Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Gift Card Giveaway to Downtown Businesses

The City of Tacoma is wrapping up construction on Pacific Avenue in downtown Tacoma.  To celebrate they are giving away gift cards each week to people who stop into at least two businesses in the project area.

Pick up your passport at any participating business. Then visit one additional business to be qualified to enter the a drawing to win one of five great prizes!  Drop off your Pac Ave Passport through December 31 at either Learning Sprout Toys or the Tacoma Art Museum's Franciscan Polar Plaza Skating Rink. No purchase is necessary.

There are a variety of downtown businesses participating some of which are below.  For the full list of businesses participating, please see below the jump.

Some places you may already go downtown that are participating:
Aesthetica Clinique (801 Pacific)
Blitz Florist (909 Pacific)
Dorky’s Arcade (754 Pacific)
Granolas Frozen Yogurt (1716 Pacific)
Lucky Penny (950 Pacific)
Pacific Grill (1502 Pacific)
Savor Creperie (1916 Pacific)
Tacoma City Grocer (1250 Pacific)

For more on the project and the passport, please visit: www.cityoftacoma.org/pacave

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Congrats to All of the New Tacoma Awards Recipients!

(left to right:) Tacoma Runners, Sue Schaeffer, Tacoma Waterfront Association, Dawn Lucien, Murray Morgan Bridge Rehabilitation, Frost Park Chalk Off and Dorky's Bar Arcade.
Congratulations to all of the New Tacoma Awards Recipients!

Each year the Tacoma- Pierce County Chamber recognizes individuals, businesses, and organizations making outstanding contributions to downtown Tacoma with the New Tacoma Awards.

In coordination with sponsors AmericanWest Bank, Tags Awards & Specialties, and Blitz and Company, the Chamber honored both award nominees and recipients at the Chamber's July Luncheon last Friday.

The 2013 New Tacoma Awards recipients are:

The Ghilarducci Award recognizing successful new development, renovation or beautification: Murray Morgan Bridge Rehabilitation. The bridge celebrated its 100th anniversary earlier this year after years of renovation and renewed community energy. The renovated bridge reconnects the downtown core to the tideflats and both the east and west sides of the Foss Waterway.

The Popham Award recognizing the individual that has done the most to build community spirit: Sue Schaeffer with the Tacoma Waterfront Association. During her tenure at the Tacoma Waterfront Association, Schaeffer oversaw numerous improvements to Tacoma's waterfront, such as seaplane floats, Point Ruston, and improving connections to the Foss. Schaeffer has worked diligently from the beginning to grow the organization, engage members, and improve Tacoma's waterfront to be a destination enjoyed for generations.

The Public Places Award recognizing the best activation of a public park, open space, or right-of-way: Frost Park Chalk Off. For six months of the year, Joel Larson, RR Anderson, and others with the Frost Park Chalkies have met every Friday on the corner of South 9th and Pacific Avenue for the past six years. The chalk-offs bring people to one of north downtown's pocket parks for lunch, entertainment, and community energy.

The Schoenfeld Award recognizing exemplary performance and pizazz as a retailer or restaurateur: Dorky's Bar Arcade. Dorky's fun blend of old school arcade games and laid back bar scene on the corner of 9th and Pacific make it a premiere hangout spot for locals looking to relax and have a good time. Owners Caroline and Les have also worked to bring the Northwest Pinball and Arcade Show to Tacoma from Seattle.

The Union Station Award recognizing organizations, companies, or individuals that have built or sustained momentum for revitalization: Tacoma Runners. Started in 2010, Tacoma Runners is a social running group that meets every Thursday evening at a local watering hole, bringing over 100 people. This popular group has a goal of healthily engaging the community and helping create connections between runners of all abilities.

Congratulations to all of our New Tacoma Awards recipients and nominees and thank you for all of your great contributions to making downtown Tacoma a wonderful place!

For information on all award nominees and past winners, visit the BIA blog.

Monday, July 15, 2013

7/17 Pac Ave Coffee Talk

Join the City of Tacoma on Wednesday, 7/17 from 10:00 - 11:00 am for Coffee Talk regarding the Pacific Avenue Streetscape project updates and upcoming work schedule. There will be an opportunity for input and feedback on the project. The meeting will be held at Dorky's Arcade located at 754 Pacific Avenue Tacoma, WA 98402.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Be on the Lookout for New Wayfinding Signs

Be on the lookout for downtown Tacoma's new wayfinding signs!

Today, Chris Storey, the Civil Engineer of the City's Public Works Department, presented a wayfinding update to the Tacoma City Council Economic Development Committee. You may recall previous discussions on the wayfinding project, which included public outreach, two open houses, surveys, and an advisory committee.

Currently, the sign designs are complete and the foundation installation is underway. Signs will be installed in two phases. Phase 1 consists of 11 signs along Pacific Avenue. Phase 2 will include 18 signs at identified downtown gateways, ranging from the Dome District to the Stadium District. Signage installation will begin next month and be completed this December.

The signs will be hard to miss standing at 13 feet high with large, readable print designed for cars travelling at 30 miles an hour. David Schroedel, the Chamber's Metropolitan Development Director, supported Storey in developing criteria for signage content. Criteria was determined based on the proximity of the destination to the current location and public feedback collected overa  ear from online surveys and open houses. Many responses came from area visitors and individuals from the hospitality industry.

A historic image covers the backside of the sign. The signs are removable from the base with the option to be changed out at a later time.

The Committee also discussed the future expansion of wayfinding and destination signage for the City, such as signs that lead to the different neighborhood districts, as well as utilizing existing transportation infrastructure to be used toward pedestrian oriented wayfinding options, like bus shelters and transit centers.



Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Congratulations to the 2013 New Tacoma Award Nominees!


Each year the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber recognizes individuals, businesses and organizations making outstanding contributions to downtown Tacoma with the New Tacoma Awards.
This year the Chamber, in coordination with sponsors AmericanWest Bank and Tags Awards & Specialties, will honor nominees and recipients at the Chamber Luncheon on July 12th at the Pacific Grill Event Center at 1530 Pacific Avenue, 98402 from 11:30 to 1PM.  For more information on the program and to register, please visit the Chamber's website.
The 2013 New Tacoma Award Nominees are:

The Ghilarducci Award recognizing successful new development, renovation or beautification:
·       Foss Waterway Sea Plane Floats
·       Murray Morgan Bridge Rehabilitation

The Popham Award recognizing the individual that has done the most to build community spirit:
·       Alex Hays, AB Hayes
·       Benjii Bittle, Broadway Center for the Performing Arts
·       Patricia Lecy-Davis, Embellish Salon
·       Penny Dennewith, Lucky Penny Cafe
·       Rusty George, Rusty George Creative
·       Sue Schaeffer, Tacoma Waterfront Association

The Public Places Award recognizing the best activation of a public park, open space or right-of-way:
·       Frost Park Chalk Off
·       Spaceworks Tacoma
·       Tacoma Urban Landscaping with Love Tacoma Lane

The Schoenfeld Award recognizing exemplary performance and pizazz as a retailer or restaurateur:
·       Azarra Salon & Wine
·       Creative Forces Gifts & Sundries
·       Dorky’s Bar Arcade
·       Print NW
·       Savor Tacoma Creperie
·       The Office Bar & Grill

The Union Station Award recognizing organizations, companies or individuals that have built or sustained momentum for revitalization:
·       Downtown: On the Go!
·       Downtown Tacoma Business Improvement Area
·       Hillside Development Council
·       Tacoma Runners
·       Tacoma South Sound Sports
·       Venti Productions

Congratulations to all the nominees! For a list of prior winners, please see the Chamber's website. We look forward to seeing you on July 12th.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Downtown Tacoma Parking Update

Since paid parking began in downtown Tacoma in September of 2010, there has been a steady increase with over one million transactions taking place last year alone.

Today, Kurtis Kingsolver, Tacoma’s Interim Public Works Director/ City Engineer, along with the Parking Technical Advisory Group Co-Chairs Rollie Herman and Judi Hyman, presented a parking update to the Tacoma City Council Economic Development Committee. The presentation provided an overview of Tacoma’s parking system, key issues, potential solutions, and next steps.

The presenters identified two key parking areas. First, the area surrounding the Pierce County Court House and Bates Technical College in between South 9th Street and 13th and Yakima and Tacoma Avenue was identified as being at capacity for street parking. Currently, this area does not have paid street parking. Typically, those visiting the court house need parking for around four hours, whereas the nearby students need parking all day. Both users, however, likely do not have the ability to pay for parking.

The second area identified is the area surrounding the University of Washington, Tacoma from 17th to 21st Street and Jefferson and Pacific Avenue. Even with paid street parking, this area is often at capacity, limiting local business’ customer volume. The advisory group proposed three suggestions to encourage higher turnover: 1). Reduce the time from two hours to 90 minutes; 2). Extend the paid parking time from 6 pm to 8 pm; and 3). Remove Saturday’s all day parking.

The advisory group also described how the City could promote parking in their off-street parking structures by improving signage that would make it easier to locate and enter and possibly tying into the current Pacific Avenue Streetscape Wayfinding project.

Moreover, the advisory group noted how License Plate Recognition (LPR) technology may be used to promote better compliance, high scofflaw capture, and improved payment compliance through greater system efficiency and the collection of data.

Lastly, the City is well overdue for an updated Parking Master Plan (the last one was completed in 1992), which would take into account parking demand and occupancy data, pricing, an evaluation of the current system’s performance, an evaluation of the City’s role in parking, stakeholder input and public outreach, and a financing strategy.

Monday, June 24, 2013

New BIA Magnets Available



The new BIA magnets are now available!

Important information, such as emergency contact, BIA Bike Security, BIA Cleaning, and Tacoma Police Non-Emergency numbers are located on the magnets.

Contact Janice at 253.683.4882 or janiceh@tacomachamber.org to request a magnet!