The City of Bremerton’s Quincy Square project has been put on hold until city officials can secure construction funding, this despite the city receiving a $201,880 grant from the Department of Commerce and bringing the design level to 90 percent completion.
The Quincy Square project, named after renowned record producer and former Bremerton resident Quincy Jones, is an attempt to revitalize the area of 4th Street from Pacific Avenue to Washington Avenue in downtown Bremerton into an active, house-based day-to-night urban center with focused arts, entertainment and evening-centric retail spaces, according to city officials.
Per city council documents, pausing the project at 90 percent design should make the municipality eligible for future economic development grants, including stimulus grants that could be forthcoming.
“With the current public health crisis causing significant uncertainty for our budgets and state budgets, we decided to take a very close look at this project, our funding strategy, and our schedule for it,” Quincy Square Project Manager Katie Ketterer said. “We don’t believe that we’ll be able to fully fund the construction for this project in 2021. That means if we complete the design phase this year as originally planned, we would be shelving the plans until the funding is actually available to build it.”
Ketterer also feels that if they can use the recently approved commerce grant to bring the project design phase to 90 percent without using the Transportation Improvement Board (TIB) grant.
“90 percent design puts us at an excellent position to apply for future grants to construct Quincy Square and it also would allow us to direct the TIB grant to other priorities.”
Councilman Kevin Gorman expressed his disappointment regarding the effects COVID-19 has had on city projects, especially one with Jones’ namesake.
“It’s really too bad that this is happening with this project at this time because there’s a lot of private development that’s really poised to come around this area. I think it’d be a shame if anything happened to this project specifically, especially with Quincy Jones’ approval.”
At this time, the current project funding is slated at $542,500, comprising a previous Department of Commerce grant of $242,500 and a TIB grant of $98,120 along with the commerce grant that was just approved by city council.