years. But inside, it now has expanded square footage, improved decontamination facilities, increased equipment storage, an improved fire alarm and sprinkler system, and a new kitchen. It also has a new roof, an emergency generator, and it has been given a seismic upgrade. Fire crews were temporarily relocated to Station 14 in Sodo for several months during the remodeling project.

The building was previously renovated and expanded in 1987, and received emergency seismic repairs after the 2001 Nisqually earthquake.

Station 13 is located on the southwest corner of Beacon and Spokane, at 3601 Beacon Ave. S.

Past and present: Chickens in the basement

The old Fire Station No. 13 at 14th Avenue South and South Massachusetts Street, about 1915. Photo from the PEMCO Webster and Stevens Collection, MOHAI. Used by permission.
The old fire station building still exists, with some changes. Photo by Wendi.

This early 20th century firehouse on 14th avenue still remains, camouflaged as a residential building. Look closely at the dormer on the roof and you can see siding that matches the siding in the 1915 picture. Other details have been changed over the years, but the building is still clearly recognizable as old Station 13.

My attention was drawn to the building by this interesting letter posted in the Seattle Municipal Archives Flickr Feed:

Image courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives.

Fire stations back then had to house horses, so the manure storage issues are not surprising. But the chickens in the basement were apparently not expected in a proper firehouse.

Fire Station 13 opened at 14th and Massachusetts on October 10, 1904, in what was, at that time, the center of Beacon Hill’s residential neighborhood. Over the next couple of decades, development on the Hill shifted further south, and the Fire Department changed from using horses to using motorized vehicles. These changes necessitated the building of a new station that would be more centrally located to serve Beacon Hill, and more suitable for the new vehicles. The old firehouse remained in service until the new station opened at the intersection of Beacon Avenue South and South Spokane Street in 1928. That building is a Seattle historical landmark that remains in operation as a fire station to this day.

The current Station 13, opened in 1928. Photo by Jason.

Alien invaders spotted at Fire Station #13

Broom is pretty, but it's bad news. Photo by zeevveez.
An alert neighbor contacted King County Noxious Weed Control after she spotted Spanish broom growing in the back lot of Fire Station #13.  Because it aggressively replaces native plants, Spanish broom is a Class A Noxious Weed, meaning that eradication is required. Fire Station staff promptly eliminated the plants.

Spanish broom looks much like its close relative Scotch broom. Both are medium-sized evergreen shrubs growing 6-10 feet high with small yellow flowers. Scotch Broom is not native to our region, but it is a “non designated noxious weed” and control is not required in most of King County, though it is recommended.

How to spot the difference:

  • Spanish broom flowers are very fragrant; Scotch broom flowers are not.
  • Scotch broom has ridged stems; Spanish broom stems are round and smooth.

If you find Spanish broom on your property (or notice it somewhere else) or have questions about another invasive or otherwise noxious plants, contact the King County Noxious Weed Control Program: 206-296-0290 or via email at noxious.weeds@kingcounty.gov. You can also report infestations of broom or other noxious weeds by using the online form.

Be sure to visit the Noxious Weed Control website to learn about the Weed of the Month, volunteer as a Weed Watcher, or get tips on safe ways to handle potentially dangerous plants like Giant Hogweed. You can also review the complete Noxious Weed list for ideas about what not to plant in your garden. Butterfly bush, for example, is considered a Class B Noxious Weed in Washington State and a non-regulated weed in King County. This means that gardeners are encouraged but not required to remove it.

Fire Station 13 hosting open house this Sunday

Fire Station 13. Photo by Jason.
Fire Station 13 is holding an open house this Sunday, June 27, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm. The station next to Jefferson Park was designated as a landmark earlier this year. At the open house, guests may see the design of the fire station, meet the firefighters, and tour the engine. Families are welcome, so bring the kids! If you have questions, special needs, or language requirements, please contact Christina Faine at christina.faine@seattle.gov.

Fire Station 13 is located at 3601 Beacon Avenue South, at the intersection of Beacon Avenue South and South Spokane Street.

(Incidentally, Fire Station 13 was once located in a different part of North Beacon Hill — at 14th and Massachusetts.)

Beacon Bits: Landmark announcement, litter clean-up, and library survey

Fire Station #13 fisheye view
Fire Station #13 named a historic landmark by the Seattle City Council. Photo by Bridget Christian.

Fire Station #13 at Beacon and Spokane Street is one of ten new historic landmarks named by the Seattle City Council.

* * *

Kevin Minh Allen has started a three-part series in the International Examiner called “Beacon Hill, Our Story.”

* * *

Continued switch heater installation will again reduce Link Light Rail train intervals to approximately every 30 minutes from 10pm Friday through Sunday night. — Seattle Transit Blog

* * *

There are currently three open spots for the May 15 tamale-making class at El Centro. The class is $50 and you get to take home some delicious work along with your newfound skill and knowledge. Contact Ashley Haugen at 206-957-4611 or e-mail development@elcentrodelaraza.org for more information or to sign up. Proceeds benefit El Centro’s senior programs.Thanks, Elliott!

* * *

The Seattle Department of Transportation continues to work on the West Seattle viaduct construction project, as well as other construction and changes in the Sodo area and the overpasses from Beacon Hill to Sodo. Particularly of note: the First Avenue South on-ramp to the West Seattle Bridge will close permanently on May 17, and there will be lane closures on the Holgate Street overpass on May 17-18, and on the Columbian Way overpass on May 19-20. See the latest planned construction notices here.

* * *

The Seattle Public Library wants to know what you think about library services and priorities. Help plan our local library’s future by filling out their survey — it’s available through May 16.

* * *

The Jun Hong Kung Fu and Sports Association is sponsoring a Beacon Hill Health Walk as a fundraiser for China earthquake relief on Saturday May 22, from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon. The starting location is 4878 Beacon Avenue South, and the walk is three miles, with a turnaround/water break at Van Asselt Community Center. There will be a team flag competition, and t-shirts for adult registrants.

Registration forms are available at Jun Hong Kung Fu and Sports Association, 4878 Beacon Avenue South, or you can find an online registration form here. Registration is $10/adults, $5/kids, and the registration deadline is May 21. For more information, contact Dee Williams at debwilli2003@yahoo.com or Jeffrey Chon at jchon1234@live.com.

* * *

Pat McGannon is organizing a neighborhood clean-up to collect litter from the streets and public stairs.

The clean-up is Saturday, May 15, at 10:30 am, and will will include Dawson (between MLK and 30th Avenue South), 30th Avenue South (between Dawson and South Edmunds), South Edmunds (between 30th Avenue South and Mount View Drive), Mount View Drive (between South Edmunds and Alaska), and the stairs that connect 30th Avenue South to South Ferdinand below. (See the map to the left.)

Gloves, grabber tools, orange safety vests, and garbage bags will be provided to make litter collection safer. Volunteers should meet at the top of the South Ferdinand stairs (on 30th Avenue South) at 10:30 am. For more information, please contact Pat at pmcgannonmail-cleanup@yahoo.com.

* * *

We received a couple of general-interest flyers that might be of interest from neighbors Sara Stubbs and Judith Edwards:
Host families for exchange students are needed in the Puget Sound area, and there is a Fire Safety and Disaster Preparedness Workshop for Seattle apartment managers scheduled for May 20. Click on the links above to view the flyers.

Fire Station 13 to host open house November 14

Get a close-up view of the historic Fire Station 13 next month. Photo by Bridget Christian in the Beacon Hill Blog photo pool.
Get a close-up view of the historic Fire Station 13 next month. Photo by Bridget Christian in the Beacon Hill Blog photo pool.
The historic landmark Fire Station 13 on Beacon Avenue South, near Jefferson Park, is hosting an open house on Saturday, November 14 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm. All are welcome (kids too!) to meet the firefighters, tour the engine, and learn about improvements to the station.

Fire Station 13 is a wonderful old building (read the Landmark Nomination Report for this site, from 2004) built in the Mission Revival style in 1928. Currently, work is being done on the station to upgrade it to current seismic safety standards, replace the roof, and improve the usability of the building.

The station is located at 3601 Beacon Avenue South, on the corner of Beacon and South Spokane Street.