By Joe Smillie
Peninsula Daily News
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City officials had expected word on the yet-unnamed “big box” store shortly after the first of the year.
City Manager Steve Burkett said Friday that the owners of the 75-acre parcel contacted the city and said “there won’t be a decision for two to three months.”
In December, city officials received an email from the owners of the land known as the Burrowes property saying that a decision on the development would be made shortly after the first of the year.
Mark Burrowes, co-owner of the land purchased by his grandfather, said Friday he hadn’t heard from the Bellevue development firm working with the retailer.
“They haven’t said anything. I don’t know if that’s good or bad,” Burrowes said.
“I wish I could tell you something more. I would imagine we’d know something more between now and June.”
Co-owner Fred McConkey said “nothing has happened” in an email reply to inquiries about the project.
The retailer has not been identified.
Peter Powell, owner of Powell Development Co. in Bellevue, did not return a call and an email requesting coment Friday.
Chris Hugo, director of the city’s community development department, said the city is still planning on the development coming to fruition.
“We assume if his efforts were dead, someone would have shared that with us,” Hugo said.
In July, Burkett discussed the possibility of a Fred Meyer store being built in Sequim during a presentation to the Sequim Association of Realtors.
Fred Meyer is a division of the larger Kroger Co. chain of retail stores.
Plans were dropped in 2004 to possibly include a Fred Meyer in the proposed Bell Farm shopping plaza on the Burrowes property.
Fred Meyer renewed its interest in the site in 2006 and 2008 without following through.
City officials have eyed the shopping center as a boon to the city’s tax coffers.
Elray Konkel, the city’s administrative services director, told the City Council at its meeting last Monday, Feb. 25, that sales tax revenues has continued to fall in 2012.
Most of that decline was due to the slumping construction market.
In 2006, Konkel reported, Sequim pulled in $608,061 in sales taxes from construction. That number plummeted to $139,557 in 2012.
Retail sales tax revenues were on par with the past several years, generating $1,434,724 in 2012.
Konkel reported January and February tax revenues appear to be on the rise so far this year.
Sequim-Dungeness Valley Editor Joe Smillie can be reached at 360-681-2390, ext. 5052, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.