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Design of Amtrak Station

Local Integration and Best Use Will Drive Design of Amtrak Station
Jan. 22, 2014

Julie Stoltman, Office of Council Member Robert Thoms, julie.stoltman@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5164

Local Integration and Best Use Will Drive Design of Amtrak Station 
--Dome District Pleased With Agreement Between City and WSDOT--

Tacoma, Wash. – District 2 Council Member Robert Thoms and the Dome District Association are pleased to announce a local architect will partner in the best use and integration of a new Amtrak station.  

After initial meetings with residents and businesses in the Dome District, Thoms pushed for better coordination between WSDOT and the City. He and State Representative Jake Fey met with WSDOT leaders last week to underscore the need for additional local input into the project.  The goal is to allow this local firm to work with the stakeholders (City of Tacoma, Freighthouse Square owner, WSDOT, Amtrak and the community) to complete space analysis, conceptual feasibility analysis, siting of live-work units, preservation of retail and façade enhancement.

At the City’s request, WSDOT agreed a local Tacoma firm will participate in upcoming community forums regarding station function and local integration. The first meeting to gather further public review and engagement with WSDOT is on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014. A follow-up design report is due in March 2014.  

“Many were at first excited by the news that the State decided to relocate Tacoma’s passenger rail station at Freighthouse Square,” said Thoms. “However, after a December meeting to share initial design ideas, it was clear that we needed more of a Tacoma voice and vision for this project.”

“This news is a tremendous victory for the Dome District and Tacoma. Our voices were heard. Council Member Thoms and the City engaged our state partners to ensure this station meets our community’s needs. After all, we will be the ones using and living with the Amtrak station every day,” said Dome District Association President Janice McNeal.  

“The vitality and continued growth of the Dome District is extremely important and we will remain vigilant to our local needs,” added Thoms. “Our needs are complex because this is a transit oriented district. We were able to protect investments like the D Street overpass and, as we move forward, the example of making sure such investments aren’t obstructed are the type of Tacoma-specific needs we will protect.” 

“The City of Tacoma looks forward to partnering with WSDOT on completion of architectural renderings to maximize benefits both to Freighthouse Square and the entire Dome District as Amtrak relocates,” said Community and Economic Development Director Ricardo Noguera. “We want to ensure this is a win-win for WSDOT, Dome area businesses and all of Tacoma.”

Community members are invited to join one of the two upcoming meetings to gather further public review and engagement with WSDOT on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014, from 4 - 6 p.m. or Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014 from noon - 2 p.m. Both meetings are on the seventh floor of the Tacoma Municipal Building (747 Market St.).