EVERETT — Waterfront Place could be a hopping spot by next fall.
Lazy Boy Brewing plans to close its south Everett taproom and move to the waterfront, and Sound to Summit in Snohomish aims to open a second location at the Port of Everett within a year.
Port commissioners unanimously approved the separate leases Tuesday. Sound to Summit’s owners had not signed the lease but were close to doing so, co-owner Doug Milnor said after the port commission meeting.
Bringing breweries, along with apartments, hotels, public trails, and a “wine walk,” to the marina area has been part of the port’s economic development strategy. Once open, the newcomers will join Scuttlebutt Brewing, which has operated along Everett’s waterfront for over 25 years.
“We are excited to recruit growing and expanding businesses to our destination waterfront,” Port of Everett CEO Lisa Lefeber said in a statement. “These additional businesses choosing to set up shop in our new destination waterfront, combined with our wonderful current tenant mix, will only enhance the success and vitality of all waterfront businesses.”
Improved visibility was a major factor for Lazy Boy Brewing to move from where it started 16 years ago, owner Shawn Loring said.
“We’ve been tucked away in this corner of Everett for so long, when this chance came along I had to take it,” he said. “Basically, you have to move there, that’s the future of Everett right there.”
Now Loring is pursuing business growth over the new 10-year lease despite moving into a smaller space. Lazy Boy Brewing will occupy 3,000 square feet in that building, plus 3,000 square feet of covered patio. Loring plans on keeping beer production output about the same as it is now, while adding food options.
“Our goal is to basically keep doing what we’re doing, be efficient, and have a more visible taproom,” Loring said.
At Seiner Drive and West Marine View Drive, the new location will be near the site where Scuttlebutt Brewing has been for decades. A fish market vendor is being sought for the rest of the space, which hasn’t been constructed yet, Lefeber said.
Sound to Summit’s five-year lease with a five-year renewal option would be an expansion as a second restaurant and taproom.
Four families acquired it last year and pursued the port deal for space at 18th Street and West Marine View Drive near Lombardi’s and the Port Gardner Inn three weeks ago.
“This seemed an opportunity too good to pass up,” Milnor said.
Everett and the port’s rising population density and high waterfront traffic were selling points for him and the other owners, he said. Sound to Summit’s lease is for 3,000 square feet inside and 900 square feet of semi-covered courtyard space.
“We’re designing this space so it’s kind of pandemic-proof,” Lefeber said.
The new building, slated to be constructed next year, will be shared with Bellingham-based Woods Coffee. Milnor said he hopes to open the second Sound to Summit location in October or November 2022. Brewing operations will stay at the Snohomish location.
Complete details of the leases, including the expected rents, were not available as they were not yet fully signed. But Lefeber said in the commission meeting each would be around $40 per rentable square foot and $10 per foot for courtyard or patio space. Port spokesperson Cat Soper confirmed they also would include a percentage of profits for the port.
Moving to an area with anchor tenants such as Anthony’s and Lombardi’s restaurants eases the “calculated risk” of such a big change, Loring said. Grand Avenue Park Bridge better connects north Everett residents across the train tracks and atop the bluff to the waterfront as well.
Being close to other breweries and restaurants didn’t worry Milnor. He said the success of Woodinville’s clustered wineries shows how similar businesses can thrive next door to each other. Plus, craft brewers are a small community and have helped each other.
“I love the fact that you’re going to get a lot of people that come in looking for an experience,” Milnor said. “Wine, beer, food, it’s all part of that experience.”
With 131 more apartments under construction and future phases of the port’s redevelopment ahead, Loring saw the shift as full of upside.
“We’re just really excited and hopeful for the future,” he said.