The owners of a dilapidated, graffiti-covered building in Phinney Ridge have been ordered to meet with a city hearing examiner on Wednesday morning after numerous complaints of graffiti not being cleaned up from the property at 7706 and 7708 Greenwood Ave. N.
The property, next to MoonPhoto, has been vacant and repeatedly covered with graffiti since at least 1996.
According to the hearing notice, the building is owned by Scott Walker and Rene Vaughan, who live just down the road on NW 76th Street. The two have been very involved in the community over the years, helping to build the 6th Avenue NW Pocket Park about a decade ago, and Walker organized the Greenwoodstock music concert at the park for several years.
A neighbor (who wished to remain anonymous) told me he had a cordial relationship with the owners several years ago, but that relationship soured after the neighbor kept complaining about the graffiti, garbage, transients, and other problems, and the property remained derelict. The neighbor said the Block Watch was also concerned.
The side of the building is also covered with graffiti.
The neighbor told me he recently found beer cans and a hypodermic needle next to the property. He has called the police several times about squatters in the building. The neighbor said the house attached to the back of the building used to have renters, but doesn’t anymore.
The back of the building appears to be rotting away.
Seattle Public Utilities received numerous reports of graffiti at the property on Feb. 8 of this year, and notified the property owners that it needed to be cleaned up. When it wasn’t cleaned up by Feb. 28, a second enforcement notification was given. Under Seattle Municipal Code’s Graffiti Nuisance section, the owners’ failure to respond to that second notice means they now face penalties of $150 per day, up to $5,000.
Walker did not respond to an email request for comment.