City Hall News: Downtown Tacoma hotel development, $3.5M Dept. of Ecology grants, and Alder Lake project update

Tacoma residents will have plenty of opportunities next week to learn more about what's happening in city government. Here is...

Tacoma residents will have plenty of opportunities next week to learn more about what’s happening in city government.

On Tuesday, Tacoma City Council will hold its regular weekly study session at noon to hear an update from the charter review committee and discuss the Hilltop Subarea Plan and Environmental Impact Statement. Also on Tuesday, Tacoma City Council will hold a committee of the whole meeting at 3 p.m. to discuss foreign direct investment. Finally on Tuesday, Tacoma City Council will hold its regular weekly council meeting at 5 p.m. to vote on a range of issues.

On Wednesday, Tacoma City Council’s Government Performance and Finance Committee is scheduled to meet at 4:30 p.m. to discuss a range of issues.

Here is a look ahead at some notable meetings, events, and issues on deck next week at Tacoma City Hall.

UPDATE: DOWNTOWN HOTEL DEVELOPMENT RFI

The City of Tacoma could soon begin negotiations with a developer interested in constructing a hotel and mixed-use project on a nearly-two-acre City-owned site in downtown Tacoma.

In January, the Tacoma Daily Index reported the City issued a Request for Interest (RFI) from developers for the site, which is located near South 17th Street and Broadway, adjacent to the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center.

“It is the City’s goal to attract mid- to large-sized convention business that will more effectively utilize the Convention Center’s 79,180-square-foot capacity and enhance local economic impact,” the RFI stated. “Furthermore, the City desires to incorporate public parking as part of a hotel-anchored mixed-used project. Developing synergies with a hotel immediately adjacent to the Convention Center has always been the City’s goal for this site.”

According to an April 4 memo from Tacoma Community and Economic Development Director Ricardo Noguera, the City received proposals from five developers: Provenance Hotels (Portland, Ore.); Mortenson Construction (Minneapolis, Minn.); Hollander Investments, Inc. (Bellingham, Wash.); American Life Incorporated (Seattle, Wash.); and Yareton Investment & Management (Seattle, Wash.). A seven-member City staff team evaluated the proposals and made the following findings and recommendations:

  • Provenance Hotels did not see a viable market for the minimum 250 rooms envisioned in the City’s RFI;
  • Mortenson Construction sought to serve as the general contractor and required $35 million to $60 million from the City to build a 300- to 400-room full-service, four-star hotel;
  • Hollander Investments proposed to build a 250-room, 10-story Hilton Garden Inn on part of the site, but required the use of 200 existing Convention Center parking stalls. The company also planned to build a 250- to 300-room, 12- to 16-story hotel on another part of the site in the future;
  • American Life Incorporated proposed to build a 150- to 300-room Embassy Suites Hotel, but requested City participation in infrastructure costs, a potential land discount, and sales and occupancy tax rebates;
  • Yareton Investment & Management proposed to build a 300-room, four-star hotel with 150 to 200 condominium residences, 10,000 to 60,000 square feet of street-level retail, and 400 parking stalls. The project would consist of two towers: one 25- to 34-stories high with hotel rooms and condominiums, and another 12- to 15-stories high with condominiums.

Tacoma City Council is scheduled to vote on a motion to authorize City Manager T. C. Broadnax to negotiate a development agreement with Yareton Investment & Management during its meeting on Tues., April 15, at 5 p.m. at Tacoma City Hall, located at 747 Market St., First Floor, in downtown Tacoma. A copy of the staff memo is available online here.

$3.5M DEPARTMENT OF ECOLOGY GRANTS

Following up on an item from last week, the City of Tacoma is poised to receive nearly $3.5 million in grants from the Washington State Department of Ecology. A $277,722 grant would help pay for laboratory testing and field testing of stormwater treatment media at Wapato Lake. A $170,000 grant would help pay to assist with the implementation of the City of Tacoma’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit. Finally, a $3 million grant would help pay for the Gravel Pit Regional Detention Project in the South Tacoma Flett Watershed. Tacoma City Council is scheduled to vote on three resolutions to accept the grants during its meeting on Tues., April 15, at 5 p.m. at Tacoma City Hall, located at 747 Market St., First Floor, in downtown Tacoma. A copy of the agenda is available online here.

UPDATE: ALDER LAKE BOAT LAUNCH REPLACEMENT PROJECT

Also following up on an item reported here last month, the City of Tacoma received two bids from contractors interested in a project to replace the boat launch dock at Tacoma Power’s Alder Lake Park, which is located at 50324 School Road, in Eatonville, Wash. According to bid documents, the project calls for the demolition and removal of the existing dock system, and the installation of a new dock and gangway ramp. The bid deadline expired on Fri., March 28. The contractors who submitted bids are Boettcher & Sons (Elbe, Wash.) — $99,290 and Marine Floats (Tacoma, Wash.) — $107,756.

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