Port of Seattle Breaks Ground on Maritime Innovation Center

A rendering of the now under-construction Maritime Innovation Center. Image: Port of Seattle.

Work is officially underway to renovate a historic building at Fishermen’s Terminal in Seattle into a new facility that nurtures the region’s blue economy.

Port of Seattle officials on May 21 commemorated the groundbreaking of a project to transform the 1918 Ship Supply Building into a modern, sustainable Maritime Innovation Center.

“The future of the maritime industry and the ocean economy is innovative, sustainable and equitable,” port Commissioner Ryan Calkins said. “The Maritime Innovation Center will foster an atmosphere of collaboration and innovation, which will ensure that all the sectors of the maritime industry, from commercial fishing to the growing green maritime economy, have not only a home but an anchor in Seattle.”

The port is teaming with architectural design firm Miller Hull on the adaptive reuse project, which aims to preserve and source its materials from the 1918 building that faces the waterfront. For example, its century-old timber would be saved and reused, according to the port.

“Miller Hull’s design will enhance the iconic pitched roof by using locally sourced and industrially appropriate materials,” the port explained, adding that rainwater cisterns and an on-site photovoltaic array are among the project’s environmentally-friendly features.

“It is an honor to contribute our expertise in sustainable design to this landmark project, which will not only preserve the Ship Supply Building’s rich heritage but propel the maritime industry into a more innovative and resilient future,” Miller Hull Principal Mike Jobes said. “The Maritime Innovation Center will stand as a testament to the Port of Seattle’s and Miller Hull’s shared commitment to sustainability, resilience, and community. We look forward to seeing it become a symbol of innovation on Seattle’s waterfront.”

By Karen Robes Meeks