KFnet in T-Town

Oct. 1, 2008 at 4:04pm

Narrows Airport Bought by Pierce County

Come fly with me

Just emailed out from the New Takhoman via some comm. from Pierce County.

Purchase keeps Narrows Airport in public hands

With a two-seat biplane parked just feet away, the Pierce County Council last night (Sept. 30) unanimously agreed to buy the Tacoma Narrows Airport near Gig Harbor from the city of Tacoma.

As part of a $5 million joint purchase agreement with the Peninsula Metropolitan Park District (PenMet Parks), the county will pay $3 million for the airport and the park district will get nearby Madrona Links Golf Course for $2 million. Councilmembers took the final vote in Hangar 1108 of the airport, which council chair and Gig Harbor resident Terry Lee says he's wanted the county to purchase since 1992.

"I think we will look back on this evening and be thankful," said Lee (District 7). "But this is just step one. Now we'll begin to have community meetings so residents can help write the business plan for this airport."

Lee said it made sense for Pierce County to determine the airport's future since it contributes $20 million each year to the county in jobs and economic development. Having the airport in the county's portfolio can help retain companies like Russell Investment Group and DaVita and attract others, Councilmember Tim Farrell (District 4) added.

"This is a positive, long-term investment," Farrell said. Councilmember Dick Muri (District 6) said the purchase is about keeping a public resource in public hands.

"It is our duty to own this airport," he said. "This is what governments do."

Of the county's $3 million purchase price, $2 million will come from the sale of the Elk Plain Road Shop property in Graham and the remaining $1 million is real-estate excise tax revenue councilmembers reserved in this year's budget. Lee noted that no general-fund dollars would be used and no taxes would be increased to purchase the airport.

The ordinance (2008-74s) and supporting documents are available at www.piercecountywa.gov/pc/abtus/ourorg/council/NarrowsAirport_acquire.htm, and information on the airport is available on the city of Tacoma's Web site at www.cityoftacoma.org/Page.aspx?nid=124.

CONTACTS: Councilmember Terry Lee, 253-798-6654; or Brad Chatfield, Communications Legislative Analyst, 253-798-7790

It'll be great to see some development focusing on our local airport. Makes me think we should totally run a light rail from there to downtown Tacoma. You know, so Seattle doesn't get all the rail-based glory.

comments [1]  |  posted under narrows airport, pierce county, tacoma

Comments

by Nick on 10/1/2008 @ 4:14pm
Light rail came to my mind too - I say let's make a trans-sound tube and run rail tunnels under the sound Bay Area style ;-)

In all seriousness, it should be interesting to see where this goes.

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