The City of Tacoma has extended its request for interest proposal deadline to March 31 for businesses interested in partnering in a social enterprise at a 1,500-square-foot commercial space.

The Neighborhood and Community Services Department received approval from the Tacoma City Council earlier this year to purchase the property at 5401 S. Tacoma Way, with the intention to convert the location into a youth center and to lease the building’s storefront to a business.

“We’re really looking for the ideal business, one that is committed to improving people’s lives as a part of a social enterprise partnership,” said Assistant to the City Manager Nadia Chandler Hardy, who also oversees the Neighborhood and Community Services Department. “This business would get the motivated staff they need to grow and thrive, while youth, ages 16 to 24, who have struggled with experiencing homelessness and not having access to the most basic of needs, would get the chance to receive professional training and experience.”

A portion of the property has already been converted into a Youth and Young Adult Drop-in Center and Emergency Young Adult Overnight Shelter, projected to open in early 2018. The available commercial space – ideally configured for a bakery, restaurant or retail business – would face the street.

The detailed RFI is available on the City’s website. Proposals can be submitted through 5 p.m. on March 31 to the Community and Economic Development Department in the Tacoma Municipal Building, 747 Market St., Room 900.