This editorial will appear in Monday’s print edition.
The Luzon Building may no longer be standing, but preserving Tacoma’s heritage wasn’t a lost cause in 2009.
Down the hill from the post-Luzon scar at 13th and Pacific is the Balfour Dock Building, the last remnant of what once was a mile-long stretch of grain storage warehouses.
The Balfour has come far – from a decaying castoff that once stored impounded vehicles to a combination maritime museum, working boat shop and hands-on learning center.
A major $7 million overhaul of the wharf in 2007 saved the Balfour from slipping into the Foss Waterway. The construction of the new concrete esplanade happened just in time to help host the Tall Ships Festival.
More work is on the way. The Foss Waterway Seaport, which is in charge of redeveloping the building, got a big boost last month. On the heels of the Tacoma City Council approving $2 million for improvements to the Balfour, an unnamed donor gave the Seaport another $2 million.