Landmarks Preservation Commission to consider Jet Building demolition

The City of Tacoma’s Landmarks Preservation Commission is slated Wednesday to review an application to demolish a 58-year-old building in the Union-Depot Warehouse Historic District to make way for the construction of a new building that will better serve the University of Washington Tacoma.

According to the application, the Jet Annex Building, located at 1903 Jefferson Ave. and built in 1952, will be replaced by a new $17 million, four-story, 49,000-square-foot building that will expand library services, classroom space, and faculty office space. A new pedestrian bridge will connect the existing library building to the new building.

A staff report prepared by the city’s historic preservation office notes the Jet Annex Building is a “non-contributing structure” in the historic district. Before the building can be demolished, the commission must do two things: confirm the building does not contribute to the historic environment; and approve the new building’s design. The university has hired Portland, Ore.-based THA Architecture to design the new steel-framed building, which will include a terra-cotta rain screen, metal paneling, cast in place concrete and aluminum curtain wall, according to the application. The design aims to earn a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver rating.

If approved by the commission, the building is scheduled to be completed by spring 2012.
On May 13, UWT Chancellor Patricia Spakes announced a funding request for the building was approved by the university’s Finance, Audit, and Facilities Committee. The project is financed through capital funding from the state and loans.

The LPC will meet Weds., June 9 at 5 p.m. at 747 Market St., Tacoma Municipal Building North, Room 248. For more information, visit .