Port of Seattle Connections, July 7, 2017

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Welcome to Connections newsletter, a community resource covering opportunities and activities at the Port of Seattle.

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

More options for eating and shopping are on the way


The Port of Seattle recently announced two developments that will expand dining and retail choices at Sea-Tac Airport.

The Port Commission authorized staff to move forward with a Central Terminal renovation project that will add 10,000 square feet of dining and seating. To maintain service during the renovation, the Port offered food cart and kiosk opportunities to Ivar's, Wendy's and Maki of Japan. All three restaurants will close in early 2018 to make way for construction. 

Commissioners also authorized a competitive selection process for 21 dining and retail opportunities. The criteria for the upcoming process continue to expand opportunities for small businesses, while also responding to public input.

The competitive selection process for the next round will begin when bid documents are soon posted for small and large lease opportunities. Firms interested in competing can register here to be notified about these opportunities and training on doing business at Sea-Tac. Details on lease packages will be available here.


Port Commissioner Stephanie Bowman shares the latest concessions announcement. 

More information

Airfield exercise scheduled to test emergency response


Emergency response professionals like these will help Sea-Tac test reactions to a mock accident on the airfield later this month.

The Port of Seattle, airline partners and area first responders will come together at the north end of Sea-Tac's airfield July 21, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m, for a full-scale emergency exercise simulating an aircraft accident.

This event, mandated by the Federal Aviation Administration every three years, is designed to test the Port's emergency plans. Dozens of King County mutual aid police and fire agencies, Port responders and various agencies and personnel will participate. Up to 150 volunteers will pose as accident "victims." 

Air travel will not be affected. Members of the news media are invited to cover the action, and a follow-up article will run in the next Connections.

Chick relocation efforts help keep aircraft safe


Birds and airplanes together can make a dangerous combination that threatens human and avian life.

Sea-Tac was one of the first U.S. airports to invest in tools to reduce the number of birds around the runways and aircraft. 

In addition to radar, nets and other resources, the Port of Seattle's wildlife experts humanely capture nearly 100 raptors, or birds of prey, around the airport each year, and relocate them to safer places, away from the airfield and aircraft. 

In this video, a Port wildlife biologist gets you up close to this raptor relocation program.

Read more

Supporting small business

Learn about opportunities at upcoming sessions


The Port of Seattle is offering two PortGen Small Business & Inclusion Workshops during July and August.

These sessions are where small business owners can learn about future contracting opportunities from project managers, and get training and assistance in the Port's procurement procedures.

One, scheduled for July 28 in the central auditorium at Sea-Tac Airport, will focus on construction projects. The other is set for Aug. 3, Pier 69 Commission Chambers, and will cover architectural & engineering and consulting projects. 

Space is limited, so register soon by emailing smallbusiness@portseattle.org. For details, contact Tina Boyd at boyd.t@portseattle.org or call her at (206) 787-3455.

Port of Seattle Commission actions

July 11 meeting

The Port of Seattle Commissioners are scheduled to hear the status of energy and sustainability policy initiatives, including recommendations for expanding the Port’s investments in equity. 

They also will consider authorizing a project to improve safety, transit connectivity and congestion on the Air Cargo Road and in the Sea-Tac Airport cell phone lot; and authorizing the Port to develop a new supplier outreach and procurement system to improve the Port’s ability to connect small businesses with opportunities at the Port.  

See the agenda

June 27 meeting

The Port Commissioners authorized the executive director to begin a competitive selection process for 12 dining and retail options (21 units) at Sea-Tac Airport, and to consider authorizing additional funds for improvements to Sea-Tac's Central Terminal infrastructure.

They heard results of the 2016 Economic Development Partnership Program and a briefing on the Economic Impacts of the Hiram M. Chittendon Locks, funded by the Port and other partners. In addition, Commissioners recognized winners of the 2017 Raisbeck Aviation High School Environmental Challenge,   


Left to right: Raisbeck Aviation High School student Brian Phuong, Steve Rybolt (Port environmental program manager), Commissioners Stephanie Bowman and Fred Felleman, student Charleisha Cox , Commission President Tom Albro, student Matthew Morin,Troy Hoehne (Raisbeck social studies teacher​)and Commissioner John Creighton.

Watch the meeting video

In Olympia

Port's environmental, manufacturing & tourism priorities included in compromise budget 


Washington State Capitol

On June 30, Gov. Jay Inslee signed a statewide operating budget for 2017-2019, averting a potential government shutdown, and resolving the school funding challenge that the Legislature faced since the state Supreme Court’s McCleary Decision on how the state funds public education.  

The Port had several priority issues that had not yet been resolved, but were addressed in some way by the recent budget compromise.

In February, the Port of Seattle Commission voted unanimously to support State Rep.Tina Orwall’s efforts to secure funding for a study of ultrafine particulate emissions in areas surrounding Sea-Tac Airport. The Commission agreed to contribute funding to any that was put forward by the state. The final state budget does include language calling on the Washington State Department of Commerce to work with the University of Washington to fund such a study. This is consistent with environmental priorities of the Port Commission.

In addition to the air quality study, the final budget included a provision that will help support modernization of the North Pacific Fishing Fleet, which calls Fishermen’s Terminal home. The budget reduces the “Business and Occupation” tax rate for manufacturing in the state, so all manufacturers will pay the same rate as Boeing, including boatyards that build the newest vessels to participate in the North Pacific Fleet. This has long been a priority issue for the Port.

And finally, the budget provided some funding to support tourism promotion efforts at a statewide level. The Port is actively involved in tourism promotion, and advocated for the passage of legislation to establish a statewide tourism marketing authority with a consistent funding source. Though the final budget does not establish the statewide tourism group, and provides only one-time funding, it was good news.

Improving our environment

Neighborhoods near airport encouraged to apply for ecology grants


Eligible groups are invited to begin applying for Airport Community Ecology Fund grants beginning Monday, July 10, via this website.

This program will fund improvements to the natural environment, especially tree and green space planting programs. Eligible groups are community and service organizations, chambers of commerce, youth or athletic associations and other non-profit organizations located in and providing services in SeaTac, Burien and Des Moines. 

Applications submitted by Sept. 1 will be considered for grant awards this fall.

Port reaffirms its stance as the Green Gateway


Suspended origami planes and cranes are part of a campaign at Sea-Tac Airport that highlights the Port of Seattle's commitment to sustainability.

The Port of Seattle recently joined the national coalition We Are Still In, the alliance of governments, colleges and businesses committed to meeting the greenhouse gas reduction goals of the Paris Agreement to combat climate change.

The Port's emissions reduction goals mirror those in the Paris Agreement: a 50 percent reduction by 2030 and a 100 percent or more reduction by 2050 compared to 2005. 

The Port Commission also pledged support for Climate Neutral Now, an initiative to drive more voluntary climate action, led by the United Nations. Airports participating in the Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) program are pledging to become carbon neutral and will document their progress through ACA.

Read more

Economic development

New cold storage facility a partnership success

cold storage high res

At the facility grand opening, left to right: Port of Seattle Commissioner John Creighton; John Naylor, president of Western Distribution Services; Burien Council Member Bob Edgar; Rob Adams, Tippmann Innovations (cold storage design & construction) and Dan Mathews, Kidder Mathews (commercial real estate broker)

The business community and elected officials recently welcomed a new cold storage facility to Burien. It is first milestone in private-sector investment in the Northeast Redevelopment Area (NERA) adjacent to Sea-Tac Airport.

Bridge Development Partners, LLC, purchased and developed the site, and constructed the new state-of-the-art facility.  Western Distribution Services, LLC, is logistics operator. 

This facility could store air cargo such as fish and shellfish, fruits and vegetables including Washington cherries, processed and prepared foods and pharmaceuticals.

In June, the Port, Burien and Panattoni Development  broke ground for construction of two industrial warehouses, just south of the cold storage site and also within the NERA.

Ballard Locks need repairs to operate another 100 years

ballard locks

Ballard Locks

The Henry M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks provide $1.2 billion a year in economic impact to our region, according to a recent study by the McDowell Group.

The report describes the benefits of reliable operation, the potential losses in the event of a failure, and steps needed to repair the 100-year-old facility. It was funded by maritime and industrial businesses, the Port of Seattle, City of Seattle and King County. 

Learn more

How cruise ships and tourism boost regional economy

cruise ship

Holland America Line's Oosterdam

Seattle’s thriving cruise industry and the tourism it creates were topics at a recent Federal Way Chamber of Commerce event with Port of Seattle representatives as featured speakers, and opening remarks by Port Commissioner John Creighton.

Cruise Services Manager Marie Ellingson talked about the cruise facilities, cruise lines and associated benefits. A total of 218 vessel calls are scheduled for this year, with each contributing $2.7 million to the economy.

Director of Tourism Development Ron Peck talked about how the cruise business drives tourism in our region. He also shared about the Port’s Tourism Marketing Support Program that has provided $150,000 for communities and organizations to promote their destinations to visitors. 

In the community

Vacant land provides a respite for shelter pups


"Jude," a volunteer walker, spends quality time with Chuck, who is need of a home.

Seattle Animal Shelter (SAS) dogs awaiting their “forever families” have it a little easier this summer due to an arrangement that allows volunteers to walk the dogs on currently vacant Port of Seattle land, about two blocks from the shelter.

The 1.5 acres, at 15th Avenue West and West Armory Way, is a quiet and natural place for longer and more entertaining walks in the fresh air.  This gives dogs a break from the shelter, located in congested area with traffic, demolition and construction noises.

“These dogs benefit tremendously by having this area,” said the SAS Director of Volunteer & Community Engagement Ania Beszterda-Alyson. “SAS volunteers are always in search of activities to liven up a dog's day and help them relax, and thanks to the Port, they now have this bigger playground, and the walks can be as long as an hour.”

“Over 230 volunteer walkers and runners work with our canine residents – they are so helpful in socializing the dogs and keeping them adoptable, and we are always need more experienced dog handlers,”Beszterda-Alyson added.

The Seattle Animal Shelter Foundation provided the funds earlier this year for fencing modifications and building a path. 

Shelter website

Employee event highlights how pets benefit humans


Rebecca Schwan, a senior real estate manager at Fishermen's Terminal who was instrumental in organizing a pet event at the Port of Seattle.

Port of Seattle employees recently came together in a creative way to celebrate and support pets through a Virtual Bring Your Pet to Work Day, contributing to a pet food drive, and participating in an adoptable pet meet and greet.

This wellness activity highlighted how pet ownership is healthy, and participants got to exercise their bragging rights by sharing pet photos on the Port's intranet. Agencies at the meet and greet included Seattle Animal Shelter, People United for Pets, Old Dog Haven, WAG!, Young Living Essential Oils and the Port Police Canine Unit

Learn while enjoying the scenery at this summer series


Community members from as far as Lacey, the Eastside and Bainbridge Island are taking advantage of the Port Unplugged adult education series this summer where they learn more about the Port while enjoying scenery, music and refreshments.

“This was a good overview of the Port's activities and responsibilities,” said Roger Rodberg, who attended a session about the working waterfront. "We were interested to learn about the environmental efforts, and the Port of Seattle parks. I got the park maps and will be exploring them.”

These events are at the Port headquarters, 2711 Alaskan Way, and include time on the deck with a view of the Olympic Mountains and waterfront.

Space is limited for the next two, July 20 and Aug. 17, so sign up right away. 

Click to register

Celebrating diversity

Events are venues to demonstrate support & have some fun


Port of Seattle employees and leaders took part in two recent events that celebrated our community's diversity. 

One was the Juneteenth observance, commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. Organized by the Port's chapter of Blacks in Government, it included dancing led by members of the Gansango Music & Dance, pictured above, and booths showcasing small businesses.

The other event, below, was the Seattle Pride Parade where the Port-Wide Pride banner accompanied people from across the organization and the Port Commission.

pride parade

In the media

News about airport concessions draws coverage

Several media outlets carried stories about the latest dining and retail news at Sea-Tac Airport. Examples included The Seattle MediumKIRO 7Q13 FOXKING 5EATER SeattleCrosscut and DFNI Online.

Study explores contributions & status of Ballard Locks

Results of the Hiram M. Chittendon (Ballard) Locks Economic Impact Study were reported by KIRO 7.

Sea-Tac ranks fourth in on-time performance

REWARD EXPERT shared information about Sea-Tac Airport's high ranking in on-time performance.

In case you missed it on social media

The Port of Seattle's Take Your Pet to Work Day photo album on Flickr.

A final note

Want more news about our industry?

The Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA) is a marine cargo operating partnership of the Port of Seattle and Port of Tacoma. To receive the NWSA newsletter, click here. To receive the Port of Tacoma newsletter, click here.


Photos: Don Wilson, Seattle Southside Chamber of Commerce and Port of Seattle staff 

Watch for the next issue of Connections on July 21.