Tacoma is a beautiful place to live, but many people, including those of us who have lived here our whole lives, know a lot about the city. To pique your interest, here are a dozen things you should know before moving to Tacoma.
Moving to Tacoma Washington | What’s It Like Living There?
If you’re Moving to Tacoma soon, here are some other interesting facts:
1. Tacoma Is the Third Largest In WA State
Tacoma is a mid-sized urban port city in Pierce County, United States. The city is on the waterway known as Puget Sound, about 32 miles southwest of Seattle and about 30 miles north of the State’s capital, Olympia. Tacoma is the second-largest city in the Puget Sound area and the third-largest in the state. Tacoma also serves as the center of business activity for the South Sound region, which has a population of around 1 million.
2. Tacoma Was Named After Mount Rainier
Tacoma adopted its name after the nearby mountain called Mount Rainier, originally called Takhoma or Tahoma.
3. It Is Called the City of Destiny
It is locally known as the “City of Destiny” because the area was chosen to be the western terminus of the Northern Pacific Railroad in the late 19th century. The decision of the railroad was influenced by Tacoma’s neighboring deep-water harbor, Commencement Bay. By connecting the bay with the railroad, Tacoma’s motto became “When rails meet sails”. Commencement Bay serves the Port of Tacoma, a center of international trade on the Pacific Coast and Washington’s largest port.
4. It Is Being Revitalized
Like most industrial cities, Tacoma suffered a prolonged decline in the mid-20th century as a result of suburbanization and divestment. Since the 1990s, downtown Tacoma has undergone a slow and steady revitalization. Developments in the downtown core include the University of Washington Tacoma; Tacoma Link, the first modern electric light rail service in the state; the state’s highest density of art and history museums; and a restored urban waterfront, the Thea Foss Waterway.
5. It Was Named One of The Most Walkable Cities In The US
Tacoma has been named one of the most livable areas in the United States. In 2006, Tacoma was listed as one of the “most walkable” cities in the country.
6. The City Is Home Of The Famous “Galloping Gertie”
In 1940, Tacoma gained notoriety for the collapse of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, which earned the city the nickname “Galloping Gertie”.
7. It Is Home To Several International Companies
Tacoma is the home of several international companies including staffing company True Blue Inc. (formerly Labor Ready), lumber company Simpson, and the food companies Roman Meal and Brown and Haley. Frank C. Mars founded Mars, Incorporated in 1911 in Tacoma.
8. It Used To Be Known For The “Tacoma Aroma”
Back in the 1930s, the city became known for the “Tacoma Aroma,” a distinctive, acrid odor produced by pulp and paper manufacturing on the industrial tide flats. In the late 1990s, Simpson Tacoma Kraft reduced total sulfur emissions by 90%. This largely eliminated the problem; where once the odor was ever-present, it is now only noticeable occasionally downtown, primarily when the wind is coming from the east. The mill produces pulpwood and linerboard products; previously owned by St. Regis Company, the mill was sold to RockTenn in 2014. The mill’s name changed yet again in 2016 to WestRock.
9. Tacoma Has Its Own Refinery
10. Tacoma Has A Large Shopping Area
One of the best places to shop around Tacoma is the Tacoma Mall, which is the largest shopping center in Tacoma. It is owned by Simon Property Group. Anchor tenants include JC Penney, Macy’s, and Nordstrom.
11. The City Had Some Significant Impact from The Economic Crisis of 2008
An economic setback for the city occurred in September 2009 when Russell Investments, which has been in downtown Tacoma since its inception in 1936, announced it was moving its headquarters to Seattle along with several hundred white-collar jobs. A large regional office for State Farm Insurance now occupies the former Russell building.
12. Hospitals In Tacoma Are Operated By The MultiCare Health System
Hospitals in Tacoma are operated by MultiCare Health System and Franciscan Health System. Hospitals include MultiCare Tacoma General Hospital, Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital, MultiCare Allenmore Hospital, and St. Joseph Medical Center.