Since the first article came out announcing the plans for building a sports arena (Event Center) in Everett’s historic district, interested citizens and business owners have voiced their concerns at numerous council meetings. The site selection of Hewitt Avenue has affected many people.
The Assistance League of Everett partner with our schools to supply children with new clothes and supplies. This charitable organization has been forced to give up renovation on their existing debt-free site, to purchase a major piece of property accruing considerable debt that will take even more money away from needy children.
Two historic buildings on Hewitt will be destroyed in spite of the objections presented in letters from the Historic Society, pleading to the city not to allow these buildings to be torn down, thereby opening the way for other historic sites to be jeopardized.
For long-time retail businesses, Sam’s Western Wear, family owned and operated for over 80 years, and A-1 Loans and Pawn, for over 18 years, this decision has been devastating. The move to a new location away from your competition is a risky decision. I know this because I am a family member to one of these businesses and have seen firsthand the effects of eminent domain.
I hope that the council members who voted to go ahead with this project, or so-called public necessity that private enterprise will be making money on, find that the project is going to be a revitalizing as they anticipate, because the only thing they have done so far is to attempt to take out some of the only businesses that have survived Everett’s ups and downs.
Hopefully, the voters will vote to support the city of Everett and not the council come the November election.