Tacoma adds Feb. 10 methanol plant hearing

Tacoma planning officials have added a third meeting to collect public input for the environmental review of the proposed methanol plant on the Tideflats.

The new hearing, scheduled for Feb. 10 at the Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center, was added to the city’s schedule to guide its review of the plant proposal after the first meeting Jan. 21 drew an overflow audience to a room with a 400-seat capacity. The Feb. 10 meeting is set for exhibit hall A on the fifth floor of the convention center, which has a maximum listed capacity of 1,900 seats.

City officials have scheduled the hearings so members of the public can say what factors should be included in the environmental review of the proposed facility, which would occupy 125 acres of waterfront property and constitute the world’s largest methanol production plant. Northwest Innovation Works signed a long-term lease in 2014 with the Port of Tacoma for the property, but a series of permits from Tacoma and other entities are required before the plant can be built and connected to natural gas pipelines.

The Feb. 10 hearing is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m., after doors open at 5 p.m. to allow interested members of the public to peruse information about the proposed facility. The third public meeting is set for Feb. 16 at Meeker Middle School at 4402 Nassau Ave. NE in Northeast Tacoma.

In a document posted Tuesday to a city webpage, city planning and development director Peter Huffman wrote that officials are aiming to have a draft plan for the scope of the environmental review available by Feb. 5 so it can be discussed at the meetings Feb. 10 and 16.

The city is also accepting emailed input for the environmental review at tacoma.methanol.sepa@cityoftacoma.org.

Derrick Nunnally: 253-597-8693, @dcnunnally

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