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Downtown Has Potential, But Needs More Attention From City

Patch welcomes letters to the editor. Please send them to jenny.manning@patch.com and include your first and last name and city of residence.

I appreciate the poll you made available to Renton residents to give input ref the decline of downtown Renton. What isn’t addressed is the lack of focus by the City Mayor and Council to achieve this, despite all the rhetoric to the contrary. 

The Pavilion building has been farmed out to an individual who rents the space periodically for weddings etc. This is our building – out tax dollars paid for it and it would be/should be a draw for folks to downtown.Weekly dances could be held there – for a nominal cost to participants, art exhibits, cultural shows etc. I know this would be a great asset to businesses and eateries etc.

Instead, it is empty for the greater part of the year.

Certainly we have the farmers market one afternoon a week in the summer – this falls short of what could and should be done. I am sure the City Mayor has lots of excuses as to why this is not being used for our benefit. 

Secondly, if you look on the ‘Renton Chamber of Commerce’ web-site, the link that will take people to down-town Renton goes to a dead end. It has been like this all year. On the other hand the link that takes you to the ‘Landing’ has all kinds of promotion and information.What are we paying the ‘Chamber’ for – what are all the businesses getting out of the membership dues they pay, absolutely nothing.

This is an outrage, especially considering the salaries that some of these individuals draw. The city wants downtown to die and to turn it into what I don’t know – perhaps a business district with offices, or just a transit center?

There is absolutely no energy or focus by the City Mayor and council to bring life into downtown Renton.Excuses will be made – not enough money to manage the Pavilion etc. I suggest putting it under the control of a department where they can manage it, or use some of the monies that we are still paying in taxes to the city for the library, that is now managed (excuse the humor) by KCLS. 

There is a way, but only if there is real commitment by the Mayor and his council.

Respectfully, but disgusted that this has been allowed to continue,

—Nicola Robinson, Renton

Mike Kingston December 16, 2012 at 05:41 PM
Downtown Renton is not a destination but rather an obstacle for commuters. Everything backs up in there: cars, trucks, buses. Buses are the worst , since most just terminate at that very inconvenient transit center. Getting to and from it by bus is an extra delay since buses have to go on freaky detours through congested streets. The circling of bus routes in Downtown Renton can make you dizzy. then you have to get off into the cesspool of crazies and police(both intimidating), just so you can transfer to another bus to continue north or south. Feels like an artificially created situation to give police more work(funds). There is absolutely no reason for most passengers to go there. It's just not a meaningful destination. Why would you want to travel from Benson Hill to Downtown Renton?! You are going north to get to Seattle or Bellevue. By the way, it is also right under the landing/take off path for the airport. Artificially forcing people to go there will end up costing a lot of money and will never work.
judy welsh December 17, 2012 at 05:47 PM
AMEN! i have 2 businesses just outside the downtown core-we have tried for years to get the city to promote downtown-but now that the landing has come along-i think this will be a lost cause Here's the reality-downtown Renton will never!!house chain stores-it will only be used for local business, which without city support will also fail Time to get off the dime & do something

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