Economic Development Board to Meet in Everett

PSRC’s Economic Development District Board will meet on Wednesday, October 2, 2013 at 2:30 PM in the Robert J. Drewel Building in Everett.

The EDD Board will meet in the Robert J. Drewel Administration Building on October 2 at 2:30 PM.

The EDD Board will meet in the Robert J. Drewel Administration Building on October 2 at 2:30 PM.

The meeting is being held in Everett to coincide with the Governor’s 8th Annual Aerospace Summit.

Alex Pietsch will update the Board on the Washington Aerospace Partnership‘s 777X, Economic Impact Study and Competitiveness Report.

The Board will discuss the i6 Grant, the Northwest Building Efficiency Technology Hub and discuss preliminary 2014 Action Items and potential legislative recommendations.

View the full agenda here.

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Josh Brown Named Executive Director of Puget Sound Regional Council

Kitsap County Commissioner Josh Brown will become the new Executive Director of the Puget Sound Regional Council.

photo of Josh Brown

Josh Brown was selected to be PSRC’s new executive director.

Brown was selected after a nationwide search to succeed Bob Drewel, who is retiring at the end of this year.

Brown was named to the position by PSRC’s Executive Board in a unanimous vote today and will start work in January.

“Josh brings the perfect mix of energy, experience, and commitment to regional collaboration to the role of PSRC executive director,” said Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy, PSRC President.

“He is deeply familiar with all aspects of PSRC and has shown outstanding ability to bring people together on transportation, growth, and economic development issues.”

Executive McCarthy chaired the executive director search committee, which included 11 other PSRC board members representing the region’s counties, cities, ports, and transportation agencies. Brown was selected from a group of 115 candidates applying for the job.

“I am honored and humbled to have been selected as PSRC’s Executive Director.  The challenges confronting our region—from economic competiveness to protecting our quality of life—can only be solved with collaboration and partnerships.  I am excited at the opportunity to work with the leaders of our region as PSRC’s Executive Director,” said Brown.

Read the rest

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Wenatchee, Yakima Residents Urge Action on Transportation

Finishing I-90 improvements and making sure local roadways are part of any new transportation package were among the comments heard at Senate Transportation Leadership Forums this week in Wenatchee and Yakima.

Columbia River in the Tri Cities area.

Next stop for the Transportation Feedback tour is the Tri-Cities, on Thursday.

Like previous meetings in Bellevue and Everett, the transportation forums drew big crowds of people eager to offer their opinions on a possible transportation package.

Speakers shared their thoughts on the possibility of a gas tax increase or user fees to fund transportation improvements. Some residents urged legislators to put new reforms in place to ensure funds are used in the most efficient ways.

The next stop on the transportation feedback tour will be the Tri-Cities on Thursday, September 26, at the Columbia Basin College in Pasco.  All of the forums are held from 6-9 p.m.

The upcoming locations are:

  • Sept. 26 – Tri-Cities
    Columbia Basin College, Gjerde Center, 2600 N. 20th Ave., Pasco, WA 99301
  • Oct. 2 – Spokane (Eastern Region)
    Central Valley High School theater, 821 S Sullivan Rd., Spokane Valley, WA 99037
  • Oct. 7 – Vancouver (Southwest Region)
    Vancouver Community Library, Columbia Room, 901 C St., Vancouver, WA 98660
  • Oct. 9 – Tacoma (Olympic Region)
    Evergreen Tacoma Campus, Lyceum Hall, 1210 6th Ave., Tacoma, WA 98405
  • Oct. 14 – Seattle
    First Presbyterian Church, 1013 8th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104
  • Oct. 15 – Bellingham
    Port of Bellingham Cruise Terminal, 355 Harris Ave., Bellingham, WA 98225

Anyone unable to attend can submit comments online at: www.senatetranspofeedbackforum.org.


Executive Board to Meet at Seattle City Hall

PSRC’s Executive Board will meet on Thursday, September 26, 2013 at Seattle City Hall in the Bertha Knight Landes Room.

PSRC's Executive Board will meet in the Bertha Knight Landes Room of Seattle City Hall on September 26 at 10 am.

PSRC’s Executive Board will meet in the Bertha Knight Landes Room of Seattle City Hall on September 26 at 10 am.

The board will act on funding for the Rural Town Centers and Corridors projects, the Growing Transit Communities Compact, 2014 Weighted Votes and Executive Board Representation, and a 22 project routine amendment to the Transportation Improvement Program that includes a large sum for the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project.

The board will also meet in Executive Session to discuss the Executive Direct Search Process and Selection.

Due to tenant improvements at its office space, no meetings will be held at PSRC through October. No webstream is available at offsite meetings, but a recording will be provided following the meeting.

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UW’s Urban Village Housing

As part of its effort to attract world class students, the University of Washington is creating a new type of student housing along Campus Parkway.

UW's new Elm Hall features the restaurant Cultivate, which offers local and seasonal gourmet dining.

UW’s new Elm Hall features the restaurant Cultivate, which offers local and seasonal gourmet dining.

Six new residence halls make up the West Campus Community. Rather than being tucked away on campus, they are integrated with the city’s pedestrian friendly street grid, which gives the student housing the feel of an urban neighborhood.

The new housing is designed to appeal to a wider range of student types, including the more independent and those of differing ages.

These modern buildings offer a mix of apartment style living, including private bathrooms, and dining options, including some kitchens, a fresh market, and even a farm to market restaurant. Some of the buildings have apartments large enough to accommodate families and mix graduate and undergraduate students. All of these buildings are within walking distance of the future light rail stop.

The overall effect has been well received so far. The neighborhood is thriving. Find out more about what is planned for the U-District here.

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Developing the Region’s Fashion Industry Cluster

Efforts are underway to further develop the region’s fashion industry cluster by establishing a Seattle Garment District. This district, located in Renton, would help support existing apparel businesses and attract new ones by shortening the supply chain and increasing access to wholesale suppliers.

The Region has the 4th largest fashion industry cluster in the US.

The region has the 4th largest fashion design industry cluster in the US.

Organizers of the Seattle Fashion Incubator, who are spearheading this effort, are made up of local fashion industry professionals along with the Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County and the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle. As reported in Apparel magazine, this advisory board will work with the Office of Community and Economic Development on this project.

The region’s fashion design industry is the nation’s fourth largest, behind only New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. In 2010, a report published by Community Attributes and commissioned by the Economic Development Council of Seattle and King County, Washington State University, and the Workforce Development Council of Seattle and King County, examined this cluster. The report showed that the fashion and apparel industry supports a total of 51,700 jobs and $16.4 billion in revenue in Washington, including direct, indirect and induced impacts.

In October, the producers of the nearly twenty-year-old Seattle International Textile Expo will be holding the event in partnership with the City of Renton at the downtown Renton location of the Seattle Fashion Incubator.


Big Turnout in Everett for Transportation Forum

For a second night in a row, the Senate Transportation Leadership Forum drew a standing room only crowd – this time on the Snohomish County Campus in Everett.

Everett Senate Transportation Leadership Forum

Nearly 200 people showed up in Everett to provide feedback on transportation.

Following the same template as the kick-off meeting in Bellevue, the meeting featured a presentation by State Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson followed by two and a half hours of testimony.

State legislators, local elected leadership, business and labor leaders, and members of the general public all made up the nearly 200 people in the room.

Once again, speakers urged legislators to come together on a transportation package this year.

Of particular interest to the crowd were projects supporting the county’s aerospace and advanced manufacturing clusters, known locally as the North Puget Sound Manufacturing Corridor, as well as safety projects and local options for Community Transit.

Boeing’s looming decision on final assembly and wing fabrication for their new 777X was also addressed by several speakers. Both Boeing and its supply chain have reiterated the importance of quality infrastructure in their future citing decisions.

The Senators are encouraging written testimony.   They have also set up a way to provide input on the web.

Eight more forums are scheduled around the state with the Senators returning to the region on October 9th in Tacoma.