Victory Heights Scores $4,157 Grant From City

Thanks to the efforts of the Victory Heights Community Council (especially President Ann Forrest), the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods has awarded a matching grant of $4,157.25 for various signs and expenses to be used around the neighborhood.

Read Minutes from the May Victory Heights Community Council Meeting

Read Minutes from the April Victory Heights Community Council Meeting

This money is in exchange for volunteer hours we have pledged including maintaining the traffic circles around Victory Heights. The funds include purchasing “Welcome To Victory Heights” signs from the city to be placed on arterials, banners, copying flyers, and buying ice cream for the social on Tuesday July 18th.

In other business at the Community Council meeting, we heard from David Johnson of Sustainable NE Seattle. These great folks organize urban farms, school gardens, the NE Tool Library (which is awesome!), the emergency preparedness HUB in Wedgwood, skills fairs, and garden tours.

Despite a fancy display shown to the Council last year, the Northgate pedestrian/bike bridge has been radically redesigned to be narrower, shorter, and more importantly, cheaper than the initial design.

The next meeting of the Victory Heights Community Council will be Tuesday, June 20th at 7 PM at the co-op preschool building and will feature a speaker from Seattle Parks about the renovation project in our park.

New Emergency Communications HUB Approved For Victory Heights

At last night’s meeting of the Victory Heights Community Council it was announced that our request for funding a communications HUB to be established in Victory Heights Park was approved by the city! Similar to HUBS that already exist at the Fred Meyers in Lake City and Maple Leaf Park (though smaller to begin with), this volunteer-run emergency HUB will allow neighbors to organize after a disaster (most likely an earthquake), trade information and resources, and communicate with the outside world. It will be based in Victory Heights Park.

Read the entire minutes of the November meeting.

tabletop-exAnticipating the HUB, a tabletop emergency preparedness exercise will be held this Saturday, November 19th between 10:30 AM and 11:30 AM at the Northgate Library. One was held last week (see photo) and really helped streamline procedures and problems we might encounter during an actual emergency.

Other bits of news: the annual Christmas Caroling event will be Sunday, December 18th starting at 5 PM.  Let us know if you will be participating or if you’d like us to visit your house and sing a few songs that evening.

The Victory Heights Community Survey is still going on. Take a moment and fill it out so the community council can know how they can better serve you.

A natural gas main will be installed along 19th Avenue NE between NE 107th Street and Northgate Way between November 28-30.

Next month’s speakers on December 20th will include a Crime Prevention Coordinator and a community police team officer talking about “Crime Prevention & Response.”

Please take a minute to “Like” the Victory Heights Blog Facebook Page.

Volunteers’ Hours Will Help Build Emergency HUB in Park

At last night’s meeting of the Victory Heights Community Council, over 20 people agreed to volunteer their time during the next year to help secure funds to build an emergency communications HUB based on Victory Heights Park.

Read the full minutes of last night’s meeting.

Communication HUBs have been set up around the city by volunteers to be used to gather and disperse information in the case of a disaster.  There has been one in Lake City at the Fred Meyer parking lot for several years now (read about a drill held there several years ago).

On September 12th, Vice-President of the community council Ann Forrest is going to apply for a matching grant from the city. To match the amount requested, community members must pledge to volunteer a certain number of hours (calculated at $20 per hour worked) over the next year (starting on the 12th). So if 10 people each pledged to work 5 hours, that would be 50 hours or $1000 we could receive in matching funds. The cost to set up the HUB will be between $1,000 and $3,000 depending on how much equipment and supplies would be purchased. It would be stored in a locked box in the park, pending approval of Seattle Parks.

In case of emergency, always check your home and family are safe first.  Then check the neighbors.  Then find out how the community is doing.  That is what the HUB is for, especially when conventional communications might not work in an emergency. The HUB would be fitted with ham radios to keep in touch with Seattle officials and other HUBs in the network. Drills would be conducted periodically to help train volunteers and establish procedures to better cope with likely events (earthquakes, massive power outage, volcanos) that likely would mean first-responders would not be able to reach us for hours or possibly days due to infrastructure damage and other priorities.  Keeping people informed about the situation and connecting up resources with needs is the primary function of a HUB.

If you would like to know more, or to volunteer to help put in hours, please write us and we will let the organizers know.

The next meeting of the Victory Height Community Council is Tuesday, September 20th in the co-op preschool building in Victory Heights Park starting at 7 PM. We’ll be electing a new president and several board seats are now open.  Come be a part of our great community!

Live Near Thornton Creek? Get Free Improvement Grants

The Adopt A Stream Foundation is in the second year of a three-year grant to do improvements around Thornton Creek. If you are a homeowner who has any part of their property within 35 feet of the creek you are eligible for a free assessment of your property and if you want, they will help pay for improvements such as erosion abatement, evasive species control, lawn replacement with native species, or even a rain garden (one is already going in at the end of Elshin Place under the 15th Avenue NE bridge).

Read the complete minutes of this month’s Victory Heights Community Council meeting.

Working from funding from the Washington State Department of Ecology, Adopt A Stream is joining with the Thornton Creek Alliance to identify eligible properties and contact homeowners about this terrific program. To learn more, contact Les Meade, an ecologist at Adopt A Stream: lesm@streamkeeper.org.

In other business from last night’s meeting of the Community Council, there are plans to make the annual neighborhood block party a separate event from August’s Neighborhood Night Out, and concern about pedestrian safety crossing 15th Avenue NE just north of the bridge.

Next month’s meeting on February 16th will feature a return of the Parks Department with designs for new park improvements coming in 2016. Don’t miss it!

Victory Heights Park Playground Needs Your Support

Robin from the Victory Heights Co-op Preschool wants us to know:

In February, Victory Heights Cooperative Preschool applied for a City of Seattle neighborhood grant for park and playground improvements at Victory Heights. Great news: the City has invited us to make a presentation at the North District Community Council meeting on April 1st – no foolin’! 🙂
To help show your support, please take two minutes of your time to answer a 5-question survey by March 31, 2015. Link to the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/MGGM5DT