Port of Vancouver USA waterfront development expected to create 800 new jobs, generate $93 million in state and local taxes

VANCOUVER, Wash. – On June 19, the Vancouver City Council voted unanimously to approve the Port of Vancouver USA’s Terminal 1 Waterfront Development master plan.

Terminal 1 is the port’s birthplace on the Columbia River and the site of unfolding redevelopment along Vancouver’s downtown waterfront. When fully developed, the project will provide office, retail and commercial space; a public marketplace; hotel; residential apartments; low- and high-dock access; restaurants; and connection to the city’s popular Renaissance Trail.

At full build-out, Terminal 1 is expected to provide nearly 950,000 square feet of new mixed-use development, create 800 new jobs to support commercial activity, drive construction investment of more than $200 million and generate nearly $93 million in state and local taxes over a 25-year period.

“This is an exciting project,” said port CEO Julianna Marler. “It’s a different kind of development than we typically do, but it still achieves the port’s mission of economic benefit to the community. The jobs, tax dollars and activity down at the waterfront will complement our beautiful downtown and create a ripple effect of benefit in the region.

“We appreciate the City Council’s support of Terminal 1 and look forward to working together to build a community resource and destination we can all be proud of.”

Port commissioners Brian Wolfe and Jerry Oliver, who have both served on the port commission since plans to redevelop Terminal 1 began, shared stories with the City Council about the redevelopment process and recognized former port commissioner Nancy Baker. Baker’s leadership was instrumental in preserving Terminal 1 for public access and moving the project forward during its early days.

Community support
Public involvement and input were a priority for the port as it developed a vision and plan for Terminal 1. As a result, Council chambers were full on June 19 and the project received positive comments and support from a number of citizens as well as several downtown and economic organizations, including the Columbia River Economic Development Council, Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce (GVCC), Identity Clark County, Vancouver’s Downtown Association (VDA), Vancouver Farmers Market and Visit Vancouver USA.

“The greatest public spaces you’ll see anywhere on this planet are often focused on waterfronts and really intelligent, thoughtful, intentional design that doesn’t leave the citizens and their community behind in the name of profit,” said Vancouver Farmers Market Executive Director Jordan Boldt. “I think the port is doing that in this case and I commend them for that.”

“It’s going to be really exciting to see this develop into what will be its future,” said VDA Executive Director Lee Rafferty. “There’s a very strong and wonderful history there, but the future’s very bright, as well, and I think Vancouver’s downtown is going to be much better off because we have strong partners at the port.”

“We see this as the final component, in terms of our waterfront, in developing a stronger sense of place for the city of Vancouver,” said GVCC Executive Director John McDonagh. “I can’t think of a better way to welcome people to our city and state than what the port has proposed. I encourage your support.”

The City Council was supportive in its comments and complimented the port’s robust public involvement, vision for Terminal 1 and dedication to the overall revitalization of Vancouver’s downtown.

“(The master plan) is the first step of a long journey, and it’s going to take a lot of work and continued advocacy,” said Councilor Jack Burkman. “I’m confident it’s in good hands with our port because this is the kind of work that you do. You don’t do short-term investments, you do long-term.”

“I commend the port for your efforts in creating what really is a forward-thinking and extraordinary vision for the Terminal 1 property,” said Mayor Tim Leavitt.

Next steps
With City Council’s support, the Terminal 1 master plan now moves on to the Washington State Department of Ecology for review and decisions on shoreline permitting. Port staff are also continuing to work with hotel developer Vesta Hospitality on plans for a new AC Hotel by Marriott, which could break ground next year.

– POV –

The Port of Vancouver USA is one of the major ports on the Pacific Coast, and its competitive strengths include available land, versatile cargo handling capabilities, vast transportation networks, a skilled labor force and an exceptional level of service to its customers and community. For more information, please visit us at www.portvanusa.com.