Tacoma commission to consider historic landmark nomination for Browne’s Star Grill

Historic Tacoma, a non-profit organization that advocates for historic preservation, announced Thursday that a nomination to place the former Browne’s Star Grill building in Tacoma’s Hilltop neighborhood on the city’s register of historic places will be presented to the City of Tacoma’s Landmarks Preservation Commission this month.

The building, which dates back to 1906 and is also known as the Kellogg-Sicker Building, was designed by pioneer Tacoma architect Carl August Darmer and is currently owned by the City of Tacoma. Last year, Historic Tacoma placed the building on its “Watch List” of endangered properties. According to the organization, the City of Tacoma purchased half a city block that includes the Kellogg-Sicker Building and the Pochert Building in 2005. The organization has also nominated the Pochert Building to the local historic register. That building dates back to 1904 and was also designed by Darmer and is also on Historic Tacoma’s “Watch List.”

“The Kellogg-Sicker and Pochert buildings have been vacant and in decay since the City obtained ownership of the property,” according to a message on Historic Tacoma’s Web site. “These buildings are in the heart of what once was a thriving commercial district. Historic Tacoma encourages the City of Tacoma to lead by example and place these unique historic structures on the Tacoma Register of Historic Places and restore them to their historic use as mixed-use residential and retail centers.”

The nominations were prepared by architectural historian and former Historic Tacoma board president Caroline T. Swope and submitted to City Hall in October.

Tacoma’s Landmarks Preservation Commission is expected to review the nominations during its meeting on Weds., Feb. 13 at 5:30 p.m. at the Tacoma Municipal Building, 747 Market St., Room 248, according to Historic Tacoma (the agenda and meeting materials have not yet been posted to the commission’s Web site; Update: The agenda and meeting materials have been posted online here). If the commission deems the buildings worthy of further consideration, a public hearing will be scheduled and other opportunities for public comment publicized.

More information is available online at historictacoma.org.