Clock ticks on Track 29 deadline as efforts to save it grow

YAKIMA, Wash. --The landmark Track 29 shopping center might be in its final days. The bankruptcy trustee ordered all tenants out by May 31st.

Plans to replace it with a parking lot have already been submitted.

However, Beverly Harding says not so fast. Her family is one of thousands who paid for a personalized brick on Heritage Square inside Track 29. The brick was a gift for her mother and father, who have since passed away. Her dad especially loved it.

"He was thrilled to death that brick was there since he lived here all his life," Beverly said.

City officials tell KIMA they can't touch the bricks because they belong to the bank-- or any future owner.

It's not just Beverly who's trying preserve the property. A "Save Track 29" group has formed. They made their presence known at Tuesday night's council meeting.

"I want to say that we will fight to the very end with all we have," leader Tony Sandoval said before Council Tuesday night.

The group is made up of citizens, Track 29 tenants and members of Yakima Historic Group. Sandoval says he understands the bankruptcy is a private matter. But he thinks the city manager and Council should try somehow to save the shops.

"This is exactly what Tony O'Rourke is trying to do," Sandoval said. "Trying to create economic development; which is Track 29. Those are beautiful little shops that can be developed."

Efforts are building to keep the historic shopping center alive, as Plans to demolish Track 29 and all of its bricks move forward.

"I thought well if they're going to do that I'd kind of like to have mom and dads," Beverly said.

Russillo's Restaurant is the anchor of the shops. The bankruptcy trustee tells KIMA the owner is ready to leave by the end of the month. However, Russillo's owner says he's not going anywhere.

It's a story KIMA will continue to follow.

The group also plans to hold a jamboree on Saturday at Track 29 to raise awareness and possibly funds for the shops.