Paws and Preservation: The Everett Gazebo compromise

Everett Mayor Cassie Franklin's push to remove a 103-year-old landmark, the gazebo in the city's oldest park, has sparked controversy and opposition from historians and locals alike. 

She wants to demolish the century-old structure to improve public safety and make way for a new off-leash dog park. 

After peaceful protests and pleas for preservation, Everett’s Historical Commission is proposing a compromise. They believe the gazebo and dog park can coexist. 

The saga began in February when news of the gazebo's impending removal shocked longtime residents who responded by decorating it with hearts as a symbol of their affection. Accusations of a back-door deal between the neighborhood association and the mayor fueled allegations of bypassing proper channels for public input.

Residents have acknowledged the former bandstand’s attraction as a shelter for homeless individuals, contributing to concerns over safety and crime in the area. Taking this into consideration, the Historical Commission suggested a bargain they believe can appease both sides: add new lighting and fence it off within a space designated for dogs. The gazebo stays and is incorporated into the off-leash area. 

In response to the commission’s proposal, the Mayor’s office said while they appreciate the time and energy spent on a compromise, efforts fell short:  

"It’s disappointing that we weren’t able to get the commission’s input on how the gazebo’s look and style could be incorporated into the new dog park design; but, looking ahead, we will be working on next steps, keeping our goal of reactivating this obviously beloved neighborhood park as our focus."


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