The Public Esplanade Connects People, Properties


A ribbon of park benches, landscaping and walkways draws crowds to the esplanade that lines the west edge of the Foss Waterway. This public space will eventually span 1.5 miles and connects the waterway with downtown Tacoma.


Esplanade visitors can watch boats enter and leave the marinas. Restaurant patios provide stunning views of Mount Rainier. Wide, flat walkways support serious runners and those who prefer a casual stroll.


Downtown access is easy and eye-catching, with a brief walk from the esplanade across the Museum of Glass plaza and the Bridge of Glass to bustling Pacific Avenue.


Foss Waterway Esplanade Design


The design team was led by Architects Reed Reinvald Johnson Willows in association with the Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership.


Bruce Dees & Associates was a core design team member, charged with creating a Master Plan for this linear park and urban revitalization project. In addition, a schematic design was developed for the first one-half mile portion of the esplanade between 15th and 21st streets, and construction documents were completed for the first phase between 15th and 18th streets.


The design team went beyond the initial scope of work for the project by studying how private development that will ultimately front the esplanade will look.


Architects/Designers: Thomas Cook Reed Reinvald; BCRA; Tsang Architects; Bruce Dees & Associates

Certain public documents maintained by the FWDA may be downloaded on our Public Notices & Documents page.


The Foss Waterway Development Authority office location will be permanently closed and telephone service will be disconnected as of December 18, 2020.  However, staff will continue to work remotely and will be available via email until December 28th.  You may direct inquiries to Norm Gollub at or to Louise Dreyer at until December 28, 2020.

As of January 1, 2021, all services formerly performed by FWDA will be conducted by the City of Tacoma or other agents, as noted below.  You may also use the City’s Tacoma First 311 system to be directed to the appropriate individual for your circumstance.

  • Development site interest:  Tacoma Community and Economic Development at 253-591-5039


  • City of Tacoma service requests (such as burned out street lights, graffiti, trash along Dock Street):  Tacoma First 311 (phone, app, or tablet/computer)


  • Special event permits and common area maintenance along the water side esplanade (litter, landscaping, etc.): Foss Waterway Owners Association care of HOA Community Solutions, 253-985-3812, Extension 102 or


  • Public access moorage at 535 Dock Street: Foss Waterway Seaport Museum at 253.272.2750 ext. 101.


  • Parks on the Foss:  Metro Parks Tacoma at 253-305-1022.