Archive for July, 2009

Do You Support The War On Cars?

[ The six semi-finalist candidates:  Bagshaw, Israel, Plants, Forch, Licata, and Bloom. ]
Let it be known that all 15 Seattle City Council candidates who participated in last Tuesday’s Candidate Survivor answered “yes” to the question:  Do you support the war on cars? So whoever wins, one thing we know for sure is that since there [...]

A Criminally Unfair, One-Sided, Amateur Blog-Style Q&A With (Or Without) David Miller

In a previous post, Seattle city council candidate David Miller left lengthy comments in response to my supposition that he is a density NIMBY.  His responses left me jonesin‘ for further clarification, and so I am posting my questions to David here,  with the hope that he will be willing to answer them in the [...]

Proposed Hugeasscity Institute Worldwide HQ

[ Image courtesy Darick Chamberlin ]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 29, 2009
An anonymous architect has won hugeasscity’s design competition for a new headquarters complex.  The hugeasscity board of directors is currently seeking a development site for the ambitious project rendered above, preferably to be located in a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood such as Seattle’s Central District.

I Skim The Seattle Times And Crosscut So You Don’t Have To

[ Point Wells, looking south.   Photo:  Steve Ringman / The Seattle Times ]
(Disclaimer: Seriously, I barely read more than the headline in each of the pieces discussed below.  I should be fired.)
Whenever the Seattle Times covers development you can safely bet the farm that they will frame the reporting with the OMG-development-is-evil-and-the-neighbors-are-howling-in-rage angle.  Like [...]

Sonic Oldies

Twenty eight years have passed since my friend played with members of Sonic Youth in NYC, but that didn’t stop him from getting on the guest list and dragging me along to the headlining show of the Capitol Hill Block Party.  No other Seattle neighborhood is more dominated by youth culture than Capitol Hill.  Yet [...]

Front Page News

As illustrated in the delectable graphic above, and reported on the front page of the Seatimes yesterday, and by The Stranger several weeks ago, there is an unusual housing project under construction near 23rd and John on Capitol Hill.  The project is unusual because it is designed on the rooming house model, with very small [...]

Tasty Tunnel Facts

Since I was given temporary and entirely undue credit yesterday morning for helping to create TunnelFacts.com, the least I can do is give it a little HAC love.  Bask in the pure wholesome goodness.
And as a reminder of the fact that there is a sane, fully vetted, and far less expensive alternative to a tunnel, here’s what [...]

RIP Julius Shulman

Julius Shulman died last week at age 98.  Having produced wonderfully seductive images well into his 90s, one can understand the great impact his career has had on the world of design.  For those interested, take a look here, here, here, and here.  There are countless others, just get your Google [...]

Broken Windows

The windows on the second floor of that building are seriously messed up.  Some of the lower sections have popped out, allowing fresh air from outside to flow directly inside to where the people are.  Whacked.
The second floor of the building at 2nd and University shown above is the office of architecture firm Perkins+Will.  Their [...]

Mike O’Brien For Seattle City Council Position 8

For me, this is the easiest choice out of all the races.  Among the reasons:  Mike O’Brien has been consistent in his support for an integrated surface/transit solution as opposed to the deep bore tunnel.
The list of supporters for O’Brien’s fundraiser includes many of the City’s best thinkers and leaders on urban environmental issues.  These [...]

Cultural Integration

“The renewal of life is the great theme of our age, not the further dominance, in ever more frozen and compulsive forms, of the machine.  And the first step for each of us is to seize the initiative and recover our own capacity for living; to detach ourselves from the daily routine to make ourselves [...]

Trains Are Magic

Even though my only credential is that I created a blog with the word “ass” in the title, yesterday I was allowed on the Link Light Rail VIP preview ride.  It’s a strange and beautiful world.
What is it about trains?  Everybody loves them.  And yes, of course, the Link Light Rail trains are sweet; the [...]

Coming To Othello Station: The Future

[ Rendering of Othello Partners' two proposed mixed-use projects, looking east on S. Othello St across MLK Jr. Blvd. ]
Though all we know for sure is that the part of the future that runs on rails is coming tomorrow.  Hopefully the buildings in the rendering above will materialize someday too.
Othello Partners recently announced that they [...]

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

A whole lotta lights that don’t need to be on, perhaps?
This photo of the ex-WaMu tower in downtown Seattle was taken as the blazing early afternoon sun flooded through all those floor-to-ceiling windows.   The row of overhead fluorescents nearest the windows can’t possibly be making much difference in the office light levels.  But nevertheless, there they [...]

Faith

Gawd Awful!

Not to be a negative nanny, or call attention to anything new, i.e. how awful Seattle townhouse development is, but I think it worth calling out those builders who are for the most part leaving nasty, long-lasting blemishes on Seattle’s built environment. This fine example is by Kohary Construction, Inc. You can see many more [...]

Weekend Density Update

Bill Dietrich on livable density.
Roger Valdez on Portland’s courtyard housing program.
Aubrey Cohen with a follow up to the environmentalist NIMBY oxymoron. 
Cohen notes that one problem with promoting density in Seattle is that we don’t have many good examples to point to (a.k.a. the burden of the density advocates).  Part of that is because it is [...]

On my first experience seeing Link in the transit tunnel, a haiku

shaft through this tunnel
fills me with tender tremors
you come, and depart

The Only Problem With The Proposed Seattle Housing Levy Is That It Isn’t Big Enough

On June 15 Seattle City Council approved the Mayor’s $145 million Housing Levy proposal, which will now be subject to voter approval this November.  The current levy (3 mb pdf) has been a popular and successful program, and has been a key tool for enabling affordable housing projects all over the city (6 mb pdf).
Broadway [...]

Hey West Seattle, Quit Your Bitchin’!

 A Seattle Times article today discussed the City’s proposal to install parking pay stations at the West Seattle Junction. Businesses and residents are up in arms – how could they!! Especially after the neighborhood fought hard to remove meters a decade ago. Businesses argue that making people pay for parking is bad for business. I [...]