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Imagine Tacoma – Waiting for LeMay
With the 31st Annual LeMay Car Show and Auction this last Saturday, and the recent news that the Starbucks across the street from the Tacoma Convention Center is closing (which I assume to mean that said Convention Center is not quite the economic generator envisioned), Imagine Tacoma considers what turning the Convention Center INTO the LeMay Museum might be:
Plenty of room to display a significant portion of the collection while still maintaining the ballroom for special functions – and the main convention floor was designed to support semi-trucks so there is plenty enough structural support. Instead of hanging bits of wood from the ceiling – maybe some cars (ala the SAM Lobby)?
EXTERIOR – (Just a few enhancements required)
15th Street Terminus
Because Downtown Tacoma did/does not have a Master Plan to guide its development, the bLINK , and thus the location of the Convention Center, were political decisions that did not accurately weigh the urban design consequences of terminating Broadway at South 15th Street (sort of like the Sounder Crossing of Pacific Avenue is today). So, at least improve this consequence by creating an appropriately scaled focus to the Broadway Avenue terminus (and maybe add some water fountains to improve the building’s feng shui).
Pedestrian Hillclimb Connection
Without the need for the large loading dock facility for the convention center off Market Street, envision a pedestrian connection from Market Street direct to Tollefson Plaza (for bus/streetcar access and additional parking).
Tollefson Plaza Fence
Given the deserted ‘arid’ condition of the existing plaza, how about a Tacoma spin on Cadillac Ranch? A line of 9 vehicles on-end (Toyota Tacomas?) along Pacific Avenue that will provide much needed ‘edge’ protection to the plaza.
With the cash from the sale of the Convention Center to the LeMay Museum, the City of Tacoma could re-invest into the necessary upgrades to the Tacoma Dome and Exhibition Center – and no more will we be Waiting for LeMay.
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