Examples of what the Eastlake Community Council can do with your help
Public safety and emergency preparedness ECC works with the police department to develop neighborhood block watch networks, fight crime and graffiti, and with the police and fire departments to keep the neighborhood safe during the 4th of July fireworks, and to prepare for emergencies.
Noise We helped secure state funding for the I-5 noise walls along Boylston Avenue and are working toward their extension north to the Ship Canal Bridge and for noise reduction measures on the bridge. ECC overturned a permit that the City had issued for a helicopter port at the corner of Eastlake and Garfield; and helped broker an agreement under which float plane companies avoid early-morning takeoffs, and routes that are most disturbing to nearby residents.
Parks, trees, and pathways ECC helped create, renovate, or steward Eastlake’s shoreline parks as well as Fairview Park, Franklin Green Street, Colonnade Park, and the shoreline walkway and plantings at the south end of Fairview Avenue E. ECC has also worked to improve the North Gateway and Rogers Playfield, and got lighting for the Louisa Arborway. ECC volunteers have planted trees along several streets, and worked to arrange City planting of trees elsewhere such as on Lynn and Newton streets east of Eastlake Avenue.
Traffic and pedestrian safety ECC convinced the City to fund the boulevard strips in the center of Eastlake Avenue, install sidewalks and curbs on Newton Street between Franklin and Eastlake avenues and by Hamlin Street-end park, make Boylston Ave. East safer by the I-5 southbound on-ramp, and put in several traffic signals on Eastlake Avenue. ECC developed a design and convinced the City to fund a safer Fairview Ave. E./Fairview Ave. N. intersection. Ongoing efforts include pedestrian-friendly guidelines for Fairview Avenue E., restoring pedestrian access to the north side of the Roanoke St. bridge over I-5, more traffic signals on Eastlake Ave and more sidewalks on side streets.
Transit ECC successfully campaigned for replacement of diesel buses with electric trolley buses and is working to ensure that trolleys return after Mercer construction interrupted their service. ECC also works to protect Eastlake’s bus service from proposed reductions, and is working with large employers in Eastlake and South Lake Union to convince King County/Metro that there should be no bus routes on Eastlake Avenue that don’t make some stops here.
Parking Years of ECC effort produced the Residential Parking Zone, which gives residents priority for on-street spaces, but in its design is friendlier to neighborhood businesses than any other.
Zoning and land use ECC is usually contacted by developers before they apply for City permits; it facilitates neighborhood input for their plans, and sponsors open meetings for this purpose. ECC’s reviews of plans, discussions with developers and with City officials (and in some cases, administrative appeals and court challenges) have prevented some out-of-scale projects and reduced the height, bulk, and scale or improved the design of practically every large building constructed here in the last thirty years. ECC is working with the City to establish Eastlake-specific design guidelines for new projects, and for improvements in the Land Use Code that favor bulky “aPodments” without parking or public review.
Art Much of the neighborhood’s public art, such as the Cornerstones along Eastlake Avenue, occurred through the initiative of the ECC, which welcomes your further suggestions.
Schools ECC helped keep Seward School from being closed and sold. It designates a community representative on the TOPS-Seward School Site Council and works with the school on joint projects. ECC played a key role in the 2010 adoption by the School Board of policies greatly improving the admissions of Eastlake children to TOPS.
Retail district ECC is working to strengthen the neighborhood’s retail district, and invites volunteers from the business community to work with it on various projects toward that end.
Eastlake Neighborhood Plan Produced in partnership with the City and other local organizations, this 1998 plan (available on the ECC and City web sites) led to many of the above improvements, and others still to come. The plan culminated ECC efforts that began with Eastlake Goals and Policies acknowledged by a 1979 City Council resolution; a neighborhood needs survey (1990), an Eastlake Vision Plan (1993) and an Eastlake Transportation Plan (1994).
Newsletter and web site ECC publishes the quarterly Eastlake News, one of Seattle’s best neighborhood newsletters. 4000 copies are hand-delivered by 30+ volunteers to every residential and business address. The newsletter is made financially possible by advertisements for local businesses, and is an important channel for them to reach customers who work or live in Eastlake. The current issue and an archive of past issues are available elsewhere on ECC’s web site, http://eastlakeseattle.org. The web site is a clearinghouse for neighborhood information, history, and contacts with government offices. Comments and suggestions for the newsletter and web site are always welcome.
ECC public meetings The many topics (suggestions welcome) have included proposed building and transportation projects, crime prevention, emergency preparedness, neighborhood history, noise, parks, trees, state and local ballot measures, and talks by candidates and elected officials.
Informal events. To help Eastlakers make connections and have fun, ECC has organized dances, concerts, cruises, clean-ups, fairs, picnics, celebrations, auctions, tours, movie nights, etc. (suggestions are welcome).
Volunteers and donations make it happen It’s quite remarkable that ECC has achieved the above results almost entirely with volunteers. ECC can continue at the same pace only if new volunteers emerge to help. Your help can be used with any of the above topics, and your additional suggestions are welcome and needed. Because ECC is a volunteer organization, your dues and donations go very far. Please make a difference! ECC’s web site has a place for you to contribute dues or a donation, and/or to volunteer (need not be a member to volunteer). Or use one of ECC’s remit envelopes–if you don’t have one, please contact us.
Eastlake Community Council
c/o Lake Union Mail, 117 E. Louisa St. #1
Seattle, WA 98201-3278