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Hope Federal Way will act on PACC with von Reichbauer’s vision | Letter
King County Councilmember Pete von Reichbauer received a key to the city of Federal Way on Jan. 22 for many reasons.
One of them is the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center that came to Federal Way because of von Reichbauer. This 2,500 seat aquatic facility now hosts more than 50 national and international competitions annually.
The Aug. 31, 2012 Mirror stated that King County reported the facility had an estimated annual financial impact of more than $7.5 million. In the period of June 17-24 2012, while Federal Way hosted the 2012 U.S. Olympic diving trials, the event attracted nearly 4,000 non-local visitors, who spent approximately $2.3 million. Non-residents spent more than $900,000 on lodging, $400,000 on food and beverages and $36,000 on retail shopping, in little more than a week.
Without the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, there would be no major aquatic events generating local hotel, restaurant and business employees’ wages, or the taxes generated from the lodging, food, shopping and other purchases by attendees at these events.
The Aquatic Center acts as a tremendous economic engine for us and von Reichbauer should be saluted for his vision, foresight and work to help build the center in our city.
Federal Way currently has a chance to rev-up another economic engine, the proposed Performing Arts and Conference Center (PACC). It would be used both as a conference center for businesses and a performing arts venue. This could transform Federal Way’s town center into a destination spot.
Like the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center, it would be a resource for residents, while also attracting non-residents to stay in local hotels, eat at local restaurants and shop at local businesses. Companies that use the conference center would have the opportunity to see some of the fine features of Federal Way and perhaps locate new offices here.
I hope that we can act with vision and foresight similar to that displayed by von Reichbauer to rev-up another economic engine with the PACC.
Margaret Nelson, Federal Way