Welcome and Introductions: Vice President Chas Redmond began the meeting. President Deb Barker had a conflict this evening. MoCA officers Eldon Olson and Sean Gamble were also present. Meeting attendees introduced themselves. MoCA public information officer Cindi Barker was also present.
Announcements and Updates:
April 23 and 27 is Lincoln Park Clean-up Day & Nature Day. That is a Tuesday (6:30PM-8:30PM) and a Saturday (10:30AM-2:30PM, at southern end of Lincoln Park, where there will be many activities).
City Disaster Drill and Morgan Hub Activation Day will take place on May 11 (which conflicts with West Seattle garage sale day). This will take place over at Morgan Junction Park. Boy Scouts and the ham radio club will participate. The drill will need actors to participate in imaginary emergencies. It will be fun.
May 18 is Morgan Junction Spring Clean Event. We are looking for folks to volunteer for a couple hours for picking up at the triangle parks and the different intersections. Sidewalk sweeping, trash pick up, and potentially tree removal. We meet at 10AM at Morgan Junction Park.
Report on Morgan Mural Restoration: The mural is fading and flaking off the cement wall. The owner is interested in keeping the mural. We are working on locating the artist, Bruce Ricket of Nova Scotia. An attendee believes that Bruce has passed away. We would like to restore the mural in a way that respects the integrity of the mural.
The Street Maintenance Division Fund: SDOT says that curb work is scheduled for certain areas.
Announcement: With sadness, we learned of the passing of our friend Toby Weymiller. Toby was president of MoCA in 2003-5 and brought a great spirit to our neighborhood, until he and his wife Maiko moved to Japan. His obituary reads “Toby Eric Weymiller, a man who followed his dreams and was always passionate about making a difference, passed away on Friday, March 29th from injuries sustained in an avalanche. At the young age of 43, Toby lived the life of most men twice his age. He loved nature, the mountains, his family and his friends. Toby is survived by his wife, Maiko, his father Sinclair Albert, and three brothers, Allen, Peter and Paul.
SDOT Presentation by Mike Ward, PE: Mike passed out maps of the work done along California and Fauntleroy Intersection regarding the bus bulbs for the Rapid Ride C Line. Most of this work was done by the end of last summer. SDOT worked with City Light to get the shelters and signs working. SDOT didn’t change the striping or canalization at that time. But the bulbs do cause changes in traffic flow. Some of the westbound traffic on Fauntleroy attempted dangerous turns around the stopped buses by passing in the opposing traffic left-hand turn lane. The SDOT solution for this dangerous situation is the installation of a 25-foot long curb barrier. Mike was asked what data was used to make the decision to install the curb bulb, and what data was being gathered after installation to either confirm effectiveness or to confirm other complaints about wait times behind stopped buses. His operations counterpart was not able to attend the meeting and Mike said he would get back to MoCA with information on those questions. Mike was not aware of the sources or nature of the data regarding the traffic problems. MoCA had a question about what it would take for SDOT to admit that it made a mistake in locating the Rapid Ride bulbs so close to the intersection. The location has created enormous congestion problems during high traffic times. Additionally, other buses have blocked traffic by stopping along the bulbs. Often times the Rapid Ride is sitting at these locations for minutes at a time, up to 4.5 minutes, instead of the promised estimate of 30 seconds at a time. This is a problem. SDOT is attempting to work on some of these issues by putting in a different stop. Mike expects that there is little chance of SDOT admitting that a mistake was made in locating the stops.
Murray/Lowman Beach CSO Update: Doug Marsano with King County talked about the project for reducing storm and wastewater overflow from contaminating Puget Sound. Firefighters recently did some training on the buildings. Live burn training will not be done due to hazardous materials in the buildings. The City has given permits for removing the material from the buildings. The work on removing the materials is expected to take about 6 weeks. Then the buildings will be taken down, recycling as much material as possible. The County has to begin construction on the storage tank by the end of 2013. Construction fencing will go to the property line. By July, Doug should have a better idea on the construction timetable. Doug will check with operations as to whether a standby generator will be onsite during the interim. MoCA suggests asking Doug back to October for an update. By the way, the Barton Pump Station is also going pretty well. Some clay deposits are causing some hurdles.
West Seattle Bike Connections: Don Brubeck is here to start a conversation about Greenways in West Seattle. Greenways groups have been started all across Seattle. These are grassroots organizations that want safe and healthy neighborhood streets that work for everyone who needs to use them, including walkers, bicyclists, and drivers. Streets can promote good health in the community by being beautiful with healthy trees and encouraging people to walk and enjoy the streets. The people who live on these streets are the deciders, although it is a question as to how this may be harmonized with the Bike Master Plan and other citywide plans. You can see more information about this on the Sustainable West Seattle website. See also westseattlebikeconnections.org and www.seattlegreenways.org/neighborhoods/west-seattle. There is a proposed Brandon east / west GREEN superhighway that can potentially be developed. An attendee raised the concern about reckless bicyclists causing chaos on our streets. West Seattle Bike Connections is definitely involved in bicycle training and safety. The City doesn’t provide any money for this. There are concerns about the dangers of trucks, cars, and bicycles sharing the streets.
City Design Guideline Update: Cindi Barker spoke about the update process. On Monday, April 29, there will be a public hearing at council chambers at 6PM. Back in 2007, the Morgan Design guidelines were put together by a committee of planners, architects, and Cindi. The document described the Morgan Junction Urban Village and the Morgan Junction context and priorities. In 2010, the City did a revision that had issues. Now in 2013, the city started the revision process again. The City did an accurate transfer of the Morgan Junction committee’s concerns. But there were some deletions, which included Morgan Junction context. The City says that this is put into the reference guide. But the reference guide’s authority is ambiguous. Developers might ignore it or be confused. The Morgan Junction context includes small-town feel, a comfortable human scale, appealing with landscaping, good for walking, a vital commercial district, and an enhancement of this community that celebrates its relationship with Puget Sound. So an issue is that design guidelines and the Morgan Junction context have been removed from the guide. Cindi’s proposal is that the Morgan Junction-specific design guidelines be put back into the Morgan Design guidelines. They have the potential to provide good guidance for developers.
Cindi also talked about pedestrian-friendly enhancements along California from Graham down to Fauntleroy. This is beautification work, benches, trees, and bike stands. There will be engagement with the residents and local businesses.
Formation of “Friends of Morgan Junction Park” (and other Morgan beautification projects: MoCA is putting out a call for volunteers interested in forming a group to help with the maintenance and beautification of Morgan Junction Park and perhaps other green areas around Morgan Junction. Several people expressed interest in volunteering. MoCA welcomes more volunteers to loop themselves into the formation of Friends of Morgan Junction Park(s). The group is also looking for leadership. Please contact Deb if you are interested in helping or being a part of the group. This is a great opportunity if you are interested in urban forestry and the beautification of Morgan Junction.
Morgan Junction Community Festival: Chas spoke about the upcoming festival. It will be at Morgan Junction on June 22, 2013. It will be great fun. The festival will include great music bands, Bubbleman, the Bite of Morgan, the Bark of Morgan, food trucks, Young-at-Art, and other events that will make it a great festival. The festival needs volunteers! The volunteers can help to set up the festival and help keep festival-goers safe while crossing California Avenue.
Slate of Officers Vote: The incumbent board was re-elected by attendees to the board members’ current positions, unopposed: Deb Barker, president; Chas Redmond, vice president; Eldon Olson, treasurer; Sean Gamble, secretary.
Next MoCA Meeting is on July 17, 2013 at 7:00 PM at The Kenney, 7125 Fauntleroy Way SW, Room #2.
Remember to Save the Date:
June 22, 2013, The Morgan Junction Community Festival.