Pierce Prairie Post

Midland, Parkland, Summit, Spanaway, Frederickson, Elk Plain, Lacamas, Roy, McKenna


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Section of 72nd Street East closed March 28-29 for vault installation

72nd Street East between Canyon Road East and 66th Avenue East will be closed from 7 a.m. Saturday, March 28 to 7 p.m. Sunday, March 29 while crews install pipes under the road for a new stormwater filter vault. The vault will remove contaminants from stormwater runoff before it enters Rody Creek.

The closure will not impact local residents getting to and from their homes. Drivers will be detoured onto Canyon Road East and Pioneer Way East during the closure.

Lane restrictions that began March 9 on this half-mile section of 72nd Street East will continue after the closure until April 15. The roadway will be reduced from four lanes to two between 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays. Three lanes will be open during non-work hours. Motorists should expect minor delays.

Stormwater is rain that runs off of hard surfaces such as roads into a system of pipes, ditches and ponds. Along the way, stormwater picks up pollution from vehicle leaks, animal waste, fertilizers and other toxic chemicals. Most stormwater eventually flows into local streams, lakes, rivers and Puget Sound.

The total project construction cost is approximately $425,000, with the Washington State Department of Ecology funding $318,715 of the effort. The rest – $106,250 – is funded by Pierce County surface water management fees. Hoffman Construction Inc. is the contractor.


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Annual county roadside herbicide applications start March 30

Pierce County roadsides will get their annual makeover this spring and summer.

An initial application of herbicides to combat weeds along road shoulders will start March 30, and continue through June. Targeted noxious weeds and brush control applications will occur through the end of November as needed. Only federal- and state-approved herbicides are used.

Workers will also mow, cut brush and trim trees along roads during the spring and summer. The work, which will be carried out weather permitting, is part of Pierce County’s integrated roadside vegetation management program.

“Properly maintained roadsides are important for the safety of motorists and pedestrians,” said Bruce Wagner, Pierce County Public Works road operations manager.

The annual maintenance also reduces fire danger, optimizes storm water drainage, helps control noxious weeds and non-native plants, and promotes native plant growth.

Renew “Owner Will Maintain” agreements

Property owners who do not want roadsides adjacent to their properties sprayed can sign an “Owner Will Maintain” agreement with Pierce County. Under this agreement, the property owner agrees to maintain the vegetation. If the property owner fails to perform as required, the maintenance of the right-of-way reverts to the county.

The agreement must be renewed each March. The owner must display a sign indicating their participation in the program prior to the application of herbicides.

Agreement applications and signs are available at the Central Maintenance Facility, 4812 196th St. E. in Spanaway, and by appointment at the West County Maintenance Facility, 13209 Goodnough Drive in Gig Harbor. Please call (253) 798-6000 for an appointment

More information can be found at www.piercecountywa.org/ownermaintain or by calling (253) 798-6000.


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Frederickson Meeting on transportation Mar 21

This is your friendly reminder about Saturday’s meeting. Bring your Frederickson transportation questions for the guest speaker. Hope to see you at 9 AM, @ Christ Christian Baptist Church, 8016 176th St. E.

The Guest Speaker for our March 21st meeting will be Letticia Neal, the Section Manager of Pierce County’s Transportation Improvement Department. She will speak about the intersection at Canyon Rd and 200th St. We have specifically asked about if any improvements will be made prior to the estimated 130 log trucks per day that are anticipated when the Sierra Pacific mill opens.

She will also let us know about any future plans to extend Canyon Rd. to the South. I have asked her to speak about the timetable for the construction of the missing section of 184th St. between 82nd & 86th Ave. That section is currently “out to bids”.

In addition, many of us see an abundance of survey stakes on 78th Ave at and around the 184th St. intersection. She will answer questions about these and any other transportation related items as time permits. We hope to see you there.


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What are those? Cameras?

PARKLAND, WA — You may have been noticing the construction around 112th Street and Pacific Avenue in DSC_2571Parkland lately. In the course of the changes in the underground utilities and the sidewalk disruption, several cameras appeared at the intersection. First, on the northbound lanes of Pacific; now, facing the eastbound lanes of 112th Street.

Our first email to the Washington State Department of Transportation resulted in a complete denial, but that was when we refered to them as traffic cameras. A phone call netted better results. You cannot call them cameras, you have to call them traffic sensors. They are the same as those big plates that used to be underneath the roadbed sensing cars stacking up for the signal. They also sense the emergency vehicles passing through.

Now the sensors are mounted on the bar with the signal light itself. Apparently it is far more cost effective because they don’t require digging up the roadway to repair and don’t have to be repaired when the roadway is being disrupted.

There are no red light traffic cameras in the unincorporated county, but do watch yourself in Tacoma on Pacific and 72nd.


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Interim traffic signal system to be installed at 94th Avenue East and 144th Street East

Work to install an interim traffic signal system and street lighting at the 94th Avenue East and 144th Street East intersection in South Hill will begin Jan. 20. Currently, the intersection is configured as a four-way stop.

Work is expected to be complete by mid-March. Motorists can expect intermittent delays, as there will be alternating one-way traffic at times. Motorists should use alternate routes when possible.

The interim traffic signal system is being installed to improve traffic flow through the intersection while funding is obtained for a project to widen the roadway between 136th Street East and 147th Street East. The permanent signal system is not expected to be installed until 2022.

RW Scott Construction of Auburn is the contractor. The construction cost is approximately $217,300. The project is funded through Traffic Impact Fees and County Road Funds.

A project webpage is available here.


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Pierce County receives $2.16 million for road safety projects

Pierce County will receive $2.16 million in federal highway safety improvement funds to fund five road safety projects.

Pierce County is among 46 agencies across Washington that will receive more than $48 million in federal highway safety improvement funds, according to a Jan. 8 announcement by the Washington State Department of Transportation.

“These funds will allow us to make important road safety improvements for our motorists and pedestrians,” said Brian Ziegler, Pierce County Public Works and Utilities director.

Project details Pierce County received funding for five projects that will result in safety improvements in multiple locations around the county.

Design on three of the projects is expected to begin in June, followed by environmental permitting. Construction contracts for the projects are expected to be awarded by September 2016, with the work expected to be completed by November 2017. The projects include:

  • The addition of guardrails and guardrail reflectors along sections of the Key Peninsula Highway, Alder Cutoff Road East, and Waller Road East. Pierce County received $485,080 in federal funds, and will contribute $8,820 in county road funds.
  • The addition of guardrails, guardrail reflectors, centerline rumble strips, and safety edges along sections of Rhodes Lake Road East, Orting Kapowsin Highway East, Sumner-Buckley Highway East, Sehmel Drive Northwest, and Mathias Road East. Pierce County received $562,770 in federal funds, and will contribute $10,230 in county road funds.
  • The addition of driver feedback signs that display travel speeds and guardrail reflectors along 218th Avenue East. Pierce County received $138,380 in federal funds, and will contribute $2,520 in county road funds.

For the fourth project, Pierce County will install lighting, ramps that are accessible according to the Americans with Disabilities Act, median refuge islands, and rectangular rapid flashing beacons that indicate a pedestrian is in the crosswalk at the intersection at Military Road South and Bresemann Boulevard South. The project will be funded with $206,100 in federal funds and $22,900 in county road funds.

Design is expected to begin in October, followed by environmental permitting and right-of-way acquisition. A construction contract is expected to be awarded by October 2018, and the work is expected to be completed by November 2019.

For the final project, Pierce County will install a new traffic signal at 38th Avenue East and 152nd Street East. Pierce County received $769,590 in federal funds, and will contribute $85,510 in county road funds.

Design is expected to begin in October, followed by environmental permitting and right-of-way acquisition. A construction contract is expected to be awarded by October 2019, and the work is expected to be complete by November 2020.


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Ribbon cutting for the 176th Street corridor project

Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy, Public Works Director Brian Ziegler and Councilman Jim McCune joined Steve Gorchester, Executive Director of the Transportation Improvement Board (Washington State) for the ceremony. 176th residents Shirley and Abe Adams helped cut the ribbon. The Adams live near B Street on 176th. They had an accident coming out of their driveway and Shirley had to be brought back to life a few  years ago. They are celebrating the new improvements.

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