I went down to the Barnes & Noble bookstore in downtown Seattle today one more time, before it closed its doors for good today. This leaves downtown without a big bookstore*, a somewhat shocking state of affairs. People just don’t buy new books like they used to, or: they buy them on Amazon at a discount, of course.
*There is still a Barnes & Noble at Northgate, the Elliott Bay Book Company on Capitol Hill, and the University Bookstore in U-District, as well as a smattering of second hand bookstores.
Here is another entry for the category ‘Then and Now’. Jul. 2005 : The unobstructed view of the Space Needle from the top of Denny Way, where it crosses over I-5.
Dec. 2019 : The giant 41-story apartment towers at 1120 Denny Way are now squeezing out the Space Needle views that had remained. If one stands in just the right spot, the Needle’s top can still be seen — between the tree branches and the apartment towers.
I marked up just a few of the new South Lake Union buildings that had filled in the cityscape since 2005.
We had relatively warm weather here the last week or so. A massive warmer-than-normal blob of water in the Pacific Ocean off the Washington coast may be to blame.
We also had the driest November in 40 years (only 1.71 in. of rain at Sea-Tac Airport, 26% of the average). That also means that the snowpack levels on the mountains in Washington State are lagging far behind the normal levels for this time of the year.
The transformation of the Kelly-Springfield building on 11th Ave in Capitol Hill into a modern office block is complete. Will WeWork move in, though — as advertised on the windows and doors?
WeWork is an international shared workspace & real estate company, and it is turmoil. It recently canceled its IPO, and is laying off thousands of employees (20% of its workforce). Bankruptcy loomed in October, and the start-up was rescued by a huge bail-out/ investment from Japanese company Softbank.
.. and so here’s a nice picture of the Christmas tree at Westlake Center in downtown Seattle, being lit up on Friday night.
There’s somewhat of a shortage of Christmas tree this year (the real ones). Millennials prefer to buy real trees, and in the wake of the financial crisis in 2008, tree farms cut back on the planting of trees that take 6 to 10 years to mature.
No, not dead, but it’s bleeding all over Thanksgiving week and into Sunday. Some retailers already offered Black Friday sales last week.
There is Black Friday backlash as well. Seattle-based outdoor goods store REI closed its doors today. The company encouraged people to go outside, instead of going to the mall or shopping online. (Yes, I agree outside is better! It was sunny today, but too cold to spend the whole day outside, though).
The Pacific Northwest is not plagued by any of the large storm systems that are sweeping over the continent*, but it is chilly outside. We are at that point where one opens the front door and go: Whoah! Feels colder than my refrigerator! The high was 42°F / 5°C today.
*Making trouble for Thanksgiving travelers and Black Friday shoppers, alike.
It’s winter (well, almost) – so the days are short and cold, and it rains a lot. Luckily for me, the Amy Yee Tennis Center has opened its doors after it had been closed for 6 months.
The courts themselves have not changed much, but insulation was added into the roof and walls. (It used to feel like playing inside a giant refrigerator in winter time). A new fire alarm system was installed, and the locker rooms were improved as well.
November is Seattle’s rainiest month, with an average total of some 6 or 7 in. of rain.
So far this month, though, the rain gauge at Seattle-Tacoma airport had recorded only 0.86 in of rain through Sunday night.