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North Seattle

Ethan Kent, 26, uses a cart to transport his belongings as well as the belongings of friends away from a Ravenna encampment where he had been living for roughly a month and a half, on Wednesday, April 18, 2018, on the Burke-Gilman Trail in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Charlie Blackwood was running off three hours of sleep and seven cups of coffee when he packed up his belongings. He had been living with seven other people in a plot of woods in Ravenna, in northeast Seattle, when city crews arrived with trucks and shovels to clear it out.

Yurie Crockett sucks up used fry oil for recycling into biodiesel. His employer will pick up congestion tolling on his work vehicle (and he commutes by bus), but believes it will hurt people struggling to stay in the city.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan proposed a new way to reduce congestion and pay for transit this week by tolling cars coming into the city. It’s called “congestion pricing.”

But the idea of increasing costs in this increasingly expensive city raises eyebrows. Maybe try better marketing, says one expert.


Cyanna DiRaimo runs for miles and miles. Sometimes, she runs along Aurora for a block or two (in order to cross), and imagines Aurora as an urban village.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

City officials have designated some parts of the aging Aurora Avenue as “urban villages” (dense, walkable neighborhoods near transit). But Aurora has a ways to go before it resembles a village. 


Aurora, formerly the Seattle Speedway, is a relic from the early days when the city dreamed that free and easy travel by car would open its boundaries and attract people to its center.

A mural commissioned by the Aurora Merchants Association is shown on Monday, March 26, 2018, near the intersection of Aurora Avenue North and N.105th St., in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Aurora Avenue North is a place where you can buy a car, sell a car or get fancy rims for your tires. If your vehicle has ever been towed in north Seattle, you may have written a painfully large check to Lincoln Towing so they’d release it. For decades, Aurora’s business community has been dominated by car-oriented businesses.

That time is coming to an end. And those businesses are fighting to maintain what influence they have left.


Laurelhurst Elementary in northeast Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

On a gray day last October, teachers across Seattle wore a shirt that read BLACK LIVES MATTER.

For Tableau, a software company in Seattle's Fremont neighborhood, the bohemian neighborhood is part of the recruiting spiel.
Flickr Photo/Scott Lum (CC BY-NC 2.0) http://bit.ly/2h3woD4

On hot summer Fridays, workers from the software company Tableau gather at a dock and jump in the water.


A Lamborghini at the University of Washington. Nearly 2,000 cars in Seattle are listed as having cost more than $80,349 – the current median household income for Seattle.
Flickr Photo/ericnvntr (CC BY 2.0) http://bit.ly/2dla8Pz

The most expensive car in Seattle is a $653,000 Enzo Ferrari (2003). It is registered to someone who lives somewhere downtown. 

It ties with an Enzo Ferrari in tony Medina for most expensive car in King County, followed by a Ferrari F40 in Bellevue that cost $643,000.

An artist's rendering of the proposed new North Precinct station for the Seattle Police Department.
City of Seattle

City council committee meetings are typically uneventful.

Not Wednesday.

Dozens of people showed up to protest a future North Seattle Police Precinct, an increasingly vexed issue.


It's been called an “overpriced police bunker.”

And the proposed North Police Precinct in Seattle hasn't even been approved.

An artist's rendering of the proposed new North Precinct station for the Seattle Police Department.
City of Seattle

An expensive bunker for police. That’s the view of nearly a dozen people who criticized plans for Seattle’s new North Precinct building at a Seattle City Council meeting on Wednesday.

The proposed $160 million building includes a public plaza and space for community meetings, along with a gym, firing range and parking garage.

Police Report Seattle Car Prowls Up 22 Percent

Mar 16, 2016
Car prowls are happening repeatedly in certain Seattle locations, according to SPD.
Seattle Police Department

It's a quick crime of opportunity that's happening more often in Seattle. According to the latest crime stats released by the Seattle Police department, car prowls are on the rise.  

The numbers for 2016 show 2,950 in the city so far.  That's up 22 percent from the same period in 2015. 

Detective Patrick Michaud said one surprising place it's happening more often is in parking garages. 

A discarded hypodermic needle next to the train tracks outside the Yankee Diner on Shilshole Avenue. Neighbors have complained about drug use, waste and garbage they attribute to car campers and RVs in the neighborhood.
KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

Seattle is experiencing a heroin epidemic. North Seattle residents say they find proof of that epidemic in parks and on sidewalks in the form of used, discarded needles. 

Mike Cuadra is a member of the North Precinct Advisory Council, a coalition of community groups and businesses from North Seattle neighborhoods. He's seen a rise in the number of needles littering his neighborhood over the past two years. 

"It's scary. I think people are frightened and angry," Cuadra said. 

Ericka, then 36, stands outside a motel on Aurora Avenue North in Seattle in 2015. The motel has since been torn down, and Ericka is now clean and employed.
KUOW Photo/Mike Kane

Earlier this month, when photographer Mike Kane went looking for a Seattle woman to share her story of being a prostitute on Aurora Avenue North, he heard about Ericka Frodsham.

Ericka Frodsham is one of 50 to 60 prostitutes who work on Aurora Avenue North, known as a track. This is one of two tracks where prostitutes work in the Seattle area. Photographer Mike Kane followed her one evening, separately from the story below.
Mike Kane for KUOW

Why is there so much prostitution on Aurora Avenue in North Seattle? Beth Quintana, who lives in North Seattle near Aurora, asked KUOW’s Local Wonder project, so we sent reporter Posey Gruener to find out.

A Google map shows the outline of the North Seattle eruv.
KUOW Staff

After the sun sets on Fridays, Orthodox Jews may not push a stroller. Nor may they carry tissues or books outside their homes.

But there’s a loophole: People who live within certain neighborhood boundaries may carry books and babies outside.

Where Do Seattle-Area Crows Go At Night?

Nov 26, 2015
Crows fly from all over the Seattle region to reach their nighttime destination, where thousands upon thousands of them spend the night together.
KCTS9 Photo/Ken Christensen

Listener Lauren Linscheid of Seattle sees crows flying every day toward Lake City Way. “I want to know where they’re going and why,” Lauren told KUOW’s Local Wonder team. We sent reporter Ashley Ahearn to investigate.

Monica Sweet says cheaper asphalt sidewalks would be a good thing for neighborhoods that have been waiting decades for sidewalks.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray wants to loosen up the city’s standards for sidewalks by building them cheaper and faster. That would let money earmarked for sidewalks in the Move Seattle levy stretch much further.

A woman is taken to an ambulance on the Aurora Bridge after the crash Thursday.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

They came to Seattle from around the world: Austria, China, Indonesia and Japan. 

They died on the Aurora Bridge on Thursday.

They were mourned at North Seattle College on Friday, where some students said they were frightened by the collision between a large tourist vehicle known as “the Duck” and a bus.

North Seattle College international students Max Putera and Jeffrey Tung.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Monday will be the first day of school for North Seattle College. The students in the international program will have a lot more than school on their minds. They’ll be thinking about the four students who died in a bus crash on the Aurora bridge Thursday.

The 73 currently runs from north Seattle to downtown via the U-District. Under the new plan, riders will have to transfer to light rail to get downtown, which can't get snarled in traffic. Some buses will still go downtown during peak periods.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

It used to be if you wanted to take the bus across town in Seattle, you often had to ride all the way downtown first. But now light rail does some of that heavy lifting, getting people from north to south. And next spring two more light rail stations are opening at Capitol Hill and Husky Stadium.

Under its new plan for rebuilding the bus system in northeast Seattle, Metro isn't going to waste so much time now fighting traffic to get downtown.

KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district.

District 5, which extends north beyond 85th Street, includes Bitter Lake and Northgate. There, eight candidates are vying to represent the area.

We asked the candidates to meet us somewhere in their district that signified why they’re running.

Annette Heide-Jessen's Kaffeeklatsch coffee shop has bet on Lake City Way. A big garage door opens right onto the state highway, which doubles as Lake City's 'main street.' Heide-Jessen sees Lake City as 'the next Columbia City.'
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

North Seattle used to be a place where you could just spread out. People came up north after the great fire of 1889 to escape the crowded tinderbox of downtown Seattle. Later, others came to build malls and for many other reasons.

Stackhouse Apartments, South Lake Union
KUOW Photo/Ross Reynolds

Rents across Seattle have risen dramatically in the past 16 years, according to a KUOW analysis of housing data.

Since 1998, the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment has risen 38 percent, measured in 2014 dollars. That’s pushed the average cost to $1,412 per month.