Parks Board Considers Run-off, Youth Involvement

The Seattle Board of Park Commissioners will hold its next meeting at 7:00 pm Thursday, January 27, in the Park Board Room at 100 Dexter Ave. N at the corner of Dexter and Denny.

The meeting agenda includes:

  • Overview of the YMCA’s Get Engaged Program: proposal to change selection method for 7th Board member.
    • Parks staff will brief the Board on the YWCA’s Get Engaged Program, whose purpose is to get young people aged 18 to 29 placed on City boards and commissions that advise departments, help shape policy decisions, make recommendations, and provide opportunities to have a voice in city government. Parks is proposing a partnership with Get Engaged to identify a seventh member of the Board of Park Commissioners. Current City ordinance calls for nomination of three members by the Mayor, three by the City Council, and one by the other six. The selection of the seventh member has proven to be a cumbersome process, and Parks proposes to ask the City Council to amend the ordinance to provide for this method of selection.
  • Briefing on Seattle Public Utilities’ Genesee Area Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) projects.
    • Parks and Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) staff will brief the Board on CSO projects in the Genesee area. Under the 2010 CSO Reduction Plan Amendment, an update to the City of Seattle’s plan for reducing overflows from the combined sewer system into surrounding surface waters, SPU aims to identify projects or programs that will limit untreated overflows at each CSO outfall to an average of no more than one per year, a performance standard established in the City’s CSO National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit. When complete, the projects will enable the City to capture 99% of combined sewer volume from the combined sewer system during storm events. SPU has identified some Parks properties as possible sites for CSO projects in the Genesee Basins. The briefing will focus on the Genesee projects, which involve use of park land at two locations on Lake Washington Boulevard.
  • Briefing on proposed Supplemental Use Guidelines for downtown parks.
    • Parks staff will brief the Board on proposed new Supplemental Use Guidelines for downtown parks. The guidelines will provide direction on what activities will provide a mix of active and passive use for the workers, residents, and visitors who use the parks. The policy covers City Hall Park, Freeway Park, Hing Hay Park, Occidental Square, Piers 62/63, Victor Steinbrueck Park, Waterfront Park, and Westlake Park. It encourages park uses consistent with Parks’ new direction for downtown parks, based on the work of the Center City Task Force: Parks is working to provide for more positive activities and entertainment in these parks to make them feel safer and more inviting. The policy would supersede old supplemental use guidelines for Market (Steinbrueck) Park, Freeway Park, Occidental Park, and Waterfront Park.
    • The Board will hold a public hearing on these proposed Supplemental Use Guidelines for Downtown Parks at its February 10 meeting, followed by a discussion and recommendation to the Superintendent at its February 24 meeting.

Briefing papers on each of these three topics will be available online at

The Board of Park Commissioners is a seven-member citizen board created by the City Charter. Three members are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council; three members are appointed by the City Council; and one member is appointed by the Park Board. The Board meets the second and fourth Thursday of each month to advise the Parks and Recreation Superintendent, the Mayor, and the City Council on parks and recreation matters. For more information, please contact Sandy Brooks at 206-684-5066 or

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SWS Stormwater Group To Meet Jan. 26 @ Uptown

The next Sustainable West Seattle stormwater meeting will be held Wednesday, January 26th, 7:30 to 9:00 pm at the Uptown Espresso at the corner of SW Edmunds St. and California Avenue SW, one block south of Alaska Junction.

This meeting is the  RESCHEDULED from the previously-scheduled  Jan. 19 date discussed at the last meeting and is due to conflicts with other SWS meetings.

Duwamish Superfund Comment Period Extended

Aerial View of Duwamish River

The deadline for comments on the Environmental Protection Agency’s Cleanup plan for the Duwamish River Superfund Site has been extended to Friday, January 14. Click here to learn more & comment on the Duwamish River Superfund cleanup.

The Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition/Technical Advisory Group (DRCC/TAG), the EPA, and other local governments hosted two very successful public meetings for the Superfund Feasibility Study (Cleanup Alternatives) on December 7th and 9th

DRCC and EPA worked with Concord International School for the December 7th meeting, and provided information in Spanish and English, with hands-on, small-group activities using Legos to illustrate the different cleanup choices.

December 9th was a more “traditional” public meeting, but also included a powerful video produced by local youth from the International District Housing Alliance’s Project WILD about their experiences interviewing Duwamish River fishermen. View their video here.

After hearing from the community representatives at workshops, through surveys, online, and in person, DRCC/TAG is proposing an additional cleanup alternative: #7

  • Cleanup Alternative #7 would clean up more of the river – it would aim to reduce chemical concentrations to “natural background” and provide better health protections for tribal and subsistence fishermen.
  • Cleanup Alternative #7 would include ongoing pollution source control, both along and upriver of the cleanup site, as an integral part of the alternatives described in the Feasibility Study.
  • Cleanup Alternative #7 would include an environmental justice assessment, to evaluate what the impact of chemicals left in the river would be on fishermen and others, and make that assessment part of the cleanup decision.

To view or download DRCC/TAG’s assessment of the cleanup alternatives, to to to download the PDF with the various options.

Background on this project: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released a draft study of cleanup alternatives for the Duwamish River. Past and present activities have left a legacy of chemical pollution in the river and in the sediment (mud) at the bottom. This pollution comes from many sources, including industries along the river and stormwater runoff from upland activities, streets, and highways.
The Draft Feasibility Study describes a range of river cleanup options. It is being prepared by the Lower Duwamish Waterway Group (LDWG) – Boeing, King County, the City of Seattle, and the Port of Seattle. Click here to visit the EPA’s web site for an overview of the Duwamish Superfund site and link to their 8-page Fact Sheet on the cleanup alternatives.

You have a voice in determining how our river gets cleaned up. Please share your comments with us by Friday, January 14th: or call 206-954-0218. Comments can also be sent directly to EPA at