Sunday, November 15, 2009

Tacoma, Washington

You are looking at Katie Downs Waterfront Tavern & Eatery on the part of Puget Sound called Commencement Bay, in Tacoma. That is Mount Rainier peaking its head up in the background.

Katie Downs is a northwest themed tavern specializing in pizza, burgers and real good seafood. And handcrafted northwest beers and wine.

There are several good restaurants on the Tacoma waterfront. And several parks. Taking a stroll along the Tacoma waterfront is an activity a lot of people engage in.

Years ago Tacoma was known for the Tacoma Aroma, caused by wood pulp processing plants. The Tacoma Aroma has been long gone. Replaced by pleasant sea breezes, lots of flowers and the scent of evergreen trees.

Tacoma is the location of 2 very expensive Superfund cleanup sites. One being Asarco. I think it may have been the most expensive cleanup to date in America. Where a mess used to exist, now a big condo complex has been built. At the other end of Commencement Bay the Thea Foss Waterway has been cleaned up and turned into a complex of marinas, high rise apartments, lofts, restaurants and a waterfront promenade. That is part of the Thea Foss Waterway in the picture, looking south towards the Tacoma Dome.

The Thea Foss Waterway complex is tied in quite nicely with the Museum of Glass. A broad stairway leads from the Thea Foss Waterway Promenade to the Bridge of Glass, which is a multi-million dollar display of Dale Chihuly glass, installed in a 500 foot long pedestrian bridge that crosses the main road into downtown Tacoma and leads to the Washington State History Museum and the Tacoma Art Museum.

Downtown Tacoma has a free to ride electric trolley train that runs from the transit hub to downtown Tacoma. At the transit hub you'll find free parking in a big parking garage, Freighthouse Square, which is a collection of shops and restaurants, the Sounder, which is a train that will take you to Seattle and a Greyhound bus station.

Downtown Tacoma is very pedestrian friendly. It is very hilly, so you can have yourself a good walking workout while exploring.

Watch the YouTube video below. In it I take you on a short walk across the Bridge of Glass to the Thea Foss Waterway. You'll also see a Sound Transit electric trolley pass by...

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