Amid Eviction Protests, a Larger Question Looms for the Central District: What's Happening to MidTown Center?


This has been going on for years now. Just sell the dumb thing already.
What about the long time derelict property at the corner of 23rd and Olive?
I'm not sure how you change the demographic and economic juggernaut that is gentrification in Seattle, but an Africa Town deal would have at least left an anchor in place for what the area once was. I grew up in a cheap soulless white neighborhood in Kent. Junk cars still sit in front yards there with pot grow greenhouses in back, but due to trends it's at least become a multicultural neighborhood.
"Sawant also called on other council members and Seattle Mayor Ed Murray to demand 'the owners work with the community to make this possible.'"

This is why I don't like Sawant. This kind of shit is Chavez-style socialism and it sucks. She should be doing the hard work of legislating to change the rules, not making demands for rule by decree.
Why are all the pro-density advocates sitting this one out?
".....'the owners work with the community to make this possible.'"
"the community" was mentioned a dozen times in this article. Let's be honest "the community" is a racial code phrase for "black". Less than 20% of the residents are black. Is there a reason the other 80% aren't as important? If they really want to preserve the history of the neighborhood is there a reason they don't disclose how it became predominantly black? It was because blacks bought the land cheap from the government when the Japanese were carted off to internment camps. Ironic that these people complaining about displacement have no problem that they displaced another group who were evicted for their race.
I can't think of one good reason why Africatown or any other "community" member is entitled to a share of the profits from this land sale. Non-black community members aren't being given anything. The ex-owner of Liberty bank chimed in that the current owner shouldn't evict the squatters. How nice of him to tell other people they should allow people to live rent free on their land. Why doesn't he allow them to live rent free on his land? After all they are relatives. Also, if he cared so much about that property he shouldn't have sold it. He sold it, he kept the money from the sale but demand the current owners give part of the land sale "to the community". What a great way to have your cake and eat it too. Greed and racial entitlement. All of this is just entitlement for free stuff.
@5 Because it has been designated "the black community" (despite that being untrue since 80% of the population is not black) therefore the overwhelmingly white pro-density people know they can't say anything without being called white privileged liberal racists who need to STFU.
That's Our Tara. Always such a Pollyanna......
I'm having trouble understanding how folks are feeling victimized by "the black community" whey it affects them naught. I grew up with an African American vibe in this community and its loss is not something to gloat over. In my rural neighborhood we had a woman rant on Facebook about how all the new Microsoft people are discriminating against her kind (after her husband was caught on video stealing tools from a garage.) Despite this I don't believe that all poorly educated whites are criminals, greedy or looking for racial entitlement. :)
This article revolves around the unknown: just what was their bid? How much under market do we think it's appropriate to expect the owners to sell for, and how are we assured that the new owners won't bail out and eat the charity themselves? There *are* ways to structure this so the charity would be to the public, not just to owners who promise to act for the public.

"Ironic that these people complaining about displacement have no problem that they displaced another group who were evicted for their race."

So because my grandparents did fucked up things to Japanese people, I'm required to shrug about displacing black people? Why is that again?

@9 No one thinks Africatown and their supporters are greedy, looking for a handout and have massive racial entitlement because they are black. People think this because of a very long history of them acting this way. They also spew bigoted rhetoric about Asians, whites, Jews and gays.
Your analogy makes no sense. Did a huge group of white people rally around this women and her husband and claim the person they stole from was really victimizing them despite a video showing the contrary? Did they demand money from the person they stole from and the right to keep the tools? Did they harass the person for years on end and keep making demands for money and property from him? Did this result in mob harassment and threats from the women and her supporters who the media portrayed in a dishonestly positive light? If not, then your analogy is bunk.
" So because my grandparents did fucked up things to Japanese people, I'm required to shrug about displacing black people? Why is that again?"

The Japanese were forcibly removed from property they legally owned. Garrett's grandfather sold Liberty Bank now 50 years later he expects a piece of the pie when the current buyer sells it. That's ridiculous. The Africatown tenant who was currently evicted were a few people who were illegally squatting and had been evicted in a court of law a while back. The rest of the blacks who left were not forced out but were offered high prices for their homes and chose to sell willingly. Not one of these things is similar to the injustice, inhumane, illegal and racist treatment of the Japanese when the government forced them to leave.
"the blacks"?
It's not gentrification, it's meritocrification. Unfortunately, depending on your point of view, that's how it works,
Maybe people should have studied harder in school and majored in subjects that would allow them to make a good living so they could participate in the modern economy?
I'm surprised Forterra would associate themselves with Garrett. He comes off as a strident loon every time he's in the press.
@16: oh, this is Wyking Garrett, son of Omari Tahir-Garrett. who comes off as a strident loon every time he's in the press.

I have no opinion on the son.
I remember being at a kid's soccer game at Garfield a few years back. I am white. An angry young black woman in her early 20's I would judge, got in my face and told me I don't belong there and should go back where I belong - presumably my North Capitol Hill home less than 2 miles away. No way to interpret this other than incredible racism. Had I encountered her at Volunteer Park where I often hang, and said the same to her, there would be no hesitancy to call it what it is. My response was muted as I was trying to be empathic to her level of powerlessness that I inferred. But this was not about the right to squat in someone else's property or otherwise a substantive issue. Personally I with that anyone with such a sense of misguided entitlement who is not paying market rent is shown the door from this sorry corner.