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After more than eight years sitting idle, the former Kimberly-Clark mill site is slated to begin its long-awaited transformation into a maritime hub to support the next generation of jobs and commerce at the working waterfront.

This comes as a result of the Port of Everett’s recent acquisition of the property that effectively expedites upland cleanup and site improvements to strengthen our local and regional economies through job restoration and expansion of trade opportunities.

In December 2019, the Port closed on the $33 million Purchase and Sale Agreement (PSA) with Kimberly-Clark Corporation, representing 77 total acres; 58 acres of the former mill site for maritime development and 19 acres of tidelands north of the Port of Everett boat launch for river management and public access.

“I am very pleased the Port and Kimberly-Clark were able to reach a negotiated agreement,” Port of Everett CEO Lisa Lefeber said. “Our respective teams did amazing work in a short amount of time to make this very complex land transaction come together. This property is critical to support our working waterfront for decades to come, and we will continue to work expeditiously to restore family wage jobs to the site, enhance trade and ensure compatible land use with Naval Station Everett.”

The acquisition agreement helped spur Kimberly-Clark’s upland cleanup and removal of the crushed material at the former mill site using methods approved by the State of Washington’s Department of Ecology and the Snohomish County Health District. 

“We appreciate the work of numerous officials who helped to form this agreement,” said Lisa Morden, Vice President of Safety and Sustainability for Kimberly-Clark. “For nearly 100 years, Kimberly-Clark had a presence in this city, and through this agreement, we can help ensure that the next generation of jobs can return to the site.”

Per the negotiated post-closing agreement with K-C, the planned upland cleanup expected to kick-off in March 2020 and conclude by the end of the year, will be funded by Kimberly-Clark with no financial impact to the taxpayers of the Port District. The Port is supporting the effort by providing Kimberly-Clark access to local, clean fill to backfill the site. The PSA also provided the Port with a $17 million credit from the former landowner to address environmental impairments in the 12 acres of tidelands located in the East Waterway.

“This is a win for both the community and the environment,” said Jim Pendowski, Head of Ecology’s Cleanup Programs. “The Department will work with both parties to ensure that the waterfront restoration
continues.”

This critical asset is strategically located in the heart of the Port’s federally secure, urban deep-water maritime complex. The working waterfront has been under significant growth pressure, and the protection of port and maritime operations is mission critical to the area’s economic stability. At the completion of Kimberly-Clark’s upland cleanup actions, the Port will be prepared to put the site to use to support near-term maritime operations and jobs.