Hoop Dreams: Impact of arena questioned

 
 

     When a basketball arena moves into the neighborhood, what happens?

     Chris Hansen’s proposed home for an NBA franchise (and maybe a hockey team, too) is still in the arguing phase, but already there is considerable speculation and concern about the impact of the arena’s construction, according to a recent research report issued by the real estate services firm Kidder Mathews.

     It’s not just the arena, for which Hansen has already spent nearly $54 million in assembling properties, the report notes. It’s also the push for more hotel rooms, more apartments, more nonindustrial uses in what is one of Seattle’s last large concentrations of manufacturing and warehouse operations.

     Those trends are meeting with resistance. The Port of Seattle and the longshore union are already on record opposing the arena’s siting just south of the Safeco Field parking garage. (Kidder Mathews says there’s a large market for leasing yard areas near the port.) Industrial firms in SoDo were unhappy with the encroachment of retailing, residential, entertainment and related activities well before the arena proposal surfaced. And as the Kidder Mathews report notes, the city has maximum size restrictions on nonindustrial uses in a designated area of SoDo (the arena itself is proposed for an area where such activity is allowed).

     What Kidder Mathews is predicting, and what the port and some industrial tenants of the area fear, is a tight local real estate market getting even tighter—and more expensive. Kidder Mathews says the 3.44 percent vacancy rate easily bests other markets in the Puget Sound region. By comparison, South King County, the state’s largest industrial market, had a 6.5 percent vacancy rate in the fourth quarter of 2012.

      The long-term impact, according to Kidder Mathews, will be “a loss of industrial supply.” That echoes an assertion made in a Seattle Planning Commission report last summer: “The proposed arena is likely to put further conversion pressure on nearby manufacturing and industrial business.”

The 2016 Washington Manufacturing Awards: Legacy Award

The 2016 Washington Manufacturing Awards: Legacy Award

Winner: Belshaw Adamatic Bakery Group
| FROM THE PRINT EDITION |
 
 
 
Legacy Award
Belshaw Adamatic Bakery Group
Auburn › belshaw-adamatic.com
When it’s time to make doughnuts — or loaves of bread, or sheets of rolls — it could well be a Belshaw Adamatic piece of equipment that’s turning out the baked goods. From a 120,000-square-foot plant in Auburn, Belshaw Adamatic produces the ovens, fryers, conveyors and specialty equipment like jelly injectors used by wholesale and retail bakeries.
 
The firm’s two legacy companies — Belshaw started in 1923, Adamatic in 1962 — combined forces in 2007. Italy’s Ali Group North America is the parent.
 
It it takes work to maintain a legacy. A months-long strike in 2013 damaged morale and forced a leadership change. Frank Chandler was named president and CEO of Belshaw Adamatic in September 2013. The company has since strived to mend workplace relationships while also introducing a stream of new products, such as a convection oven, the BX Eco-touch, with energy saving features and steam injection that can be programmed for precise times in baking. The company energetically describes it as “an oven that saves time, reduces errors, makes an awesome product, and is fun to use and depend on every day!”
 
So far, more than 3,000 have been installed in quick-service restaurants, bakeries, cafés and supermarkets in the United States. They are the legacy of Thomas and Walter Belshaw, former builders of marine engines, who began producing patented manual and automated doughnut-making machines in Seattle 90 years ago. They sold thousands worldwide and, today, Belshaw Adamatic is the nation’s largest maker and distributor of doughnut-making equipment.