Center for Urban Waters

Urban Waters logoAbout the Center

Research conducted by University of Washington Tacoma scientists at the Center for Urban Waters seeks to understand and quantify the sources, pathways and impacts of chemical pollutants in urban waterways. Highly sensitive analytical tools to measure contaminant levels are combined with sophisticated computer models to track pollutant sources and transport in the Puget Sound region. UW students work side-by-side with Urban Waters colleagues, contributing to research teams while gaining valuable training and experience.

The research is led by Professor Joel Baker, Port of Tacoma Chair in Environmental Science at UW Tacoma and Science Director for the Center for Urban Waters. The Port of Tacoma Chair was established in 2005 and funded through endowments from the Port of Tacoma, the City of Tacoma, SSA Marine and matching funds from the university.

About the Facility

The Center for Urban Waters is a research center, a collaboration, and a facility. It is a community of environmental scientists, analysts, engineers and policymakers developing creative and sustainable solutions to restore and protect urban waterways. The unique intellectual environment brings together organizations with complementary missions and individuals with diverse skills to develop innovative approaches to environmental restoration as well as protection and sustainable urban development.

Research at the Center for Urban Waters is led by the University of Washington Tacoma. The LEED Platinum facility was developed by the City of Tacoma. City staff in the building work on critical environmental services to the citizens of the community. The collaboration also includes the Puget Sound Partnership, a state agency coordinating efforts to restore and protect Puget Sound.