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Yearly Archives: 2017

Port of Kalama Files Appeal to Shorelines Conditional Use Permit

The Port of Kalama today filed an appeal to the conditions placed on the Shorelines Conditional Use Permit for the Kalama Manufacturing & Marine Export Facility (KMMEF) by the Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE).

“While the Port is in no way opposed to regulation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the Port believes that GHG emissions are appropriately addressed in the air emissions permit for the manufacturing facility not a shorelines decision,” said Mark Wilson, Port of Kalama Executive Director. “We believe that the Shorelines Management Act is not intended, nor does it grant the authority, to regulate Greenhouse Gas (GHS)—It is for the protection and proper management of the shoreline. Our appeal is about the precedent setting nature of the permit.”

The primary shoreline impact of the overall project is a marine terminal which will be built, owned and operated by the Port of Kalama.  Northwest Innovation Works (NWIW) will be the primary user of the facility, but it will also be available for lay berth use by other ships. The Port will charge fees for the use of the terminal by NWIW and other users.

The marine terminal will include a dock, berth, loading equipment, utilities and a storm water system.  Ships calling at the terminal for methanol will connect to shore power which reduces emissions to the air from ship engines.

For more information on the port’s appeal documents click here.

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State Department of Ecology Approves Kalama Manufacturing & Marine Export Facility Use Permit

The Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE) today approved the Shorelines Conditional Use Permit for the Kalama Manufacturing & Marine Export Facility (KMMEF).

This permit is the result of a long and comprehensive public process through which the community and other stakeholders participated in submitting comments and suggestions for the development.

The Port of Kalama appreciates DOE’s diligence in reviewing the permit application.

The primary shoreline impact of the overall project is a marine terminal which will be built, owned and operated by the Port of Kalama.  Northwest Innovation Works (NWIW) will be the primary user of the facility, but it will also be available for layberth use by other ships. The Port will charge fees for the use of the terminal by NWIW and other users.

The marine terminal will include a dock, berth, loading equipment, utilities and a stormwater system.  Methanol ships calling at the terminal will connect to shore power which reduces emissions to the air from ship engines.

The majority of the emissions associated with the condition are not located in the shoreline jurisdiction.  Nonetheless, Ecology is seeking to impose limitations on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for the overall project in the shoreline/conditional use permit.

“The GHG emissions condition by Ecology appears to be unprecedented and will require further evaluation to understand the implications for development throughout the state,” said Mark Wilson, Executive Director.  Port attorneys are reviewing the permit and the conditions.

Greenhouse gas emissions are a worldwide issue. The KMMEF project contributes to a significant net reduction in GHG emissions by replacing coal methanol with Ultra-Low-Emission gas methanol.

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Port of Kalama Honored with Pathways 2020 Community Champions Award for Economic Vitality

The Port of Kalama has been honored with the Pathways 2020 Community Champions Award for Economic Vitality. The ‘economic vitality’ category awards organizations that excel at creating jobs, employee wellness, training, employable skills, new or expanding business, transportation, financial security, reducing poverty, and higher wages. Pathways 2020, a Cowlitz County nonprofit, also awards individuals and organizations that lead in the areas of education, housing, social cohesion, health and access to healthy foods.

“This award reflects our planning and collaboration with community and business partners to ensure environmental and economic balance to create good jobs, investments in community amenities, and a quality of life like none other,” said Troy Stariha, president, Port of Kalama Board of Commissioners.

Port of Kalama contributes to a thriving and livable community

The Pathways 2020 award for economic vitality celebrates the Port of Kalama’s contributions to ensure a healthy economy and community assets that improve Kalama’s quality of life:

  • Marina renovation project is under design to perform maintenance and upgrades while enhancing safety and environmental protection, American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility, facility aesthetics and overall attractiveness of the entire marina.
  • Parking facilities will be expanded at Marine Park to accommodate more recreational visitors and serve marina traffic.
  • McMenamins new hotel and brewpub located on the Kalama riverfront, which honors the town’s Hawaiian heritage and founding pioneers, is under construction and is expected to open to the public in early 2018.
  • Initial property development and preparation of the mixed-used Spencer Creek Business Park are underway to expand business opportunities in Kalama.
  • In response to demand for more light industrial space at the Port, the board of commissioners recently approved the expansion of Kalama River Industrial Park with a new 110,000 square foot building. Permitting and construction will start soon.
  • In an effort to develop a closer relationship between the students and faculty of the Kalama Schools and the Port’s business partners on the waterfront— the Port played a leadership role in a student career fair that offered an opportunity to meet members of the business community and learn about jobs and career opportunities right there in Kalama.


Pathways 2020 is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life in Cowlitz County through collaborative partnerships, resource mobilization, strategic planning and program development. Its mission is to promote and improve the health and wellbeing of Cowlitz County by fostering community partnerships that provide the fabric and support each person needs to be a healthy and contributing member of the community.

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Celebrating Earth Day: Port of Kalama is brimming with economic activity, community vitality, recreational opportunity, and environmental stewardship

As businesses continue to find Kalama a perfect location to grow, the small community celebrates Earth Day with an extensive list of recognition for environmental stewardship

Just 30 minutes north of Portland, Oregon, business and community development are booming at the Port of Kalama. With more than 30 companies employing over 1000 people, the Port of Kalama offers a prime location for companies seeking industrial land and exceptional move-in-ready industrial buildings.

The Port’s sweeping riverfront industrial acreage with easy access to all modes of transportation is attracting new and emerging businesses—all while offering a pristine natural environment for recreation, sporting and nature enthusiasts.

At the core of the Port of Kalama’s mission is a promise to carefully evaluate community investments to create jobs and enhance public recreational opportunities all while protecting and enhancing the environment and natural resources. That careful  balance is in the DNA of every single project the Port embarks upon. It is the Port’s job to ensure that environment, economy and community assets are thoughtfully planned to work in harmony with one another.

It’s a balancing act and it’s not always easy, but we strive to do the right thing to ensure Kalama’s quality of life. Always.

From the new Spencer Creek Business Park to a new building in the Kalama River Industrial Park, McMenamins locating here, and international businesses like Northwest Innovation Works choosing Kalamaall of these exist thanks to years and years of contemplation, collaboration, diligent planning—and a commitment to protecting the  culture here. And all bring incredible economic opportunity to this community in the way of tax dollars for infrastructure like roads, as well as jobs.

It’s Earth Day Every Day at Port of Kalama

The Port of Kalama is dedicated to preserving Kalama’s natural environment through community service projects and has been awarded numerous honors for environmental stewardship:

  • The Port supports the Lower Columbia River Fish Enhancement Group for salmon habitat restoration at the lower Kalama River. The Port has invested in structures built along the shoreline to provide shelter and safe feeding areas for young salmon.
  • The Port participated in the Kalama River Clean-up with river conservation nonprofit, RiverJunky. The Port provided removal of all waste, debris and materials from the site after clean-up efforts.
  • The organization installed environmentally friendly lighting and climate control in the new Administrative Building.
  • Water-infiltration systems were installed to avoid stormwater discharge at the Industrial Park, Marina, and Port-owned facilities and buildings.
  • The Port is consistently awarded outstanding performance recognition for wastewater treatment by State Department of Ecology award.
  • A marina restoration project is proposed to not only enhance access to the facility but to performs environmental upgrades and safeguards to protect shoreline and river
  • The Western Dredging Association (WEDA) awarded the Port of Kalama with the top Environmental Excellence Award in the navigation dredging category.
  • Port of Kalama was named Washington State Port of the Year in 2015 for combining long-term vision and innovative planning to create jobs and quality of life.
  • The Port received the Pathways 2020 Community Champions Award for its significant community contributions.


The Port of Kalama ensures that everything we enjoy about our town—the business, the environment and our wonderful recreational opportunities are all working together.  Our mission is to balance the needs of our community with stringent environmental protection and we invest in things that make Kalama a better place to live.

Please join us in celebrating this beautiful community we have created together.

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We’re progressing! Site preparation now underway at Port of Kalama’s Spencer Creek Business Park

Site preparation and preloading commences work this month at Spencer Creek Business Park at the Port of Kalama. The Port recently awarded the $1.2 million contract to Tapani, Inc. for Phase 2 site preloading and ground improvement at site which is now underway.

Residents and visitors will see the piles of sand being moved onto the site at Area 3 for the ‘preload’ phase of the ground improvement process. After Area 3 settles the preload material will move on to Area 4. The area is well-marked with signs to help explain the process.

The Phase 2 project at Spencer Creek Business Park will complete site preloading and occur in several phases with a land settlement period between each phase. (A project map is included below.) The project includes:

  • Removing all sand above 26.5′ elevation from Areas 1 and 2
  • Moving it in phases to Areas 3 through 6
  • Permitted clearing of some trees and vegetation, fences and structures
  • Compacting sand to 26.5′ elevation.


Upon completion of Phase 2, the entire 70-acre footprint will be prepared for development. General business activity at the Port will not be interrupted during this time.

Watch this video to find out more about what Spencer Creek Business Park will bring to our community.

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Help the Port support our local community – share your voice

As part of our mission and in support of the Kalama Manufacturing and Marine Export Facility, the Port is responsible for building two assets inside the shoreline jurisdiction—the proposed wharf for ship moorage and export, and a new well for industrial process water. We’ve done our due diligence to ensure an environmentally—and economically—responsible community asset in the new facility.

The Port’s wharf and well will not only provide benefit to the entire community, but will serve facilities that brings jobs and opportunity to our community— all while generating millions of dollars in taxes for our schools, roads and infrastructure. It is simply a win-win:

  • 688 total jobs during operations, including 192 direct jobs and 496 indirect and induced jobs
  • $21 million in annual payroll for direct jobs
  • Estimated $30 to $40 million in annual tax payments to state and local authorities


Speak Up

Washington State Department of Ecology can approve or deny the Shoreline Substantial Development and Conditional Use permits issued by Cowlitz County. Make your voice heard to support our community.

Click on this link to speak up for our community:

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Port of Kalama commission finalizes lease agreement with McMenamins, moves forward with construction

The iconic family owned business known for operating distinct properties in the Pacific Northwest will develop a portion of the Port of Kalama riverfront with a hotel, restaurant, pub and brewery

The Port of Kalama Commission this week approved the final lease agreement with McMenamins to build a new hotel and brewpub on Port property.  Construction of the facility is expected to commence on the site within the next 60 days.

The new McMenamins destination will include a 40-room hotel, meeting rooms, gift shop, restaurant, brewery, and rooftop brewpub with river view as well as a smaller 500- square-foot pub a short walk away at the Port of Kalama’s Ahles Point.

“Not only can Kalama look forward to this terrific dining and recreational option here, but this is truly an incredible investment and community asset that will bring significant economic benefits to the city of Kalama by way of sales taxes and jobs,” says Mark Wilson, executive director, Port of Kalama. “We expect this development to draw even more visitors and potential business interests to the area.”

With a long history of reimagining interesting spaces, McMenamins will incorporate Kalama’s Hawaiian heritage into the design of the buildings, which will be modeled after the historic Pioneer Inn in Lahaina, Maui. Architectural plans were completed by Collins Architectural Services and are ready for the Port’s construction of the building and landscaping. McMenamins will design and construct all interior components of the facilities working with Pacific Crest Construction for the build-out.

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New river conservation program plans intensive clean-up of Kalama River at Port of Kalama’s Haydu Park this Saturday, March 4

It was the perfect summer day for fishing on the Kalama River when local fisherman Jarrod Kirkley, 33, reeled in a stunning steelhead. What he found next totally ruined the moment: sticking out of the fish was a used hypodermic needle. Sickened by the find Kirkley got to thinking about what he could do to clean up and conserve his beautiful playground: a new river conservation program was born. Welcome RiverJunky Washington, a river-certified waterway conservation 501 (c) (3).

Kirkley expects around 200 volunteers at the Kalama River conservation efforts which will convene at the Port of Kalama’s Haydu Park at 10 a.m. this Saturday, March 4. Teams of 7 to 10 volunteers will be dispersed to areas along the Kalama River for clean-up. The organization supplies all trucks, trailers, garbage bags, gloves and hand sanitation. The Port of Kalama will provide industrial dumpsters to haul off the final collection of debris and trash.

Interested volunteers are encouraged to call 1-866-RVR-JNKY to participate or just show up on Saturday.  RiverJunky rewards all volunteers with free gifts, raffle prizes and a hosted meal for all after.

“I’ve literally been fishing since I was two years old and I got so tired of angling in what was becoming a wasteland—I knew I had to do something to help clean up the situation,” says Kirkley, a third generation construction professional with his family’s Beavercreek Construction Company in Castle Rock, Washington. “My goal is to raise the awareness of others who care about our rivers and continue to build a volunteer base to carry on these important conservation efforts.”

Kirkley, who lives in Silverlake, calls his nonprofit ‘the world’s first river way garbage clean-up service’ and is determined to reduce the impact of trash and debris on the river ecosystem.  Since September Kirkley has organized thousands of volunteers and attracted 25,000 followers to his website and social channels. His local efforts have cleaned up several Pacific Northwest waterways including the Cowlitz River and Puyallup River; and his conservation model has been replicated now in states as far away as New York.

“Our motto is ‘if one person is cleaning up trash it makes our world one times better; but if 100 people are cleaning up trash it makes our world 100 times better!” says Kirkley. “We really appreciate all of our volunteers who join in these important endeavors.”

RiverJunky is a nonprofit organization funded from public donations and sponsorships like Dick’s Sporting Goods, Starbucks, Lamiglas and many others. All product proceeds go directly to river conservation.

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Port of Kalama, Kalama School District team up to engage students on career opportunities in Kalama and beyond

Port and School district plan Career Fair to educate students about port industries and career outlook

Did you know that industries at the Port of Kalama employ more than 1000 people? And there are Fortune 500 companies right here conducting global business and commerce including import/export, manufacturing, marketing, welding and steel work, recycling, trucking and any myriad other commercial and industrial enterprises. They choose Kalama for its ideal location in the heart of the Pacific Northwest on the highway, railroad and river.

The Port of Kalama and the Kalama School District are working together to let Kalama students know more about opportunities after high school. And they are plentiful—right here at home.

The Kalama School District Career Fair takes place on Thursday, February 16 at Kalama High School with sessions for students from noon to 3:00 p.m. and again in the evening for parents to join them for a showcase of the wide range of job opportunities available, the skill sets required, and the pathway to obtaining those jobs. The event, which will be organized like a trade show with booths and spokespeople, is intended to be a career fair rather than a job fair and there is no expectation of hiring as part of the event.

Where: Kalama High School Gym

When: February 16, 12:00—3:00 and 5:00—6:30

“The Port of Kalama is working to develop a closer relationship between the students and faculty of the Kalama Schools and the Port’s business partners on the waterfront the fair offers an opportunity to meet members of the business community and learn about the work we do, as well as career opportunities for students,” says Mark Wilson, executive director, Port of Kalama. “We hope to improve the understanding of the business activities here and let students know about the many career opportunities that can be found right here in the community.”

Kalama students will go through the career fair in groups: 6th, 7th and 8th grade first; 9th and 10th second; and 11th and 12th last. Each group will have about an hour to visit with the businesses. Each group will have received an hour long presentation about the business community at the Port prior to going to the career fair to help guide them to career opportunities they want to learn more about. The partnership’s goal is to make middle and high school students aware of the career opportunities in their community and how to build a path toward those careers.

For more information or to RSVP to participate, call Jackie Heupel at the Port of Kalama at 360-673-2325 or , Mark Wilson, Executive Director, Port of Kalama at 360-673-2325, or Eric Nerison, Superintendent, Kalama Schools at 360-673-5228,

Port of Kalama Building

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Port of Kalama marina project will bring enhanced recreational access and environmental benefits to the region

The first step toward a significant marina renovation is complete with the City of Kalama’s approval of the Port’s shoreline substantial development permit application. The shoreline permit is required for development or activity performed within 200 feet of the Columbia River shoreline.

The decision will now be submitted to the Washington State Department of Ecology. The Port will continue to work with State and Federal regulatory agencies on the remainder of the permits needed for this project. The project is in the final design and planning stage and will go out to bid later this year, 2017.

“The Port of Kalama marina renovation project will perform maintenance and upgrades while enhancing safety and environmental protection, American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility, facility aesthetics and overall attractiveness of the entire marina,” says Darin Sampson, Port of Kalama project manager.

Among many, some improvements include:

  • Construction of ADA-compliant aluminum-grated gangway for ADA access to the visitor dock and entrance to marina.
  • Replacement of concrete floats with aluminum-grated floats
  • Removal of nine creosote timber piles and salvage of ten steel piles
  • Provide and/or upgrade potable water service, fire suppression systems and electrical service to all floats


“This marina renovation project will go a long way to ensuring excellent access to the facility as well as the environmental upgrades and safeguards that will protect natural resources like our shoreline and river,” says Tabitha Reeder, Environmental Manager.

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