City of Tacoma Department of Public Utilities

  • Overview

City of Tacoma Department of Public Utilities (Tacoma Public Utilities) is fated to fulfill the electric and water desires of the City of Destiny's dwellers. The municipal utility's Tacoma Power unit generates, transmits, and distributes electricity to 169,000 homes and businesses in Tacoma, Washington. Tacoma Water serves more than 95,700 customers; the division's water supply comes from wells and the Green River Watershed. Tacoma Public Utilities also oversees Tacoma Rail, a freight-switching railroad with 75 customers and more than 200 miles of track, and the Click! Network, a high-speed data network that serves 23,790 cable TV customers via 1,460 miles of fiber-optic and coaxial cable.


Tacoma Power has more than 2,330 miles of transmission and distribution lines; Tacoma Water stores 68 million gallons of water in the McMillin Reservoir and 73 million gallons in 18 other reservoirs and standpipes; Tacoma Rail operates 14 diesel locomotives.

About 64% of Tacoma Water's customers are inside the city limits of Tacoma; some 55% of Tacoma Power's customers are located inside the city limits of Tacoma.


Tacoma Public Utilities operates entirely from revenues generated from the sale of its utility and rail services, not from taxes. To adjust to declining revenues, the divisions cut operating and maintenance costs, postpone some capital projects, and cut jobs through attrition and adjusted rates.

In 2011, Tacoma Rail, with the help of a $2.5 million grant from the EPA and Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, purchased three eco-friendly locomotives for $4.3 million.


Tacoma Public Utilities is government-owned.

Company Background

Established in 1892, Tacoma Public Utilities is the largest department of the City of Tacoma, and is governed by the five-member Public Utilities Board.

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City of Tacoma Department of Public Utilities

3628 S. 35th St.
Tacoma, WA 98409
Phone: (253) 502-8000
Fax: (253) 502-8380


  • Employer Type: Government Owned
  • Director Finance: Robert Biles
  • Superintendent and COO, Tacoma Power: Ted Coates
  • Director Information Technology: Michelle Lewis-Hodges

Major Office Locations

  • Tacoma, WA