Business park OK'd by Port
special to the times/news
Port of Seattle commissioners have approved the first of three agreements with the city of Des Moines that could lead to development of a business park on 90 acres of Port land near Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
This is the first of three properties slated for redevelopment following completion of a study that examined development opportunities on parcels of vacant airport-owned land that can be returned to productive business use.
Construction could begin as early as 2007.
The study was conducted by the airport and several neighboring cities including Des Moines.
Port commissioners approved the agreement after the Des Moines City Council acted affirmatively last month.
The initial development study, called the New Economic Strategy Triangle (NEST) study, focused on the market potential of properties near Sea-Tac Airport to foster economic growth in South King County communities.
The Port, which operates the airport, and other jurisdictions are seeking similar opportunities on all sides of Sea-Tac.
"Creating economic benefits for communities near the airport and the entire region are top priorities for the Port of Seattle," said Port of Seattle Commission President Bob Edwards."
"Working with our neighbors in Des Moines, we have together found a way to provide good jobs for local residents and revenue for the city."
Des Moines Mayor Bob Sheckler stated, "We look forward to working in partnership with the Port of Seattle in developing this valuable part of our community.
"We also commend the Port for its decision to forgo the use of this site for dirt excavation, which has been a significant issue for our city for many years."
The land is in the city of Des Moines, bordered by South 216th Street and west of 24th Avenue South.
It was purchased more than 10 years ago for noise mitigation, and has been vacant ever since.
By returning the land to commercial use, the city and Port will benefit from leasehold taxes, jobs and potential sales or other taxes.
"The Port and the city think there are plenty of businesses that would benefit from locating close to Sea-Tac Airport, said Edwards."
"We are pleased that this agreement provides a flexible development process in order to attract tenants that fit with both the city and Port's business and community goals."
The joint agreement sets the general framework for proceeding with development. It defines how the city and Port will align land use and zoning code issues, how environmental matters will be addressed, and provides a process for the development of a conceptual master plan.
A second agreement, if approved by both the city and the Port, will contain the resulting conceptual master plan, as well as approval for street and plat vacations and environmental mitigation.
A third agreement, between the city and a potential developer, would include a detailed master plan.