In November 1972, Jack Roberts, a reporter for the Spokesman-Review described the site: "Havermale Island's sinking skyline, slammed for weeks by wrecking balls, is taking on the tired, desolate look of a bomb-gutted section of World War II London. The island, which is the heart of the 100-acre Expo site, is a mass of twisted structural steel, broken chunks of concrete, railroad gondola cars being loaded with salvage, huge cranes poking skyward and piles of nondescript debris."
"Many years later, King Cole described his 'defining moment' during the construction. One day he drove down Grand Boulevard from Spokane's South Hill and curved around Sacred Heart Hospital to Washington Street. 'There had always been these railroad tracks cutting me off from the view of the north side of town and of the river and everything else. The day that I actually drove down, and they weren't there, I felt like: if nothing happens, if the fair didn't happen, if I died, whatever happened, what I really wanted to do the most of all was to get rid of those damn tracks.'"
"About a decade later, when he became involved with Expo '74, Williams was willing to accept a broader definition of government's proper role in society. Like many other Spokane businessmen, he was comfortable with the blend of private and public enterprise that made the world's fair possible, and he would help the exposition acquire several millions in state funds. As he said of Expo, 'It was private enterprise, but they went to the trough too.'"