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.

Category: Transportation

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

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
11th

Tacoma’s first new major hotel in eight years opens near UWT

When Caroline Curtis and Vickie Molzer unlocked the front doors of the Holiday Inn Express Downtown Tacoma  Thursday afternoon, that simple, unceremonious event marked the informal end of seven years of planning, negotiation and construction that brought Tacoma its newest major hotel.

First conceived in 2006, the hotel developed by Seattle-based Hotel Concepts, slogged its way through numerous city design reviews, architectural modifications and the sluggish economy to finally become reality at 1 p.m. Thursday.

Curtis, operations manager for hotel operator BMI Hospitality and Molzer, the hotel’s first general manager, did the honors, and the hotel received its first guests.

Read more »

July
11th

Alaska Air Group board answers Wall Street’s incessant request with a dividend

SeaTac-based Alaska Air Group Thursday announced it will begin issuing a quarterly cash dividend next month.

The airline holding company will pay shareholder of record on Aug. 6 a 20-cent-per-share dividend on Aug. 22.

The holding company owns Alaska Airlines and its sister carrier, Horizon Air.  The dividend will be in addition the multi-year stock repurchase program the airline company has initiated.

Wall Street analysts, noting the airlines’ growing pile of cash in recent quarters have repeatedly quizzed the airline when it will begin distributing that money to shareholders in the form of a dividend.  Until Thursday, Alaska’s answer has

Read more »

July
11th

Boeing wins rare 747-8 Freighter order

With orders for the latest version of Boeing’s iconic 747 continuing to struggle, the company Thursday announced an order for two of the freighter version of the jumbo jet from Silk Way Airlines, a cargo carrier in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Boeing put the value of  the two freighters at $704 million at list prices.

The 747-8 is the fifth generation of the 4-engine jumbo jet that debuted in the last ’60s.  The 747-8 features new, fuel-efficient engines, an improved wing, an updated interior and electronics.  Boeing has net orders for 105 of the planes.  The company has sold just five of

Read more »

July
10th

And Boeing’s featured airline of the month is — Asiana Airlines

Of the dozens of airlines that Boeing counts as its faithful customers, which did the company single out for accolades  in the July issue of its slick Frontiers magazine?

You’d be right if you said Asiana Airlines, the airline whose Flight 214, a Boeing 777,  crashed at San Francisco International Airport on Saturday while attempting to land.  Two passengers died.

Boeing had picked Asiana for its July customer profile weeks before the accident.  The magazine was distributed July 1 through July 5.

If the ties that bind Boeing and Asiana weren’t public enough before the landing incident, they are now

Read more »