In a jam-packed agenda at the Wedgwood Community Council meeting on Monday evening, March 21, 2016, reports were heard on issues affecting the immediate neighborhood and all of north Seattle.
City Councilmember Debora Juarez gave a report on major projects in District 5 which includes Wedgwood north of NE 85th Street and all of north Seattle from Puget Sound to Lake Washington. Major capital projects are a new North Precinct Police Station to be built at 130th & Aurora; extension of light rail lines up through Northgate; and a pedestrian/bike bridge to be built spanning I-5 so that people can get back and forth from North Seattle Community College across to Northgate with its transit hub.
Councilmember Juarez now has an office on the campus of North Seattle Community College so that residents of District 5 can come to get info and discuss concerns. The District 5 office is open every Friday from 10 to 3 and is located in Room #1451, adjacent to the NSCC cafeteria and coffee shop. Call 684-8805 for info or contact legislative assistant email@example.com
Next on the agenda at the March 21st Wedgwood Community Council meeting was a report from neighbors who have organized to gain improvements on their street. On the westernmost edge of the Wedgwood neighborhood, a section of NE 85th Street extends from Lake City Way NE to Ravenna Ave NE. On February 21st in the 2100 block of NE 85th Street, neighbors witnessed an officer-involved shooting in which the suspect was killed. Nearby neighbors had begun organizing even before this, but the traumatic event coalesced the neighbors into even stronger efforts to work together. Calling their program Reimagining NE 85th Street, the group hosted a walk-through on March 14th with City of Seattle department representatives to look at needed improvements, especially street use.
One of the primary functions of the Wedgwood Community Council, a volunteer neighborhood-advocacy group, is to help residents find and use City of Seattle resources. At the WCC meeting on March 21st the Reimagining NE 85th Street group members listed what actions have already been taken, such as reporting abandoned vehicles and illegal dumping. Discussion was held on other possible strategies including project funding offered by the City of Seattle. The WCC will continue to support Reimagining NE 85th Street in their neighborhood improvement efforts. UPDATE: A work party is scheduled for Saturday, April 23rd from 9 to noon; everyone is welcome to join in and show support for this block improvement initiative in western Wedgwood. The work party will be clearing brush and weeds closest to the corner of Ravenna Ave NE at NE 85th Street.
SECOND UPDATE: The April 23 work party went well. In addition to these continuing efforts, the Wedgwood Community Council has endorsed the street fund application of the Reimagining NE 85th Street project. It will be presented on Thursday evening, May 5, at the Northeast District Council meeting.
Other topics at the March 21st Wedgwood Community Council meeting were the Emergency Preparedness workshop on April 9th; Spring Clean initiatives in Wedgwood; and the traffic issues on 35th Ave NE during evening rush hour, caused by cars detouring through Wedgwood due to closure of a section of Sand Point Way NE. The WCC requested that a traffic officer be placed at the intersection of NE 75th Street from 5 to 7 PM weeknights, which was done as of March 3rd.
During the evening rush hour, traffic officers posted on 35th Ave NE at NE 75th Street have helped to keep traffic flowing, control left-turning traffic so that cars do not block the intersection, and help pedestrians cross safely. Updates on the Sand Point Way NE repair work are posted regularly here on the WCC webpage.
Some of the other projects which the WCC is interacting with, include the work which Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will do to extend the Wedgwood Neighborhood Greenway north of NE 85th Street. SDOT street work will also occur on 40th Ave NE near to the new Thornton Creek School buildings where pedestrian crossings will be marked.
Another community council project which is about to be launched, is an upgrade of the WCC website, done by a dedicated volunteer who has given many hours of his time. UPDATE: Check out our great new webpage! And you can also sign up for “electronic newsletters” with links back to the full articles on this page.
If you would like to get involved in activities and advocacy for Wedgwood, use the links to these events or contact WCC directly at firstname.lastname@example.org