Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland, and key staff from both the City of Tacoma and Sound Transit, will be joined March 4 through March 7 by representatives of the Urban Land Institute, planners and urban design specialists from across the country, and officials from the cities of Hartford, Conn., Louisville, Ky. and Austin, Texas. The visiting delegation will inspect and tour Tacoma’s Martin Luther King, Jr. corridor to formulate and suggest development strategies.
The visit comes just in time as the corridor is under review for an expansion of the Sound Transit Link light rail system.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. corridor, also known as the Medical Mile, is a stretch of downtown Tacoma real estate bordered by two of the city’s oldest residential and commercial areas – the Stadium neighborhood to the north, and the Hilltop neighborhood along the south.
Nearly 1,000 housing units have been built in these areas, accompanied by substantial investment from two major health care providers located at both ends of the corridor. A third medical clinic is under construction midway between the two hospitals.
“There are a number of older commercial and residential structures along the Medical Mile that offer opportunities for neighborhood redevelopment complemented by large scale private investments,” said Strickland, who was selected last year by ULI as a Daniel Rose Fellow, which involves a year-long program centered on innovative urban development. “Over the last 10 years, thanks to extensive community outreach and planning, significant growth opportunities have been created for this historic neighborhood, and there is now the possibility of extending Sound Transit light rail service to this corridor.”
The Daniel Rose Fellowship is the flagship program of the ULI Daniel Rose Center, established in 2008 by ULI Foundation Governor Daniel Rose. The Center aims to empower leaders in the public sector to envision, build and sustain successful 21st century communities by providing access to information, best practices, peer networks and other resources to foster creative, efficient and sustainable land use practices.