'This is the biggest redevelopment we’ve ever done,' says Bellingham mayor

People in Bellingham now have access to something they haven’t explored in more than 100 years: The downtown waterfront.

The former Georgia-Pacific site is finally being unveiled as a new place to play and, work, and live.

The port and city had to redevelop nearly 300 acres, much of it contaminated, so it’s been a lot of work, but the hope is that this will help transform not only the waterfront, but the downtown as well.

“This is the biggest redevelopment we’ve ever done,” said Bellingham Mayor Kelli Linville. “It has the potential to be the focus of downtown.”

“It’s going to be great,” said Barbara, a local who has lived in Bellingham for decades. “It’s going to be awesome to have all this access to go down there.”

It had been a waste site left by the pulp and paper plant that did business there for decades.

It cost more than 6 million dollars over the last several years to demolish old buildings and clean the site.

“It was all industrial, and it had every single process that went into processing wood chips into pulp,” said Gina Austin with Bellingham Parks.

The plan now is to bring in new business, including inside the historic granary building, and continue to open up more of the waterfront to the public, with more beaches, walking and cycling trails.