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West Seattle Herald
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February 14, 2017     West Seattle Herald
SLIDESHOW: Alki Homestead remake taking shape; No completion date set but repairs are well underway
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February 14, 2017

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SLIDESHOW: Alki Homestead remake taking shape; No completion date set but repairs are well underway | West Seattle Herald / White Center News Skip to Main Content Area Wednesday, February 15, 2017 | Overcast, mist, light rain, 48.2 °F search Letters Sign in Subscribe Contact Us Front Page News Features Sports Opinion Police Blotter SLIDESHOW: Alki Homestead remake taking shape; No completion date set but repairs are well underway The Alki Homestead, a landmark and repository of many memories in ... Westside-O-Rama West Seattle Entertainment Guide Admiral Theater 2343 California Ave. S.W. 938-3456 Movie ... West Seattle girls fall short, losing to Bishop Blanchet By Tim Clinton SPORTS EDITOR West Seattle fell shy against ... Amanda's View: Opportunity to be By Amanda Knox   I remember how Don Saulo, the chaplain at ... Police Blotter Week of 2-6-17 Assault suspect leaves rabbit at scene of crime Officers were ... News Mudslide on Highland Park Way SW blocks road, knocks out power Hewitt will show plans for PCC site redevelopment at special Admiral Neighborhood meeting SLIDESHOW: Alki Homestead remake taking shape; No completion date set but repairs are well underway Seattle Parks seeking your input on new Highpoint Play Area playground equipment On the Go Week of 2-13-17 National Weather Service issues Wind Advisory; Gusts up to 50 mph are expected Seattle’s Neighbor Day celebration invites you to indulge in random acts of kindness Feb. 11 Design Review meeting on four story 108 unit mixed use bldg set for Mar. 2 King County among the first in the nation to achieve a global milestone in the fight against HIV/AIDS Landslide on Vashon causing delays OBITUARY: Verda R. Hansberry 1919 ~ 2017 West Seattle Food Bank gets new 'Shopping' model going Audrey Zemke leaving as Operations Manger of White Center Food Bank West Seattle Helpline gets new location and more space for 'Clothesline' free clothing store Surprise snowstorm dents local blood supply, donations urged UPDATE: Power outage and bus delays as snow storm snarls the community JuNO Land Use Committee to city: Include apartments In upcoming HALA outreach On the Go Week of 2-6-17 Oh Snow! UPDATE: Winter Storm Warning calls for the white stuff Sunday and Monday Getting there; SDOT Snow and Ice route map shows you how Northwest Symphony Orchestra performing 'Valentine's Concert' Feb. 10 Metro Transit Alert -Transit riders in King County, be prepared for possible snow or ice Will community give Camp Second Chance a chance? Councilmember Herbold offers update on the Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) Timeline ​Statement by Port of Seattle Commission President Tom Albro regarding audit and resignation of CEO Fick Patrick RobinsonAlki Homestead owner Dennis Schilling pointing to the area that was damaged in the 2009 fire, now repaired. A new log beam above him was brought in and will be painted to match the others. SLIDESHOW: Alki Homestead remake taking shape; No completion date set but repairs are well underway By Patrick Robinson 02/14/2017 The Alki Homestead, a landmark and repository of many memories in West Seattle is slowly taking shape under the guidance of owner Dennis Schilling who officially took ownership of the historic property from Tom Lin in March of 2015. The building, once known as the Fir Lodge was originally built in 1904. It went through numerous changes throughout the years, including enclosing the porch, adding a second story, and an external kitchen, but it all fell into doubt when flames destroyed some of the interior and roof in a post Christmas fire in 2009. Efforts to get approval for restoration plans were made but it wasn't until Schilling was able purchase the building and fashion a restoration plan that met with the Landmarks Preservation Board's approval that bringing the building back could move forward. Today, two year later Schilling says, "The steelwork is done, no more steel is coming in," referring to the massive interior steel beam framework now in place that is part of the building's earthquake retrofit. The original bathrooms are being replaced by two ADA compliant bathrooms, the external kitchen steel framing is done. Logs that needed replacement have been installed and the original fireplace, which was "in terrible shape with cracks running all through it" has been carefully dismantled and will come back. The large stones that once sat atop it will not return, but the wooden mantle will be reproduced. It may not however be a functioning fireplace though a gas option is possible Schilling said. "There actually is a foundation under the building but what we did, on the advice of an engineer, is dig down like 18 inches below the foundation and then we scooped out a little but under it and poured it so the the new foundation kind of cups underneath it and then we drilled a gazillion holes in here and epoxyed steel into the old foundation. So this is now fairly well tied together. The old foundation has been significantly upgraded." On the list yet to be done is a lot. That's why Schilling can't yet commit to a date for completion. "In construction it's feast or famine and right now everyone is feasting," meaning finding a sub contractor for certain specialized work has been a challenge. Specifically the electrical work including lighting and more urgently the installation of a sprinkler system, which requires a plumber with that kind of experience and the construction to make it work. Floors need to be finished on both the main floor and the second floor where three studio apartments will be built. Not to mention the construction of the apartments over the current parking lot, which was part of the financial arrangement to make the restoration possible. Also on the list are the roof, (with skylights) and finally the iconic Alki Homestead sign. All this and it's still unclear if The Homestead will come back as an actual restaurant. Schilling said he's had some interested parties (they would ostensibly lease the space), and there will be a kitchen built but until he can set a more clarified date for completion, anyone else's plans, such as a company wanting to operate a restaurant there, will have to wait. He has said it might end up being an event center where weddings, meetings and other gatherings could take place. So don't get your hopes up for the return of the famous Homestead fried chicken just yet. Photo gallery for this story We encourage our readers to comment. No registration is required. We ask that you keep your comments free of profanity and keep them civil. They are moderated and objectionable comments will be removed. View the discussion thread. Please send us your news tips, photos or ideas of how we can better cover your neighborhood. Email us at or TEXT news tips to 206-459-6717 Receive updates on news and events in the West Seattle neighborhood via Twitter! 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