Submitted by Ronald Frederick.
We have two competing visions for the future of DuPont, one by the current Mayor and one by the citizens. At a recent City Council meeting, Senator Steve O’Ban showed up to praise the current mayor for “Making DuPont the economic engine driving South Pierce County.” To the citizens, that part about driving seems to resemble an eighteen-wheeler.
To the citizens, DuPont is a family friendly residential community which does not mix well with eighteen-wheelers. I grew up in Steilacoom and moved to DuPont two decades ago to raise my family and enjoy the small-town ambiance, the natural wonders like Sequalitchew Creek and hiking trails, and the historical and cultural setting where the first settlers arrived in what is now Washington State. At the current time, my extended family with children and grandchildren all live in DuPont and there is nothing more important to the future of DuPont for me than this competing vision.
The citizens of DuPont came together using their own time and money to defeat the building of multiple distribution warehouses on the Old Fort Lake property, around the DuPont Home Course golf course overlooking the Puget Sound. This area was not zoned for distribution warehouses and was contrary to the Comprehensive Plan. However, this plan was supported and encouraged by the current mayor.
Yet again on May 14, 2019, citizens turned out to testify in front of a Hearing Examiner to challenge the plans for a DuPont Industrial Warehouse that abuts the crown jewel of DuPont, Sequalitchew Creek. The industrial warehouse would include an eight-foot-high cement wall adjacent to the creek area as a noise barrier from the warehouse. No thank you, Mr. Mayor! The citizens don’t want the concrete noise barrier and we don’t want the noise. We don’t want the pollution. We don’t want a warehouse that cements over the location where the first settlers arrived, where we have a Historical Marker, where the Buffalo Soldiers camped in 1904 and which will destroy the natural setting of the entire area.
To be sure, there are many other issues concerning the future of DuPont and we will discuss those issues during the campaign. Some of those issues involve government and business ethics or a lack thereof. They involve the development of a historical and cultural preservation organization for DuPont. They involve an economic development organization for DuPont with citizen membership so that we can recruit appropriate business development that meshes with the small-town flavor of DuPont. Most importantly, our campaign is a grass roots movement by many citizens banding together to save DuPont as a safe place for families and to keep our small-town atmosphere and quality of life.