Save the Daylight!

As a reminder, Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday, March 8th. In the US, Daylight Saving Time starts on the second Sunday in March of each year and ends the first Sunday in November of each year.

You may have asked yourself, “Why do we put ourselves through this every year, and why does daylight need saving, anyway?” And if so, I am here to help provide some answers! Daylight Saving Time (the proper name for this spring-and-fall clock change thing) is all about longer summer days. And living on or near a lake, who doesn't appreciate longer summer days?!. The "saving" comes in because, with an early sunrise, people generally sleep through part of their lovely summer day, in effect wasting daylight (in fact, "The Waste of Daylight" was the name of a 1907 booklet handed out by William Willet, an early proponent of Daylight Saving Time).

The Daylight Saving Time 2015 time change is fairly simple: Most anything computerized, from a cell phone to a laptop, jumps ahead all on its own. Most other watches and clocks need to be reset manually, so we can inevitably forget to change one and confuse ourselves the next day.  But even with this slight inconvenience, we have it pretty easy -- in 1916, the first implementation of Daylight Saving Time in England consisted adding 20 minutes every Sunday in April. Less of a shock to the system, I suppose, but then it's no surprise that the month-long ordeal was ultimately changed to a single time change in March instead.

Since the 1970s, energy conservation has been the primary reason for the summer time change -- later daylight means we turn on the lights later, saving energy. The 2015 time change will be observed in different parts of the world, though not at the same times. The European Union, for example, springs forward on the last Sunday in March on the 29th, so you'll have to subtract an hour from the time difference for three weeks, unless you live in Hawaii, one of the US territories, or Arizona in which case there is no 2015 time change. Well except for the Arizona Navajo Nation community which does observe daylight saving time.  Simple, right? 

And if it seems like Daylight Saving Time starts early every year, you're right -- sort of. Beginning in 1986, Daylight Saving Time started on the first Sunday in April and ended on the last Sunday in October. But in 2007, Congress revised the dates to the current March-November calendar in order to extend the energy savings gleaned from earlier rising.

So come this Sunday March 8th morning as you struggle to wake up from the effect of losing that extra hour of precious sleep – keep in mind that we always seem to adjust, overcome and forget about the time change ... at least until November.

How will you spend your extra hour?

Public Meeting: Big SeaTac Airport Expansion Plans

The community is urged to come learn about the “Sustainable Airport Master Plan” designed to address and accommodate the expansion plans for the future of Sea-Tac Airport at an Open House on Wednesday, March 4 from 5 until 7 PM.  The location is Mount Rainier High School at 22450 19th Ave. S. in Des Moines.

At earlier meetings, Port Officials had revealed plans for huge expansion options to adapt to the expected boom in passengers over the next 20 years. Announcements were made regarding a new International Arrivals Facility planned for 2019, but that is only the beginning. Also on the drawing board are plans for 35 more airplane gates added to the north and south of the airport’s 81 current gates, and potentially an additional new passenger terminal. Further details on the expansion plans may be viewed at the Seattle Times Website

At this open house, you will hear from Port of Seattle staff and consultants about proposed concepts for sustainably accommodating forecast increases in air travel demand at Sea-Tac, and have an opportunity to share your ideas.

According to the Port, this long-term blueprint for airport development is called Sea-Tac’s Sustainable Airport Master Plan. It aims to meet the needs of the traveling public over the next 20 years in a way that takes the most sustainable approach possible. This includes reducing environmental impacts, ensuring economic performance and working with local communities. The plan covers airfield development within the current three-runway configuration, terminal development, roadway improvements, cargo and facility modernization and expansion possibilities. Impetus for this planning effort is continued strong passenger growth at the airport, which served more than 37 million passengers in 2014. Forecasts show this figure could be 52 million in 2024 and 66 million in 2034.

In addition to forecasting, this planning process is taking stock of current facilities, infrastructure, operations and passenger levels, and looking at scenarios that are five, 10 and 20 years in the future. It includes air quality, energy and water conservation, recycling and other strategic environmental goals, and will align with the port’s Century Agenda sustainability and energy efficiency goals. Completion of the plan will make Sea-Tac the first large hub U.S. airport to fully incorporate sustainability as a key master planning component.

Along with the future demand forecast and some early concepts for meeting the demand, the March 4 presentations will explain the process for creating and evaluating concepts and selecting the preferred choice or choices. An environmental review process—including public involvement — is scheduled for 2016, before the plan is finalized.

When Disaster Calls - How Will You Resond?

The Cities of SeaTac, Burien & Kent RFA are offering the FEMA-sponsored Community Emergency Response Team training at no charge starting April 16, 2015.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program educates residents about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area well being and provide training on basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. Using the lessons learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also are encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking a more active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community.

The CERT program will provide 21 hours of training, plus a simulated disaster drill. Classes are held each Thursday, 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM for seven weeks. The final drill and graduation are held on Saturday, May 30 from 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

To register, contact:
CSO Mechee Burnett
Call 206.973.4917

When the next disaster strikes,
                         will you be sufficiently prepared to respond?

Avoiding Pitfalls and Making Connections

Getting around in the southwest Angle Lake area may become a bit more difficult before improved access will be realized! 

With multiple major construction projects planned or already underway in the neighborhood of what is now being referred to as the Angle Lake Station District, it certainly was expected that traversing the local roads would become more of a challenge due to lane closures and detours.  Plans have now been revealed for the creation of an additional surface street for making a transition link between 28th Ave and 24th Ave So.  The new road will be situated between the South 200th and 208th Streets. 

Project designs are nearing completion for this road improvement project which will extend 26th Avenue South from South 200th Street to the intersection of 24th Avenue South & South 208th Street. The new roadway segment will provide four general purpose lanes, left turn pockets, shared use path on both sides of the street, curb, gutter, storm water infrastructure, retaining walls, street lighting and signaling, landscaping, buried power and communication utilities.

This project completes a vital north/south corridor that provides a direct connection with the SeaTac Regional Justice Center, City of Des Moines, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, the future Angle Lake Light Rail Station at South 200th Street, and multiple adjacent development properties.   The project is forward-compatible with the future State Route 509 Gateway Project. The planned construction will occur beginning summer 2015 and will continue through spring of 2017.

Additional projects in the area:
Be prepared to experience traffic delays and bring some extra patience when traveling through the Angle Lake Station District through the next couple years while the neighborhood undergoes tremendous growth and revitalization.

Another Area Construction Project Announced

Southwest Angle Lake Neighborhood receives a new moniker with the announcement of yet another new construction site.

Hot on the heels of several 2014 announcements identifying new construction projects with in the area, the City of SeaTac is now seeking bids this month to build a new 7,120 square foot fire station in what is now being labeled as the Angle Lake Station district. The plan calls for a state- of-the-art facility on South 200th Street just one block from the new Angle Lake light rail station and will replace an existing, outdated station that has been in operation since 1957. The estimated cost of construction is $3.1 million.

The City began planning for the station several years ago and will open the facility around the time the light rail station begins operations in 2016. The new station will sustain the City’s current high level of protection and service and augment the operational needs of the Fire Department. The upgraded complex ensures that fire and emergency services remain in the neighborhood and are readily available to the new development planned for this part of the city.

The station design is inspired by the Greene and Greene craftsman style of the early 1900’s, was designed by TCA Architects. The design team also included Barker Landscape Architects and Pyramid Engineering who helped develop the plan which includes streetscape landscaping culminating in a prominent rain garden to help mitigate run-off from paved surfaces.

“The new station is an important part of establishing the new light rail district as an active, transit oriented neighborhood,” said City Manager Todd Cutts. “Its distinctive design and public features will provide a focal point for the community. We are looking forward to what this new amenity will mean to our future development plans.”

“The new station will be a public building that the community will appreciate for years to come, thanks to the outstanding design team assembled to help make the City’s vision a reality,” said Parks and Facilities Director Kit Ledbetter. “What we need now is an outstanding contractor to turn the vision into a reality.” 

No formal plans have yet been announced regarding how the existing fire station will be used when the new station is in full operation. Some local residents have suggested that the facility be used to house an 'Artist Workshop', others have suggested a restaurant / bar be located there. Additional suggestions are welcome. Please submit your suggestions to Economic Development Manager Jeff Robinson at