News Blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf Neighborhood


City Council: Should homeless tents be allowed in our parks?

October 7th, 2016 by Mike

A week from today a Seattle City Council committee will hold a special meeting on the homeless crisis – including whether tents should be allowed on public property which might include Maple Leaf, Green Lake and Thornton Creek parks.

(Note that the Maple Leaf park is over an enormous drinking water reservoir.)

This is a proposal supported by council members 7-1 in September. Since then, a lot of news coverage has questioned it, and it’s unclear what an amended version might look like.

The meeting will be Oct. 14th at 9:30 a.m. It is of the council’s Human Services & Public Health Committee.

Councilman Tim Burgess, a committee member who was the “no” vote, earlier this week posted:

As introduced on September 6, the proposed law establishes a new right to camp on public property across Seattle, including in our parks and greenbelts, and on sidewalks and planting strips….

Read the proposed new camping legislation carefully. It contains a few key phrases that require the city government to allow camping on public property for at least 30 days per location.  In addition, even when an encampment is in an unsafe or unsuitable location, the City cannot remove it until the City has provided 48 hours’ notice, and must offer the individuals alternative locations in which to camp.

His full post is here.

Other coverage:

The Seattle Times’ Danny Westneat earlier this week:

Last month, some homeless-aid groups wrote up a controversial ordinance giving the homeless a right to camp on some public property. It was retitled as “Council Bill 118794” and introduced with 95 percent identical wording (though it has not yet passed). The city staff’s memo says bluntly that the bill didn’t come from any elected official: “CB 118794 was drafted by the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington and Columbia Legal Services.”

(Original September story from the Times is here.)

KIRO TV: “Camping in the end zone: How Seattle’s homeless crisis is spilling onto playfields.”
KING TV: “Maps show possible homeless encampments.”

Contact your council member? Debora Juarez (who was absent for the original debate) represents most of Maple Leaf:

The full list for mayor and City Council:,,,,,,,,,

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Kids decorate more than 300 bags for homeless

November 25th, 2010 by master

Photos from Renee Staton and George Allen.

In an effort to help welcome two new homeless camps to the Northeast Seattle community, students at  St. Catherine of Siena Parish School, 8524 Eighth Ave. N.E., decorated more than 300 bags that community members helped fill with food on Wednesday night.

Volunteers today are passing out the food bags, along with more than 400 blankets that students have gathered, and wishing a Happy Thanksgiving to members of Nickelsville, which recently moved to a former Lake City fire station at 2806 N.E. 127th St. They also plan to visit Tent City 3, which now is located at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on Capitol Hill, but will be relocating Saturday to Maple Leaf Lutheran Church, located at 10005 32nd Ave. N.E. in nearby Meadowbrook.

You can read more about the effort on KPLU, and a big thank you to Renee Staton and George Allen for all of their organization efforts.

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St. Catherine School food drive needs your help

November 23rd, 2010 by master

Although we’re reluctant to ask anybody to drive in this weather, we still want to share a request urging community members to contribute to a food drive that St. Catherine of Siena Parish School is helping organize.

The food is needed for the residents of Nickelsville, which recently moved to Lake City, and Tent City 3, which is scheduled to move to Meadowbrook’s Maple Leaf Lutheran Church on Saturday, Nov. 27.

Students at the Maple Leaf school, located at 8524 Eighth Ave. N.E., already have gathered blankets for the drive, but are still in need of food items that don’t need to be heated or refrigerated, such as fruit, breakfast bars, muffins, small bottles of fruit juice and meat sticks. Other contributions could include small bottles of Purell and hand wipes, however, no money contributions can be accepted.

Drop off your donation by Wednesday, Nov. 24, at the Lake City Neighborhood Service Center, 12525 28th Ave. N.E., which is open today and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday night, St. Catherine students and parents will assemble gift bags that students have decorated with Thanksgiving messages, then deliver them on Thursday morning.

If you can’t make it to the center by Wednesday night because of the snow or any other reason, organizer Renee Staton said she will be driving around Wednesday afternoon picking up donations if you contact her in advance at or 206-225-5739.

Don’t forget, North Helpline, 12736 33rd Ave. N.E., also is still in need of extra turkeys to give to families in need this Thanksgiving holiday, and Blue Saucer, 9127 Roosevelt Way N.E., is offering a free drink of your choice to customers who bring in a grocery bag full of nonperishable foods for the food bank.

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North Seattle may not see permanent tent city

November 8th, 2010 by master

If Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn has his way, it appears that Nickelsville and other homeless tent camps around the city will find a permanent home in SODO instead of North Seattle. Tonight, Mayor McGinn wrote on his blog that he wants the former Sunny Jim peanut butter factory in SODO at Airport Way and South Snoqualmie Street to become the site of a permanent homeless encampment on city-owned land.

Nickelsville camp currently in the U-District

The Nickelsville camp that spent the past three months in the U-District is scheduled to move out on November 15. Potential sites for a permanent camp included one on city property at 12098 Stone Ave North near Northwest Hospital.  But McGinn plans to hold a community meeting in SODO in support of his favored location in the next few weeks.

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Times letter links Maple Leaf vandalism, Tent City 3

November 8th, 2010 by master

A letter to the editor in The Seattle Times seems to have Maple Leaf and Meadowbrook confused yet again regarding Tent City 3’s new home at Maple Leaf Lutheran Church, which despite its name is located in Meadowbrook at 10005 32nd Ave. N.E.

The writer says:

For every positive there have been offsetting negatives — like the Maple Leaf residents whose property have been vandalized in the wake of their opposition to having Tent City 3 next door.

At first I thought maybe he really meant Maple Leaf, since we are next door to Meadowbrook, and I was about to ask our Maple Leaf readers if they had noticed an uptick in vandalism. But in a later comment, it’s obvious the writer actually is referring to Meadowbrook property owners:

One neighbor’s driveway was spray painted with phrases like “homeless hater.” Others have experienced problems as well.

Residents of Tent City 3 haven’t actually moved to Maple Leaf Lutheran Church yet. According to the church’s website, the roving homeless camp’s 90-day stay will begin Nov. 27.

By the way, if you’re interested in helping, volunteers as well as donations are in need.

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Homeless tent camps could find permanent home in North Seattle

October 26th, 2010 by master

The Nickelsville homeless tent camp is supposed to move out of its current location in the U-District on November 15.  But instead of being forced to find another temporary home, it could soon have a permanent one across Interstate 5 from Maple Leaf.

Nickelsville camp currently in the U-District

A citizens panel appointed by Mayor McGinn recommends that Seattle put a permanent homeless encampment on city land within a month and open up parks and the basement of City Hall to people with nowhere else to sleep.

KING 5 and our news partner the Seattle Times report the potential sites include one on city property at 12098 Stone Ave North near Northwest Hospital.  The other sites are in Magnolia/Interbay, West Seattle, and South Seattle.  The citizens panel will now look over the list and make its recommendation.

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Don't blame Maple Leaf residents for tent city reaction

September 22nd, 2010 by master

A recent opinion piece from Ken Schram on KOMO News points the finger directly at Maple Leaf residents for the outcry against the tent city planned at Maple Leaf Lutheran Church, 10005 32nd Ave. N.E.

Schram seems to have missed the fact that the church is actually in Meadowbrook, which is on the east side of Lake City Way. He writes:

Oh, no!

The homeless are coming!

The homeless are coming!

That’s the cry echoing around Seattle’s Maple Leaf neighborhood after a church voted to host a tent city this coming Thanksgiving.

Our sister site Wedgwood View, whose coverage area includes Meadowbrook, has been following the topic more closely, and indeed not all of the church’s neighbors are supportive of the roving homeless tent city.

As for Maple Leaf Life readers, the only comments we’ve had so far in the posts we’ve written have been supportive of Tent City 3 being our neighbor.

However, considering that we’re separated from Meadowbrook by Lake City Way, it’s hard to say whether Maple Leaf residents would have the same reaction if a tent city were in our neighborhood.

But in the meantime, Schram’s readers seem to know where we stand on the issue, after he said that we “panic and screech: The homeless are coming! The homeless are coming!”

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Tent City 3 is coming to Maple Leaf Lutheran Church

September 20th, 2010 by master

Tent City 3 is coming to the Meadowbrook neighborhood in November after a vote of the Maple Leaf Lutheran Church on Sunday.

Beginning Nov. 27, the church will host the tent city for the homeless in its parking lot for 90 days, said Pastor Julie Blum in an e-mail to our sister site, Wedgwood View. Blum said the measure passed by a super majority of the congregation.

The issue has been hotly debated in the neighborhood, including more than 60 posts in a recent Wedgwood View blog post. Neighbors living near the church, located at 10005 32nd Ave. N.E., cite a host of concerns, including their fear that tent city will bring increased crime. A neighborhood site about those concerns is here.

Blum said the church will host a community meeting to “hear and address concerns” sometime in November. She said the church will inform neighbors when the date is set.

“It is our hope and prayer that those in our neighborhood who have concerns will see what a positive experience this can be,” Blum said in her e-mail, “and that they will use their energies to support the homeless and care for those in need.”

Proponents have praised other tent cities around the region as a humane way to help the homeless. They also say that there is little to no evidence that they result in increased crime for the neighborhoods that host them.

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Should Maple Leaf Lutheran host Tent City No. 3?

August 26th, 2010 by master

Tent City 3 may be coming to the border between Maple Leaf and Meadowbrook later this year — and that is spurring quite the debate, including dueling Web sites.

On the pro-Tent City 3 side is Maple Leaf Lutheran Church, at 10005 32nd Ave. N.E., which will vote next month on whether to host the tent city, which would house 100 homeless people for three months.

The church recently added a whole new section to its Web site, including background, news updates and frequently asked questions.

On the anti-Tent City 3 side is a well-organized neighborhood group called Meadowbrook Neighbors. Their next meeting is tonight (Thursday, Aug. 26) at 7 p.m. at a home at 3218 N.E. 100th St. (you are asked to bring a chair).

Both sites offer conflicting reports and studies about whether tent cities have increased crime in other areas they have come to.

What’s your opinion — should Maple Leaf Lutheran Church host Tent City 3? Our sister site, WedgwoodView, has several comments posted already.

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