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Economic Development

The Port’s Economic Development Division is responsible for spurring our regional economy, sustaining and creating family-wage jobs by supporting small businesses, workforce development, tourism and leveraging real estate development to create jobs.

The Port owns property in King County that can be developed to provide jobs for thousands of people. Our Real Estate Strategic Plan is being prepared and will provide a roadmap to maximize the benefits and build regional prosperity.

Economic development partnership program

The Port of Seattle has authorized a new Economic Development Partnership Program to support local community economic development activities. More than $962,000 is available to cities in King County as matching funds. Based on population, each city would receive between $5,000 and $65,000 for the following eligible activities:

  • Business recruitment initiatives designed to attract new companies to a region or city
  • Small business development (including incubator/accelerator projects) 
  • Industry retention and expansion assistance (ex. Maritime, Aerospace, etc.)
  • Tourism development 
  • Downtown revitalization 
  • Commercial or industrial property development 
  • Other community or economic development projects that support new investment and job creation 
  • Cities may collaborate or aggregate regionally to enhance impact

Applying for the partnership program

To apply for the program, please read the program guidelines and eligible activities carefully and attend a workshop if you are able. Then, complete an application form and return it to
Please email Susan Chamberlain at with any questions you have about the program.
Select this link to read FAQs about the partnership program.

Economic Development Partner Cities


​Fifteen more King County cities have received funding from the Port of Seattle to support local community economic development activities, bringing the total number of King County cities receiving awards to 27. The third round of partnership awards will go to the following cities that plan to use the funds, along with a local match, for economic development projects that support new investment and job creation.

Bothell - $25,410 

Develop a vision and comprehensive plan for the Canyon Park Technology area to support business expansion and job growth. 

Burien - $48,810 

Design signage that creates a walkable multi-modal downtown environment to attract visitors, new businesses and commercial development, as recommended in the city’s Downtown Mobility Study. 

Carnation - $5,000

Support the “Savor Snoqualmie” marketing collaboration with cities of Snoqualmie and Duvall promoting outdoor recreation, farm and culinary experiences, cultural heritage and the work of local artists.  Grant funds will be used for wayfinding signage and promotional materials for Bounty Week 2017. 

Covington - $18,520

Redesign city’s website with an emphasis on economic development opportunities and business services. 

Enumclaw - $11,140 

Provide small business workshops and training through Green River Community College for light manufacturers. Promote visitors to Mount Rainier through collaboration with Visit Rainier, Pierce County Visitors Bureau and Seattle Visitor and Convention Bureau with enhanced web content and advertising. 

Kent - $65,000

Execute a multi-level program to support and expand Kent’s food entrepreneur business community, working with the Food Innovation Network and Green River Community College’s Small Business Development Center. The program will provide below market rate commercial kitchen incubator space and business training for food entrepreneurs.   Launch social enterprise café featuring international foods and hold 8-10 downtown pop-up dining events featuring diverse cuisines.

Maple Valley - $24,700

Maple Valley has completed prior studies related to economic development.  The Port grant will enable the City to hire a consultant to review prior work and develop recommendations which outlines and proposes roles, responsibilities and implementation strategies for economic development as associated with the City’s 2017/2018 budget. The recommendations will direct the City toward a clearly defined future vision. 

Mercer Island - $23,480 

The City will develop and design wayfinding signs to direct visitors using the regional bike trail to the town center which supports local business growth. 

Milton - $5,000

The City of Milton acquired a piece of the Twin Towers and is pursuing installation of a 9/11 Memorial as a downtown enhancement and tourist attraction.  The Port funds will be used to mount the installation and design an interpretive exhibit.  

Newcastle - $10,940 

Port funds will be used to support development of a new downtown plan, along with revised development regulations and capital improvements program for transportation and amenity improvements in the Downtown that address streets, public spaces, parking, and public facilities.  Included will be a new concept plan and vision for Coal Creek Parkway as well as additional motorized and non-motorized connectivity to support the development of a pedestrian-oriented downtown with effective linkages to the other sectors in the CBC and surrounding residential neighborhoods. The planning process will also include an audit and a comprehensive revision of the Downtown zoning regulations and design guidelines.

Renton - $65,000

Port funds will be used to support part of the community’s overall branding and marketing campaign which includes, implementation of a new website with a searchable land and building inventory, GIS integration, economic data, and demographic profiles to promote commercial and industrial sites in Renton. Port funds will also be used to develop collateral materials through production of photography, video, print, audio and other digital media highlighting Renton’s business and industry, as well as promote downtown branding, including street banners, website upgrade and  utility cabinet wraps. 

Sammamish - $49,980

Port funds will be used as part of the City’s Economic Development Scoping Analysis and includes updating demographic and economic data, developing a factsheet for marketing, update City’s website to focus on business needs and developing recommendations and strategies to attract and retain businesses. 

SeaTac - $27,650

Design and redevelop the City’s website to provide improved economic, demographic, zoning, comprehensive plan and utility information which supports business expansion and attraction. 

Tukwila - $19,300 

Port funds will be used in combination with City funds and staff time to implement a business attraction, recruitment and retention program which includes, acquiring updated demographic and economic data, developing collateral materials, and updating the City’s website.  

Woodinville - $11,240 

Support growth and expansion of the wine industry by using surveys and focus groups to  identify specific interventions which could be made to bolster the wine industry and related visitor experiences.  Identify and develop case studies of other areas that have successfully developed the wine and tourism sectors as examples for Woodinville.

The following three cities received the second set of awards in September:

Bellevue - $65,000

Establish partnerships with eastside cities to enhance Startup 425, a business support center
Provide export and marketing training to technology companies in preparation of attending Mobile World Congress
Undertake an event to recruit international technology companies identified at Select USA
Collaborate with eastside cities in marketing the Innovation Triangle


Shoreline - $54,500

Develop a Request for Expression of Interest (RFEI) Prospectus to attract public and private investment for a Shoreline Media Campus.  The Media Campus is intended for local production of movies, episodic television, commercials and gaming content and provide a flexible platform for new technology production to thrive such as VR/AR.  The RFEI will provide information on market demand, design and financial models to present this opportunity to potential investors and developers.

Snoqualmie - $12,850

Collaborate with other Snoqualmie Valley cities on the Savor Snoqualmie branding and marketing campaign.

The City of Snoqualmie will create a poster series promoting outdoor recreation, culinary experiences, cultural heritage and local art; develop and install wayfinding signage connecting the city to the Snoqualmie Trail and develop a calendar of events which will assist online visitors to develop local itineraries.

The following nine cities received the first set of awards in September:


Auburn  - $65,000

 Develop a business to business supply chain database to promote local business

 Support microbusinesses and Auburn incubator tenants


Des Moines - $30,100

Complete a pre-design feasibility study for a multi-use facility at the downtown Marina location.

Complete a market demand assessment of the Marina and downtown as “destination locations” to accommodate future growth.

 Complete a parking study assessment for downtown and Marina redevelopment.


Duvall - $7,345

  •  Update City Economic Development Vision and Plan
  • Support “Savor Snoqualmie”, a new regional tourism promotion group supported by each Snoqualmie city.
  •   Continued branding and marketing efforts
Issaquah - $33,330
  •  Provide six workshops through the Chamber of Commerce for business training
  • Create a video for business recruitment and community marketing to support existing print materials.
Kenmore - $21,500
  •  Provide training and technical support to companies involved with the City’s business incubator
  •   Promote the City’s image for business development and tourism
  •    Build on local assets like Bastyr University, Kenmore Air, Edward State Park, Lakepointe and Kenmore’s emerging brewery district
Kirkland - $65,000
  • Partner with Bellevue and Redmond to promote ICT cluster growth
  • Participate in tradeshow events to attract technology companies
  • Provide business assistance to startup companies
  • Prepare an engineering study to increase transient moorage at Kirkland Marina
Normandy Park - $6,420
  •  Provide training through SBDC at Highline Community College to address small business needs 
North Bend - $6,460
  •   Develop a series of videos to promote outdoor recreation and tourism related businesses
Redmond - $59,180   
  • Develop a marketing and media package that includes video, business cluster fact sheets, print and digital brochures.
  •  Participate in business recruitment events including D.I.C.E (Design, Innovate, Communicate, Entertain) and the Space Foundation Symposium.​ 



Port of Seattle staff held workshops for cities in King County to share information about the Port's new Economic Development Partnership Program developed to support local community economic development activities. More than $962,000 is available as matching funds to the 38 cities of King County. Depending upon its population, each city would receive from $5,000 and $65,000. The funds will be used to support small businesses in growth, job creation, expansion, retention and recruitment.
In the pictures below, taken on July 6 at a workshop at Kent City Hall, the Port's Economic Development Coordinator Susan Chamberlain, Procurement Administrator Patty Etzkorn and Director of Tourism and Development Ron Peck met with cities staff members from Auburn, Tukwilia, Redmond, Kent and Federal Way. Staff answered questions about the program guidlelines, application and contract specifications and budgeting.
Staff conduct an Economic Development Partnership Program workshop


Staff conduct an Economic Development Partnership Program workshop

Economic Development Partnership Program participants

Economic Development Partnership Program workshop participant

Des Moines Creek Business Park

The Port owns land around Sea-Tac Airport that is being redeveloped to support our airport communities and the region. The Des Moines Creek Business Park has seen high demand among businesses to locate there. In June 2016 the Port participated in a groundbreaking celebration for the new FAA Regional Headquarters that will be built there, bringing 1,600 employees. Greencore Group, a leading international manufacturer of convenience foods, is building a new facility at the Business Park for 400 employees. In total, the City of Des Moines will see more than 6,000 new jobs come to their city from the Business Park, diversifying the economic base.

Des Moines Creek Business Park aerial
Des Moines Business Park rendering


Click the images to enlarge

Economic impact report

The most recent economic impact report commissioned by the Port of Seattle, based on business activity data collected in 2013-2014, showed that greater than 216,000 jobs were generated by Port activity, including over 129,000 direct jobs. These jobs generated $4.2 billion of direct wages and salaries. In addition, businesses providing services at the Port-owned properties received $19.8 billion of revenue and generated $894 million of state and local taxes.​​​



Economic Development Partnership Programmo

Learn how the Port of Seattle is working with other maritime businesses to encourage K-12 Career Tech programs in schools here​.


Economic Impact Report