YAKIMA, Wash.-- Yakima officials are considering a plan to close part of Second Avenue.
A local hops extract company says the closure would help them better comply with federal food safety guidelines, but a neighboring business owner is worried the closure would hurt his bottom line.
Essentially, the city would sell one block of Second Avenue to Hopstract, who would then fence it off and close the street.
Something Lynn Buchanan says could hurt his business and drive clients away.
"The city says it'll be a minor inconvenience to our customers. A minor inconvenience to a customer makes the difference between a customer going one place or going somewhere else," said Buchanan, whose family has owned a warehouse and truck-weighing business since the 1920's.
Hops Extract Corporation of America came to the city with the idea.
No one with the company was available for comment Monday, but in their application the company says it wants to better comply with a federal food safety act. To do that, they would need to purchase 2nd Avenue between Lincoln Ave. and D St. for $28,000 and then close it to traffic.
Something Buchanan says will destroy about a third of his business.
"We have some customers that say that they normally use 2nd Avenue. If they can't use 2nd Avenue, they're leaving," Buchanan said.
So, he's trying to outbid the hops company by offering the city $35,000, just so he can keep the street open.
But, the city manager says it's not about the money, rather what's best for the public.
The city's planning department has backed the request of the hops company, but now a hearing examiner is working on their recommendation, taking into account all the public comment.
The city manager says the city council will make the final call and likely vote in March.