August 2014 Update: Construction on the Creek

Looking northward on 35th Ave NE we see the track and fields of Nathan Hale High School on the left.  The Confluence construction work is to put in much larger culverts crossing under 35th Ave NE for the South Branch of Thornton Creek.  The water flows eastward into Meadowbrook Pond.

Looking northward on 35th Ave NE we see the track and fields of Nathan Hale High School on the left. The Confluence construction work is to put in much larger culverts crossing under 35th Ave NE for the South Branch of Thornton Creek. The water flows eastward into Meadowbrook Pond.

In the Summer of 2014 work is continuing on improvements at The Confluence, the joining-place of the north and south branches of Thornton Creek on 35th Ave NE at NE 107th Street.  The two branches flow into Meadowbrook Pond, a water-filtration and flood control area created by the Seattle Engineering Dept. in 1997-98.  In 2012-2013 the Pond was dredged and enlarged.  In 2014 in this final stage of construction, the creekbeds near to the Pond are being enlarged and an adjacent flood plain is being created.

On the east side of 35th Ave NE we see the footings of the bridge which crosses 35th Ave NE, and the empty lot which will become a flood plain to hold the water of heavy rains.

On the east side of 35th Ave NE we see the footings of the bridge which crosses 35th Ave NE, and the empty lot which will become a flood plain to hold the water of heavy rains.

On the west side of 35th Ave NE, large poplar trees were cut down along the south branch of Thornton Creek because the trees were choking the channel and restricting the flow of water, leading to overflows in the parking lot and sports fields of Nathan Hale High School.

On the east side of 35th Ave NE, an empty lot is being turned into a flood plain to hold the water of heavy rains, instead of overflowing onto 35th Ave NE.  Log structures (using cut-down trees) will be used in the both the north and south branches of Thornton Creek as part of the meandering, slow-the-flow reconstruction of the creekbeds.

Construction is anticipated to continue until as late as November 2014, which unfortunately means the continued closure of 35th Ave NE at NE 107th Street.  Traveling northward, one can go only as far as the Meadowbrook Community Center at 10517 35th Ave NE.

Some of the other phases of creek restoration will be:

–Completion of in-water “fish window” work.
–Connection of south branch to the main stem of Thornton Creek and to Meadowbrook Pond.
–Complete the bridge across 35th Ave NE with its walls, sidewalks and barriers; install utilities across the bridge.
–Resurfacing, paving and striping of 35th Ave NE.
–Site restoration, to include landscaping and planting, fence installation, artwork installation.

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A Tree in Montlake

Reblogged from Montlake.net/flyer/:  Seattle’s renowned tree expert Arthur Lee Jacobson has written about a fallen cherry tree near the Montlake Community Center at 1618 E. Calhoun Street, on the south side of the Lake Washington Ship Canal. Mr. Jacobson alerts everyone who would like to try growing this rare variety, to take cuttings from the fallen Horinji tree.

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Slow-Down on the Trail: Construction Impacts the Burke-Gilman

An alert from the Seattle Parks and Recreation Dept:  Construction may affect use of the Burke-Gilman Trail between NE 125th and NE 135th Streets.

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July 2014 Update: Thornton Creek Confluence Project

The South Fork of Thornton Creek flows eastward through culverts under 35th Ave NE at NE 107th Street in Meadowbrook.  Work is underway this summer to widen and improve this channel of Thornton Creek.  Instead of a straight, vegetation-choked channel, meanders will be created and a floodplain to absorb more water during rainy seasons, as part of the overall plan for The Confluence of the two branches of Thornton Creek.  The culverts which carry the creek under 35th Ave NE are being replaced with much larger ones this summer.  As part of digging up the creek, fish are being counted and conserved.  Watch here:

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Ride for Ryther 2014

Valarie says:  Ryther at 2400 NE 95th Street is a residential treatment center which offers behavioral health services for children and families facing complex challenges.  A fundraiser, Ride for Ryther, is being held in the Seattle-to-Portland Bike Challenge, July 12-13, 2014.  Read here how you can help support the work at Ryther by sponsoring the Riders.

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The Confluence in 2014

In summer 2014 work will be done to enlarge the capacity for water at the point of NE 107th Street where the South Fork of Thornton Creek crosses under 35th Ave NE.  Some tree removal will be required to create more space for the creek channel.

In summer 2014 work will be done to enlarge the capacity for water at the point of NE 107th Street where the South Fork of Thornton Creek crosses under 35th Ave NE. Some tree removal will be required to create more space for the creek channel.

Road closure update:  As of June 2nd, 2014, 35th Ave NE is CLOSED at NE 107th Street.  Summer construction work will be done to enlarge the creek bed of the South Fork of Thornton Creek and put in new, much larger culverts under the road.

The Thornton Creek Watershed of northeast Seattle flows toward Matthews Beach at NE 93rd Street on Lake Washington. The Confluence is the flat area along 35th Ave NE between NE 107th to 115th Streets, part of the Meadowbrook neighborhood. It is the site of convergence of the North and South Forks of Thornton Creek, and many smaller tributaries join in this area, as well. The creek system flows into Meadowbrook Pond at about NE 107th Street on the east side of 35th Ave NE. The Pond collects and filters the water before it flows down to Matthews Beach and out into Lake Washington.

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A Log House Life in Wedgwood in the 1930s

The Reese brothers, Fred and Albert, grew up in a German-speaking farm community in Minnesota in the 1880’s. It was a hard-working life with limited opportunities, and the boys’ formal education ended at the eighth grade. From then on they worked on the farm and later in other laboring occupations.

Fred Reese married in 1906 at age 28 and he and his new wife, Nellie, lived in the home of Nellie’s parents James and Agnes Russell in Brainerd, Minnesota. The Russells ran a boarding house located near the town train station.  Both Nellie and Agnes helped with the cooking, while Fred Reese worked outside the home as a blacksmith.  Fred and Nellie named their first child Russell Reese, in honor of his maternal grandparents.  In those early years before 1910, we can speculate on whether Fred and Nellie had ever even heard of Seattle, let alone imagine that they would someday live there.

In 1932 Fred Reese built this log-sided house in Wedgwood.  The writing on the photo gives the plat name of Pontiac Addition, Block 49 Lot 2.

In 1932 Fred Reese built this log-sided house in Wedgwood. The writing on the photo gives the plat name of Pontiac Addition, Block 49 Lot 2. The house was at first numbered 3704 because there was as yet no 38th Ave NE. Later the house number was changed to 3804 NE 87th Street.

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