Regional Retail Ordinance Approved in EllensburgPosted:
ELLENSBURG, Wash - After three years of discussion the Ellensburg city council approved an ordinance 4-3, that allows big box retailers to come to the area.
The roll call vote was tied at three when Mayor Obie O'Brien was asked for his vote. With the crowd at the edge of their seat he said "Yes" in a confident voice.
However, there still is mixed feeling about the regional retail and negative effects it could have on the historic downtown area.
One of the councilmembers that voted against the ordinance made a last effort by motioning to delay the implementation of the ordinance, but that was voted down by the council, 5-2.
Lifelong Ellensburg resident Mike Brunner says he is excited for the new stores.
"You need something short of Fred Meyer you have to go to Yakima or someplace else out of town to get your stuff. And it takes our local dollars and gives it to someone else, why not leave it here?" asked Brunner.
Mayor O'Brien says stores like Target and Best Buy could start being built by the end of next year. He also says their is language in the ordinance that prevents any appeals or lawsuits to delay planning or building of the retail.
The south and west I-90 interchanges in Ellensburg are the designated areas for building. The west interchange will likely have more retail and the south interchange is to have condos and offices.