An 11th hour challenge | Letter

Mar 19, 2014

Editor, The Beacon:

All communities have challenges. Mukilteo is no exception. Chief among them in 2014 is the future location of the Mukilteo-Clinton ferry terminal.

After exhaustive review and deliberation by state powers-that-be with “jurisdiction” in ferry affairs (WSDOT and WSF are two), state authorities have decided to plant the new Clinton Ferry terminal in the very midst of 22 acres on the Tank Farm at Mukilteo's north shore.

This Sound view north is a singularly spectacular event. It will be completely quashed by WSDOT’s current chosen option, creating instead an eyesore for eternity.

It is the worst choice for the future of our city.

This option, to be implemented quickly, will turn that beautiful property to an asphalt parking lot, holding scores of exhaust-spewing cars waiting to board the ferry just off shore. Consider that as a pretty sight!

This action will significantly lower the real estate values of both historic Old Town homes, others on the bluffs overlooking the Tank Farm, and savage Mukilteo's economic prosperity forever. No new businesses. No beauty.

This looming perspective will indeed assure a most lovely city, Mukilteo,  becomes a “dead end town” replaced by a canker characterized as an ugly, congested, noisy transportation hub for Puget Sound.  Nothing more.

That entirely darkens the city’s future.

There is a preferred alternative.

Imagine the new construction of a number of business on 20 acres of the Tank Farm site. Restaurants, gift shops, a game center designed principally for the young and the young-at-heart, a cultural center brightly presenting our unique and important history.

These structures would be set 30 feet back from the shoreline promenade that extends east to Edgewater Park (currently inaccessible). A short boardwalk would connect each to the shoreline promenade.

This northern frontage would be pleasantly landscaped. Centrally there would be a small park. The cultural center might be located there.

The refurbished ferry terminal will remain where it is (one of the four alternatives considered).

The state will reportedly save $85 million in the process!

This civic development would be a pleasant destination, becoming an attractor for tourists and Puget Sound visitors. These people bring money to the community. Both our city government and our citizen would become more prosperous. Real estate values would go up. Taxes might decrease. (Imagine that!)

The Clinton-Mukilteo ferry should dock at a refurbished terminal in the location it has occupied for more than 50 years, thus sparing our northern shoreline, God's gift to all of us, from irreparable blight.

That brightens the city’s future.

It is the 11th hour – perhaps later still.

Nevertheless, I suggest that civic representatives with authority and citizens prepare a short, clear presentation for Gov. Jay Inslee. Present this information solely to him. He needs to know more.

Get to the top quickly; go where the power is.

Scott Casselman,

Mukilteo

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