Archive for December, 2014

A message from WSDOT regarding the Alaskan Way Viaduct

December 17, 2014  |  Announcement, PI, Viaduct  |  No Comments

You may have seen media coverage on Friday regarding ground settlement and the Alaskan Way Viaduct. The Washington State Department of Transportation asked us to post the following message for neighbors who might be concerned about potential effects to Pioneer Square:

Public safety is WSDOT’s top priority, which is why we installed a state-of-the-art settlement monitoring system as part of the SR 99 Tunnel Project. Recently, that system detected approximately one inch of ground settlement near the pit Seattle Tunnel Partners is building to access and repair the tunneling machine. We have also seen the same amount of settlement on the Alaskan Way Viaduct, with lesser amounts of settlement detected in the surrounding area.

Some settlement was expected during tunnel construction and while the tunneling machine repair work was underway. This settlement appears to have occurred in the last month.

We have conducted visual inspections in the neighborhood and around the viaduct and have not observed any effect on buildings or utilities in the surrounding area or the viaduct. WSDOT crews are conducting additional surveys this weekend to verify this information, including an inspection of the viaduct and a visual inspection of adjacent areas.

While we are conducting this additional work, we are confident that there is no risk to public safety. We are coordinating closely with neighborhood representatives and the appropriate historic preservation organizations as we gather more information. We will continue to provide regular updates at

If you have questions or concerns about this issue over the weekend, please contact David Sowers, WSDOT’s Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program deputy administrator, at 206-713-0686.


December 13, 2014  |  Business, Food, PI  |  No Comments

by Courtney Crockett

As a local I have eaten at Radici many times since its June 2013 opening, though had not yet had the pleasure of meeting the owner. Rudy La Valle had been the quiet force behind his restaurant’s fresh Italian menu until he recently shared with me details about his successful history as Seattle restaurateur.

Rudy La Valle, owner Radici

Rudy La Valle, owner Radici

Background– Rudy originates from British Columbia making a stop in Los Angeles before coming to Seattle. He began his food and restaurant career while in LA during the boom years of the late 1970’s – early 80’s working with industry legends like Wolfgang Puck. A life change and a new family to care for brought Rudy to Seattle where he first used his knowledge and experience in management at highly popular Seattle establishments Wild Ginger and Cafe Juanita.

Then, in 1988 he opened his own restaurant, Rialto Pasta Bar and Grill in Green Lake which focused on fresh and accessible Italian cuisine. Rialto was much loved by its neighborhood and served its loyal customers for some 10 years before re-locating to Fremont in 2009. Rialto made itself at home with local support for another 3 years before Rudy changed direction. In 2013 Rudy decided to come to Pioneer Square with a menu focused on his family heritage deriving from the Calabria region of Italy.

Pioneer Square– Rudy was initially reticent about Pioneer Square for his new restaurant venture. He took a chance on the Second Ave S location, a former restaurant that had been sitting empty for 6 months but had a fully equipped kitchen. Local business, b9 architects originally located around the corner from Radici, was contracted to help create the industrial style using white tile and polished wood. To reinforce the family theme, daughter Cassandra contributed to design and ancestral family photos align the walls. The end result is both a modern and relaxed environment.

radici leann

Menu- Come for Dinner! Radici is now open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday. The reasonably priced menu features Rudy’s signature red sauce aka Rudy’s Red Sauce which is a comforting all-day-on-the-stove-top Italian mama recipe made with meatballs, sausages and pork ribs. Pastas are made fresh daily with vegetarian and gluten free pasta options available. Great well-priced Italian wines within the $20 range are staple.

Radici also has a new Happy Hour menu. Rudy highly recommends the Ravioli Carbonara. A single fresh pasta sheet filled with a whole raw egg, ricotta and spinach. Proscuitto and parmesan to top.

Lunch menu and specials change every week. Seasonal menu changes are additionally offered. For more information visit





Shop the Square Gift-Wrapping Service

December 5, 2014  |  Announcement, Event, Residential Council  |  No Comments



The Pioneer Square Residents Council is joining the “Shop the Square” effort with a gift-wrapping service (for a donation) at Milepost 31 from 11 am to 5 pm for the next two Saturdays: December 6th and 13th. The proceeds will go to the Pioneer Square Residents Council for our community projects.

You’ll find cookies, goodies, and good cheer at Milepost 31, too. If you print and have the Shop the Square Passport validated at five participating Pioneer Square stores, you’ll be entered in a weekly drawing for great prizes.

If you bring your gifts in by noon, you can pick them up the same day by 4:30.  Then you can spend your time enjoying the holiday spirit on the Square and checking out all the recent additions to our community.

Get your passport and more information at the Residents Council website.

Three-day Coco+Kelley Holiday Pop-Up this week

December 3, 2014  |  Event, First Thursday  |  No Comments

The garlands are up around the Square and the holiday excitement is mounting. The festivities begin this First Thursday, December 4th when Coco+Kelley will sponsor a special Holiday Pop-Up at 95 Yesler Creative Studios. An impressive lineup of local designers will show their wares and present classes in holiday crafts. On First Thursday, you’ll find an opening night party, and there’ll be nibbles and treats every day.

On Saturday, you can sign up for one of the three sessions of the Gift Wrapping 101 workshop, led by Brandy of Marabou Design. You’ll learn how the pros wrap their presents and you’ll have the opportunity to create your own gift tags and wrapping paper. McKenzie Powell will be on hand to lead two workshops on Wreath Design – she’ll share the process of creating the perfect décor for your front door. You can sign up for sessions at Coco+Kelley’s website here:

Do plan to come by 95 Yesler Creative Studios to discover the creativity and holiday cheer on Pioneer Square!

Here’s the schedule:

* Thursday, Dec 4th  5-10 pm * Friday, Dec 5th 12-7 pm * Saturday, Dec 6th
      Opening Night Party         Workshops

SPROUT – Grand Opening this Thursday

December 2, 2014  |  Business, Event, First Thursday, Personal, PI  |  No Comments

by Jenny Kelly

My husband and I moved to this neighborhood over 5 years ago, and fell in love with it right away. Shortly after moving in, we started this website/blog, and mostly kept up with it over the past  five years. (However, I am more than excited to have new contributors to the blog!). In that time, we also had a daughter, who is now an inquisitive 2 year old, who loves exploring the neighborhood and various activities downtown.

Despite some of the tough times we’ve experienced in Pioneer Square, we really love this neighborhood and are committed to contributing to its success. With new businesses, and especially with more residents, I think we are beginning to see some great changes in the neighborhood. I’ve always felt that this neighborhood had all of the right pieces — it just needed a better balance of a strong residential base — and we see new building announcements every year that continue to move the neighborhood in that direction.

When my husband and I decided to open a healthy, fast-casual restaurant, Pioneer Square was our first choice. So, a little over a month ago, we opened SPROUT at the base of Smith Tower (512 2nd Ave S). We weren’t too public about it because we are new to the restaurant business, and wanted time to work out some of the inevitable kinks. It’s been amazing so far, and we are incredibly grateful to all of the support we have already received from local employees and residents.

This Thursday, we are (finally) going to have our Grand Opening and would love for you to stop by and try a salad, wrap, soup, or some frozen yogurt.

Details from the official announcement are below:


SPROUT Grand Opening this Thursday

After a few weeks of being open, SPROUT is ready to celebrate with a Grand Opening. Come by this Thursday (12/4) to experience live music, a free cup of soup (with the purchase of a salad), and taste their organic frozen yogurt.

They will have a ribbon cutting at 4pm, and the festivities will continue until 6:30pm, so stop by after work for some dinner while enjoying the live music and free samples.

SPROUT was started by Pioneer Square residents Jenny and Michael Kelly, with their business partner Marcus Oesterwinter, and Executive Chef Alison Strong. Looking at all of the fast-food choices today, they wanted a place where people could eat healthy food every day — and eat with purpose. ‘

SPROUT offers a variety of filling salads that carry as many organic and local goods as seasonally possible. Their dressings are all house made, and are low fat and gluten-free. Drinks include uniquely house made drinks (like Agave Lemonade, and Strawberry Limeade) that will make you forget traditional soda ever existed.

What: SPROUT Grand Opening
When: First Thursday, December 4th
Live Music from 12 – 1:30pm and 5 – 6:30pm
Ribbon Cutting at 4pm

Check them out online for more information: