The derailment of an Amtrak Cascades train in DuPont December 18 forced the line to be moved back to its old route. That dealt a harsh blow business at Freighthouse Square -- home of the new Tacoma Amtrak station.
"Freighthouse has been a fixture in the south Puget Sound region for over 40 years," said Doug Huntington, property manager of Freighthouse Square. "This is a building that depends on the local people, coming through and spending money."
Freighthouse Square houses dozens of mom and pop stores. Most are minority-owned businesses.
Freighthouse Square owner Brian Borgelt said it was a disruptive year waiting for construction to finish for the new station.
"We've lost tenants in here who ran out of money during this construction process because they just couldn't survive," said Borgelt "We are the transit hub of the community. We partnered up on that with the understanding that there would be some synergy to that not that we would simply be shoved aside as if we didn't matter to make room for a train."
Business owners such as Virginia Crittendon said they hope Freighthouse Square won't be forgotten.
“I think I have a cute little shop myself but what good is it if nobody sees it. Nobody is down here to buy anything," she said. "The fact that the train was coming that was a big part of me coming on down here."
Crittendon and others, including Olive Branch Tea Room owner Terry Waller, expanded their businesses in anticipation of the Amtrak train.
"I had to disband this little cute little girl's tea room and move it back to the café. This was added onto my rent and it's huge," Waller said.
According to WSDOT, the train won't return to the new route or the new Tacoma station until it puts in Positive Train Control to the route by the end of 2018.
"This is so devastating to wait two years for one day and then that happens," said Crittendon, "I really I was devastated because I thought of the people's whose lives were taken and also the business that are impacted here. Everyone was so happy for it to come.