Lakewood has great infrastructure, highway access, simple permitting, available industrial properties, and development incentives. Lakewood is also a wholesome place to live with great schools and vibrant culture. Lakewood is a great place for big businesses, small businesses, and workers.
Economic Development Manager
6000 Main St. SW, 3rd Floor
Lakewood, WA 98499
To email Becky Newton add her email handle before @cityoflakewood.us
Phones & Email:
Monday to Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Permit and Service Counter
Monday to Friday: 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The September, 2023 edition of the Lakewood Economic Development editorial column is now available and can be found using the link below:
The Community & Economic Development (CED) Department creates a yearly fact sheet for people to use as a quick reference guide to Lakewood. The fact sheet includes general demographic, economic, and community resource data.
The Q2 2023 BR&E Quarterly Update is now available. The BR&E report includes feedback from businesses in Lakewood.
The June, 2023 edition of the Lakewood Economic Development editorial column is now available and can be found using the link below:
The Economic Development Brochure is a snapshot of business in Lakewood. The brochure includes a jobs report, economic demographics, and recent business activity.
The Lakewood Permit Report is now updated for Q2 2023. The permit report includes all major permit activity, new constructions, and proposed projects for Q2 2023.
The Economic Indicators report is a general view of the economic conditions in Lakewood. The report includes general business, employment, tax, housing, and community data.
The Annual BR&E report for 2022 is now available. The annual BR&E report includes feedback from over 100 businesses who participated in the 2022 program.
The Annual Lakewood Permit Report is now updated for 2022. The annual permit report includes all major permit activity, new constructions, and proposed projects for 2022.
On October 13th 2022, Lakewood Economic Development Manager, Becky Newton, shared Lakewood’s 2021-2022 Community and Economic Development Report with the Lakewood Chamber of Commerce. The presentation materials have been added to the Economic Reports section of this page.
The Community & Economic Development (CED) Department report examines our work in relation to the City Council’s adopted goals, objectives, and strategies over a 2 ½ year period from 2020 through July 2022.
The Economic Development Strategy Plan Draft is designed to promote and support a robust local economy. City Council goals for 2021-2024 include an adaptive and growing economy, a diversified and resilient economy, and an economy that supports local businesses and residents.
Our Business Retention and Expansion (BRE) program is designed to:
- Retain or keep existing businesses in the community; and
- Provide assistance for existing businesses to expand.
BRE is applicable to all businesses in the community, from small mom-and-pop shops to large national employers and all industries, particularly trade-based or primary companies that bring in new dollars to the city, county, and state.
BRE and business attraction go hand in hand when developing a community. The City of Lakewood has three retail trade areas:
- Lakewood Towne Center
- International District
- Pacific Highway Transit-Oriented Commercial area on Pacific Highway adjacent to I-5.
Lakewood has a large industrial park and additional industrial lands available for development. Opportunities are abundant and many properties are ripe for redevelopment.
Lakewood has a wide range of affordable to high-end residential offerings. The City is focused on increasing the variety of living spaces such as live-work units, mixed residential, garden style living communities, and middle market homes.
View the Economic Vitality Strategy for information on our target areas for development.
The comprehensive plan is a high-level overview of the general planning direction of a government body. Comprehensive plans communicate the goals, objectives, policies, actions, and standards that guide the day-to-day operations of City staff. The comprehensive plan for a city also includes a summary of Land Use, Zoning, Capital Facilities, Transportation Networks, Utilities, Economic Development strategies, Climate Change policies and more.
Cities are constantly looking toward the future to make decisions that will suit future development. Comprehensive plans are updated every ten years. Lakewood will update its comprehensive plan in 2024.
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges we face as a community today. The effects of climate change are not always obvious to us, as changes often occur over many years. In order to minimize the effects of climate change on our daily lives we must reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce the adverse effects of climate change, and ensure that we share the burdens, costs, and benefits equitably with a concentration on environmental justice.
The lakes, trees and green spaces in Lakewood are great natural resources. In order to continue to enjoy the beauty of Lakewood now and into the future, we must take care to protect and maintain these resources. Mitigating the effects of climate change come in many shapes and sizes. The City focuses on three main areas: trees & green spaces, renewable energy, and transportation.
Trees are one of Lakewood’s most valuable resources. As the city strives to become more resilient and sustainable, the conservation of trees is paramount to success. Trees are sources of great natural beauty and contribute many practical benefits to healthy cities.
The City of Lakewood is working hard to revise tree codes and preserve urban tree canopy. Read the article below to find out more about trees in Lakewood, tree code, the tree advisory committee, and the Urban Forestry Program.
Workforce Development is a pressing issue for businesses in Lakewood, especially now that we are in recovery from the Covid-19 emergency. During the pandemic, job postings in the region were at an extreme low while the amount of workers looking for jobs increased dramatically. This imbalance caused hardship for many workers, families, and businesses, as many people were unemployed during this period.
While the labor market has rebounded for the most part, businesses in the region have been coming to grips with a still-changing landscape. In this article you will find information about unemployment and job growth by industry, housing and work-from-home, workforce education and training opportunities; and hiring and retention practices and strategies that are working for local businesses.
- Economic Development means different things to different people. Generally, it is the creation of wealth – from which community benefits are realized. Strategic planning, real estate development and reuse, and technology led economic development initiatives are critical pieces of the puzzle when fostering and creating a healthy economy.
- The work is focused in three main areas:
- 1) Business Retention and Expansion (BRE);
- 2) Business Recruitment; and
- 3) Making the city Attractive for new Businesses.
- Please visit our Business Resources page for information on starting a business, business licensing, and for resources available to businesses in Lakewood.
- If you have questions or unique needs for your business, please contact our Economic Development team at (253) 983-7738.
- Businesses must obtain a state business license to operate a business in Washington. They must obtain a City of Lakewood business license to operate a business in Lakewood. Please use the Washington State Department of Revenue Business Licensing Service online portal.
- Visit the Business Resources page for more information on starting a business in Lakewood.
- Long-term vacant properties can happen for several reasons:
- 1) Contamination on the site
- 2) Legal issues complicating a sale or redevelopment effort
- 3) Owner is holding out for a price well above market value
- 4) Ground characteristics making site development problematic
- 5) Building code issues that are cost prohibitive to come into compliance