Tacoma Urbanist

Oct. 26, 2013 at 12:01am

Paper and Lumber Companies Pour Thousands Against Tacomans' Efforts to Repair Their Streets Via Prop. 1

Follow the Money.

Given the flyer against Proposition 1 spamming Tacoma, one would think that Tacoma's seniors were the ones mounting the effort to defeat Tacoma's effort to rebuild and repair their roads. 

Today's flyer in the mail against Prop 1.

Hardly.  In fact, Tacoma Public Utilities offers a discount rate for low income and seniors. 

Many seniors support repairing Tacoma's streets and Proposition 1 as they know dangerous and unpleasant they are to drive on. 

See Eastside resident and retiree Edwina Magrum discusses why she will be voting YES to support Prop 1 to Fix Tacoma Streets.

Let's see who is really funding the effort to derail Tacomans' effort rebuild their streets.

Here is a paper/pulp company on the tideflats who made a $10,000 donation.

From the Washington State Public Disclosure Commission:

Here is a lumber company who made a $10,000 donation.  Yet, you won't find these entities on the anti Prop 1 material.

In contrast, here is a list of supports of Proposition 1:

Organizational Endorsements




Tacoma Education Association

PTA of Tacoma, Parent Teacher Association

Ministerial Alliance

Tacoma Firefighters, Local 31

Tacoma Police, Local 6

Pierce County Democrats

27th Leg. District Democrats

Young Democrats, Pierce County

Black Collective, Tacoma Pierce Co.

Urban League, Tacoma

Stand for Children, Tacoma

Conservation Voters, Pierce Co.

Sierra Club, Pierce Co.

Transportation Choices Coalition

Washington Conservation Voters




Central Labor Council, Pierce Co

Tucci & Sons


Tacoma Joint Labor Council

Pacific Grill Tacoma

Building  & Construction Trades Council, Pierce Co.

MC Construction

Lucas Xitco

Electrical Workers, IBEW 483

Electrical Workers, IBEW 76

Professional Technical Employees, Local 17


ILWU Local 23

Miles Resources

Realtors Earling Kuester & Leslie Young

Teamsters 117


Operating Engineers, Local 612

NW Cascade

Print NW


Bruce  Dees & Associates

Grette Associates


Doyle's Public House


Here is the list of honorary co-chairs backing Proposition 1:

Our Coalition - Honorary Co-Chairs

Honorary Co-Chairs, YES! on Prop. #1

Last update – October 21, 2013



Clare Petrich, Port of Tacoma Commissioner

Harold Moss, Former Mayor of Tacoma

Mark Martinez, Building & Construction Trades Council


Dr. Jane Moore, Tacoma Transportation Commissioner

Jacki Skaught, Tacoma Transportation Commissioner

Kristina Walker, Tacoma Transportation Commissioner

Andrew Strobel, Tacoma Transportation Commissioner

Yoshi Kumara, Tacoma Transportation Commissioner

Don Ramsdell, Tacoma Police Chief

Leslie Young, Safety & Street Improvement Council

Tom Hilyard, Fmr. Tacoma Public Utility Board Member

John Thurlow, Northeast Tacoma Neighborhood Council Chair

Justin Leighton, Central Neighborhood Council Chair

Liz Burris, New Tacoma Neighborhood Council Chair

Skip Vaughn, South End Neighborhood Council Chair

Mike Tucci, Tucci and Sons

Nathe Lawver, Pierce County Democrats, Former Chair

Beverly Smaby, 27th LD PCO

Silvia Reyes, 27th LD PCO

Jeff Maki, South End

Kaelah Maki, South End

John Messina, West End

Dustin Lambro, Teamsters 117

Ken Peachy

Bob Myrick, Cycle Advocate

Kevin Grossman, Local Developer

Russ Heaton, Doyle's Public House

Jason Alexander, Small Business Owner

John Truman, Small Business Owner

Robyn Murphy, Small Business Owner

Rev. Arthur Banks, Ministerial Alliance

Rev. Gregory Christopher, Shiloh Baptist


State Sen. Jeannie Darneille (27th LD)

State Rep. Laurie Jinkins (27th LD)

State Rep. Jake Fey (27th LD)

State Sen. Steve Conway (29th LD)

State Rep. David Sawyer (29th LD)


Mark Lindquist, Pierce County Prosecutor

Aaron Pointer, Metro Parks Tacoma Commissioner

Erik Hanberg, Metro Parks Tacoma Commissioner

Andrea Smith, Metro Parks Tacoma Commissioner


Catherine Ushka, TPS School Board Member

Scott Heinze, TPS School Board Member

Karen Vialle, TPS School Board Member

Willie Stewart, Former TPS School Board Member

Kim Golding, Former TPS School Board Member


Mayor Marilyn Strickland, Tacoma

Deputy Mayor Marty Campbell, Tacoma

Councilmember Ryan Mello, Tacoma

Councilmember Anders Ibsen, Tacoma

Councilmember Victoria Woodards, Tacoma

Councilmember Lauren Walker, Tacoma

Councilmember David Boe, Tacoma

Former Mayor Bill Baarsma


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comments [10]

Sep. 25, 2013 at 12:01am

Transit Analyst: Sound Transit's Threat to Impose Fees on Link Would Gut Tacoma's Transit System

After reading transit guru Chris Karnes' post on the transit blog Tacoma Tomorrow, it is clear that there is no upside to Sound Transit's proposal to start imposing fees on Tacoma's "Link to Nowhere."  Let's be clear: Tacoma's Link is nice and cute but it does not deliver much value compared to the other light rail systems in the state.  Link simply connects the huge parking garage downtown, a benefit to commuters, and is useful for the rare Tacoma Dome event.

This is a lose-lose proposal for Tacoma as ridership, using ST's own numbers, would be reduced by 20 or 30 percent, undermining Tacoma's transit system, with no benefit whatsoever for Tacomans. Tacomans would continue to pay the same tax to Sound Transit.  Bizarrely, the payback period for collecting fares would be 4 to 20 years, so there is little benefit for ST other than to employ a few more people.

The result would more people using cars in Tacoma, fewer people coming downtown, a disproportionate impact on the the poor, severing off the connection between the Dome District and downtown Tacoma, thereby making it harder in the future to justify Link extensions.

From Tacoma Tomorrow:


Yesterday Sound Transit held a public meeting at the Pantages Theater and a public hearing in Tacoma Council Chambers on Tacoma Link fares – concurrently -- and during working hours (@ 5pm, and 2-6pm).  However, there was one thing that was sort of missing at the hearing – the proposal (which is still not available online).  How do you take input on a proposal that is not out for public review until today?

Well, regardless of how you feel about that, the Sound Transit Board is scheduled to vote next Thursday on a staff proposal to charge $1.50 to ride the 1.6 mile Tacoma Link light rail.  Why? Because Sound Transit’s policy is that services that have sufficient ridership to justify collecting a fare, should be collecting a fare.

As a transit enthusiast, I recognize that farebox recovery is an important part of public transit that helps to support high quality service.  Subsidies pay for most of transit, but the goal for most transit services is to charge a fare that recovers about 20% of the cost of the service.  To get close to that level of recovery, Sound Transit indicates that riders would need to pay $2 each way.  One impact of charging a fare that high is that ridership losses of 30% (or more than 300,000 riders a year) are projected.  On top of that, the actual fare equipment that would be installed would require an upfront cost of $500,000.  At last night’s Pierce Transit CTAG meeting, we were told by Sound Transit that fares would take anywhere between 4 and 20 years (!) to payoff that initial investment, depending on how much of a fare is charged.

But wait there’s more!  Sound Transit wants to (logically) use ORCA as a fare payment system.  The problem with that is the dilemma that a tourist, new to Tacoma, would experience.  She or he would need to purchase a $5 ORCA card before paying whatever fare Sound Transit decides to charge to go 1.6 miles.  You don’t need to run very many numbers to determine that fewer tourists will use Link after an event at the Tacoma Dome when confronted with a $5+ charge to go into Downtown via light rail.  This will hurt Downtown Tacoma in a way that Sound Transit staff have not fully taken into account.  On top of that, as if Pierce Transit’s 36% service cuts haven’t been enough injury, charging fares on Tacoma Link would actually SIPHON OFF $50,000 annually from Pierce Transit’s budget because of how revenue from ORCA is shared among local agencies.  Less funding translates to less bus service.

Who sees the logic in charging a fare to pay for farebox equipment anyway?  That seems like a good deal for whoever the equipment provider is, but a raw deal for riders in Tacoma.  Sound Transit could just as easily program the $500,000 ticket vending machine expense into the extension of Tacoma Link and begin charging fares then.  Why the rush to purchase and begin paying off ticket vending machines that won’t be paid off for at least ten years anyway?  It simply doesn’t make any sense.

Tacoma LINK fare talking points:
  1. The payback period for the fare collection equipment alone 4-20 years based on a fare of $1-$2
  2. Ridership is projected to drop 20-30% if a fare is imposed
  3. Using ORCA as a fare collection for LINK will siphon off $50,000/year from Pierce Transit
Thankfully, there is a loophole in Sound Transit policy that could save Tacoma Link riders and Downtown Tacoma from this mess – if the City of Tacoma is up for it.  Hypothetically, the City of Tacoma could work to cobble together some funding that would begin flowing to Sound Transit in 2014 to offset Tacoma Link operating costs.  It could come in the form of an LID or as a part of the Business Improvement Area, or as a collaboration among employers and educational institutions.  This would have the advantage of keeping Tacoma Link fareless for all passengers – to the benefit of students, workers, transit riders, residents and visitors.  It would also have the side benefit of getting the City to think seriously about how it’s going to fund an extension – both in terms of capital and operating dollars.

My message to Sound Transit is, yes, we know that Tacoma Link needs to be charging a fare, but look at your own numbers.  It doesn’t make sense to do it right now – Tacoma Link will lose 20-30% of its ridership, it will take between 4 and 20 years to payoff the ticket vending machines, tourism will suffer, and Sound Transit’s bastion of support in Pierce County will be alienated.  It makes more sense to partner collaboratively with the City of Tacoma to offset operating expenses in the time between now and when an extension of Tacoma Link opens for service.

I will gladly pay my fare when I see light rail run to the Stadium District and beyond.  I can’t wait for that.

Until then, I encourage readers to voice your concerns to Tacoma Mayor and Sound Transit Boardmember Marilyn Strickland and the Sound Transit BoardAnd fill out another one of those surveys.


Action steps:

Take the Sound Transit poll today and let them know what you think.

Contact your Tacoma City Council member and give them your opinion.

comments [5]

Aug. 13, 2013 at 12:22am

Looking Back : Tacoma Fire Department Repairs Tacoma's Historic Totem Pole in 1948 and 1955

As the Tacoma Landmark Preservation Commission works to find the best way to restore and maintain one of Tacoma's ionic landmarks and pieces of the Tacoma Art Collection, it is interesting to look back on the history of Tacoma's iconic totem pole with the help from the Tacoma Public Library.

Collection: Richards Studio Collection Series: D90574-1 (Unique: 24078) Date: 05-07-1955


The Tacoma Fire Department provided ladders and the Safeway stores supplied scaffolding when members of the Painters Union, local # 64 and members of the Tacoma Junior Chamber of Commerce took on the project of painting Tacoma's totem pole at South 9th & A Street in 1955.

By official proclamation, Mayor Harold M. Tollefson had declared May 8-14, 1955 "Clean up, fix up, paint up" week in Tacoma. This annual event encouraged citizens to clean out their basements, attics and yards and dispose of excess items. The re-painting of the totem pole was the project chosen to kick off the campaign. Local # 64 had already painted the totem pole once before in April of 1948. ______________________________________________________________________

See also:

Since the May ad hoc meeting, cooler heads have had a chance to prevail. On June 4 the Tacoma Arts Commission met to consider whether or not to officially deaccession the totem pole from the city’s public art collection. Such a move would have been the first step in removing the pole from its current location and sending it to a museum or laying it down on the ground to be claimed by the elements.

Either way, the totem pole would cease to be a living part of the ongoing life of the city. The Arts Commission, however, recommended that the totem pole be kept as part of the city’s public art and that it should be protected and restored. The recommendation was accepted at the Commission’s June 10 meeting. A June 12 meeting of the Tacoma Landmarks Commission directed the city to come up with a plan to restore the totem pole and to keep it in place in Fireman’s Park. Crisis averted.

comments [1]

Jun. 19, 2013 at 8:10am

Former WSHM Director David Nicandri Comes to Peace With the Removal of the Chihuly Bridge Fence

In the last 8 years, there have been some epic battles by City of Destiny activists seeking a more walkable livable city.

Perhaps none have reached such a frenzy as the battle to open up the fence that was blocking pedestrians direct access to the Bridge of Glass.  The controversy escalated when the WSHM proposed building a brick wall in front of the bridge blocking off the view of the bridge and water as well with a brick "donor wall."

At one time, the WSHM director David Nicandri resisted the pressure of an untold number of politicians, artists, reporters, and the entire blogosphere. At one point Exit 133, for the first time in it's history, decided to turn off it's comments due to the volume of citizen outrage from a well.  Julie Anderson, formally a Tacoma City Council member wrote a scathing opinion piece against the proposed wall. It often looked as it were Nicandri against the entire Tacoma community.

When Nicandri left the WSHM, the wall was soon removed and pedestrians were able to walk for the first time directly from Pacific Avenue to the Bridge of Glass.  An important urban and pedestrian victory had been won. Hundreds of Tacomans in all walks of life deserve the credit.

Since leaving, Nicandri has redeemed himself in two significant ways in many people's eyes.

First, he was instrumental in saving the WSHM from being closed by the Washington State Legislature while bizarrely proposing to build another museum in Olympia.

Second, Nicandri played a significant role in (likely) saving the Fireman's Park Totem pole from being left to "rot in the woods" somewhere through his commentary in the Tribune.

Below is a picture Nicandri asked me to take in front of the Bridge of Glass with the fence now open. Godspeed in all of your new adventures David!


Current condition:

Full circle: former Washington State History Museum director David Nicandri in front of the now open and "freed" Chihuly Bridge of Glass.


When the wall was up:

Morgan Alexander with his petition "Free the Chihuly Bridge" at iconic Blackwater Cafe.

by RR Anderson.

A Century Park sketch

Petitioner gathering against the wall blocking the Chihuly Bridge

Chalking by RR Anderson

"Blogger Wall"

comments [0]

Jun. 10, 2013 at 12:01am

Controversial Artist RR Anderson Acquires Coveted Retail Space at UWT for "Tinkertopia"

After years of lampooning every politician and others in Tacoma and around the state, RR Anderson is about as anti-establishment as they get in the City of Destiny.

Yet, last week, the powers that be joined forces and gave him a plumb: the crown jewel of a retail space in Downtown Tacoma by the University of Washington at 1914 Pacific Avenue through the City of Tacoma's Spaceworks Program for the business he and his wife started : Tinkertopia.

This is the former Gyro place right next to Savor Creperie

The days of being relegated to the confines of his tiny workshop in his backyard are over.  Because he recently gave up his day job, there is no going back.

From the archives:

God Speed Tinkertopia, RR, and Ms. Darcy!

More about RR revealed at his book signing at Kings Books via "Electric Elliot."


comments [3]

May. 14, 2013 at 8:41am

Hilltop Kitchen to open next month, 1022 to re-open June 2

Controversy swirls around 1022 and Hilltop Kitchen.  However, as thriving business districts such as Pike Place Market have long discovered, the more businesses in the area the better so as to make the district a destination and a greater draw and success for everyone.

We need both businesses to succeed to further the rebuilding of Tacoma storefront by storefront.


Here is the latest article on the upcoming Hilltop Kitchen.

The name and the partner suggest Americana. Not so. This time around, Keil is focusing on spirits of Latin America—like cachaca, tequila, rum, and my newly beloved mezcal. He got into rum in his early bartending days working at a “tiki-esque” bar. And Keil says he likes mezcal because it’s a spirit made mostly in tiny batches by individual farmers in Oaxaca, a sort of boozy take on the farm-to-table way of thinking. Expect lots of housemade stuff, including some shrubs. And plenty of whiskey. Because really, why not?

comments [2]

Apr. 19, 2013 at 12:01am

TAM Should Be Barred from Erecting Vacuous Blank Walls on Pacific Ave

Pacific Avenue was once a vibrant street thriving with people and commerce:

Then, in the "urban renewal" fever in the 1950s, Tacoma leaders systematically tore down one historical building after another leaving parking garages, empty lots and many blank walls facing pedestrians on Pacific Avenue such as the Wells Fargo parking garage:

Wells Fargo Parking Garage

The Wells Fargo parking garage, North Park Plaza parking garage, Tollefson Plaza cumulatively extinguished pedestrian life, commerce in the middle of Pacific Avenue in downtown Tacoma creating a massive dead zone void of almost any life in the middle of the city.

Proposal for the expansion of the Tacoma Art Museum

Now the expansion for the Tacoma Museum expansion threatens to build another long lifeless blank wall on Pacific Avenue.  Although the TAM expansion will have some windows on Pacific Avenue they will be covered with a screen severing the connection between the street and pedestrians. 

Walking on Pacific Avenue near the insular dark Haub expansion will be a harsh lonely experience for pedestrians notwithstanding the"artist rendition" pedestrians drawn into the drawings to try to make them look them look more vibrant than they will be,

Better Museum Design: Seattle Art Museum:

Tacoma should not try to be Seattle or any other city.  However, the following changes to the proposed TAM expansion to improve the urban design of the building could greatly benefit the museum as well as downtown and people who live, work and visit Tacoma. 

By building the TAM expansion with good urban design principles, TAM would be doing it's part to contribute to a vibrant downtown rather than creating yet another dead zone in the city. 

1) The screens over the windows should be removed so pedestrians can see inside as they would any other building and connect people with the building. The screens are a deliberate attempt to cut off the building from the street yet still make it look like the "glazing" or window requirements are being met.  This is quivalent to placing windows in a building and then covering them up with posters.

2) The color on the addition should be greatly lightened up.  The dark brown color make the TAM expansion look uninviting at the least and possibly even scary and foreboding.

3) The entrance to the Tacoma Art Museum should be much larger and taller so that it is obvious to visitors and makes a statement without having to install "way-finding" red arrows and signs all over the place.

4) The wind swept plaza needs to have a significant piece of art in it, the Tacoma equivalent of Hammering Man. One problem with the TAM expansion is that it look utilitarian and boring.  Not everyone likes Hammering Man.  However, at least it make a statement.

5) 6) 7) What do you think? How could the TAM expansion be improved so it would add more life to Pacific Avenue and he vibrancy of downtown Tacoma?

Send your comments/suggestions on the TAM design here:




See also :

James Kunstler: How bad architecture wrecked cities

Forward to 6:50 of this video of Kunstler discussing the detrimental result of having blank walls on the main street of a city:

comments [33]

Apr. 8, 2013 at 2:54pm

Breaking: Opus Bank to Open in Rust Building at 11th and Pacific Avenue

Confirmed: the decade long vacant space at 11th and Pacific Avenue has finally been leased to Opus Bank.

It was always a bit sad to walk by the Tacoma Pierce County Chamber of Commerce sign and see that there was ever any "commerce" on one of the most visible and central retail spaces in the City of Destiny.  That has now changed and construction is well under way.

From Opus Bank:


News Release

April 02, 2013


EVERETT, Wash. – April 02, 2013 – Opus Bank (the “Bank”) announced today that it has entered into lease agreements to open new banking offices in the cities of Seattle, located in King County, and Tacoma, located in Pierce County, Washington. The new banking offices are a continuation of the Bank’s planned organic growth, which includes the opening of de novo banking offices in major metropolitan markets up and down the West Coast.

Debbie McLeod, Executive Vice President, Retail Banking of Opus Bank, stated, “As the fastest growing, and one of the best capitalized banks in the Western region, we are continuing to strategically expand our network of banking offices in major metropolitan markets.” McLeod added, “Complementing our existing 22 locations in the Puget Sound region, these new offices will be Opus Bank’s first offices located in the core business districts of Seattle and Tacoma.

The new offices will serve as hubs for our existing commercial business bankers, as well as those bankers we expect to add to meet the increasing demand for our commercial business products and services.” McLeod concluded, “We continue to commit significant amounts of capital funding to those small and mid-sized commercial businesses, entrepreneurs, real estate investors, and professionals, who share our vision to expand and grow. These businesses, entrepreneurs, and professionals have been an integral segment of our local communities, driving job growth and economic vitality.”


Pierce County, WA:

The new Tacoma banking office will be located at 950 Pacific Avenue, Suite 150, Tacoma, WA 98402, in the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce building at the intersection of Pacific Avenue and 11th Street, and is scheduled to open in the third quarter of 2013.


For more information see:


comments [11]

Mar. 30, 2013 at 2:47pm

The Overwhelming Case to Extend Link Light Rail Through Stadium and 6th Avenue

As many people and Sound Transit itself has emphasized, the light rail Link extension must have a high ridership to succeed. As obvious as this may sound, the discussion has become derailed later to many other considerations.

Despite the good intentions, the City of Tacoma's failure to study the relevant factors which could have made the Tollefson Plaza a success (active permeable edges), has left it a dead piece of useless "open space" piece of concrete in all but a month or so in the winter when the skating rink is there. Tacomans are now burdened with this dead plaza just as they are with the North Park Plaza parking garage. Let's not make the same mistake with the link extension and create a vastly underutilized (empty) light rail system.

(photo credit Exit 133)

Here is the analysis by transit guru Chris Karnes on the issue:


The Logic behind a 6th Avenue LINK Corridor

Tacoma General Hospital, a major employer on the B1 corridor.
Right: Stadium High School Wright Park in Background
This post comes out of the frustration that I feel when I read editorials like this in the paper about corridors like C1. I understand where the author is coming from, but in corridor evaluation, you need to try to back up your claims with numbers and with specifics. I try to do that here.

Here's why 6th Avenue needs to be given more serious consideration. The bold parts are categories of criteria for evaluating the project that were designed by the stakeholders group and were prioritized in part by public comment. If you have more to add to this, mention it in the comments.

Improve mobility and transportation access for Tacoma residents and visitors.

Long Range Bicycle Map around 6th Avenue
11 streets with bike lanes and bike boulevards intersect with B1
The B1 corridor along 6th Avenue between Central Tacoma and the North End is slated to have a ridership response of 3.0 to 3.5 million additional riders per year or greater than 10,000 riders per day, matched only by the E1 corridor.  The B1 corridor would link together Tacoma Dome Station, Downtown Tacoma, the Stadium District, Hilltop, and 6th Avenue - tying E1 for the number of distinct neighborhoods and mixed use centers served by a corridor.  

Bicycle connections are planned at eleven - yes eleven - cross streets to the corridor, making it easier to expand access to more than just areas that are within ¼ mile to the line.  Federal regulations on transit investments allow federal grant money to be used to expand bicycle access within 3-miles of each station.  The eleven cross streets slated for bike access along B1 are: Union Ave, Puget Sound Ave, Alder St., Pine St., State St., Ainsworth Ave, J St., I St., Yakima Ave, St. Helens Ave and Tacoma Ave.  Also, local transit service from Pierce Transit routes 1, 11, 13, 14, and 16 would be available for redeployment to act as feeder and connecting services. Bus service from these routes could also potentially be redeployed to other parts of the city, further enhancing ridership and access to Downtown.

Increase transit ridership within the City of Tacoma.

The B1 corridor has the largest existing population center in Tacoma.  The 98403 zip code, which represents the North Slope neighborhood of the Stadium District is the 12th most dense zip code by population in the state and it is the densest in Tacoma by far at 7,830 people per square mile.
The Stadium District and 6th Avenue are rivaled again only by similar, but lower, existing population density along the MLK E1 corridor.

10,000 students, including those from UW Tacoma (3,662), UPS (2,600), Stadium High School (1,699), Tacoma School of the Arts (515), and others would have access to the line.  Students are very reliable users for public transit during all periods of the day.

Commuters would benefit by being connected with Tacoma General/Mary Bridge Hospital, the Downtown Tacoma regional growth center and connecting regional transit services at Tacoma Dome Station.  Tourists and visitors would be able to visit entertainment venues and green open spaces on 6th Avenue and at Wright Park in the Stadium District, not to mention the many festivals and farmers markets that take place in these areas.  Shoppers would have more choices in the Stadium District and on 6th Avenue.  Tacoma Link service would run late at night to match demand from existing night life venues in Downtown and on 6th Avenue.
Goal Criteria and B1 (Source: Sound Transit)

Serve underserved neighborhoods and communities in the City of Tacoma.

The B1 corridor would serve significant portions of low income and minority populations and more than twice the proportion of households without a vehicle when compared to the C1 Portland Ave corridor. In fact the number of households without a car adjacent to B1 is higher than that found on average in Seattle or Los Angeles (also see Goal Criteria; right, for B1 reference).

Use transit to spur economic development and other types of investments

The Stadium District is zoned for mixed use development and there are a number of vacant parcels capable of being built upon.  The entire 6th Avenue corridor all the way to TCC is either zoned for mixed use or for commercial development and has many opportunities for additional density. At least one six story mixed use project is in the works for the corner of 6th and Alder St that might better pencil with light rail.

Jazzbones, an example of vibrant nightlife entertainment on 6th Avenue.

10 minute frequencies would be viable for up to 20 hours a day because of high ridership and proximity to businesses that stay open late.  New businesses would fill existing buildings currently for lease and in new buildings that would be constructed.  Proximity to entertainment venues as well as the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center would make development of hotels a possibility in the Stadium District.

Wright Park in the Summer time.  Wright Park would be served by B1 and E1.
Ensure that the project is environmentally sensitive and sustainable

High ridership means fewer cars on the road.  Fewer cars means better quality air and less pollution into Puget Sound.  B1’s high ridership makes it easily one of the most environmentally beneficial routes considered.

The B1 corridor would be next to the 27 acre Wright Park with playground and sprayground facilities, a one mile trail, a botanical conservatory and pond.

The B1 corridor is consistent with the City of Tacoma’s Climate Action Plan, Comprehensive Plan, and Streetcar Feasibility Study.  No habitat corridors are affected by a B1 route.

Establish a project that is competitive for federal funding

The B1 corridor easily can match any other corridor in project justification for federal funding.  The mobility benefits of a B1 corridor would be profound, ranging from increased bike access to a 30% increase in transit reliability between 6th Avenue and the Downtown core.  High ridership again means more environmental benefits for the region.  It is a cost effective use of resources because it will save on the order of 2-3 minutes per trip between 6th Avenue and Tacoma Dome Station.  Local land use patterns are incredibly supportive of public transit, as is evidenced by high ridership on Pierce Transit’s Route 1. Economic development is zoned for and vacant land is available for development.  And finally, a local improvement district for a B1 corridor, that is the local match, is incredibly viable because local property values are high enough to support it.


comments [9]