News Blog for Seattle's Wallingford Neighborhood


The Wallingford Dump Gets a Facelift!

January 21st, 2014 by master

The Seattle Times reports that the Wallingford transfer station is getting updated! That’s great news for Wallingford! Unfortunately, for about two-years, customers of the North-Station will need to take an estimated 10.5 mile trip down to the South Park-Station to unload their trash.

Originally published January 19, 2014 at 6:58 PM | Page modified January 19, 2014 at 9:50 PM

Wallingford transfer station closing for two-year update

Starting Monday afternoon, the garbage-transfer station in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood will close for two years while a more efficient and user-friendly facility is built in its place.

By Safiya Merchant

Seattle Times staff reporter

The new South Transfer Station in South Park opened in 2013. It is bright and airy with lots of green attributes. There are separate entrances for private and commercial trucks.

Enlarge this photo

On Monday, the infamous pit at the garbage-transfer station in Wallingford will exhale its last smelly breath.

The transfer facility on North 34th Street will shut down at 5:30 p.m. so that a more efficient and modernized version can be built in its place over the next two years.

In the interim, residential and commercial users of the North Transfer Station will need to trek their old tires, shot appliances, yard debris and other garbage down to the new South Transfer Station in South Park, which was just completed last year.

The new north station will be markedly different from the one there now, featuring many of the same amenities that were added to the new south station.

Chief among them: Instead of dumping their garbage into a deep and massive pit, users will be able to deposit it onto a flat floor — a safer option for customers and employees alike, said Ingrid Goodwin, a public-information officer for Seattle Public Utilities (SPU).

Other new features: separate dumping areas for commercial trucks and self-haulers, translucent panels on the building to let in more natural light, misting systems to control odors and dust and solar panels on the roof.

Unlike the current station, which is open on the sides where customers drive in and out, the new station will be enclosed.

And the entire campus will expand east to Woodlawn Avenue North to make room for the station’s own separate recycling facility.

The north-station reconstruction is estimated to cost $92.4 million, according to Goodwin.

Ken Snipes, SPU’s director of solid-waste operations, said the north-station construction is the second phase in a three-phase project that began with the new south station.

The third phase, Snipes said, will be to transform the old South Transfer Station, which still stands near the new one at that site, into a recycling facility.

The changes to the north and south stations will help them come closer to their goal of recycling 60 percent of everything that comes in by pulling more materials out of the waste stream and recycling them, Snipes said.

Goodwin said the community around the north station was actively engaged in the planning of the new north station, and vocal about what it wanted and didn’t want to see.

One feature it pushed for — and will get: creation of an open space at the site for community use. This space will include features like a sports court and pathways.

“It’ll look a lot friendlier; it won’t look like a dump,” Goodwin said.

The downside is that for roughly the next two years, north-station users will need to haul their trash about 10.5 miles south to the station in South Park. That facility will be able to handle additional customers, Goodwin said, but she acknowledged the inconvenience.

“We’re just hoping that our customers will be patient with us for the next couple of years and they will benefit from having a new station in 2016,” she said.

Lynn McCaffray, an arborist who frequently takes yard waste to the Wallingford station, said she probably won’t drive down to South Park because she lives up north in Shoreline and does not want to go through traffic at the end of her day.

Shoreline also has a transfer station, and she’ll use it instead, noting that it just reduced its rates for clean green waste.

But once the Wallingford station reopens, she said, she’ll be back. “I like the facility; the people are really friendly; they’re really nice.”

Safiya Merchant: or 206-464-2299

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Saturday: Two transfer station community events

April 15th, 2011 by master

Seattle Public Utilities and the North Transfer Station steering committee are getting closer to a final design for the station, more commonly called “the dump.” The new station will be constructed on the current site at 1350 N. 34th Street after the old facility is demolished in 2012.

The current transfer station was built in the 1960s with the single purpose of collecting garbage.  Today, the station  has to deal with recyclables and yard waste.  Long lines can sometime form on N. 34th Street as customers wait for their loads to be weighed.  Neighbors are also forced to deal with noise, and even worse, the odor.  One nearby resident told us when we toured the station in 2010 that the smell gets worse every year.

This Saturday, April 30, SPU will host two community-wide events to give anyone interested a better look. At these events, you’ll be able to view the existing station, provide input on the proposed design concepts, and learn more about the future of the North Transfer Station.

Walking tours of the perimeter of the transfer station
Date: Saturday, April 30, 2011
Time: 9:30 – 11:00 a.m.
Location: Corner of N. 34th Street and Carr Place North

Community meeting
Date: Saturday, April 30, 2011
Time: 12:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Location: Hamilton International Middle School, 1610 N. 41st Street

Two designs are now under consideration, after a lengthy design process and series of workshops.

These are flyover video visualizations of the two options — the first shows a separate recycling facility; in the second, the recycling area is attached to the transfer station. Visit the SPU North Transfer Station site for extensive information on the project.

Seattle Channel Video can be played in Flash Player 9 and up

Seattle Channel Video can be played in Flash Player 9 and up

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Community weighs options for new transfer station

September 15th, 2010 by master

Community leaders have narrowed their choices among the 7 options for the new transfer station on North 34th Street in Wallingford.  During a meeting last night, stakeholders selected their top picks.

Community members look over 7 design proposals

The new station will replace the current North Recycling and Disposal Station at 1350 N 34th (seen below).  After the old station is demolished, the new one will be built on the same site.  Each of the 7 proposed designs offered a different option on how to use the property. 

Current transfer station

The Wallingford Community Council recently sent a letter to Seattle Public Utilities supporting only one of the 7 proposed designs.  That design is Concept 3 (below), which currently doesn’t call for the east side of the property to be used as a recycling operation.  It preserves the industrial buffer zone and the council is urging that a public park be built at the corner of 35th and Woodlawn Ave.

Concept 3

Jessica Vets, a stakeholder representing the Fremont Chamber of Commerce, spoke with us as other members of the panel tried to narrow their choices.

“My number one take is I want to connect retail, I want to connect businesses,” said Vets.  “People come across the Fremont Bridge and they have no reason to turn right.  I want them to want to turn right.  What are we doing to make it pedestrian friendly, to make it when people go by they don’t go ugh, there’s the transfer station?”

At the end of the night, concepts 6 and 7 were eliminated, and options 1 and 5 were merged into one.  The group also came up with a few new ideas that will be put into consideration at the next meeting of the stakeholders on October 21.

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