• City of Tacoma QA
  • City of Tacoma OpenData

Economic Development Strategic Plan 2020 - 2025

The City has developed a five-year plan for the City and its partners in eight key areas:


1. Business Retention, Expansion & Recruitment to Strengthen and diversify the local economy 

  • Identify and conduct outreach to firms within Tacoma’s targeted sectors 
  • Actively participate and strategically pursue projects with regional partners to leverage new business
  • Identify infrastructure issues that inhibit business growth and advocate on behalf of commercial and industrial zones

2. Develop authentic and emerging industries through Small Businesses & Entrepreneurship

  • Expand the City’s business retention, expansion and recruitment efforts to include micro, small and mid-sized businesses
  • Facilitate providing additional assistance to businesses in areas of the city experiencing or projected to undergo gentrification and displacement of legacy businesses
  • Streamline City lending processes to enhance accessibility to small business financing, including translation of documents 

3. Workforce Development & Human Capital: Create a trained, future-ready workforce 

  • Work with local colleges, universities, community colleges, technical schools and the Tacoma School District to coordinate training and education for local industries
  • Coordinate with Workforce Central and local educational institutions to develop a list of skills that are in greatest demand by employers in Tacoma’s target sectors
  • Utilize Anchor Institution Collaborative in coordination with the City Manager’s Office 

4. Build increasingly vibrant neighborhoods through Neighborhood Business District Revitalization 

  • Regularly monitor properties for sale or rent and engage in direct recruitment of small businesses that are a good fit for specific neighborhood identities and retail/service gaps
  • Inventory vacant or underutilized property and connect businesses looking for space and lease options with appropriate parties
  • Conduct outreach to absentee property owners to identify specific barriers to activating their vacant or underutilized property

5. Promote Downtown Tacoma as the center of commerce for the South Sound 

  • Support the Downtown Retail Advocate’s Work Plan in the Business Improvement Area, develop relationships with stakeholders and identify prospects for infill development
  • Continue to identify and recruit key anchor tenants for catalytic Downtown sites with the greatest potential for leveraging additional private sector development and job growth
  • Facilitate historic restoration and renovation of Old City Hall

6. Commercial & Industrial Property Activation by Supporting employment-generating activities and office/industrial product 

  • Work closely with City of Tacoma Planning and Development Services Department and the University of Washington Tacoma to facilitate new development on campus
  • Create and maintain a database of key properties in Tacoma with high economic potential that are underutilized
  • Actively participate in an economic analysis of the Tideflats subarea planning process

7. Implement premier customer service within the Business & Development Climate 

  • Use monthly coordinating meetings with the City’s economic development partners to discuss policy and program issues
  • Work with City of Tacoma departments to identify opportunities and mechanisms to assist with infrastructure, environmental and related development costs
  • Conduct property owner outreach regarding key properties to facilitate development and attract Opportunity Zone investment to effect positive impacts and mitigate for unintended outcomes

8. Placemaking & City Image: Choose Tacoma in which to live, work & explore 

  • Develop a narrative describing why Tacoma is an advantageous place to live and work with the power to resonate regionally and nationally; produce and regularly update marketing materials
  • Participate in an analysis of current and projected parking needs within the City and develop broad-based strategic approaches
  • Align City communications efforts with local and regional economic development partners’ efforts, and spearhead a multi-channel marketing campaign