The February issue of National Geographic magazine features a one-page article about the vertical evacuation structure that will soon be a part of the Ocosta Elementary School in Westport. The structure will be the first of its kind in the United States.
Voters in the area approved a local bond measure in April to construct a new building that will include a “tsunami life-safety refuge.”
The vote was a successful move forward for Project Safe Haven, a partnership between the Washington Emergency Management Division, the University of Washington and other agencies.
Since 2001, Project Safe Haven has been helping coastal communities develop tsunami vertical evacuation plans.
Construction on the structure is expected to start next summer, according to Ocosta School District Superintendent Paula Akerlund.