Sound Transit is applying for an extension to the technical noise variance for construction of the Beacon Hill station and light rail tunnels. The current variance, which has been in place since March 2003, expires on December 31. It establishes overnight noise limits for the construction process, and allows the construction to continue around the clock, seven days a week. Sound Transit would like to extend it until June 30, without any other modifications.
An information meeting about the variance extension is on Tuesday, December 16, 6:00 – 8:00 pm at the Beacon Hill Library, 2821 Beacon Avenue South.
We stopped in at the Rainier Grocery Outlet this evening and saw that entire rows of shelving were gone, the freezers were half-full, and a lot less “stuff” was in the store. I asked the checker if they were closing or just remodeling. He said they’re closing November 26th.
We haven’t been able to get more details yet, but we’re wondering if the store is a casualty of the lengthy construction of the Mount Baker light rail station that has made access to the store more difficult for the last few years. The building and property are owned by the University of Washington, with their laundry facilities next door.
So, Beaconians, what should Capitol Hillers expect in the next few years as a large section of Broadway becomes a big hole in the ground? We’ve lived through it and ought to have some useful insights for our neighbors to the north.
“The last big segment (of the Central Link light rail) is the tunnel and station above it on Beacon Hill. The station is at surface level and passengers will be hoisted up and down via a rope tow or something. Anyway it’s 165 feet from the Beacon Hill surface down to the tunnel and that’s a long way. Maybe they’ll have a fireman pole for going down and a jetpack for going up.”
The article mentions a similar effect in other markets, with single-family home values showing increases ranging from 2 percent in San Diego to a blistering 32 percent in St. Louis. The article also suggests that it is not just station location that causes the biggest increases, but transit-oriented development (TOD) that adds to the attractiveness of the area. North Beacon and Mount Baker (Rainier and McClellan) will have their stations soon, but will the TOD follow? Will we see a similar increase in housing value here on Beacon Hill? The Othello and Columbia City stations are already seeing some development, but there hasn’t been much up on top of the Hill or at the foot of McClellan.
This Saturday, October 25, the Greater Duwamish Council and the SE District Council are co-sponsoring a community meeting to discuss the new neighborhood planning process and “how to create vibrant, successful neighborhoods” at the light rail stations.
The event will be at the New Holly Gathering Hall, 7054 32nd Avenue South, at 12:00 noon, and snacks and child care will be provided.
On Saturday, October 25 at 12:00 noon, the Southeast District Council and the Greater Duwamish District Council are hosting a community event to discuss the new neighborhood planning process and “how to create vibrant, successful neighborhoods at these stations.” The event is at the New Holly Gathering Hall, 7054 32nd Avenue South, and food, beverages, and child care will be provided.
Also in the neighborhood planning arena, the city’s Neighborhood Plan Advisory Committee (NPAC) needs four at-large members, “with a good mix of neighborhood knowledge, new passion, and a commitment to healthy communities,” to sit on the committee. The deadline is today, October 17, at 5:00 pm. If you’re interested in helping guide the forthcoming neighborhood planning process as an NPAC member, fill out this PDF and get it in ASAP.
Thanks to the SDC and GDDC for the postcard about the event, and the Rainier Valley Post for getting the news out about the NPAC applications.
There has been quite a bit of discussion about bus service changes when light rail comes on board. It would be great to have a discussion about this and fill out our surveys as a neighborhood! I’ve contacted Metro and they are sending me about 50 surveys (in multiple languages) to hand out at the Pancake Breakfast THIS Saturday at El Centro – 9:30AM.
A bus service and light rail discussion will go hand-in-hand at our forum on creating a town center, because you can not create a “town center” without adequate access by ALL modes. We have an amazing opportunity with the light rail to be more connected to southend neighborhoods and downtown, but bus service is still crucial for local trips.
The current Metro plans include a potential crosstown route that will connect the Hill with West Seattle, possible changes to the 38 to eliminate redundant service once the light rail opens, and more.
Come have a pancake and sausage breakfast and discuss the “Town Center” possibilities surrounding the new Lander Street tunnel station. Breakfast is graciously hosted by Beacon Hill Pedestrians next Saturday, October 18th, from 9:30am to 1pm at El Centro de la Raza (North entrance). For more information, contact BHP at 206-323-1792.
Thanks to Robert Hinrix for the list posting and BHP for the postcard!