Monthly Archives: April 2009

Roanoke exit closed tonight and Monday

More finishing work on the noise wall project, says the State Department of Transportation. Here’s their press release:

As the project winds down, we need to return the area to the way we found it before construction. That includes installing guardrail and other safety equipment along the southbound I-5 exit to Boylston Avenue E. You may notice additional noise from the freeway as we complete the work. We’ll use every reasonable measure to keep noise to a minimum.

In order to complete the work we need to close the southbound I-5 exit to Boylston Avenue E. for two nights:

  • Thursday, April 30 – We’ll close the southbound I-5 exit to Boylston Avenue E. at 9 p.m. The exit ramp will re-open to drivers by 5 a.m. on Friday, May 1.
  • Monday, May 4 – We plan to close the southbound I-5 exit to Boylston Avenue E. at 9 p.m. The ramp will re-open to drivers by 5 a.m. on Tuesday, May 5.

The I-5 Pavement Repair Project will also require lane and ramp closures in the area this week and next. You can always find project related closures online.


Cheshiahud Trail: the Missing Link

The Cheshiahud Trail wraps smoothly around Lake Union except for one missing link: the section between Edgar and Hamlin on Fairview Ave. E.  To make the connection, a pedestrian or cyclist must trudge up Edgar to Eastlake and down Hamlin (or vice-versa), both steep east-west streets that run down to the water from a busy arterial.

Some of the block between Hamlin and Edgar is public right of way. The street right-of-way actually extends from Hamlin to within about 50 feet of Edgar Street End Park, an undeveloped park overrun with bamboo and blackberry. The shoreline of property at 10 E. Edgar is half on the city right-of-way. A permit for the dock (mostly on city right-of-way) is renewed every September, but the city does not review the permit for possible violations. At present, large concrete blocks are stored on city property behind a gate and fence that also intrude on city property. There is no permit for this storage; the city issued a stop-work order last year when the blocks were delivered, possibly for building a new bulkhead, but they have not been removed.

If the blocks, fence and gate were moved, the city could require an easement to connect the city right-of-way with Edgar Street End and build a stairway for pedestrians and cyclists. The city has already approved a construction permit to build the stairway but has not funded it. If this connection were made, it would complete the Cheshiahud loop and reduce the incentive for cyclists to stay on Eastlake and add their names to the list of cyclist fatalities in Seattle.

Spring in Eastlake

People jogging and walking their dogs around Minor, Yale and Fairview have probably seen me clicking away on my camera.  I really love the variety of flowers, plants and trees that Eastlakers put in their yards.  And it’s great that some bloom now, while others wait until late summer, so the show lasts a while. 

Attached are some shots I’ve recently taken around the neighborhood.  Hope you enjoy.  You may even spot your house.


Boylston paving project nears completion

New pavement on the I-5 ramp at Boylston.

The last part of the Boylston noise wall project is nearing completion.

State Department of Transportation crews have finished repaving Boylston at the southbound I-5 exit. According to the DOT, the ramp should be open by 8 p.m. this evening (Saturday) unless they open it earlier. Crews are currently reinstalling barriers.

Even more important, the barriers that blocked access to Boylston at Hamlin and Edgar have been removed. This will make it easier for residents in this part of Eastlake (of which I am one) to get to the freeway and Capitol Hill.

Tonight also brings the last weekend closure of the University Bridge, from midnight to 6 a.m. This closure is part of the ongoing painting project on the bridge.


The DOT has a slideshow of the noise wall construction project:

Volunteer opportunities in Eastlake

Chris Leman sends the following:

Volunteers are needed tomorrow (Thursday, April 23), 8:30-11:30 a.m., on the east Lake Union shore between NOAA and Lake Union Drydock. Join 20 high school students in helping with the remaining planting and to spread mulch. The mulch keeps weeds down and helps keep the soil moist during the summer.  Bring raingear, gloves and sturdy shoes.

And now that we’ve restored the lakebank between NOAA and Lake Union Drydock with native plants, we need to water them in the coming months. Once the plants get established, they won’t need watering, but they do need it for the first few summers. Please call (206) 322-5463 or e-mail to sign up for a future weekday or weekend. Also, we need donations of hoses, nozzles, soaker hoses and sprinklers, which you can leave by the tool hutch at 1609 Fairview (near the trash can).

Volunteers are also needed to help inventory Eastlake’s trees, especially the large ones which we are fast losing from lack of priority. This will involve filling out an inventory form and it would be good also to take a photo. Instructions and advice will be provided. To get involved:  See the article on page 4 of the April/May Eastlake News (PDF), which is also available at

Election season opener for Seattle City Council candidates

City Council candidates, from left, Ginsberg, Plants,
O’Brien, Miller, Licata, Israel, Williams, Bagshaw, Bloom,
Kaplan, Rosencrantz, Conlin, Royer.

The first public “Meet and Greet” of the City Council election season was last night in View Ridge. Thirteen candidates turned out for the event at the Sandpoint Community Methodist Church.

Johnathon Fitzpatrick of Ravenna Nation reports on who was there and gives a quick rundown on what issues each candidate is running on.


Spring in the P-Patch

Joe Monda prepares his garden.

It was easy to tell it was Spring on Saturday: The sun was actually visible and gardeners were preparing their plots at the Eastlake P-Patch on Fairview.

Dirt was being turned, planting beds were being cleared and the water was on. Some early flowers were even blooming, signs of what is to come when the mini-gardens begin growing in earnest.

The P-Patch is planning to expand, say the volunteer site coordinators, Mary Jones and Barb Donnette. There’s a lot of demand for space in the P-Patch and a long waiting list to get a spot.

The expansion would add 20 new plots to the 28 already there. The new plots would be smaller (100 square feet instead of the 200 square feet of the current plots) and would be situated on the hill above the current plots. There would be three new plots that would be accessible to those with limited mobility.

Eastlake garden designer Lisa Hummel has designed the expansion. In addition to the new beds, the plans include a new pathway to connect the lower garden with the new upper space.

The volunteers have applied for a $15,000 matching grant from the City’s Department of Neighborhoods to help fund the expansion. Donnette says they have $30,000 in volunteer matching donations (labor, materials and in-kind services) and $2,000 in cash matches.

Donnette says they are also hoping to get surplus material from the City’s Department of Transportation to be used in the project, everything from old street signs to rubble.

“We are still reaching out to neighborhood folks who want to get involved in work on site or to support the effort through the donation of services, goods or cash,” she says. 

Check the pledge form online at the Eastlake Community Council’s web site for more information or to donate. Contact Mary Jones at MEJ(at) or Barb Donnette at jandbdonnette(at) for information on the P-Patch and the expansion. For information on the City’s P-Patch program, click here.

Currently showing in the P-Patch’s arbor is “Partly Sunny,” a piece of fabric art by Barb Matthews, a student in the University of Washington’s Fiber Arts Certificate Program. Her artwork in the P-Patch features a sunburst design done in an array of brightly colored cotton fabric on a blue nylon backing. Look to the back of the garden to see it. On Saturday afternoon, a gentle breeze made “Partly Sunny” dance in the sunlight.  

Click the arrow to see the slide show. Click on an individual photo to see caption info in Flickr.

Car prowl at south end of Lake Union

Police report a car that was parked in the 900 block of Fairview Avenue N. was broken in to sometime between 6:15 and 9 p.m. on Thursday, April 9.

The owner parked the car and went to nearby restaurant. When he returned he found the side rear window of the car broken (damage estimate is $300) and numerous items stolen. Police are investigating.

Noise wall installation is under way

Positioning one of the noise wall panels.


Lifting the sections.

Construction crews are installing the final two sections of noise walls along Boylston Avenue E. this weekend. The street is closed  between Lakeview Boulevard E. and E. Lynn Street and also between E. Roanoke and E. Hamlin until early Monday morning.

The photos were taken just before noon on Saturday. Each of the noise wall slabs weighs approximately 7,200 pounds.

It’s a great show to watch. Just stay on the sidewalk and out of the way.