The Pacific Plaza project was a public/private partnership between the City of Tacoma & Pacific Plaza Development, LLC.
The South Park Plaza Garage evolved from a tired space into a newly renovated state-of-the-art, green facility. Project highlights include: a retrofit parking structure with an additional 102 parking stalls to complement the existing 381 stalls; two floors of Class-A office space and the conversion of the Pacific Avenue retail space; and the reconstruction of the public hill climb connecting Pacific Avenue and Commerce Street.
The project was designed to meet LEED Platinum certification, the highest possible rating awarded by the U.S. Green Building Council. As part of the design some of the sustainable features include: a highly visible green roof covering approximately 85 percent of the building; a rainwater collection cistern which will reduce rainwater runoff from the site and will be utilized for water reuse in the facility and irrigation of the green roof; as well as a state-of-the-art heating and cooling system. PROJECT DEVELOPMENT
The Pacific Plaza project began in May 2005 when the City advertised a Request for Proposal for Mixed-Use private development. Two proposal packages were received and Pacific Plaza Development, LLC proposal was selected for the development. The Pacific Plaza’s team consisted of PCS Structural Solutions, Absher Construction, BLRB architects and Neil Walter Company.
The redevelopment details were:
- Development was to be performed by Pacific Plaza, LLC.
- City assembled the underlying land and business relocation.
- Pacific Plaza, LLC purchased existing garage and land from City; City retains parking revenues.
- Pacific Plaza, LLC constructed improvements.
- City purchased renovated/expanded parking structure back from Pacific Plaza.
Pacific Plaza fact sheet (pdf)
Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
Sept. 22, 2009
On Sept. 22, 2009, at 10 a.m. in the Pacific Plaza lobby, the City of Tacoma hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony to commemorate the work done in partnership with the Pacific Plaza Development, LLC for the redevelopment of the South Park Plaza Parking Garage. "This is a great day in Tacoma," said Public Works Director Dick McKinley at the Pacific Plaza ribbon cutting ceremony on September 22, 2009. "I want to take a moment to say thank you to Mayor Bill Baarsma and the City Council, as well as the City team and many, many others - who had the courage and took the time to make it happen."
The redevelopment of the old South Park Plaza Parking Garage into Pacific Plaza included:
- Retrofit parking structure to “new” condition (381 Stalls).
- Additional public parking (102 new stalls).
- Provides two floors of Class-A office space above new parking level (approx. 67,000 SF).
- Conversion of the Pacific Avenue level frontage to attractive, highly marketable retail (approx. 36,000 SF).
- Provides for pedestrian enhancements around building and the reconstruction of the public hill climb connecting Pacific Avenue and Commerce Street.
- In addition to redeveloping the garage the new facility will be a showcase for the City's commitment to sustainable building practices and energy conservation. The City is pursuing LEED Platinum certification, the highest possible rating awarded under the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating system. More information on LEED, the nationally recognized standard for green buildings, is available from the US Green Building Council. Sustainable building features include:
- Green roof covering approx. 85% of the building and is highly visible from surrounding hotels and office buildings. The green roof soil medium utilizes the City’s TAGRO product, which is a special blend of Class A Biosolids.
- Rainwater collection cistern which will reduce rainwater runoff from the site and will be utilized for water reuse in the facility and irrigation of the green roof.
- Other features include a state-of-the-art heating and cooling system, energy efficient lighting, water-efficient plumbing fixtures, removal of polluted soil from the site, and an elimination of products with high-levels of VOC’s.
This updated image shows the sculptural nature of the piece replicating the experience of impact when something is dropped in the water. The blue and green tiled surface is flat, serene and flush to the sidewalk where it begins at Pacific. The floor becomes wavy at the side of the stairs undulating more significantly as it moves its way up the wall. The “source” of the waves projects from the upper left hand corner. A motion activated light will illuminate from the projection washing the wall and creating shadow. Although not indicated in this drawing, stainless steel letters will spell out the quote listed below throughout the base of the piece.
Projecting Drop, a new public artwork by Vancouver artist Jill Anholt will be the signature focal point for the 12th Street hill-climb come Summer, 2010.
Projecting Drop honors the power of water. Broadly, it refers to water’s presence in the Northwest as natural amenity and primary source of energy. Specific to Pacific Plaza, it refers to the importance of water to the building and the remarkable transformation of a former Turkish bath into a cistern designed to irrigate the green roof at the very top of the building.
Hexagonal tile, similar to that which clads the former Turkish bath directly under the piece, creates a swath of blue and green from Pacific Avenue to the base of the broad staircase that connects Pacific to Commerce in an open and airy manner.
The tile continues to the left of the staircase as it begins to undulate mimicking the ripples of a water drop. The ripples move up a 25 foot tall vertical wall becoming more sculptural ultimately surrounding the visual ‘source’ of the drop.
Projected light will respond to the movement of people as they interact with the space. Fragments of a quote from the 1891 Tacoma Ledger will wash over the artwork
“From amidst a somber forest of firs, a city has risen as if by a stroke of an enchanter wand. Like a new Venice, Tacoma looks forth over the glassy waters and prepares to handle the commerce of the world. Let Energy! Ambition! And Enterprise! Continue to give luster to the City of Destiny!”
Almost prophetically, this quote references the strength of Tacoma as a city of glass.
“The scale of this piece will be stunning in this location.” states Amy McBride, Tacoma Arts Administrator. “It will be a powerful and transformative piece that ties Tacoma’s past to its future.”
The Tacoma Arts Commission reviewed and approved the proposed design on July 13, 2009. Commissioner Michael Sweney was on the selection panel.
Jill was selected from a pool of over 50 candidates in early 2009. This competitive “Call to Artists” requested qualifications for an artist or artist team to create artwork in tandem with the Pacific Plaza building, a LEED Platinum building known for its leading edge environmental design. After reviewing her work, visiting the site, and completing a thorough interview, Jill was selected from four finalists. The panel selected her based on the quality of her past work, her professional career as a public artist, her response to the story of the site and her experience creating environmentally sensitive/responsive artwork. For more information about artist Jill Anholt http://www.jillanholt.ca.
Owners: City of Tacoma and Pacific Plaza Development, LLC
Developer: Pacific Plaza Development, LLC
Architect: BLRB Architects
Structural Engineer: PCS Structural Solutions, Inc.
Contractor: Absher Construction
Property Manager: Neil Walters Company
Parking Manager: Republic Parking Northwest
For more information about the Pacific Plaza project, contact Joshua Clarke, facilities project manager, at (253) 591-5395 or email@example.com
For more information about the Pacific Plaza Public Art, contact Amy McBride, Tacoma Arts Administrator, at (253) 591-5192 or firstname.lastname@example.org