Owners are building on win-win situations

Steve and Sonja Jones are not only sprucing up the downtown Buckley building they purchased four years ago, they’re taking a proactive role in filling it with tenants who they believe will enhance the city’s core.

Couple looks for tenants that enhance downtown areas in Enumclaw and Buckley

Steve and Sonja Jones are not only sprucing up the downtown Buckley building they purchased four years ago, they’re taking a proactive role in filling it with tenants who they believe will enhance the city’s core.

Moving into the highly visible ground floor at the corner of Main and Cedar streets will be The Main Street Coffee House with owners Matt and Jennifer Frick.

Set to open before the end of August, Steve Jones said it is a classic style coffee house that is on every level as nice as any in Seattle, but what it truly offers is a place downtown where people can meet.

“There’s not really a gathering spot,” Jones said. “There are a few places, but it’s fairly limited.”

Jennifer Frick agreed. She would like to see the 1,000-square-foot shop that fronts Main become a mecca for business owners and clients to work through details, moms sharing a moment after running kids around, college students sipping away while working on their homework, and teachers, and others, dropping by on their way to work.

“I see it as a place where the community can meet,” she said. “It’s a great opportunity and a great location.”

Frick, who worked as a retail store manager until recently having a child, said owning a coffee shop was always in the back of her mind, but making it a reality wasn’t in the forefront. That was until Matt, a contractor, started working on the building with Steve and the coffee shop originally planned for the location didn’t materialize. It was then the thought of running a coffee shop in their hometown became appealing, and thanks to the Joneses attainable.

Steve and Sonja Jones said they know its tough during these trying economic times for business, especially start ups, so the Joneses, through their business Mystic Properties, worked with the Fricks. According to Steve Jones, they worked out an arrangement with the Fricks to finance part of the build out and an attractive lease rate for the first year to ensure their success.

“It is a win-win for both parties and everyone living on the Plateau,” Steve Jones said. The office space upstairs will be complete Oct. 1 and is renovated to reflect the original 1898 architecture. Without advertising, the Joneses have three of the five offices leased.

The historic triangular building is their favorite. The apartment’s upstairs were converted back to vintage office space with 13-foot ceilings and solid core doors, perfect for business that don’t see a great deal of foot traffic off the street like attorneys and accountants.

The Joneses also own the two parcels on Cole Street in Enumclaw that house Radio Shack and Oh Baby.

Steve Jones said it’s in the property owners best interest to help tenants keep their doors open.

“A commercial building’s value is in the tenant,” Jones said. “A sucessful tenant makes a successful business, which in turn makes a successful downtown.

“In these challenging times we have worked closely with our tenants to ensure their success and in the process renovate a historic building in a downtown struggling to recover.”

Preserving a city’s downtown core is the Joneses’ passion. Now living in Bainbridge Island, they spent years living in Greenwater and Sonja is an active Real Estate agent at Enumclaw’s Person Real Estate Group. Enumclaw and Buckley have a special place in their hearts.

“We’re pretty passionate about these historic downtowns,” they said. “Bonney Lake and Federal Way don’t have historic downtowns. They don’t have them, but they sure want them.”

And they hate to see downtown buildings empty.

“You can’t sit around waiting for the perfect tenant, you have to make it happen,” Steve said.

“It wasn’t something we were seeking out,” Jennifer Frick said. “But there’s a great opportunity with this building.”

To comment on this story, view it online at www.courierherald.com. Reach Brenda Sexton at bsexton@courierherald.com or 360-802-8206.

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