News blog for Seattle's Fremont neighborhood


Entries from January 2011

‘Quirky’ Fremont Featured By BBC

January 27th, 2011 by master

If you happen to notice an influx of English, Irish, Welsh and Scottish accents in Fremont over the course of the next 6-12 months, you can probably thank the BBC for it’s story on Fremont that’s currently featured on their homepage.

The article is a rundown of Fremont for tourists who might be interested in stopping by on their trip to Seattle.

This neighbourhood, less than five miles north of the heart of downtown Seattle, continues its legacy of public art, everyday weirdness, and off-the-wall-events inclined towards nudity and costumes. Yet its popularity, soaring rent prices, new luxury condos, and inundation of high tech company offices have transformed it into something a tad different than its tie-dyed forefathers and mothers anticipated.

Fair enough.

They also name-check the Fremont Sunday Market, Hub and Bespoke, Flying Apron Bakery, Uneeda Burger, Brouwer’s Cafe, ETG Cafe and hey, this blog! The post itself comes courtesy of Lonely Planet, though with all of the Brits currently planning to visit us now, I don’t think we’ll be too lonely in our own little universe for long.

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Seattle Installs Flashing Beacons at B.F. Day, Other Schools

January 27th, 2011 by master

As a way of reminding drivers to take it slow near our schools, the City of Seattle has installed new flashing school zone beacons at five Seattle schools, including Fremont’s BF Day Elementary school. The beacons are accompanied by signs that denote a 20 MPH speed limit when children are present or when the lights are flashing.

The Seattle Department of Transportation also recently made additional school walking route improvements at BF Day.

“Adding flashing beacons has been shown to lower speeds through school zones and lower vehicle speeds typically result in fewer pedestrian injuries and fatalities,” according to the Seattle Department of Transportation’s (SDOT) Safe Routes to School Coordinator Brian Dougherty.

SDOT now operates 47 pairs of school zone beacons at 45 public and private elementary schools around the city. Funding for the new beacons came from the Bridging the Gap transportation levy passed by Seattle voters in 2006.

Photo: SDOT

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Seattle Totally Just Kidding About Those Parking Hikes (For Now)

January 27th, 2011 by master

Two weeks ago we heard about rising parking rates all around Seattle, including a $0.50/hour hike here in Fremont. Most of you were displeased. And you weren’t alone.

The city was listening to you and other neighborhoods, some of which are facing a new $4.00/hour parking rate, and is putting these revised rates under review before making them official.

At a lunch-time forum at City Hall, Councilmember Tim Burgess said the City Council has asked for a review of a parking study used by the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to set the new rates.

Mike Estey, SDOT manager, said staff were “scrubbing the numbers, the data and methodology” in the wake of criticism that the rates would hurt small businesses and were based on peak-occupancy, not typical parking availability.

No word on what changes might be in order and whether or not this affects Fremont specifically (most comments are directed towards downtown), but at least for the time being you can expect to see the same-old $1.50/hour rates in town.

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Fremont Dancer A Part Of Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Cinderella

January 26th, 2011 by master

Following a nine-year hiatus, Kent Stowell’s Cinderella makes a long-anticipated return for its McCaw Hall debut with the Pacific Northwest Ballet. Choreographer Kent Stowell’s show, drawn from the original French fairy tale, features 50 professional dancers in both dramatic and comedic roles, live orchestra and more than 100 elaborately detailed costumes set against vast storybook backdrops.

It also features a talented, young dancer from Fremont.

Third-grader Anika Thomas will be performing the role of Memory Child in the show. She is one of sixty-two children from Pacific Northwest Ballet School performing in 32 roles.

If you’d like to see Anika and the rest of the case of Cinderella, you can find out more information here. The show runs from February 4th through February 13th.

Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Cinderella premiered in May, 1994 and the Company has toured the production to California, Arizona, and Edmonton and Calgary, Canada. It was last performed in Seattle in 2002 at the Mercer Arts Arena.

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Fremont Transitions To LED Streetlights

January 26th, 2011 by master

Between Ship Canal and 65th Street, residential streetlights have been shining a little differently in recent weeks. The streetlights have been replaced with Light Emitting Diode (LED) fixtures, just some of the 5,000 LED streetlights that were converted over the last year in Seattle.

Seattle City Light plans to convert all 40,000 residential streetlights to LED within the next four years. The changeover will save money in the cost of repairs and replacements. LED lights last for twelve years, compared to standard lights which only last four.

Bruce Harrell, a member of the Seattle City Council and Chair of the Energy, Technology and Civil Rights Committee, pushed for LED changes. Harrell likes what the lights do for Seattle, not just from a cost-perspective but also for quality of life.

LEDs use 40 percent less energy while producing light comparable to moonlight, which makes it easier to see small objects and color distortion is reduced. HPS streetlights produce amber colored light which alters the colors of objects. For example, under the amber colored glow of an HPS streetlight white will appear as light-blue. LEDs do not have that effect. We expect savings of nearly $300,000 in the first year and more than $2 million per year when all 40,000 are installed.

Councilmember Harrell wants to know what you think of the new LED lights by reaching out to him at with comments and questions.

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The First Buildings In Fremont

January 26th, 2011 by master

Recently we heard all about where Fremont got its name from. But how did Fremont literally start? In other words, what was the first building in all of Fremont?

Believe it or not, it was not a Thai restaurant. It was the Occidental Hotel (maybe…it could just be an advert for the hotel as well).

Courtesy of the Asahel Curtis Collection, this photo comes to us as part of the University of Washington Libraries Digital Collection, which is chock-a-block with cool photos of early Seattle.

They didn’t have Yelp back then so there’s no way to tell how good of a hotel it was or whether or not there was a Starbucks in the lobby.

Check out some more Fremont-related photos in the collection including some old-timey photos of B.F. Day School and Fremont’s first post office in 1890. My personal favorite is the photo of these lunatics ice skating on Lake Union. Who wants to give that a try next time it ices over?

Check out the whole collection and take a trip back to a simpler time, before Seattle needed superheroes.

H/T: Tom

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Adele Salon Brings ‘Intimate, Community-Oriented’ Hair-Styling To Fremont

January 25th, 2011 by master

A new high-end, boutique hair salon is coming to Fremont. Adele Salon will open at 4224 Fremont Ave North (across from Paseo) on February 1st and promises to offer an intimate, community feeling while you get your cuts, color, highlights or one of their other many services.

Adele’s owner, Amy Quackenbush, is moving to Fremont after owning the hair salon Suede in Roosevelt for six years. After evaluating neighborhoods to find one friendly towards locally-owned businesses and which provides support for those owners, she found that Fremont fit the bill.

“We’re thrilled be a part of Fremont’s incredible community and to bring our services to the neighborhood,” Quackenbush said. “Adele fits seamlessly into this pedestrian-friendly area surrounded by independent restaurants and retailers; we look forward to being here for many years and forging lasting relationships.”

Quackenbush bring with her two fellow stylists, Jenna McClure and Karen Andrews, that will make up the trio working at Adele. The three have worked together for four years and share a camaraderie not only amongst one another but also with each others’ clients.

“We pride ourselves on the fact that we know each others’ clients,” says Quackenbush, who describes the atmosphere inside her salon as an “intimate, community-oriented space, like a coffee shop setting.”

Since no one working at the salon is named Adele, it begs the question…who is it named after? That would be Quackenbush’s “eternally fashionable grandmother,” who passed away a few years back but remains an inspiration.

The salon’s signature is their “Diamond Cut.” While getting a precision cut, they add a glazing treatment to your hair. The service also includes a shampoo, blow dry and finishing touches.

While many long-time clients know the stylists and will be following them to the new location, Adele invites new clients to come check out the space when it opens with a special deal. For the first month, any new client will receive a complimentary “Power Dose,” which includes a three-minute shampoo as well as a conditioning treatment (a $20 value).

Salon hours will be Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 206.522.5245 or visit More photos of the new space after the jump.

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Fremont News, Notes, Happenings & Whatnot 1/20

January 25th, 2011 by master

Some news and items of interest for Fremonsters…

  • The “Mayor of Fremont” get a shout-out in this online comic.

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City Asks Neighborhood Businesses To Host Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

January 24th, 2011 by master

This story is from our sister site Phinneywood.

The city’s Office of Economic Development is asking businesses to host an electric vehicle (EV) charging station for customers.

Charlie Cunniff, with the OED’s Seattle Climate Partnership, told a recent Greenwood-Phinney Chamber of Commerce meeting that any business with a parking lot  could host one parking spot with a plug-in. Cunniff says the business could promote it as a benefit for customers to charge up while shopping.

The U.S. Department of Energy awarded a $115 million grant to Phoenix-based ECOtality to manage the EV Project, installing 15,000 charging stations in 16 cities in six states, including Washington. ECOtality, which has been in the electric vehicle charging business for 20 years, matched the government grant, for a total of $230 million for this pilot project.

“The electric vehicles are here, it’s not the future, and there needs to be a charging infrastructure for people to charge outside their homes and at their homes as well,” Dan O’Shea, Washington State sales manager for ECOtality, explained. “Within the next three to five years, 80 percent of all car manufacturers are going to have at least one electric vehicle.”

O’Shea, who lives in Phinney Ridge, says his company plans to install about 2,000 EV chargers from Olympia to Everett. About 900 of those will be in the homes of people who agree to have their data shared as part of the pilot project, to help the DOE determine where to install additional chargers, and to understand the habits of EV drivers.

“Western Washington and Seattle are an important part” of the project, he said.

A Blink residential electric vehicle charger.

About 1,200 chargers will be publicly available at short-term parking lots where customers would typically park from one to three hours, “where you’re going to be doing your topping off of your battery,” O’Shea explained.

The public charging stations will be what’s called Level 2 chargers, at 220 volts. (Level 1 is a normal household 120 volt system.) Level 3 chargers, called a Fast Charger (with 480 volts) will be installed at fueling stations and other easy-access places such as convenience stores.

A Level 2 charger for commercial locations, such as parking lots.

O’Shea says Level 2 chargers would typically take four to eight hours to fully charge an electric vehicle. But, “a Fast Charger will take your battery from zero to 80 percent full in 26 minutes,” he said.

Fast Chargers have two ports, so two cars can plug in at one time, however, they charge sequentially. So the first car will be charged, then it will automatically start charging the second car.

“They’re very forward looking, very modern looking. Size wise, they’re very manageable,” he said. “It looks like a giant iPod Shuffle. They have touch screens, interactive screens.”

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Fremont News, Notes, Happenings & Whatnot 1/20

January 20th, 2011 by master

Some news and items of interest for Fremonsters…

  • Fremont has been identified as a hot spot for electric car ownership growth.

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