Public meeting Feb. 11 to discuss future of Fort Nisqually Living History Museum

Metro Parks Tacoma will host the second public meeting in three months to discuss future capital projects and programs at Fort Nisqually Living History Museum.

The museum, located at 5519 Five Mile Drive, in Tacoma’s Point Defiance Park, is an educational facility that features a mid-19th century Hudson’s Bay Company trading post that was originally located approximately 16 miles to the south in what is now the City of DuPont. Two surviving buildings from the original fort were moved to the present location in 1934, and the fort’s missing historic structures were reconstructed. The Fort Nisqually Living History Museum promotes Pacific Northwest heritage through education, historic preservation, and interpretation, and offers classes, camps, educational tours, public and private events, rentals, a museum store, and a research library.

In May, Metro Parks Tacoma issued a Request For Proposals seeking contractors with experience in museum design and long-range planning to develop a capital improvement and program plan that will guide the future of the Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, according to a legal notice published in the Tacoma Daily Index (see “Fort Nisqually: Metro Parks Tacoma seeks contractor to develop museum’s long-range plan,” Tacoma Daily Index, May 5, 2015). Metro Parks Tacoma and Weatherhead Experience Design Group, which has worked with the Museum of History and Industry, EMP Museum, and Chicago History Museum, held the first public meeting to discuss the future of Fort Nisqually Living History Museum in November (see “Public meeting aims to develop Fort Nisqually Living History Museum long-range plan,” Tacoma Daily Index, Nov. 5, 2015).

The next public meeting to discuss future capital projects and programs at Fort Nisqually Living History Museum will be held at 6 p.m. on Thurs., Feb. 11, at the Metro Parks Tacoma Board Room, located at 4702 S. 19th St., in Tacoma. A new visitor center, refurbished structures, better restroom access, improved parking, innovative interpretation techniques, and more capital improvement possibilities at Fort Nisqually over the next 20 years will be unveiled during the public meeting. According to Metro Parks Tacoma staff, the ideas have been gathered at public meetings and through extensive research in an effort to create a more immersive visitor experience that will engage families as well as individual history enthusiasts to Fort Nisqually Living History Museum. Metro Parks Tacoma wants to hear citizens’ reactions to the ideas, which will help them move forward with long-range capital and program plans for the Fort.

“Now is a great time to get involved in developing a detailed vision of the Fort’s future,” said Metro Parks Tacoma Chief Planning Manager Doug Fraser. “[The public will] see maps, diagrams and photos. We’d like [the public] to tell us what [they] think.”

If you are unable to attend the public meeting this month but would like to contribute ideas, you can call Fraser at (253) 305-1019 or e-mail him at dougf@tacomaparks.com. A third and final public meeting is likely to take place in late March or April. More information is available online here and at DestinationPointDefiance.org.

Fort Nisqually Living History Museum. (PHOTO COURTESY METRO PARKS TACOMA)

Fort Nisqually Living History Museum. (PHOTO COURTESY METRO PARKS TACOMA)

To read the Tacoma Daily Indexs complete and comprehensive coverage of Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, click on the following links: