Letters to the Editor

PACC data shows project is in city's collective interest | Letters

The proposed Performing Arts and Conference Center (PACC) is expected to cost close to $32 million and would be the most expensive public project in Federal Way history. The project is slated for the abandoned Toys R
The proposed Performing Arts and Conference Center (PACC) is expected to cost close to $32 million and would be the most expensive public project in Federal Way history. The project is slated for the abandoned Toys R' Us site on 20th Avenue South near the Federal Way Transit Center.
— image credit: Courtesy image

In a recent Federal Way City Council meeting, the major concern, voiced by councilmembers and citizens alike, revolved around the long-term financial viability of the proposed Performing Arts and Conference Center (PACC).

Specifically, could our population sustain this project? Does an extrapolation of the experience of the Edmonds performing arts facility to the Federal Way PACC make sense?

Since then, Federal Way’s economic development director, Patrick Doherty, released demographic studies comparing the population and household incomes of the greater Edmonds market to the greater Federal Way market area.

The data reveals that the Federal Way market area population is about 14 percent greater than that of Edmonds, with roughly the same household income. The data also shows that the number of households with incomes above $100,000 in both demographic areas is roughly the same.

While pro forma statement are forecasts, not guarantees, these demographic comparisons argue that we can reasonably draw from the experience of the Edmonds performing arts facility with reasonable accuracy in forecasting demand, support, revenue and expenses for the proposed Federal Way PACC.

Let us not lose sight of the purposes of this venue. It is intended to bring business to town and spur economic development, it is intended to ameliorate the decay that infests downtown, and it is intended to serve the cultural and celebratory needs of our community.

We must also carefully weigh the alternative: do nothing and watch a metastasizing urban blight engulf our city. I believe it is in our collective interest to facilitate timely completion of the project.

Paul Levy, Federal Way

 

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