Port of Tacoma Okays Maritime Center Design Funding

Image: Port of Tacoma.

Port of Tacoma commissioners on March 19 authorized $7 million toward the Port Maritime Center, which would pay for master planning, legal fees and community engagement and bring the project to 60% design.

The total cost of the design is estimated at $13.5 million, according to a port commission staff report.

The port and Tacoma Public Schools are teaming up to develop a Port Maritime Center Campus and a maritime skills center on Parcels 92 and 94, port-owned land along Foss Waterway across from downtown Tacoma.

The Maritime|253 Skills Center aims to nurture the industry’s future workforce needs and would be available for free to upper class high school students in Pierce County, Wash., while the Port Maritime Center gives the port a new administration and commission space that can accommodate 150 port and Northwest Seaport Alliance staff and commissioners.

Preliminary design for a 60,000-square-foot, two-and-half story port building features maritime and sustainability elements.

The total estimated cost of the project ranges from $105 million to $150 million, with the school district expected to contribute an estimated $35 million to $41 million, according to a staff report.

“This is an exciting moment as we build a new front door to the Port of Tacoma,” Commission President Kristin Ang said. “The way this project connects us to the wider community, and helps us build the workforce of the future, reflects how we’re seizing this once-in-a-generation opportunity.”

A public open house on the project is scheduled for 4 to 6 p.m. May 7 at Foss Waterway Seaport. For more information, visit portmaritimecenter.com and maritime253.org.

By Karen Robes Meeks