Tacoma business owner, city official optimistic about fighting crime on Hosmer Street

A business owner on a troubled south Tacoma street says they are seeing positive progress in the city's fight to make a change. 

Hosmer Street, particularly around an abandoned Econolodge, has become a hot spot for drug use, gun violence and sex trafficking. 

Last fall, FOX 13 spoke to a local company looking to bring change to that area. In a recent sit down with them, they say: it's working.

Emily Hubbard purchased the abandoned motel in 2022 with the hope of creating new apartments. 

"We all thought that it would be simple. We would come in, and we would call the cops, and we would get it under control, and it would be a lot easier than it was," Hubbard said. 

However, that would not be the case. 

RELATED: 'Being shot at by tenants': FOX 13 News talks to owner of crime-ridden Hosmer Street hotel

Instead, Hubbard and her company, Sage Investment, dealt with the dangers this property continued to present

"Coming in and thinking that we could get that turned around in six weeks was a little bit naïve on our part," she said. 

It took months to clear out the crime, but she says it was worth the effort. 

In the near-year since Hubbard purchased the motel, officials have been working to make the city, and Hosmer Street, safer. 

"I’ve seen a really big change in Tacoma. We’ve had businesses up and down the corridor starting to band together," said Tacoma City Councilmember Joe Bushnell, who represents the area where the motel is. 

Bushnell said that with police focus and work from business owners like Hubbard, things are looking up. 

According to data FOX 13 News obtained from the City of Tacoma, homicides are down so far this year by about 40%. The same data also says that assaults, arsons and burglaries are down citywide. 

Hubbard said she now owns three properties on Hosmer Street, and the former motel-turned apartments is expected to start renting by late fall. 

"I don’t know if we’re crazy or what, but we felt like here we actually got to have the ability to make a change," she said.