EVERETT — Rucker Avenue will lose a rock-solid business this month when Summit Everett, a climbing gym, moves one block west to Grand Avenue.
The current gym at 2820 Rucker Ave. will close its doors Nov. 30 and relocate to retail space at 2900 Grand Ave. The new 8,500-square-foot facility — in the anchor space of a former indoor farmers market — will open sometime next year.
Summit is closing the Rucker facility due to increased operating costs, manager Daniel Coltrane said.
It’s a lucky save for the local climbing community. And the new address will offer three times as much surface for bouldering.
“Our main goal is to keep climbing here in Everett,” Coltrane said.
The new location, on the first floor of The Waterline Apartments, briefly housed the Grand Avenue Marketplace. The farmers market opened in March 2018 and closed six months later. The spot has been vacant since.
Everett resident Jan Griffith-Mower thinks Summit’s new digs will liven up the block.
“It will young it up,” Griffith-Mower said, as she waited in line to buy ginger snaps at Choux Choux Bakery, one of Summit’s new neighbors.
Summit offers classes and instruction for adults and children, age 3 and up.
The added foot traffic should give the bakery a boost, Griffith-Mower said.
“They can bust their butts, and then come here and nosh it up,” she said while paying for her cookies.
A small plaza in front of the Waterline is empty except for a few metal chairs and tables. It’s a pleasant seating area, but one that mostly goes unused.
That could change.
The area is looking like it could become Everett’s new fitness district.
Urban Yogis, a yoga studio opened a year ago on the north end of the plaza. Crossfit Advantage Everett on the southeast corner of Hewitt and Grand avenues is another recent arrival on the block. A stone’s throw to the north, longtime businesses The Sisters Restaurant and Sno-Isle Food Co-op round out the retail offerings.
For Summit, the Grand Avenue address is a step up.
The new location offers a full fitness area with cardio, free weights, resistance equipment and more bouldering and climbing surface. Full climate control, 24-hour member access, covered off-street parking and, “best of all, much more space to grow,” tops off the list, the gym noted in a Facebook post announcing the move.
Still, it’s a bit of a loss for some of Summit’s neighbors on Rucker Avenue, including Pops Skate Shop at 2826 Rucker.
“We do see some people from there who come in and make small impulse buys — T-shirts and shoes,” said Skate Shop manager Jefferson Elliott.
“But someone else will move in,” he added optimistically.
The Rucker location has been a climbing gym for more than 20 years.
Summit took over the Rucker facility in 2016.
The first rock climbing gym in America opened in Seattle in 1987, launching the beginning of a new sport: indoor climbing.
Climbing gym memberships will not be billed Dec. 1. Youth program participants who’ve purchased December courses will receive full refunds. Annual pass holders can contact firstname.lastname@example.org for refund status.
The Waterline Apartments, retail space and plaza was originally called Potala Place when it was developed by Lobsang Dargey in the early 2000s. Dargey defrauded investors and misused tens of millions of dollars. Sentenced to four years in prison in 2017, he was released in 2020, owing millions.
A Las Vegas-based business called EB5 Grouptook control of the property in 2017.
In 2021, Cumberland Holdings purchased the property from the EB5. Cumberland is the new owner.