Wyking Garrett, Ms. Helen, Africatown, and Black Wall Street: Visions for the future of 23rd and Union

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(Images: Jeremy Hurd-McKenney for CHS)

Posted on Tuesday, April 7, 2015 – 11:33 am by Craig Hurd-McKenney

Saturday April 4, Africatown representative K. Wyking Garrett began the presentation recognizing that “Seattle has the opportunity to rise to the values it aspires to […] or follow the path it’s on now, like San Francisco, where communities are being uprooted. We have to think of the ecosystem of people.”

With major elements like a Public Development Authority or a land trust still on the drawing board, community members met with Africatown Seattle and the Union Street Business Association Saturday to talk about the future of 23rd and Union and landowner Tom Bangasser’s still-for-sale Midtown Center block. There was one solid announcement about the future of the property, however.

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Bangasser introduced longtime community members Helen Coleman and her daughter, Jesdarnel “Squirt” Henton. The ladies were there to provide lunch and context for the changes at 23rd and Union and to announce that a lease for Ms. Helen’s Soul Food Bistro had been finalized with Bangasser.

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