Parks Wants Nominations for Wildlife Sanctuary Sites

Seattle Parks and Recreation, in cooperation with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, is proud to announce the Wildlife Sanctuary Program. With the community’s help, Parks’ objective is to identify and protect critical urban wildlife habitat for some of our most vulnerable species.

In 2009, the Seattle Board of Park Commissioners approved the Wildlife Sanctuary Policy, which articulates Seattle Parks’ commitment to sustain habitats for a wide variety of wildlife, and outlines steps Parks will take to create and manage wildlife sanctuaries for these species:

Parks invites nominations for wildlife sanctuary locations from the community. Any individual or community group can submit a nomination for a park site, between April 15 and June 15, 2010, of a location they think should become a sanctuary.

The nomination form is available now. Assessment of wildlife sanctuary applications will be completed by June 30, 2010, and the Parks Superintendent will have final approval of all nominated sanctuaries.

You can find nomination forms, instructions and references online at http://www.seattle.gov/parks/wildlife/sanctuary.

Nomination packets will also be available at Seattle Parks and Recreation Administration Building, 100 Dexter Ave. N, Seattle on April 13th.

Parks’ goal is to promote the value of healthy and diverse urban wildlife populations by working with the community to combine planning efforts, maintenance practices, educational opportunities, and volunteer stewardship to support wildlife.

For help and more information, please call Barbara DeCaro, Natural Resources Management Unit, at 206-615-1660 or email her at barbara.decaro@seattle.gov.

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Gardening Classes from Seattle Tilth

Seattle Tilth is offering a couple classes this weekend in West Seattle.

Get gardening in West Seattle with one of these engaging classes taught by garden educators from Seattle Tilth in conjunction with Community Harvest of SW Seattle.

  • Vertical Gardening (St. James Annex, 9421 18th SW) May 16, 10:00 to 12:00 noon. Learn to build cool garden trellises is this fun class.
  • 1-2-3 Grow a Garden (St. James Annex, 9421 18th SW) May 16, 1:00 to 2:00 pm. Get a one-hour introduction to growing veggies in your garden.
  • Garden Helpers (St. James Annex, 9421 18th SW) May 20 through Jun 13. A dynamic training program for people who want to help others in their community grow gardens.

See the full list of upcoming classes in West Seattle and in other neighborhoods at www.seattletilth.org.  For more information contact Liza Burke at lizaburke@seattletilth.org

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Free Pass to Seattle Green Festival – Volunteer

SCALLOPS will have a booth at the Seattle Green Festival.  You can get free admission if you volunteer to help staff the SCALLOPS booth – to do so, use this Doodle Link and sign up for a time period.

You can bring your SCALLOPS group posters and flyers to let the 15,000 plus folks who come to Green Festival each day learn more about what your group is doing.

And, save some time to attend the SCALLOPS workshop on Saturday, June 5, at noon at the  Community Action Stage – “Start Up Your Sustainable Community Now!”,  and on Sunday, June 6, at noon also at the Community Action Stage – “Sharing SCALLOPS Success Stories.”

For more information contact Cathy Tuttle at 206-547-9569 or visit the SCALLOPS website at http://scallops.ning.com/?xg_source=msg_mes_network.

Start @ Camp Long, Walk to reFresh Southwest Festival

Special Camp Long Event  on June 5 – Delridge WALKS – Exploring our Community on Foot (and the chance to win great prizes) Start at Camp Long at 9:00 a.m. on June 5.

Get in Step With reFRESH Southwest!

Join “Delridge WALKS” on Saturday, June 5th from 9:00 am to 1:00pm to explore, walk, & win!

Take steps towards building a safe and healthy Delridge by arriving to the reFRESH Southwest event by foot. Community members are leading walks from various locations around Delridge Community Center (South Seattle Community College, Delridge Neighborhood Service Center, Highland Park Improvement Club and Camp Long (led by Naturalist Gretchen Graber). Arrive by foot at the reFRESH Southwest event and hit up Delridge Neighborhood Points of Interest along the way to be entered to win one or more of dozens of great prizes. Additional CA$H prizes will be awarded for Delridge WALKS participants who enter to win the photo contest.

To join a walk, or for more info, email info@feetfirst.info or call 206-652-2310.

Camp Long, located at 5200 35th Avenue SW, offers family programs!  For more information go to http://seattle.gov/parks/environment/elc.htm

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Neighborhood Service Centers Closed (furlough)

Due to citywide budget cuts, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods (DON) and its Neighborhood Service Centers are required to close offices for 10 furlough days in 2010.

The two DON West Seattle Service centers are the Southwest District Service Center at 4205 SW Alaska Street (next to Rocksport in the Junction), the Delridge Neighborhoods District Service Center at 5405 Delridge Way SW.

The schedule is as follows:

2010 Closure Dates for Furlough:

  • Tuesday, June 1
  • Tuesday, July 6
  • Monday, August 9
  • Tuesday, September 7
  • Monday, October 11
  • Monday, December 2

The Energy Blog – by Andy Silber

This is something I wrote several years ago, but the premise is just as sound now as it was then and timely based on the Mayor’s upcoming announcement.

Seattle Transit

Seattle’s current transit capacity is far below what is needed to serve its population. As population increases our current system will fall even farther behind what is needed. But since Seattle doesn’t currently control its transit future, we are unable to grow the system to meet our needs.

I propose that Seattle take responsibility for transit, in cooperation with other entities like Metro and Sound Transit, by directing Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to hire a Director of Transit who would lead a new division charged with providing transit that meets the needs of Seattleites. Their tools would include re-purposing roads (e.g. making one lane of 1st Ave downtown bus only), funding increased Metro service, building and operating a monorail or trolleys or whatever is deemed to best meet the city’s needs.

This proposal doesn’t call out any particular transit solution or funding mechanism. Those will need to come out of study by professional transportation planners and elected officials. All this proposal does is acknowledge that the current system doesn’t work, and must be changed to better meet Seattle’s needs.

Why Metro Alone Won’t Work

King County is one of the most diverse in the country, ranging from nearly Manhattan densities in downtown and Belltown to rural land in the east (see Table 1). This complicates transit planning due to the equity arrangement: when Metro increases service, 20% of the new service is in the Seattle area and 80% to the rest of the county. This leads to two problems for Seattle: we can only increase the total service to the amount that the whole county is willing to pay for and for every $1 that Seattle increases its tax burden only 67 cents is spent in Seattle.

Every transit line has an ideal amount of service, which depends on many factors, but the single best predictor of how much transit an area needs is the density. Seattle’s density is nearly twice that of Bellevue’s and nearly 10 times the rest of the county. Since per-capita transit ridership increases with density, the ideal amount of transit is higher in Seattle than in the rest of the county. But the current funding formula does not give Metro the flexibility of putting the resources where there is demand.

In addition Seattle voters have shown a much greater interest in funding transit, but transit proposals need to be watered down to win enough votes outside of Seattle. So Metro alone can’t provide Seattle with the transit options it needs. Even if the funding levels were changed to represent the population, Metro would still be unable to provide Seattleites the transit options they want and need.

Seattle Bellevue Woodinville King Count King Count minus Seattle
Population (thousand people) 582 117 9 1737 1155
% of population 33 7 0.5 100 67
Density (thousand people per sq mile) 6.9 3.8 1.6 0.8 0.6

Table 1 Demographics for King County (from 2006 from the Census Bureau)

Principles of Seattle Transit

  • Goal of SDOT is to move goods and people, not vehicles.
  • No one should have to watch full buses drive past. If a line is that popular more resources need to be added to that line quickly.
  • If buses are getting stuck in auto traffic, then a grade-separated solution must be sought.
  • When doing cost-benefit analysis, include all costs: include the total cost of driving and pollution.
  • We must reduce the number of vehicle miles driven in Seattle even as the population grows.
  • Seattle should not be penalized by Metro for providing extra service.

Check out Andy’s other blog on 1Sky  http://www.1sky.org/blog/2010/05/how-big-does-the-bp-oil-slick-look-from-the-other-side-of-the-country

    Health, Equity, & Transportation Forum @ Yesler

    You are invited to a Health, Equity, & Transportation Forum Wednesday, May 26th, 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm, at the Yesler Community Center, 917 E Yesler Way. This event is part of the “Walk Bike Ride” initiative.

    This forum considers the impact transportation choices have on communities from a health and equity perspective. Moderated by C.R. Douglas, a panel of community members will discuss questions such as:

    • What do you see in your own neighborhood that makes you walk, bike, ride transit?
    • How do peoples’ neighborhoods/built environment affect their health?
    • How are different people affected differently? Why is this?
    • What does the future look like, if we do it “right”?

    Please let us know if you plan to attend!

    Panelists include:

    • Jen Cole is the director of the Safe Routes to School Program at Feet First. Safe Routes to School programs aim to increase the number of students walking and biking to school safely.
    • Dr. Ben Danielson is a pediatrician at Odessa Brown Children’s Clinic. Located in Seattle’s Central District, the clinic provides medical, dental and mental health care under one roof to all families regardless of their ability to pay.
    • Ed Ewing is the director of the Major Taylor Project at the Cascade Bicycle Club, which has the mission of creating a multicultural bicycling community where teenagers have equal opportunity to spend time outdoors and on a bicycle.
    • Carla Saulter, “Bus Chick”, blogs for www.seattlepi.com. Carla is a third-generation Seattleite (on her dad’s side) and is one of a growing number of Seattleites who have chosen to live without a car. She takes the bus everywhere she goes.
    • Anne Vernez Moudon, Dr. es Sc., Professor of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Design and Planning at the University of Washington. She also directs the Urban Form Lab, which studies neighborhood and street design, non-motorized transportation, and physical activity.
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    UnDriving Moves Out Into World @ Large

    Undriving launches new website!

    Undriving is moving forward into the world – please visit our new website at Undriving.org for all the latest news. You can now order a custom Undriver License online – so if you’ve been wanting to get one, or have friends who do, check it out. Undriver Licenses also make a great gift! You can also join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

    Jeffrey Kipper and Fulvio Casali were the ace technical experts responsible for launching the site, Nicole Fallat was responsible for the social-media links, and  Nova Askue, Cindy Butler, and Jenny Heins helped in many ways.

    Undriving is on the move!

    This great concept that was born within Sustainable Ballard has grown into a free-standing non-profit organization with its own board of directors, about to file for 501(c)(3) status (also many thanks to Urban Sparks for fiscal sponsorship since 2008). One big focus: we are working on developing a toolkit for other organizations to carry out this program.

    Undriving Events

    The highly popular Undriver Licensing Station will be at six events in April, May and June – three schools including Ballard High School, ArtsWalk in Olympia with Intercity Transit, and Seattle Green Festival June 5-6. We’ll also be at American Medical Response’s annual company picnic – if your company is looking for an engaging activity for employees and families, please inquire.

    Undriving Stories Project

    Undriving is honored to have received a grant from 4Culture, as part of the aLIVe program – a Low Impact Vehicle Exploration. In partnership with our friends at the UW Master of Communication in Digital Media program (MCDM), we will be producing six video stories featuring Undrivers and their discoveries. If you are interested in having your Undriving story featured, please email stories@undriving.org.

    See A BuiltGreen Home & Tesla Electric Car

    G2BHomes is hosting this Sunday, May 26, from 12 noon to 4:00 pm, an open house at 3119 Walnut St. SW to showcase building techniques and new electric vehicletechnologies.

    • Learn about Energy Efficiency in a BuiltGreen (4-star) home in West Seattle (3119 Walnut Ave SW)
    • Talk to the builders and partners (including Tesla, who will have an all-electric Roadster parked in the driveway!) about sustainable building

    For more information see www.g2bhomes.events

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