Letters to the Editor

24-Hour Fitness and city zoning | Federal Way letters

Re: "City at odds over zoning variance for 24-Hour Fitness," Oct. 14:

Let's see... obesity is rampant, there are no fitness clubs in the Twin Lakes area, the space is empty and the site of various crimes because it's empty (i.e. break-in and building of a skateboard park with gang issues), fewer commuter trips since it will be located in much denser residential area than the current club, 24-Hour Fitness has built new and re-used existing spaces all over the Northwest for clubs larger than this one with zero issues like only Federal Way could throw up.

With the same circumstances of an existing space with same or less footprint impact on the area, Federal Way government doesn't care about the size of a hobby/crafts store, a dry cleaner, bookstore, an electronics store, gift card store, or a thousand other types of businesses. So why in heck would a government entity care specifically about the “competitive” (re: Dave Lee, Federal Way associate planner) aspects of specifically a fitness club?

If they truly do care to regulate such a business, then why not care about the quality of the equipment the club uses vs. other clubs? Answer: The only possible reason is a new and improved 24-Hour Fitness is such a threat to the community is that it's in direct “competition” to the under used and money losing Federal Way Community Center fitness facilities. As reported in the Federal Way Mirror on Jan. 23, 2009, the center and specifically the fitness aspects are “breaking the bank” and becoming a money pit for Federal Way. A new 24-Hour Fitness would only make that situation harder to overcome. Have we slipped this far into socialism that a private business that provides so much benefit to its customers be forced out of the area because of government mismanagement?

If this was one private business doing this to another, it would be illegal anti-trust.

Scott Lee, Federal Way

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