The Puyallup Hatchery has been placed on the state’s Washington Heritage Register and the nomination now goes to do the same for the National Register of Historic Places.
The U.S. Park Service will act on the nomination later this year, but it is likely to be approved now that the state has already declared it historic. The Governor’s Advisory Council on Historic Preservation made the declaration after an approval recommendation from the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation and endorsed by Puyallup officials and state lawmakers.
The designation makes it the only state hatchery to be recognized as a historic landmark. While the declaration is largely symbolic, it does create a roadblock of sorts when it comes to operations or expansions at the site, which dates back to the 1940s.
The hatchery was the focus of attention this summer, when the Department of Fish and Wildlife announced it was in discussions with a seafood giant to lease the site for 50 years in exchange for fish, instead of cash, for the lease payments. Those talks died shortly after they were made public, prompting the formation of a non-profit foundation tasked with keeping the hatchery open to the public.