Bellingham History And Changes Over The Years
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Bellingham Washington's Business Scene Continues To Change

Bellingham Washington has evolved over the years from a sleepy timber and fishing town into a modern university town and tourist destination. Bellingham's proximity to the U.S. / Canadian border also means local businesses are effected by the ever changing exchange rate that can either attract or repel Canadian shoppers by the tens of thousands.

Many businesses have come and gone over just a few short years but Bellingham is a thriving community so when one business goes there always seems to be another to take it's place. Here are a few of the most recent and "soon to be" and notable changes.

 
 
Bellingham Has Taken Possession Of The Former Georgia Pacific Paper Pulp Mill Located On Bellingham's Waterfront

The Canadians Are Coming

The the ever changing business scene in Bellingham appears to be back on an upswing with the recent parity of the U.S. and Canadian Dollar. Enjoy it while it lasts.  Below is a  list of some businesses we have said goodbye to in recent years and the new businesses that replaced them.
Crowds Of Bargain Shopping Canadians Come To Bellingham Every Week To Shop For Milk And Other Food Products In Bellingham Area Stores
Bellingham Washington's Business Scene Continues To Change And Evolve
Then       Now
Home Base Home Improvement & G.I. Joes Sporting Goods Located Behind Home Depot across from Bellis Fair mall have been closed for some time.   WinCo Supermarket (Now Under Renovation) This employee owned location will be one of their newest and largest superstores. Once open it is sure to shake up the local supermarket scene with their massively low prices.
Circuit City Electronics -   Dwaard & Body Home Appliances (A great place for a new fridge)
Linens And Things - Next To Ross Dress For Less- Closed   Marshalls - A very cheerful and modern store definitely worth a look yet crowds of Canadian shoppers seem to mob the Ross instead.
Sears Roebuck At Bellis Fair Mall (It was a dinky store compared to Sears' flagship palaces in larger cities.   Soon to be a Sports Authority Sporting Goods Superstore - Perhaps they can succeed where G.I. Joes Sporting Goods Failed?
Toys R Us Toy Warehouse Behind Ross (Walmart & the internet undercut them)   Value Village Discount/Resale Shop - Its so big! Maybe too big?
Kowloon  Chinese Restaurant (Good food but expensive) Now Gone   Wonderful Buffet Chinese All-You-Can-Eat / Bellingham's Most Popular Asian Buffet. The food is good but the crowds and parking can be a challenge. This is one of those places that, like the saying goes. "Is so popular that nobody goes there anymore"... at least not locals but there are plenty of Canadian visitors happy to take their place.
King's Table Family Buffet Restaurant where kids under 5 eat free! Yum!
On Ellis next to Grocery Outlet
  Ye Old King's Buffet is now an abortion clinic. Those hungry Kids under 5 accustomed to eating free might want to go to McDonald's or elsewhere for the time being.
The Old Wilson Motors Toyota & Mercedes dealership moved to Iowa street to their new building.   Now the old Wilson Motors is a consignment/auction house
The old ugly junk yard at Iowa and I-5 was refurbished   Now a stunning new Wilson Motors Mercedes / Toyota / Scion dealership. "Oh What A Feeling" and "Wow.. What A Transformation"
Apple Market Grocery Store on James Street - Gone   Now a much loved Trader Joes Market.  Trader Joes doesn't normally open an outlet in a town the size of Bellingham however their Everett store got so many requests from ex-Californians that would drive all the way to Everett that they decided to open one and just try to find a parking space. It has been a huge success.
Pizza Hut closed to become the Lychee Buffet which lasted only a few years. It was the best Asian Buffet in town. Perhaps it was too good?   Now a Woods Coffee.... Who would have thought Bellingham needed another drive through coffee house? Woods is excellent, although in Bellingham, all Coffee stands are excellent aren't they?
Cost Cutter Lakeway - Transformed By New Owners   Now "The Market" supermarket. Wow, what a beautiful store but where are the customers? Locals just love their Fred Meyers and won't give it up without a good reason?
The Lakeway Shopping center where the Market is located underwent a major face life.   Suddenly a strip mall is re-branded as an urban village. Funny how a brick facade can do so much. The Center is beautiful but it seems the frozen yogurt shop brings in the most customers.
Al's Honda Motorcycles and Scooters, Generators, Lawn equiptment etc closed - Sorry to see it go.   Soon to be the newest Labels consignment store.
Izzy's Pizza Buffet And Salad Bar has been transformed into an Adult Oriented Store   Now a Lovers Package selling romantic items, novelties, and unique strap-on thingy products.
The Kentucky Fried Chicken Outlet at the south end of Guide Meridian has clucked it's last chicken   Now is it yet another popular drive through espresso/coffee stand
The former "Burger Me" restaurant on Lakeway which was once a Wendy's Hamburgers has undergone yet another transformation.   The tiny Whatcom Water & Sewer district which originally wanted to build a palatial multi-million dollar new headquarters has had to settle for a remolded burger joint. It has actually worked out well--they did a fine job on the remodel and should be commended.
The Good Guys electronics has been out of business for 8 years-- how time flies.   Now with the new WinCo employee owned superstore opening soon it is only a matter of time we see new businesses taking over the old Good Guys building. How about yet another Woods Coffee? They seem to be opening up everywhere these days.

Bellingham's Waterfront Offers Sweeping Views Of Bellingham Bay And The San Juan Islands

Bellingham-Georgia-Pacific-WaterfrontBellingham's Waterfront Then & Now

Perhaps the biggest Then & Now undertaking in Bellingham is the 137 acre site along Downtown Bellingham's Waterfront now vacated by the Georgia Pacific pulp mill and toilet paper plant. 

The company sold the land worth approximately $37 Million Dollars for ten bucks in exchange for a release from having to clean up the contamination on the site deposited over years of use as an industrial site. Georgia Pacific produces many well known tissue products sold under brand names such as Quilted Northern, Soft n' Gentle, and Angel Soft Toilet Tissue. Other products include Brawny, Dixie, and Vanity Fair. 

Now what to do with the property? Bellingham has the potential to become a popular Cruise ship port destination.  Do We Develop A Maritime Shopping Village? Orca Aquarium? Waterfront Children's Graffiti Art Museum? The Possibilities Are Endless

The Bellingham Port Authority would like to build a much needed marina or does it use the land as a park or for some other use? The city has the potential to create something truly awesome or completely lame. In a town that seems to say no to everything it will be interesting to find out what it finally says yes to. 

If you want to really dream about what Bellingham's waterfront has the potential to be.

Take a moment and look at this ---- Bellingham's New Waterfront?

Bellingham Has A Unique Opportunity To Make A Grand New Waterfront

Bellingham Washington History Comes Alive At Bellingham Area MuseumsWhatcom County Farms
Bellingham Washington and surrounding communities are amongst the top producers of Dairy products, Poultry & Eggs, Raspberries, Blueberries, Strawberries, Potatoes, Cattle and Other Agricultural Products in the State of Washington.  In a recent survey there were over 1,400 farms in production in Whatcom County.

In addition there are numerous Greenhouse & Nursery growers providing other plant products for local markets.
Fun Things To Do In Bellingham Washington 
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