By Natalie Covate, July 23, 2014, Snohomish County Tribune
Plans by the Port of Everett to revamp its 65-acre waterfront marina district are back in the forefront again.
The Port is presenting a new plan — one that taps into Everett’s maritime and mill history and that, they think, will better reflect the personality of Everett.
While the project expects to contain at least 350 homes, the focus of the new Waterfront Place development is commerce and amenities.
In addition to committing over 500,000 square feet of the development to office, commercial and retail space, the port wants five restaurants and two waterfront hotels on the site.
The port hopes to ask for partnership bids in January and begin construction on the project in 2016.
Waterfront Place will cater to pedestrians, with four miles of walking and biking trails.
“We are very excited with this plan and being in-sync with Everett culture,” Terrie Battuello, chief of business development for the port, said.
A new park will lie next to the waterfront, featuring tide pools and ponds that will serve as a natural playground for children. Battuello said there is an opportunity for educating children about local marine life through interacting with creatures found in the pools.
A marine-related clubhouse will be front and center in the park. On the back of the clubhouse is a stage that can be used for local events or even drive-in movies.
Walking paths through the development can also be converted into a farmers market.
“This will be a world-class gathering place for the community,” Battuello said.
A towering central clock will face the heart of the city, just like a mill clock would have in the paper mill days of Everett. This nod to history also creates two frontage points to the development, one on the water and one facing the city.
“We’ve been getting positive feedback so far,” Battuello said. “I’ve had people ask me how to get on the waiting list.”
The new plan will cost the port an estimated $33 million in addition to the more than $80 million it has already spent on developing this area.
On June 17, the port’s commission authorized an application to be submitted to the City of Everett allowing strategic revisions for the Waterfront Place development. Council was briefed on the plans on June 25.
The port says that increasing building height and density is not a part of their new plan.
This fall, council will be asked to review the changes to the planned development overlay submitted by the port. Council needs to approve the changes before the project can move forward.