Kimberly-Clark mill site likely to remain industrial land

EVERETT — The Kimberly-Clark paper plant has been a fixture on the waterfront so long it’s hard to imagine Everett without it.

But at some point, it will be gone.

And don’t expect a new community park or high-end condos and shops to take its place.

The company plans to demolish the buildings and sell the land. And that will take some time.

Although the fate of the property isn’t sorted out, city officials said they would like to keep the site devoted to heavy manufacturing or other industrial use. That’s what it’s zoned for.

The property is about 90 acres along prime waterfront near the Everett Naval Station. The proximity to deep water makes it a valuable, rare asset, said Allan Giffen, Everett’s Planning and Community Development director.

He said the city administration doesn’t support a change to residential.

“It’s a prime piece of property and we’d like to keep it in productive use,” he said.

The city has a vested interest in the future of the Kimberly-Clark site, said spokeswoman Kate Reardon.

“It’s too early at this point to talk with any certainly at what the future looks like,” she said. “Our primary goal is for a future use is one that provides an opportunity to recapture family-wage jobs.”

There is a hint of a chance that there might be public access at the site in the future.

Depending on what type of company buys the land, it might be required by state regulations to provide public access to the waterfront, Giffen said.

Kimberly-Clark Corp. was in negotiations to sell the pulp and tissue mill to Atlas Holdings Inc. Those talks fell through in December because of environmental issues.

Most of the people who worked at the mill no longer do. About 200 workers remain.

It’s expected to be shut down by the end of March, said Bob Brand, a Kimberly-Clark spokesman.

“We’re taking it one step at a time,” he said.

Don’t expect bulldozers to show up the day after the mill closes.

It will likely be months, and perhaps longer, before the company is able to meet requirements for demolition.

The company has to go through a review process to make sure demolishing the building won’t cause harm to the environment. The state may also get involved, if contaminated soils are found on site, which could make for a longer process.

The company has yet to file paperwork to begin that process.

What’s also not clear is who will be responsible for cleaning up environmental problems that stalled the original sale talks. Company officials said they are ready to help.

“Kimberly-Clark recognizes that some environmental remediation will likely be required,” Brand said, “and the company will cooperate fully with the state Department of Ecology, other potentially liable parties and interested stakeholders, in efforts to address this situation.”

Debra Smith: 425-339-3197 or

Talk to us

More in Local News

Lead climbers head up their respective routes at Vertical World North on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Beginner’s ascent: A newcomer’s guide to indoor climbing

Indoor climbing gyms in and around Snohomish County offer thrills without winter chills.

Providence Regional Medical Center Everett. (Olivia Vanni/The Herald)
Providence Swedish tightens COVID, mask policy

Citing a rise in respiratory illness, local hospitals and clinics will require masks for care.

Chestnut mushrooms grow in a fruiting tent on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023, at Black Forest Mushrooms in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Fungi town: Downtown Everett home to new indoor gourmet mushroom farm

Black Forest Mushrooms will grow up to 20,000 pounds of tasty mushrooms each month. Its storefront opens Saturday at 2110 Hewitt Ave.

Outside of Angel of the Winds Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Police arrest Angel of the Winds arena worker accused of stabbing boss

The man allegedly walked up to his employer and demanded a raise, before stabbing him in the stomach, witnesses said.

The town post office in Index, Washington on Wedesday, Nov. 29, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Index, smallest town in Snohomish County, is No. 1 in voter turnout

Index has beaten the Snohomish County ballot return rate in each of the last 10 years. Snohomish County leaders have a few theories as to why.

Founder and Executive Director Pa Ousman Joof, alongside Lynnwood Mayor Christine Frizzell, right, prepares to cut the ribbon during the grand opening of the Washington West African Center on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Born out of struggle, West African Center flourishes in Lynnwood

African music filled the room Saturday at 19203 36th Ave. West, for the grand opening of the nonprofit’s new state headquarters.

An STI clinic opened Friday, Dec. 1, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Free STI clinic opens in Everett after 14-year hiatus — and as rates spike

The county-run facility will provide treatment and resources for prevention of sexually transmitted infections.

Graffiti covers the eastern side of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County Cascade Unit on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Again, Boys and Girls Club tagged with suspected gang signs in Everett

Residents on Cascade Drive say their neighborhood has been the scene of excessive graffiti and sometimes gunfire in the past year.

A man pauses to look out over the flooding along Old Snohomish Monroe Road on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023 in Snohomish, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Why are Snohomish County rivers susceptible to flooding?

The short answer: Geography. Our proximity to Puget Sound and the mountains makes our rivers sensitive to big storms.

Henry King sits on a bench he often spent time on between the Boulevard Park and Taylor Dock boardwalks in Bellingham, Washington. (Photo courtesy of Bellingham Police Department)
Marysville man accused of killing ‘kind, gentle’ homeless Bellingham man

After a nine-month investigation, police arrested Elijah Belmont Wednesday in the death of Henry King in Boulevard Park.

Traffic moves along Mukilteo Speedway in front of Olympic Middle School on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Automated traffic speed cameras get the green light in Mukilteo

Cameras will be at three sites on Mukilteo Speedway for school and park safety, not at red lights.

Brenda Stonecipher, left, and Mary Fosse
Everett council president backs down from ban on holding 2 offices

On Wednesday, over 20 speakers showed up to support City Council member Mary Fosse’s ability to serve in the state Legislature.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.