The Biz Buzz

Get the most up-to-date news, insights and analysis of Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound business.

NOTICE: The Biz Buzz has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved The Biz Buzz.
Visit the new section.

Archives: July 2013

July
17th

Free cake, no protests as Walmart opens its first Tacoma store

With speeches, cheers and a prayer, Tacoma’s first Walmart store opened Wednesday morning.

Dozens of patrons waited for the doors to open at 8 a.m. as Walmart officials and dignitaries gathered in a semicircle before a makeshift stage to bear witness to $68,000 in charitable contributions and a brief history of the company which, on Wednesday, saw the opening of 24 stores nationwide and two in state – in Tacoma and Vancouver.

“Building this store has been a journey,” said Tom McReynolds, a Walmart manager who oversees nine stores in the Puget

Read more »

July
17th

UPDATED: Chick-fil-A planning a Tacoma store

Georgia-based Chick-fil-A, known for its chicken sandwiches and waffle fries, plans to open a drive-through restaurant in Tacoma.

The plans were filed with the City of Tacoma this morning and first noted by local blog exit133.com. A project manager confirmed them to The News Tribune. Those plans indicate the company plans a 4,567-square-foot restaurant at 3902 Steele St., near the Ashley Furniture store in the Tacoma Mall area.

The plans don’t list a timeline for construction. I’m working to get in contact with someone from the company to elaborate. The company doesn’t operate in Washington state now,

Read more »

July
16th

Aerospace Summit set for Wednesday at Clover Park Technical College

What are state and local governments and private businesses doing to ensure that Washington remains a hub of the aerospace industry?

Get a briefing Wednesday on that aerospace retention effort at Pierce County’s annual Aerospace and Advanced Manufacturing Summit at the McGavick Center at Clover Park Technical College.

Alex Pietsch, director of the governor’s office of aerospace, is one of several speakers on the agenda. Pietsch will discuss Washington’s aerospace strategy and the Evergreen State’s recruitment efforts at the recent Paris Air Show.

Other speakers include: Dr. Amit Bandyopadhyay, professor at Washington State University’s School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering.  He will

Read more »

July
16th

Hundreds flock to the first day of State Farm’s job fair in Tacoma

Downtown Tacoma’s newest big employer is hiring, and it has no shortage of candidates.

People came to the Hotel Murano’s Bicentennial Pavilion by the dozen on Tuesday, trying to land a job at State Farm. Doors to the job fair opened at 10 a.m. and the line to register for an interview was in the double-digits for hours.

The company wants to hire about 500 people. Before the job fair even began, more than 1,000 people had filled out applications online.

Angela Campbell of Puyallup graduated from Highline Community College in December and has been looking for work ever since.

Read more »

July
16th

Sea-Tac gets second daily Dreamliner flight

Sea-Tac Airport,  the second U.S. airport to host the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on a regularly scheduled flight, will see more Dreamliner service beginning this fall.

According to schedules published this week, United Airlines will begin using a Dreamliner for its Sea-Tac-Tokyo flight beginning Nov. 5.

The Chicago-based airline now uses a larger Boeing 777-200ER for the flight to Tokyo’s Narita Airport.  All Nippon Airways began flying a Dreamliner from Sea-Tac to the the Japanese capital last fall.

Those ANA flights were interrupted in early winter when all Boeing Dreamliners were grounded to solve battery fire problems.

ANA has resumed it

Read more »

July
16th

Alaska Airlines adding Colorado ski town to wintertime route structure

Alaska Airlines, which historically has provided air service to such ski towns as Sun Valley, Idaho, and Mammoth Lakes, Calif.,  and Kalispell, Mont.,  will add a Colorado ski destination to its route map for the first time this winter.

The SeaTac-based airline will begin new service between Sea-Tac Airport and Steamboat Springs/Hayden, Colo., this winter. The twice-weekly flights will operate from Dec. 18 through March 29, 2014. The flights will make the roundtrip to Steamboat Springs on Wednesdays and Saturdays during that period.

“This will be Alaska Airlines’ first Colorado ski destination, giving our customers in the Pacific Northwest the

Read more »

July
15th

Finnish ice breaker departs Tacoma area for Alaska

A Finnish multi-purpose ice-breaker that spent much of last weekend in Tacoma and at the entrance to Quartermaster Harbor off Vashon Island departed early Monday for Dutch Harbor in Alaska.

After a brief, early morning stop in Seattle, the MSV Nordica headed out the Strait of Juan de Fuca for the 49th State.

The bulbous-bowed, 381-foot-long vessel is contracted to Shell Offshore by Arctia Offshore Ltd. for use in exploration activities in the seas off the north coast of Alaska.  The Nordica and its sister ship Fennica are part of a flotilla of ice-breakers, anchor-handling ships, supply vessels and tankers

Read more »

July
15th

Mitzel’s American Kitchen in Fife will close next week; Puyallup Tribe will redevelop the building as another restaurant

Mitzel’s American Kitchen, located at 5402 Pacific Highway E. in Fife, will close on Tuesday, July 23, according to Greg Kjellesvik of Ehli Auctions.

The Tacoma auction house will conduct an online auction of the fixtures and equipment at the Fife restaurant. For further information on the auction, visit cyberauctions.com/static/ATerms_362.html.

The Fife property is owed by the Puyallup Tribe of Indians, which intends to redevelop the building and open a tribal restaurant.

John Weymer, spokesman for the tribe, said Sunday that the tribe did not renew Mitzel’s lease.

“The tribe is planing on running a restaurant themselves,” he

Read more »