Ships on the Duwamish river

Duwamish Waterway

For more than a decade, Boeing has demonstrated its commitment to the health of the Lower Duwamish Waterway and surrounding communities.

Timely and Effective Solutions

For more than a decade, Boeing has demonstrated its commitment to the health of the Lower Duwamish Waterway and surrounding communities in Seattle, Wash., by investing in cleanup activities and habitat restoration. Boeing partners with businesses, tribes, the local community and government agencies, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Washington Department of Ecology, to implement protective, timely and cost-effective cleanup solutions.

For more information, view the Plant 2 Habitat Restoration and Sediment Cleanup Backgrounder.


Plant 2 Images: The Past and Today

History of Boeing Plant 2

Boeing can trace its nearly 100-year history back to the banks of the Lower Duwamish Waterway. In addition to supplying the U.S. military with nearly 7,000 B-17 bombers throughout World War II, Boeing Plant 2 provided thousands of Washington men and women with manufacturing and industrial jobs.

In December 2011, the aging 1.7 million square foot facility was demolished to clear the way for Boeing’s cleanup and habitat restoration efforts along the Lower Duwamish Waterway. Over 85 percent of the building materials were recycled or reused.

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Historic image of 5,000th B-17 Bomber in a crowd of people. The 5,000th B-17 bomber built after Pearl Harbor carried the signatures of all the builders, riveters and designers who worked on it at Boeing Plant 2.

Making Progress with Early Cleanup

Boeing completed a comprehensive cleanup of the 1-mile span of the Duwamish Waterway near the former Plant 2 site. This dredging effort involved removing enough sediment and bank soil to fill 4,000 railcars and replacing it with clean sand to restore the waterway. Boeing received an Environmental Excellence award from the World Organization of Dredging Associations in recognition of its multi-faceted environmental restoration.

This cleanup was one of the "early action" projects which — combined with other early action work managed by the Port of Seattle, City of Seattle and King County — reduced Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations in the waterway sediment by half.

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Restoring Habitat for Fish and Wildlife

 2016 Enviro Report Plant 2 Duwamish Shoreline Restoration 2016 Enviro Report Plant 2 Duwamish Shoreline Restoration

Amid barges stacked high with containers set for Alaska and heaps of old appliances waiting to be recycled, there is now natural, undeveloped shoreline along this working waterway. Boeing completed the largest habitat restoration in the Lower Duwamish Waterway, transforming nearly one mile of former industrial waterfront adjacent to the former Plant 2 site into a wetland resource that improves Puget Sound salmon runs.

From tufted hairgrass and bulrush to willows and big leaf maple, more than 170,000 native plants now occupy five acres along the water’s edge. These wetland plants and grasses, along with piles of woody debris that are anchored in place along the shoreline, provide refuge and food sources for fish and wildlife. A protection system built out of ropes and lightweight steel rods is currently in place to prevent geese from uprooting the young plants.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recognized Boeing with its annual Excellence in Restoration award in 2015. This award honors leaders in coastal restoration who are focused on ecological value and the importance of effective collaboration with project partners.

The Natural Resource Trustees, a group that is made up of federal agencies, state agencies and local tribes, oversaw the project’s design. Boeing also worked with the U.S. EPA and the Washington State Department of Ecology to coordinate its waterway cleanup in conjunction with habitat restoration.