In the late 1990s Port of Kalama commissioners started considering the future needs of the community and investments required to keep the Kalama’s economic engine on track creating jobs and strategic growth. The result of that thoughtful planning process is the beginning of the Spencer Creek Business Park. Port predecessors worked strategically for decades to plan and prepare for the success the region is now experiencing.

The Port’s economic assessments identified a future need for additional mixed-use development along I-5 and for additional recreational opportunities. The Port included the assessment in its Comprehensive Scheme and Plan of Harbor Improvements and began purchasing land as it became available.

The ‘Comp Scheme’ planning process is open to the public and the community is invited to comment on proposed economic and recreational planning that culminate in the Port’s Comprehensive Scheme of Harbor Improvement that will benefit Kalama long into the future. The Port of Kalama conducts an annual strategic planning process to target investments, land acquisitions and community amenities to achieve plans outlined in the Comp Scheme.

“All of our Port developments—from the Kalama River Industrial Park to marina upgrades and development of the recreational facilities like Haydu Park—are driven by our Comp Scheme and strategic plan and our observation of what the region needs for economic and recreational health deep into the future,” says Mark Wilson, executive director, Port of Kalama. “With development moving north from Clark County up I-5—we are in a natural position to be the location of the next stage of development. And because of decades of careful planning, we are prepared for it. We’ll have local control over what happens at the site and what kinds of businesses are recruited—we’ll do it in a way that is wise and appropriate for our community.”

The land at Spencer Creek Business Park is still being surcharged to prepare for construction, and the next phase of development will include road improvements, curbs, sidewalks, utility extensions and all of the critical infrastructure to serve the area’s growth and prosperity.

Thanks to responsible planning over decades the Port enjoys a thriving recreational system with parks and playgrounds, a new sports complex, and popular riverfront, pathways and marina enhancements. All of these business and recreational assets improve the health, livability and economy here—and all without any Port-levied taxes.