Joshua McNichols | KUOW News and Information

Joshua McNichols

Reporter

Year started with KUOW: 2007

Joshua has been the "growing pains" reporter since 2015, documenting the region's growth and change. 

Joshua “took the long way” to radio, working in architecture firms for over a decade before pursuing his passion for public radio in 2007.

By "long way," he means he's also been a writer, bicycle courier, commercial fisherman, bed-and-breakfast cook, carpenter, landscaper and stained glass salesman. He’s detailed animal enclosures to prevent jaguars from escaping the Miami Zoo. Once, while managing a construction site in Athens, Greece, he was given a noogie by an Albanian civil war refugee in his employ. “You do not tell those guys how to place stucco,” he said.

All of which has no doubt made him the story-teller he is today.  

Ways to Connect

A dartboard we fixed up at Earl's On The Ave in Seattle's University District
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Amazon has released its list of 20 finalists for the company's next headquarters.

Many of the chosen don't come as big surprises: Chicago, Boston, New York, etc. But then there were cities like Miami and Indianapolis that made us ask, what are you doing on this map?

Traffic on Second Avenue in downtown Seattle.
Flickr Photo/Oran Viriyincy (CC-BY-NC-ND)/http://bit.ly/1irsJLd

Traffic engineers have lots of projects planned for downtown Seattle in 2018. In the short run, they could cause more congestion. But they say it'll be worth it in 2019, when even bigger projects are planned.

Sugary drinks like this will be taxed 1.75 pennies per ounce in Seattle beginning January 1, 2018.
Flickr Photo/Mike Mozart (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/pohVni

Seattle’s new soda tax hits stores on January 1.  Officials hope the tax - 1.75 pennies for every ounce of sugary drinks purchased - will help decrease obesity without hurting businesses. Scientists in Seattle will be monitoring the results.

Gabrielitto Rodriguez Barcelotta, at his camping spot in Belltown, does not mind the bike racks that now discourage camping here and separate him from traffic. But bike advocates do mind the city's use of bike racks for this purpose.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Seattle’s department of transportation is taking some flak for using bike racks to discourage tent camping on Seattle sidewalks.

Robotic drive units transfer items at an Amazon fulfillment center on Friday, November 3, 2017, in Kent.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

This is a crazy time of year for online retail behemoth Amazon – especially for their robots.

Robots have already taken over a lot of the work in Kent's Amazon warehouse, like finding and retrieving items. And they’re continually learning how to do things that humans do.

Amazon employee and ship dock manager Zach Mudd, center, leads a group chant as employees return from their lunch breaks at an Amazon fulfillment center on Friday, November 3, 2017, in Kent.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

It’s the last few days before Christmas and Amazon warehouses are buzzing with human activity — and with robots. The robots are getting more intelligent, and experts say robots will soon take more of those jobs. There are things humans can do to get ready for that future. Amazon intends to help them prepare.


Journalist and author Ruchika Tulshyan says Amazon is not immune to the tech industry's diversity problems.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

It’s lunch time in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood. Employees pour out of Amazon’s headquarters. Ruchika Tulshyan sits on a bench, watching who comes and goes. 


Joseph Jones, an Amazon employee on the marketing team for Amazon channels, takes pictures with his mother, Cathy Jones, right, and his grandmother, Hattie Perry, left, during Amazon's bring your parents to work day on Friday, September 15, 2017.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We know, you want the jobs. 

That's why you're offering billions of dollars and other sweet kickbacks to get Amazon to move to your town. 


Is Amazon your guilty pleasure?

Nov 24, 2017
Boxed items are shown on conveyer belts leading to docks where they will be loaded onto trucks at an Amazon fulfillment center on Friday, November 3, 2017, in Kent.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We're a conflicted bunch.

On one hand, we love to hate Amazon in Seattle because the city grew too fast and it's made problems for a lot of people. But a lot of us are also huge Amazon shoppers. 

Think about that: Amazon is so good at what it does that even people who say they shouldn't, use it.


Traffic is seen on I-5 from 45th St., on Friday, October 27, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

A couple of years ago, a semitruck carrying a load of fish overturned on the Alaskan Way Viaduct during rush hour on a Tuesday.

We get it: This is possibly the most stereotypical Seattle problem ever.


Deborah Bartlett, shown here in her kitchen with Ponch Hartley, cooks meals in her South Lake Union home so she's not tempted to patronize her neighborhod's pricey restaurants.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

What's it like to live a middle class lifestyle in Amazon's neighborhood?

Deborah Bartlett knows. She's a teacher. And like half the people in Seattle, she earned less than $50,000 last year. She works part time at a school near Amazon’s headquarters.


Amazon employees walk in front of a map highlighting 238 cities that submitted bids for Amazon's second headquarters in the lobby of the Day 1 building on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

So.

It’s been a little tense in Seattle since Amazon started shopping around for a new city to love.


A group of people jog across Lenora Street, on Thursday, October 5, 2017, in front of Amazon's biodomes, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Do us a favor. Look up relentless.com. 

No really — try it.

We’ll wait.


Prime(d)

Oct 17, 2017

What happens when Amazon comes to your town? So many cities want Amazon’s second headquarters. We get it. We here in Seattle have the first one.

And it’s changed us – physically, emotionally. Psyche and soul. Some people got rich. Some people got forced out.

We’re in a long-term relationship with Amazon. You just started dating.

We need to talk. 

Listen on the web or subscribe in Apple Podcasts.

Amazon Spheres, downtown Seattle
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

In September, 2017, Amazon kicked off the country’s biggest lottery — a search for a second headquarters, a.k.a. HQ2. The city that wins that contest might want some insight from the city Amazon chose first. So we're launching a new podcast.   

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle has a shortage of housing. But all over town, houses stand vacant. Either they’re in foreclosure, or they’re waiting to be torn down for development. Some people think vacant homes are an underused resource.

One man steals them.


Justin Robinson, left, and the man who bought his apartment building, Dan Robins.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

When an old apartment building goes on the market, all of a sudden, everybody starts doing the math.  


Steve Moddemeyer on Brooklyn Avenue in Seattle's U-District.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Seattle doesn’t get hurricanes like the ones that recently dumped trillions of gallons of water on Texas and Florida. 

Kevin, Kelvin and Georgia Hinton at their old apartment
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

The movers have arrived at the Hinton household. They load up boxes onto dollies and wheel them out the door.

A toddler watches the garbage trucks at Wallingford's rebuilt transfer station
KUOW Photo / Joshua McNichols

The south end of Wallingford used to stink because of a smelly old transfer station. 

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Emily Fox speaks with KUOW's Region of Boom reporter Joshua McNichols about the team's upcoming coverage of Seattle's housing crisis.


Carl Slater at the Good Shepherd Center in Wallingford
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood is known for its restored bungalows and for Gasworks Park. But some people worry it could lose its soul if the city’s affordable housing plan goes through. 


Jeremy Noble flies his Cessna 182 airplane on Wednesday, August 23, 2017, to the Renton Municipal Airport during his morning commute to work.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

It's after 3 p.m. on a Wednesday afternoon, and Jeremy Noble is about to leave his job as an air traffic controller at Sea-Tac International Airport. 

If he were driving home to Stanwood, north of Everett, his commute would take two hours. But today, he's taking his plane.


Foreclosure housing house
Flickr Photo/Taber Andrew Bain (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/6WB4v4

Seattle’s real estate market is booming, but contrary to what you might think, foreclosures are still happening. Foreclosures can be disruptive in neighborhoods.

Last year, about 700 people in Seattle lost their homes to banks. The city wants to help them. 


Joshua McNichols and Carolyn Adolph
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Emily Fox speaks with KUOW reporters Joshua McNichols and Carolyn Adolph about why they spent a month reporting on Bremerton, and what it taught them about our growing region.


Paul Lundy repairs typewriters for a living.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Office space is cheap in Bremerton. That's one reason you can find eccentric businesses there, like a business that repairs old typewriters.


Betty Walker waits for shipyard workers to speed walk past her restaurant, the Sweet and Smokey Diner. The shift ends a few minutes from now at 4:02
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Bremerton grew up next to a Navy base.

The town used to be the economic center of the Kitsap Peninsula. But then, in the 1970s and 80s, development shifted to the suburbs around Bremerton. Now the city wants to get some of that mojo back.


The late Michael Taylor
Larry Taylor

You know about Charleena Lyles, the mom of four who was shot by Seattle police a week ago.

Last fall, a similar shooting happened the day when the Jungle, a homeless camp, was shut down. Police shot a man named Michael Taylor.


El Balcon, Bremerton. The city ousted the tiny restaurant during the recession but invited it back after its owners and their five children became homeless.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

When Mario Amaya first set foot in Bremerton in 2009, he fell in love.


War boxes visible in a Bremerton alley.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Tiny, affordable houses line some of Bremerton’s alleys. They’re called “war boxes,” remnants of the massive building boom that transformed Bremerton during World War II.

Studying that boom and the housing it left behind offers clues on what it would take to truly meet our region's current housing needs.


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