from The Stranger:

DEAR MAYOR MURRAY, Please Don’t Let an Automotive Parts Storage Lot Go Where Seattle Drum School Could Go

The City of Seattle is requiring extensive building code renovations at Seattle Drum School’s north branch (12510 15th Ave NE) which neither they, nor their landlords can afford. Unfortunately the building is being sold. An opportunity has arisen for them to purchase the former Fire Station 39 in downtown Lake City, less than a mile away from their current location. Drum School director Steve Smith says the city has other options for this fire station property, and they need supporters to let the Mayor’s office and the city council know that Seattle Drum School belongs in Lake City.

Smith said, “What we need now more than anything is the city’s cooperation and support. We think there’s a lot of enthusiasm inside the city’s Department of Finance and Administrative Services (FAS) for our attempt in acquiring the fire station. They have stressed repeatedly that getting politicians involved in the process is going to be critical to our success. The latest we’ve heard is that the city is about to lease the property to Bill Pierre for two years to use as parts storage. They’ve been trying to buy the property (they already own sixteen acres along Lake City Way), but so far the city has turned down that proposal. We’ve emailed area politicians and Lake City civic groups attempting to garner support for our endeavor. So far we have only received a notification from the Mayor’s office acknowledging our inquiry.

In terms of fundraising we will need to raise at least $300,000 in order to make the fire station our new home, as it is in need of a seismic retrofit as well as other code improvements, in addition to significant basic renovations just for it to be made inhabitable for us. We really hope we can make it work.”


Mayor’s Office: [email protected]
City Council’s Nick Licata: [email protected]
City Council’s Mike O’Brien: [email protected]

In May, 2013 Smith spoke about Seattle Drum School’s situation.

The North Seattle and Georgetown locations have roughly 600 students and over 40 teachers combined. They offer bass, drum, guitar, piano, voice, trumpet, saxophone, trombone, DJ, mandolin, and ukulele lessons, as well as rock-band classes, and audio-engineering instruction. During the summer, there are camps, and they host all-ages shows and clinics as well.

Lastly, Smith said, “The city is enforcing laws and standards that are designed to improve the quality of society and the environment. I think it’s in everybody’s best interest to present this situation as an opportunity to foster cooperation and find a solution to our problem that benefits everyone involved including the City of Seattle as a whole.”

Seattle Jazz