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Port of Kalama amphitheater construction commences

The Port of Kalama next week commences the Amphitheater and Park Improvements Construction Project. The first phase is to create new pathways with lighting and security cameras.

Beginning Monday, May 21, some pathways through Marine Park and Louis Rasmussen Park will be detoured. The intermittent closures are expected to last no more than two weeks. The playground will remain open.

The short-term project includes construction of a small outdoor amphitheater and maintenance at Marine Park including excavation, grading, and concrete to create seating, and construction of a covered stage as well as:

• Replacement of the asphalt walkway in Marine and Rasmussen Parks,
• Installation of lighted bollards along the asphalt walkway, and
• Replacement of the irrigation system in Marine Park

The Port of Kalama has long considered the community benefits of creating a small public amphitheater on the Kalama waterfront to accommodate a growing number of events, concerts and public activities.

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Moving forward! With exhaustive environmental impact study completed, Port and County finish up with additional greenhouse gas analysis of methanol plant

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 of Kalama 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.

A recent ruling by Cowlitz County Superior Court Judge James Warning reinstated the Shorelines Permits for the methanol production plant and offered a ruling that provided clarity to what must be studied in a supplemental environmental impact statement (SEIS). The last remaining element of the environmental review process is a further review of the impact of greenhouse gases (GHG) from the project, including a broader evaluation of upstream and downstream emissions.  Once completed, this will wrap a several-year-long comprehensive environmental evaluation.

The Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) is currently underway to review:

  • GHG emissions attributable to project construction;
  • On-site direct GHG emissions from operation of the project;
  • GHG emissions from purchased power;
  • GHG emissions potentially attributed to the project from natural gas production, collection, processing and transmission;
  • GHG emissions from the shipping of methanol product to Asia;
  • GHG emissions associated with changes in the methanol industry and related markets that may be induced by the project’s production.

 

Similar to the original Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on the project, the Port and the County will first present a draft SEIS for public review and comment.  The Port and County will then prepare the final SEIS to respond to comments received.  Publication of the draft SEIS is expected to be later this year.

“We’re very pleased that the Shorelines Permits are reinstated—that’s a very important decision that appropriately narrows and focuses the Shoreline Board’s remand order, consistent with what the law requires,” said Mark Wilson, executive director, Port of Kalama. “We appreciate the clarity the judge has provided because it provides the guidance that is needed to get the job done right.  The SEIS is already underway, and we look forward to having a thorough study completed in an expeditious manner.”

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Discover! Who are port industries and businesses—how do they support the Kalama community?

The Port of Kalama is home to more than 30 companies employing more than 1,000 people. Manufacturing companies, storage facilities, distribution business, exporters, recycling agents, trucking companies and many others make their home in Kalama. They benefit from the Port’s superior customer service and business support. And because of comprehensive planning, we’ve still got room to grow!

“The Port of Kalama is the ideal location for us to expand our business facilities and better serve our customers in the Pacific Northwest,” says Steve Collins, National Sales and Marketing Director, Bridger Steel Inc., a company expanding operations at the Port’s new industrial building opening at the end of the summer. “Kalama’s location and proximity to I-5 will enable us to serve a very large area of the Pacific Northwest very quickly.”

All Port businesses and industries give back to our community. Kalama residents are the beneficiaries of the significant capital investment of the businesses here at the Port of Kalama. Revenue from wharf usage, leases, and other business fees enable the Port to fulfill its mission of inducing capital investment in an environmentally responsible manner to create jobs and to enhance public recreational opportunities.

Thanks to port businesses and the port’s commitment to serving the public with parks, recreational facilities, walking paths and a state-of-the-art marina, locals enjoy the bounty without paying a cent in taxes.

For a list of all businesses and industries making their home at Port of Kalama, click here.

Next up: Discover! New Industrial Park Building opens later this summer—who are the tenants?

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Superior Court Judge Reinstates Shoreline/Conditional Use Permits for Methanol Plant

Port now has the clear direction it was seeking on scope of Supplemental Review

Mark Wilson, Port of Kalama Executive Director, said he welcomed a decision by Cowlitz County Superior Court Judge James Warning which reinstated the Shorelines Permits for the methanol production plant and storage facility proposed by Northwest Innovation Works, LLC (NWIW). The ruling provided clarity to what must be studied in the supplemental environmental impact statement (SEIS).

“We’re very pleased that the Shorelines Permits are reinstated—that’s a very important decision that appropriately narrows and focuses the Shoreline Board’s remand order, consistent with what the law requires,” said Wilson. “One of our challenges has been ambiguity about what is required and what is not, especially related to greenhouse gas emissions.  While Judge Warning shared the Shorelines Board’s concerns about Ecology’s Greenhouse Gas Guidance document, the Judge agreed with the Port that the proper remedy was a limited remand of the EIS only to revise the Greenhouse gas impact analysis, while leaving the balance of the Shorelines permits in place pending that limited review.  We appreciate the clarity the judge has provided because it provides the guidance that is needed to get the job done right.  The SEIS is already underway, and we look forward to having a thorough study completed in an expeditious manner.”

NWIW is proposing to develop and operate a natural gas-to-methanol production plant and storage facility on approximately 90 acres at the Port of Kalama.

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Port, County Launch Additional Environmental Study of Kalama Methanol Plant

The Port of Kalama and Cowlitz County announced today they have completed the scoping process for the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for Northwest Innovation Works, LLC—Kalama (NWIW)’s proposed natural gas to methanol production plant and storage facility.

The Port and county are “co-lead agencies” overseeing environmental review of the proposal under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA).

During the scoping period, which extended between January 30 and March 1, 2018, the public, parties who commented on the EIS being supplemented, government agencies, tribes and interested parties were invited to submit comments about the issues they wanted to see studied in the SEIS.

“The Port appreciates the comments received from everyone,” said Liz Newman, Port of Kalama Marketing and Communications Manager. “The comments help to ensure the analysis in the SEIS is robust and thorough. We look forward to moving ahead with a review of the issues.”

The scoping report and comments received during the scoping process are available for public review on the project-specific SEPA website: http://kalamamfgfacilitysepa.com/. The previously prepared EIS and technical appendices also remain available at this website.

The SEIS will include a greenhouse gas (GHG) life cycle analysis to address findings by the Washington State Shorelines Hearings Board in its September 15, 2017 decision.

The SEIS will specifically cover:

• GHG emissions attributable to project construction;

• On-site direct GHG emissions from operation of the project;

• GHG emissions from purchased power;

• GHG emissions potentially attributed to the project from natural gas production, collection, processing and transmission;

• GHG emissions from the shipping of methanol product to Asia;

• GHG emissions associated with changes in the methanol industry and related markets that may be induced by the project’s production.

A public comment period will be held when the Draft SEIS is complete.

NWIW is proposing to develop and operate a natural gas-to-methanol production plant and storage facility on approximately 90 acres at the Port of Kalama.

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Every Day is Earth Day at Port of Kalama

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 of Kalama 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.

The Port of Kalama is dedicated to preserving Kalama’s natural environment through community service projects and facility enhancements that protect its natural resources:

  • An extensive marina renovation project that offers several significant environmental benefits is currently underway:
    • Replacing solid concrete floats with grated floats that allow sunlight through to minimize predatory habitat;
    • Solid steel access ramps are being upgraded with grated steel also allowing for sunlight and improved ADA-compliant recreational access,;
    • A new fire system will minimize environmental risk related to potential fires in the marina;
    • Old, original creosite timber piles are being replaced with steel.
  • The Port supports the Lower Columbia River Fish Enhancement Group for salmon habitat restoration at the lower Kalama River. The Port has invested in wood structures built along the shoreline to provide shelter and safe feeding areas for young salmon.
  • Water-infiltration systems were installed to avoid stormwater discharge at the Industrial Park, Marina, and Port-owned facilities and buildings.
  • The Port received the Pathways 2020 Community Champions Award in 2017 for its significant community and environmental contributions.

 

The Port of Kalama ensures that business, the environment and its robust recreational opportunities are all working together.  With a mission to balance the needs of the community with stringent environmental protection, the Port invests in things that make Kalama a better place to live.

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Discover! Does the Port levy taxes?

No taxes! Decades of strategic planning by past port commissioners continues to ensure the required revenue to maintain port facilities, parks and services for all residents with no taxes added. Every year the Port of Kalama commission is required to declare whether it will levy property taxes on residents living in the Port district area. With careful planning and project management, the port continues to maintain all long-term economic development projects as well as public facilities with the existing revenue it collects from business operations.

Regional residents are beneficiaries of the significant capital investment of the businesses here at the Port of Kalama. Revenue from wharf usage, leases, and other business fees enable the Port to fulfill its mission of inducing capital investment in an environmentally responsible manner to create jobs and to enhance public recreational opportunities. Thanks to port businesses and the port’s commitment to serving the public with parks, industrial facilities and marine terminals, walking paths and creating a unique tourist destination, locals can enjoy the bounty without paying a cent in taxes.

About 78% of the Port’s value is invested in capital assets which include land, buildings, docks, improvements such as roads and utilities, and equipment which are valued at over $132 million, The Port owns and manages over 1,000 acres of property which includes our parks.  Major projects in 2016 included building two warehouses, acquiring property near I5 Exit 32, and completion of the marina parking and trail project.

Next up: Discover! Who are port industries and businesses—how do they support the Kalama community?

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Port of Kalama awards contract for storm water and industrial lot improvements

The Port of Kalama board of commissioners last week voted to award the Central Port Storm Water and Lot Improvement Construction Project contract to Barcott Construction, LLC located in Chehalis, Washington. The $428,140.00 contract—not including Washington sales tax— includes improvements to water quality and improving the site for increased industrial use. The project is expected to run through the end of June.

The contract includes construction in the Central Port Industrial Area including:

  • Construction of a storm water infiltration pond and capping existing outfalls to the Columbia River,
  • Installing storm water lines to direct storm water to the new infiltration facility,
  • Demolishing two unusable buildings,
  • Removing concrete structures and utilities from the old Columbia Fiber site, and
  • Minor fill and asphalt of existing depressions in the lot.

 

The improvements are part of the Port’s strategic plan to balance a healthy environment and an inviting business climate. The new infiltration ponds will treat and infiltrate storm water and prevent discharge to the river while the industrial lot improvements will make the area more conducive to leasing for industrial uses and new business.

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Port of Kalama awards contract for Marine Park improvements and amphitheater construction

The Port’s strategic plan includes construction of a small outdoor venue and ongoing improvements to parks for public recreation and enjoyment

The Port of Kalama board of commissioners last night voted to award the Amphitheater and Park Improvements Construction Project contact to Keystone Contracting, Inc., an excavation contractor based in Ridgefield, Washington. The $854,392.08 contract—not including Washington sales tax— includes construction of a small outdoor amphitheater and maintenance at Marine Park. The project is expected to run between May and July 2018.

Th contract includes excavation, grading, and concrete to create seating, and construction of a covered stage as well as:

  • Replacement of the asphalt walkway in Marine and Rasmussen Parks,
  • Installation of lighted bollards along the asphalt walkway, and
  • Replacement of the irrigation system in Marine Park

 

“Part of the Port’s mission is to create recreational opportunities for the community—these improvements and the addition of a small outdoor venue for public events fulfill that goal,” says Randy Sweet, president, Port of Kalama board of commissioners. “With increased use of Port parks, the intent is to create more diverse and enjoyable guest experiences at events like the ones the region has been enjoying for decades such as the Blues and Hawaiian Festivals among others.”

The Port of Kalama has long considered the community benefits of creating a small public amphitheater on the Kalama waterfront to accommodate a growing number of events, concerts and public activities.

“We envision a grassy open space with tiered seating for concerts and special events that already attract us to the Kalama waterfront—the area will be open to the public except during special events,” says Sweet. “A significant benefit is that the stage and seating will be in a natural setting; the stage will be covered and power will be permanently installed for ease of planning community events.”

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Discover! What is the economic impact of Port of Kalama?

As an economic development entity and a land developer, the Port of Kalama has developed considerable economic muscle to the benefit of Cowlitz County as well as the State of Washington. In the State of Washington, the Port supports:

  • 1220 full-time direct jobs with over $129 million in payroll
  • Beyond Port boundaries, 2156 indirect jobs and 1399 induced jobs, with a combined payroll of $219 million
  • Total economic impact: 4775 jobs with over $349 million in payroll and over $3 billion in economic output
  • Spencer Creek Business Park’s projected economic impact could mean an additional 727 construction jobs and 907 ongoing jobs over the next 20 years, with an estimated total direct, indirect and induced impact of over 3000 jobs

 

Companies and employees located here purchase materials, buy lunches and gas, and pay taxes. State and local taxes paid by port located companies exceed $95 million per year.

In 2016, the Port of Kalama Administration paid over $5 million to suppliers, over $2.1 million for staff, and over $355,000 in taxes. All of this enters the economic “circle of life” and supports our community through additional purchasing and supporting those indirect and induced jobs.

The Port is consistently honored with the Pathways 2020 Community Champions Award for Economic Vitality which awards organizations that excel at creating jobs, employee training, employable skills, new or expanding business, transportation, financial security, reducing poverty, and higher wages.

Next up: Discover! Does the Port levy taxes?

Port of Kalama Marine Terminal

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