Word on the Street

The latest news in and around Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound

NOTICE: Word on the Street has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved Word on the Street.
Visit the new section.

Archives: Oct. 2010


Smashing pumpkins, and Zach’s sense of safety

This morning you may have read the story of Zach Hovland’s Jack o’lanterns, the Gray Middle school students who smashed them, and the Gray students who brought new ones to his house.

Zach, who is 22 and has Noonan syndrome, was delighted with the good kids’ gesture, and accepted their apology for their fellow-students’ cruelty.

If only the story had ended there.

It did not, as Zach’s mom, Athena Elrod, let us know this morning. Here is her e-mail:

Our afternoon with the students from Gray Middle School was wonderful, quite an uplifting experience that left us feeling

Read more »


Predock-designed building in California faces demolition.

Antoine Predock is best known around here for his design of the new Tacoma Art Museum.

This post from The Architect’s Newspaper covers the controversy around plans to demolish a building of his design at the Pomona campus of Cal Poly.

The tower, with its soaring form, is visible from the I-10 freeway and also doubles as a wayfinding device on campus, helping visitors move through a school that university president Michael Ortiz calls “difficult to navigate.” The structure has been featured in numerous films and television spots, and is even integrated into the university’s logo. Its presence

Read more »


Tacoma church named to state register

Central Lutheran Church in Tacoma
Central Lutheran Church in Tacoma

As a historically important building, Central Lutheran Church in Tacoma’s Stadium District is relatively young at 53 years old.

But its design and stained-glass windows have landed the brick building at 409 Tacoma Ave. N. on a state list of significant buildings, called the Washington Heritage Register.

Central Lutheran, constructed in 1957, is the first post-World War II church listed on the Washington Heritage Register, according to the preservation group Historic Tacoma. The structure was also added to Tacoma’s Register of Historic Places earlier this year.

Central Lutheran is “a strong example of post-WW II ecclesiastical architecture,” according to a news release from Historic Tacoma. It was designed by the firm of Lea, Pearson and Richards, which also designed Kilworth Chapel at the University of Puget Sound.

Here is the press release: Read more »


You can help Empty Bowls fill EFN’s warehouse

Soup makes everything better, even an economy that’s boosted the number of people who rely on food banks.

Emergency Food Network
will harness the power of soup and combine it with the elevating influence of art at its annual Empty Bowls fundraiser from 1 to 4 p.m. Nov. 13 at Life Center, 1717 S. Union St.

Potters have been throwing, glazing and firing the bowls that will be for sale for $15 and up. Patrons can buy a bowl, then enjoy soup donated by eight restaurants, including Masa, Infinite Soups, The Swiss, Adriatic Grill and The

Read more »


Weyerhaeuser mansion price tag: $8 million

One of Tacoma’s most historic – and expensive – homes is on the market for $8 million.

That’s the asking price for the nearly 50-room Weyerhaeuser mansion overlooking Commencement Bay in Tacoma’s North End, according to redfin.com.

The home for Northwest Baptist Seminary is being sold so Salem, Ore.- based Corban University can expand the seminary, now part of Corban’s School of Ministry, by moving a more central Puget Sound location, perhaps south Seattle.


Rooms of Dreams at YWCA’s new DV shelter

The people behind YWCA Pierce County’s new shelter for victims of domestic violence never dreamed it would be so beautiful.

They never dreamed that so many donors – 400 who gave money and another 200 who gave goods and time – would support the project to the extent that they have,

But they did, and from 10 a.m.m to 5 p.m. Saturday we can all see what they’ve accomplished. For $10, we can tour the 22 apartments in the old Wilsonian at 401 St. Helens Avenue.

From the basement, with its new boiler for the radiator heating syste, and

Read more »


Peninsula power outage: Even after lights back on, people were cruising for food

OK. So it wasn’t even close to a “Where Were You When the Lights Went Out” event, but tonight’s power failure on the Gig Harbor and Key peninsulas was a major inconvenience and annoyance to commuters stuck in stop-and-go traffic and people wondering what they could eat that didn’t need cooking once they got home.

Even at 8 p.m., nearly an hour after the power was restored to much of the peninsulas’ 65,000 residents, motorists cruised by restaurants, peering in windows to see whether food was being served again.

If you were hungry, it was ugly. Burger King, closed. The

Read more »


Puyallup votes down utility rate hike

The City of Puyallup isn’t raising its utility rates to pay for future infrastructure needs — at least for now.

After a lengthy discussion this week, the city council narrowly voted down a proposal to raise the rates between 4 and 7 percent each year for six years starting in 2012.

“At some point we have to do something,” said Councilwoman Nicole Martineau, who with Mayor Kathy Turner and Deputy Mayor Tami Brouillet voted for the plan.

Council members Don Malloy, Rick Hansen, Kent Boyle and John Knutsen voted against, saying now isn’t the time to raise rates because of

Read more »