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Free the waterfront!

by dolly varden
on 10/31/2010 @ 11:02am
Other people may have already seen this, but somehow I missed it: Eric Anderson has set the stage for getting the big, polluting, view blocking Navy ships off the waterfront between downtown and Old Town.

Hopefully this will get the city moving on providing better pedestrian and bike access down there. (Road diet, anyone?)

In other recent good news for the waterfront and the Sound, the creosote pilings are coming out at Point Ruston, the mouth of Hylebos Creek is getting restored, and (slow moving) plans are in place to fix Old Town dock by 2013.

by KevinFreitas on 10/31/2010 @ 2:26pm
Wow, fantastic update on all accounts, thanks dolly! Would certainly rock to have those ships park somewhere in the port where they're not blocking any views, dumping soot in their backyards, or helping break up our beautiful waterfront.

I'd love to see a re-done Schuster that includes moving the train tracks against the hillside then a two land road closer to the water with some room for a continued waterfront path. At least. Or run the train under the road and make room for some shops and a waterfront path.

by Erik on 10/31/2010 @ 5:33pm
The goal of many Tacomans has been to create a continuous walkway from Ruston to downtown on the water.

Each piece that is connected is a victory.

Yes, Free the Waterfront!

by captiveyak on 11/1/2010 @ 7:58am
So, just out of curiosity - are we all amenable to restricting the "working waterfront" area to the Port? or would we like to see the port returned to a natural condition as well? Personally, i like working waterfronts.

by dolly varden on 11/1/2010 @ 8:21am
I think the waterfront that will "work" better for the Tacoma of the next 100 years or so will be one that takes advantage of its natural setting and allows us to compete with other cities in Puget Sound and the Northwest on a quality of life basis. Tacoma's future economy depends on it. The centerpiece of that effort can be filling the downtown-to-Old Town gap in terms of connecting Ruston Way (which itself could use an upgrade within 10 or 15 years) and Old Town.

The port will stay the port (it also takes advantage of our natural location in its own way and is also vital to the economy), but will reduce its contribution air pollution and carbon emissions as container ships "plug in" to the grid rather than idle with their engines on (already starting to happen), and hopefully eventually less industry that's olfactorily incompatible with high density residential development in downtown and Stadium (like the pulp mill and the rendering plant). Or maybe they can improve their pollution control devices to the point that it doesn't matter -- Simpson Kraft has certainly made progress in that regard, but they're not there yet.