Fremont Neighborhood Council – Annual General Meeting — April 28, 2014
Board members present: Stephanie Pure, Toby Thaler, Shawn Mulanix, Norma Jones, Jim Engelhardt, Judie Clarridge.
Stephanie opened the meeting and invited everyone to introduce themselves and share any announcements:
- Art Brochet, SDOT, provided an update on local projects: (1) The Fremont Bridge will be painted, in the same colors, this summer. The project is out for bids now. (2) There will be an Open House regarding the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track on May 21st, from 5:30 to 8:00 pm at the Fremont Studios. (3) A sidewalk on the south side of Northlake Way at the foot of Stone Way and a curb on the west side of Northlake Way by the parking lot will be constructed this summer. (4) In the late summer/fall, there will be resurfacing and girder replacement on the overpass over 15th Avenue West at the south end of the Ballard Bridge. This overpass is used when traveling between Nickerson and Fisherman’s Terminal. The overpass will be closed and lanes restricted for two months. Traveling from west to east will be the most impacted.
- FremontPublic Association / Solid Ground 40th Anniversary Event on Thursday, May 8, from 7 to 9 pm at the Fremont Abbey. Armen Stepanian will be among the speakers.
Keynote Speaker: Seattle City Councilmember Nick Licata
Nick announced a new approach to gather citizen comments on the City budget. Four workshops will be held in different areas of the city between May 6 and 14. Each workshop will focus on different departments (for example, the workshop at the University Heights Community Center will focus on Parks, Neighborhoods, Libraries, and the Arts) and will be attended by 3 councilmembers.
There was discussion about pedestrian safety when crossing Stone Way N.and N. 41st. Concern was expressed that, despite the “road diet” changes on Stone Way, it is still a major arterial and the crosswalk at that intersection is not a safe. Pedestrians using the crosswalk have been struck by cars both in the past and recently. Formal complaints have been submitted to SDOT. Drivers ignore pedestrians who are waiting to cross. The lanes on Stone Way are wide. Often, drivers have come off Aurora Avenue where the speed limit is higher. Hamilton Middle School, the Wallingford Community Council, and the Fremont Neighborhood Council have written letters to SDOT. A key issue is that the crosswalk is used frequently by students attending Hamilton Middle School. Students who live in Fremont use the N. 41st Street overpass over Aurora Avenue. The crosswalk at N. 41st is in a direct line from the overpass to the school.
There was further discussion about the effectiveness of various traffic calming measures. Pedestrian traffic is likely to increase with the additional 1,000 apartment units under construction along theStone Waycorridor.
Other topics of discussion were the upcoming district elections and the relative power of the mayor and the city council. Neighborhoods are looking forward to having at least one councilmember interested in their district. Does the success of the ballot measure to establish districts strengthen other grass roots measures such as future charter changes to balance the power towards the council? There was discussion that currently the council often takes a back seat.
Election of 2014 Officers and Board Members:
Stephanie presented the slate of officers and board members for consideration.
President: Stephanie Pure Vice President: Toby Thaler
Treasurer: Jim Engelhardt Secretary: Judie Clarridge
There were no nominations from the floor.
MOTION: Rita Selin moved that the slate of officers and board members be approved. Shawn seconded. The motion passed.
LAND USE AND TRANSPORTATION: Toby reported that the Design Review Board continues to schedule meetings on projects in Fremonton the 4th Monday of the month which is in conflict with the FNC Board meetings. Toby submitted comments on the mixed use apartment building project planned for N. 36th andGreenwood. Because parking for residents is on the same level as the commercial space, it reduces the space and hurts the viability of the commercial space.
Stephanie and Toby reported on the April 19th presentation that Bradley Khouri, B9 Architects, gave to the FNC board and nearby homeowners on the proposed 6-story mixed use apartment project at 743 N. 35th, immediately east of the Fremont Public Library. They appreciated that the architect and developer set up this presentation since the FNC would not be able to attend the DRB meeting. The developer is asking for a contract rezone for the additional height and, in return, is proposing open space in a plaza/courtyard area. The proposed plaza/courtyard area faces both commercial space and the front doors of townhouses. There was concern about how that design would work.
LAKE UNION DISTRICT COUNCIL: Ralph was elected to serve as the LUDC representative to the City Neighborhood Council (CNC). Because he is attending the CNC meeting tonight, Sarah submitted his report. At the April 7th LUDC meeting, applicants for the 2014 Neighborhood Park and Street Fund projects gave presentations to the Council. This included Fremont Greenways which proposed installing bicycle detection push buttons on NW 43rd St. (east and west), Contra-flow bicycle access onto eastbound NW 43rd St. (east side of intersection) and converting Yield signs to Stop signs on 6th Ave NW, where it crosses NW 43rd St. An advisory vote was taken and the final results will be reported at the next meeting.
MEMBERSHIP: Norma announced that the FNC currently has 79 members. She encouraged those in attendance to check the FNC’s website for more information. And, let those are not already members know that they could sign up on the website.
TREASURER’S REPORT: Stephanie said that she and Jim are working on transitioning the treasurer function and a report will be ready soon.
MINUTES: Norma moved that the minutes from the March Board meeting be approved as presented. Toby seconded. Motion passed.
The meeting was adjourned. The next meeting will be Monday, May 19, 2014. It is a week early due to the Memorial Day holiday.