The Smith family joins Forest City Military Communities, Navy leaders, Lake Stevens Mayor Vern Little and Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson as they cut the ribbon to their new home in Lake Stevens.
Most families dream of a new home in a community where their kids will be safe and the schools provide a quality education. The Smith family is no exception.
Susan Smith, a Chief Petty Officer for the U.S. Coast Guard and her husband Arthur, along with their three kids, Shajuana, 18, Juan, 15, and Kavonna, 10, will be the first family to move into the new military housing project in Lake Stevens. Another 67 families from both the Navy and the Coast Guard, will be joining them this weekend.
Forest City Military Communities has partnered with the Navy to bring families beautiful homes in charming and appealing communities across the country.
“At Forest City, we do more than build houses; we create communities where families thrive. This is of utmost importance to our dedicated servicemen and women, and their families, who regularly relocate throughout their service,” said Tom Henneberry, president of FCMC. “By creating neighborhoods of well-designed, high quality homes, community centers and other amenities, we are able to improve their quality of life and provide an environment conducive to making friends and raising a family.”
The Lake Stevens community, formerly known as Greenwood Village, is located just east of downtown Lake Stevens along 4th Street NE near 131st Ave. NE, has been renamed Constitution Park.
“Constitution Park represents the latest example of how our PPV (Public-Private Venture) partnership with Forest City is doing exactly what we’d hoped— improving housing conditions and fostering a greater sense of community for our men and women in uniform,” said Captain Thomas Mascolo, commanding officer of Naval Station Everett. “Those who protect our nation should have a place they are proud to call home. We want them to be able to give their families the same high quality of life that American families enjoy today.”
In all, there will be 141-homes built in Constitution Park which will house servicemen and women including an Admiral and several Commanding Officers from Naval Station Everett and the Coast Guard.
Michael Nanney, Vice-President for FCMC Northwest explains that many of the junior servicemen and women who will be living in these homes have never lived anywhere like this before.
“The coolest thing is the young families that will live here,” he said. “These are great homes with awesome curb appeal. If that doesn’t get you out of bed in the morning… I don’t know what will.”
Nanney also explains that this development has brought a win-win situation to all of those involved including FCMC, the Navy, Pacific Ridge Homes, who were the former owners of the development and the City of Lake Stevens.
“This is a very positive affect on Lake Stevens. This development is not only good for the community but it came at a very opportune time for the city economically,” Lake Stevens Mayor Vern Little said. “This development also brings 141 families to the community that will be dedicated to their new City where they will enjoy Scouting, the Junior Athletic Association, service clubs, a great school district and a sense of belonging.”
Lake Stevens offers all that a military family looks for including peace of mind when they are deployed, leaving their family behind.
“We needed a place in close proximity to the Naval Station Annex and Community Support Annex in Marysville,” Nanney explains. “We also needed better quality schools and a real downtown. This is a real community and we feel pretty fortunate to have found this place.”
Local government couldn’t agree more.
“The Mayor and City Council are very supportive in welcoming our military families and had previously passed a resolution ‘Declaring Lake Stevens to be military family friendly’ and encouraging area businesses to become a military family friendly employment partner,” Lake Stevens City Administrator Jan Berg said.
A ribbon cutting ceremony took place last Wednesday, Aug. 19 where the Smiths joined FCMC President Tom Henneberry, Rear Admiral James Symonds, Commander of Navy Region Northwest, Capt. Mascolo, Mayor Vern Little and Everett City Mayor Ray Stephanson in cutting the big, blue ribbon in front of their new 1,900 square foot home.
“We welcome you,” Little said. “This city is a close-knit community that cares and is involved and a very giving community. We wish you the best on your move to your new city and look forward to helping you in any way we can.”To view more pictures of the Navy housing and the ribbon cutting ceremony, visit our website at www.lakestevensjournal.com.