A news blog for Seattle's Phinney Ridge and Greenwood neighborhoods


Phinney Ridge resident concerned about increased noise from tourist helicopters over the neighborhood

October 5th, 2015 by Doree

Sanjay wrote to tell us he’s concerned about the increasing noise from Helicopters Northwest and Seattle HeliTours, which fly low over the neighborhood.

Have you noticed a lot of noise from helicopters this past summer? That is because two helicopter tourist companies now advertise that they fly over Green Lake and the Ballard Locks. To fly between these sites the helicopters fly over Phinney Ridge. Since our neighborhood is, in fact, a ridge, the ground rises up and the helicopters fly at a very low elevation as they crest Phinney Ridge. The tour company’s web sites gush that the helicopters fly as low as 500 feet above the ground.

How exciting this must be for the passengers, but the result for our neighborhood is noise. This noise is harming the quality of life in our neighborhood.

What can we do about it? I contacted some of our Seattle and King County representatives to ask about what can be done. Larry Phillips replied to me saying “The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulates noise from low-flying aircraft, such as helicopters. The Seattle Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) can be reached by phone at (425) 227-2813 or by email.”

He’s wondering if others would like to discuss the issue and possible solutions. You can email him at beeshma70@gmail.com.

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SPACE revamping its rental policy to avoid noise problems with neighbors

October 16th, 2009 by Doree

SPACE: A Design Build Collective on the corner of Greenwood Avenue and N. 76th St. is reworking its policy on renting out its space to other groups after a neighborhood uproar over loud parties this summer.

Harlequin Source School was occasionally renting the building for dance performances, but then apparently sublet the space to someone who let a party get out of hand, according to numerous comments in a previous post about Harlequin.

The front door to SPACE is the green awning to the left.

We received a note from Isaac Marcum, who is now working with SPACE to manage its Venue and Education Center.

Harlequin Source School has vacated the building leaving room for much positive change. Hosting such gatherings as the private party that occurred here in late August has never been the intention of SPACE. That event happened without discussion or knowledge of the building management and was completely inappropriate. We are sorry for our lack of oversight and will make sure it does not happen again as we move forward.

Some of the things we are doing is enforcing a preset “db” rating for the space. What that means is we are investing in a db tester that rates the volume of sound. We will then test to find what the max setting is that does not disrupt our neighbors. After we find that rating we will place a strict rule about it for all gatherings, night or day. This preset db rating will even be included in the agreement for use of the space.

Our intention is to use the space as a creative hub as well as host small, private events such as baby showers, birthday parties, Biznik events, workshops, and so on. These smaller events will have little to no impact, and we hope to work with everyone on this to make it a positive experience for everyone.

I hope to hear any concerns the community has and would love to keep communication open about how we can both respect our local community as well as be a resource. Thank you everyone who has shared your opinions thus far. I will take all these concerns to heart and move forward to an ever-increasing positive place with SPACE.

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Anyone hear loud noise last night?

August 28th, 2009 by Doree

Karl emailed us early this morning about a strange noise up on Phinney Ridge last night:

Thursday 11:30 and going strong at nearly 1 am, a roar of more than copters coming from east of 1st Ave. NW and 77th N. Rude! Don’t see any construction reports. What gives?

Anybody have any ideas of what it was?

Update 11:45 a.m.: The mystery may be solved! Several people wrote in comments that it sounds like the concrete drilling work that is happening on I-5. Washington State Department of Transportation even has their own blog post devoted to the noise, along with audio.

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