EVERETT — Construction has started on the Port of Everett’s ambitious plan to turn part of the city’s waterfront into a mix of housing, shops and other commercial space surrounded by paths and open spaces.
The port has dubbed the first phase Fisherman’s Harbor in a nod to the local fishing industry. If built according to the project plans, it will have 255 condominiums and apartments, a 140-room hotel, five commercial buildings, plus ground-floor shops and restaurants. Public open spaces include a planned splash park.
Burlington-based Interwest Construction got a $7.6 million contract from the port to build new roads and public spaces, and install utilities. Bergerson’s contract was for $4.4 million. Both companies are expected to finish their work at Fisherman’s Harbor by late 2017 or early 2018.
Port officials expect buildings to start going up in late 2017. They are in talks with a housing developer and a hotelier, but have not signed any agreements yet. They are actively recruiting retailers and restaurants, Port of Everett spokeswoman Lisa Lefeber said.
Construction is expected to continue into 2020.
In all, the port expects to spend $18.5 million on utilities, roads, site preparation and other work at Fisherman’s Harbor. It expects to spend about $62 million on the rest of Waterfront Place, which covers 66 acres. The plan calls for developers to pick up most of the project’s cost, which port officials forecast to be more than $500 million.
The port has tried to redevelop the former industrial land before when it partnered with a private developer called Everett Maritime. That effort — called the Port Gardner Wharf project — ended when the developer filed for bankruptcy in 2009.
This time around, the port is partnering with several developers across the project. By law, the port cannot develop housing, so that land will be sold to private developers selected by the port.
At its busiest, the work is expected to support 2,000 jobs and generate more than $8 million in tax revenue for the city, according to port documents.