Supporting Local Businesses
Measuring Impacts on MLK Business District
In 2008, HomeSight gathered together a group of business owners and community leaders together to discuss the impacts that recent development, including the light rail construction, has had on the MLK business district. The group discussed the needs of the business district and how community efforts positively impact the area. From this discussion, HomeSight began to work towards developing community indicators to help measure the success of our efforts. As a result, HomeSight led an effort to interview a number of key MLK business owners to find out what their experiences were through light rail construction and what resources they felt were needed by businesses in the area. HomeSight is also working with other local organizations to measure the changes taking place in the MLK business district and report back these results to the community.
- Click here for a summary of the interviews we conducted in 2008.
Martin Luther King Business Association (MLKBA)
HomeSight has supported the formation and development of the MLKBA since its inception. The MLKBA is the first business organization of its kind along the MLK alignment severely impacted by Light Rail construction. The MLKBA grew out of a need to organize and promote the businesses along the MLK corridor who have been significantly impacted by many years of light rail construction. The surviving businesses now face new challenges and opportunities as the light rail is completed and begins service in the summer of 2009. The next couple years are a critical time for the ethnically diverse businesses that line the corridor, and for the larger MLK community. As new development and investment come into the area, the MLKBA seeks to promote the businesses and preserve the cultural character of the community.
The MLKBA was formalized earlier this year with the goal of supporting the MLK businesses and working to build a “strong, vibrant, and culturally diverse business community that is a destination, second to none, in the Pacific Northwest.” The Association developed by-laws, established a fiscal agent, and was formalized by Board elections in April 2008.
Since April 2008 the MLKBA has:
- Established two priorities for 2008 – membership recruitment and holding an event
- Developed a membership form and brochure
- Recruited 29 members, and
- Held with Sound Transit a very successful MLK Safety Street Fair that attracted more than 3,000 people. MLKBA continues to grow its membership and plan community events.