Seattle’s Most Influential People 2018: Office of the Waterfront Director, Marshall Foster

Marshall Foster is leading the charge on the waterfront project
Marshall Foster, photographed on Seattle’s waterfront

This article appears in print in the November 2018 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe.

Since 1953, when the Alaskan Way viaduct opened to traffic, Seattle has been separated from its downtown waterfront. As head of the city’s Office of the Waterfront since 2014, Marshall Foster has made it his mission to undo that 65-year-old error. When it’s finished, the waterfront project will include a new tunnel bypassing downtown Seattle, a reconnected street grid, a replacement for the crumbling seawall and a new promenade to Pike Place Market. And Foster, an implacable leader who has spent the past decade steering the project through controversies and building bridges between sometimes warring stakeholders, will deserve much of the credit.


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