To: Mayor, City Council
From: John J. Caulfield, City Manager
Train Testing on Point Defiance Bypass Route to occur Jan. 16-17
On January 16-17, Sound Transit in partnership with WSDOT and Amtrak, will run trains on the Point Defiance Bypass for railroad signal testing. Trains will run from Tacoma Dome station to the Nisqually Junction. Testing will take place from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days with trains running at speeds up to 79 mph.
Travelers may experience traffic delays at railroad signal crossings and the public is asked to use extreme caution near the railroad right-of-way.
To ensure public safety, local police officers will control each at-grade railroad signal intersection during the two-day testing period.
Potential traffic delays could occur at the following at-grade signal crossings:
- South 66th Street
- South 74th Street
- Steilacoom Boulevard Southwest
- 100th Street Southwest
- 108th Street Southwest
- Bridgeport Way Southwest
- Clover Creek Drive Southwest
- 41st Division Drive
- DuPont – Steilacoom Road
This testing is in advance of the eventual resumption of Amtrak Cascades service to the Point Defiance Bypass later this year
Sound Transit Contact Information:
Public Information Officer
(206) 903-7838 or [email protected]
Jan. 18 proclaimed Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Day of Service and February Black History Month
At the first Lakewood City Council meeting of 2021, on Monday, January 4, 2021, the Lakewood City Council virtually honored Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Civil Rights leader who dedicated his life to freedom, opportunity, and equal justice for all, by proclaiming January 18, 2021 as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service.
Dr. King is widely regarded as America’s leading advocate of nonviolence and one of the greatest nonviolent leaders in world history. Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, Nobel Peace Prize lecture and “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” are among the most revered orations and writings in the English language.
The latter writing by Dr. King serves as the seminal focus of the City of Lakewood’s 18th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration which has a theme of “Injustice anywhere is a threat the justice everywhere.”
In “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” Dr. King wrote:
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
To read the “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” in its entirety visit here.
Dr. King’s accomplishments are now taught to American children of all races, and his teachings are studied by scholars and students worldwide. He is memorialized in hundreds of statues, parks, streets, squares, churches and other public facilities around the world as a leader whose teachings are increasingly-relevant to the progress of humankind.
Dr. King is the only non-president to have a national holiday dedicated in his honor, and is the only non-president memorialized on the Great Mall in the nation’s capital.
Importantly, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is recognized as a national day of service where Americans are encouraged to volunteer within their communities making it a “day on” rather than a “day off” to honor Dr. King’s legacy.
The City of Lakewood’s 18th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration will be held virtually on Thursday, January 14th at 6:00 p.m. this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pre-recorded event will include a 30-minute video featuring various community members, performances by local artists, and keynote speaker L. Denice Randle, Executive Director of Peace Community Center.
Kimi Ginn, a member of the MLK Committee which plans the annual celebration, provided the following comments at Lakewood City Council meeting:
“I wanted to let you know that the process of putting this wonderful program together that’s going to be January 14th has been a very collaborative effort… We have a lot of exciting people from the community giving a lot of insight to what it’s like to live with diversity here in Lakewood and I think it’s important to hear from the young to our elders what we mean when we say diversity and inclusivity here in Lakewood…
We’ve had a very, very challenging year with the pandemic and when we look at all of the incidents unfortunately with losing many citizens here in the city of Lakewood to the horrible COVID-19, to some of the incidents we have faced throughout this nation with discrimination and racism.
I’m proud to be a Lakewood citizen and Lakewood community member and I’m very, very, very proud of all hard work and I think as folks view this event on the (January) 14th, I think our community will see that we truly value diversity in Lakewood.”
The proclamation by the Lakewood City Council also designated the month of February 2021 as Black History Month.
The full proclamation can be read here.
The full Lakewood City Council meeting can be viewed here:
Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery Plan to start Jan. 11
This week, Governor Inslee announced a new plan to address the COVID-19 pandemic here in Washington State. The new plan transitions the State from the current “Safe Start Plan” to the “Healthy Washington-Roadmap to Recovery Plan,” which is effective Monday, January 11, 2021. Please see the following links for more information:
In summary, per the new Healthy Washington Plan, Washington will be divided into eight (8) regions based on health system resources. Lakewood is within the Puget Sound Region, which includes Pierce County, Snohomish County, and King County, see the map below. Beginning on Monday, January 11, 2021, all regions will start in Phase 1 of the now 2-Phase plan.
In the future, a region’s phase will be determined by the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) in response to four metrics. The final metrics for regions will be calculated on Fridays and phases changes will be effective the following Monday.
To go forward from Phase 1 to Phase 2, regions must meet all four metrics:
- Decreasing trend in two-week rate of COVID-19 cases per 100K population (decrease >10%)
- Decreasing trend in two-week rate new COVID-19 hospital admission rates per 100K population (decrease >10%)
- ICU occupancy (total — COVID-19 and non-COVID-19) of less than 90%
- COVID-19 test positivity rate of <10%
To remain in Phase 2, regions must meet at least 3 metrics:
- Decreasing or flat trend in two-week rate of COVID-19 cases per 100K population
- Decreasing or flat trend in two-week rate new COVID-19 hospital admission rates per 100K population
- ICU occupancy (total — COVID-19 and non-COVID-19) of less than 90%
- COVID-19 test positivity rate of <10%.
Regions that fail to meet two or more of the above metrics will be moved back to Phase 1.
Notably, some restrictions will be lifted January 11, 2021, including those on live entertainment with tight capacity restrictions of 10, and certain fitness programs. Once in Phase 2, indoor dining and indoor fitness centers will be allowed to operate at 25% capacity. This plan differs from the previous “Safe Start” program in that there are fewer phases, and counties will move forward regionally rather than on a county by county basis. The table below highlights the various activities allowed in Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the Healthy Washington Plan.
Virtual Coffee with the Mayor
Please join Mayor Don Anderson on Tuesday, January 12, 2021 at 7:30 a.m. for Coffee with the Mayor. This meeting will be held virtually via Zoom.
The guest speaker this month will be Tiffany Speir, Long Range/Strategic Planning Manager who will provide an update on the upcoming Lakewood Station District Subarea Plan.
To participate in the meeting by Zoom visit:
Meeting ID: 989 1276 5312
Or Telephone: US: +1 253 215 8782
Meeting ID: 989 1276 5312
Passcode: 471060 If you have any questions regarding accessing this virtual meeting, please contact City Clerk Briana Schumacher at (253) 983-7705 or [email protected].
Lakewood Business Owners – we want to hear from you!
Tell us what you think and receive an entry to win a $50 VISA gift card!
The Lakewood Annual Business Survey is now open through January 15th. Take the survey here.
The purpose of this survey is to gather information from our local businesses about what’s working and what’s not, the challenges you are facing, and how the City might best assist going forward.
EDB holding free webinars on the Second Round of the Paycheck Protection Program
The Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County (EDB) is holding free webinars on the Second Round of the Paycheck Protection Program on January 14, 2021 at 8:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. PD
WEBINAR Date: January 14, 2021
Two sessions: 8:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. PDT
Webinar speaker line-up includes:
- U.S. Representative Derek Kilmer, WA-6th Congressional District
- Linda Womack, Director, Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) – Tacoma Business Center
- Desiree Albrecht, Economic Development Specialist, Small Business Administration (SBA)
- Steve Burke, Business Advisor, Western Washington Regional Manager, Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
- Maria Carbullido, Vice President, Hub Branch Manager, Sound Community Bank
- Ezgi Uçaner-Flor, Chief Credit Officer, Business Impact NW
- Walter McLaughlin, Senior Vice President and SBA Manager, Banner Bank
- Jimmy Ng, Business Banking Relationship Manager, KeyBank
- Maria Stark, Stark Bookkeeping – QuickBooks Pro Specialist, Alii Business Group
- Ivan Golovkin, Project Specialist, Minority Business Development Agency – Tacoma Business Center
Phase 1a of COVID-19 vaccine distribution remains in progress
Currently, Washington state is in Phase 1a of the Washington State Department of Health’s interim COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plan. You can access the full interim plan (10/2020) here.
People currently getting the vaccine now and for the next few weeks include:
- People who work in healthcare settings.
- First responders who treat patients with COVID-19.
- Older adults who live in congregate care settings.
For more information on Phase 1a, click here. Planning is starting for the Phase 1B and 1C groups, which at this point is estimated to include 100,000-200,000 doses.
Learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine from the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department (TPCHD) here.
As we have since the beginning of this pandemic, the City continues to follow guidance from our trusted medical experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Washington State Department of Health (DOH), and the TPCHD.
Check out the DOH’s 60-second video on how the COVID vaccines work:
Below are some links to reliable sources that provide information on the vaccine. The CDC site, in particular, has a range of information, to include detailed scientific data on the safety and efficacy of the current vaccine.
Pierce County opens Covid-19 testing station in Lakewood
Pierce County is currently using the former Department of Licensing emissions testing site in the industrial park off 112th St for drive-thru COVID-19 testing.
For the most up-to-date information on the Pierce County COVID-19 Testing Station, click here.
Location: 3003 107th St S. Lakewood, 98499 Directions
Open: Wednesday – Sunday: 10:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Closed: Mondays and Tuesdays
NOTE: This site will be closed: Dec 31.
Email: [email protected],
Services Available: Covid-19 Testing
These tests are free. Identification is not required. On-site staff can help you register. Results are available in five to seven days.
To make the process go faster, please fill out these forms in advance. Complete both forms on your device. Print and bring the forms with you to the testing site. Complete one form for each person being tested in your group.
Mobile Testing at Fort Steilacoom Park
The Pierce County EOC will also offer Mobile Testing for COVID-19 at Fort Steilacoom Park at the Baseball field parking on Saturday, January 9th from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
For the most up-to-date information on this event, click here.
City soliciting for candidates to fill Lakewood City Council vacancy
There is currently a vacancy on the Lakewood City Council (Position 5). Pursuant to RCW 42.12.070 the Lakewood City Council has 90 days from the time the position became vacant (December 31, 2020) to appoint a qualified candidate to fill the vacant position.
City Council Position 5 is up for election in the 2021 General Election. The person elected for this position will assume office immediately after the 2021 General Election is certified.
The City asks Lakewood residents interested in filling this vacancy on the Lakewood City Council to submit the following:
- A one-page (1) letter of interest confirming their Lakewood residency, identifying why they are interested in serving the community in this capacity, and summarizing their qualifications.
- Candidates should also attach a resume to this letter of interest.
Applicants must ensure these documents are received by the City Clerk no later than 5 p.m. on Wednesday, January 13, 2021.
Documents may be mailed to Lakewood City Hall, Attention: City Clerk 6000 Main Street SW Lakewood, WA 98499 or emailed to Attention: City Clerk at [email protected].
The Lakewood City Council’s goal is to appoint a new councilmember to this anticipated vacancy no later than the March 15, 2021 Lakewood City Council Regular Meeting.
The City of Lakewood is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer that encourages, supports, and celebrates respect, empowerment, diversity, and inclusion for all. We welcome your contributions!
25th Anniversary Art Contest
The City of Lakewood will be turning 25 in 2021!
To celebrate this momentous occasion, the City will be holding a number of special events throughout the year.
We are kicking it off with the City of Lakewood’s 25th Anniversary Art Contest!
The arts have an amazing ability to create a sense of togetherness and to celebrate diversity, belonging, and community. The arts can help decrease stress and reduce loneliness, as well as provide opportunities to reflect and process experiences and feelings, to help imagine our future, and to connect us through our common humanity.
The 25th Anniversary Art Contest has two themes.
Theme #1: Unity – Local artists are asked to create a reflection of their experiences, memories, hopes, and feelings based on the theme of Unity. The theme was developed by Hank Jones of the Lakewood Youth Council.
Theme #2: Love Lakewood – Local artists are asked to create a reflection of what they love about Lakewood. This can be any number of things, including people, places, memories, events, traditions, food, etc.!
Artists can submit one entry per theme.
For more information on the contest including how to enter, age categories, cash prize amounts and raffles, check out: https://cityoflakewood.us/25th-anniversary-art-contest/
We look forward to seeing all of your amazing works of art.
There is no entry fee to participate in this contest.
Contest submission deadline is January 15, 2021
Prizes are sponsored by TwinStar Credit Union
The City is ready to respond to snow & ice
Whenever the first winter storm comes our City’s operations and maintenance crew will be ready for it!
The City’s arsenal of snow plowing equipment includes one ten-yard dump truck with plow and salt spreader, two five-yard dump trucks with plows and salt spreaders, two 1,000-gallon brine tanks for one of the five-yard dump trucks, one 500-gallon brine tanks for the 1-ton flatbed truck, and one 10,000-gallon brine storage tank and five trucks with plows.
The City has designated priority routes for snow and ice events (see maps). Priority Level 1 routes include the City’s main arterials, the “big” streets which are high-capacity, such as Bridgeport Way SW and Steilacoom Boulevard, to name a few. We also focus on necessary access for first responders.
In addition to plowing, the City’s crews also apply anti-icing treatments on roadways to prevent snow and ice from sticking (bonding) to the road in freezing temperatures. The City’s anti-icing treatments is a salt brine, which is a solution of sodium chloride and table salt. This type of brine is the safest and most cost-effective anti-icing product available for our needs in the Western Washington climate.
To see a video of the city’s trucks in action, click here.
Check out WSDOT’s latest blog on keeping roads open during winter here.
Pierce County Superior Court to participate in pilot Eviction Resolution Program
Many landlords and tenants have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently there are both federal and state mandates in place prohibiting evictions based on the nonpayment of rent. Once those mandates end, Pierce County expects a large number of eviction cases to be filed in Superior Court.
To address this anticipated increase in eviction cases, Pierce County Superior Court has established a no cost Eviction Resolution Program (ERP) which will require parties to engage in problem-solving steps before the cases come to court.
The ERP is being offered at no cost. It is funded from federal CARES Act monies.
In Pierce County, Tacoma-Pierce County Housing Justice Project and Pierce County Center for Dialogue and Resolution are providing the staffing for this program.
COVID-19 related resources:
Eviction moratorium extended to March 31, 2021
On December 23, 2020, Governor Jay Inslee announced he will extend the eviction moratorium to March 31, 2021. More information on this extension will be coming shortly from the Governor’s Office.
Pierce County COVID-19 Relief Programs & Resources
For the latest information on Pierce County COVID-19 relief programs and resources, see here.
Care Connect Washington
Care Connect Washington is a program for people who have either tested positive for COVID-19 or been exposed and need support to isolate or quarantine at home. To learn more about Care Connection Washington, click here.
Washington State Department of Commerce – Business & Worker Update
The Business and Workers update is a weekly newsletter providing news and information to help businesses and workers navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. The information is compiled by the state Economic Resiliency Team. To read or subscribe to the newsletter, click here.
The WA Notify app is a simple, anonymous exposure notification tool to help stop the spread of COVID-19. By adding WA Notify to their smartphones, Washington residents will be alerted if they spent time near another WA Notify user who later tests positive for COVID-19. Learn more about the app here.
Washington Listens supports people affected by the stress of COVID-19
In response to COVID-19, Washington has launched Washington Listens, a support program and phone line to help people manage elevated levels of stress due to the pandemic. People who call the Washington Listens support line will speak with a support specialist and get connected to community resources in their area. The program is anonymous.
The Washington Listens support line is 1-833-681-0211. It is available from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. TTY and language access services are available by using 7-1-1 or their preferred method.
Resources and self-help tips are available on walistens.org
Changes and temporary closures coming to north and southbound I-5 in Lakewood
The state Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is rebuilding the interchanges at Thorne Lane and Berkeley Street, and adding lanes to I-5. Drivers are advised to plan extra travel time into their trips and give work crews a brake by paying attention while traveling through work zones. All work is weather dependent and may be rescheduled.
I-5 Closures near Lakewood:
Friday, Jan. 8
- Southbound I-5 exit to Thorne Lane will close from 10:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 9.
- Port of Tacoma Road on-ramp to southbound I-5 will close from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 9.
- The southbound I-5 exit 135 to Portland Avenue and North SR 167 will close from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 9.
ONYX DRIVE IMPROVEMENT PROJECT
The Onyx Drive Improvement Project is nearly complete. There are a few sidewalk repairs that will require the City’s contractor to close a lane of traffic and flag vehicles around the work. This work will occur soon. Once the US Postal Service installs the locks to the new cluster mailboxes, the City will provide keys to the affected residents. This will likely occur in January 2021.
The Onyx Drive Improvement Project rebuilt 1.55 miles of roadway from Onyx Drive from 97th Avenue to 87th Avenue and from Garnet Lane to Phillips Road. Key features of the project include:
- 12-foot travel lane in each direction.
- 8-foot-wide shared sidewalk on the south side of the road with a two-foot roadside buffer.
- 6-foot wide sidewalk on the north side of the road. Street lighting suitable for the residential setting.
- Realignment of the Onyx Drive/Phillip Road intersection. Raised crosswalks at the intersections of:
- 97th Avenue
- 78th Street
- Coral Lane
- Radar feedback signs.
- Locking cluster mailboxes.
VETERANS DRIVE IMPROVEMENT PROJECT
This project is rebuilding 1.63 miles of Veterans Drive into a two lane road with curb, gutter, sidewalk, bike/pedestrian path, streetlights, and landscaping. The project adds roundabouts to three key intersections.
In mid-December, the base lift of asphalt was poured on Veterans Drive. The contractor will be laying the final lift of asphalt in early 2021, weather permitting.
In the interim, construction work will continue on this project throughout the winter and, as a result, there will be periodic lane and/or whole section closures throughout the next few months. The contractor is making good progress on pouring sidewalks and driveways from Highland to the VA. This will continue for the next two to three weeks. In addition, landscaping and property restoration continues on the section between Gravelly Lake Drive and Highland. The detour to the VA will continue to be used during working hours while the contractor is actively working between Edgewood and the VA entrance.
While restrictions at Veterans and Gravelly Lake Drive are no longer in place fulltime, detour signage remains up in effort to reduce the level of traffic within the project’s limits. Unless the contractor is actively working in the section between Edgewood and the American Lake Veteran’s Administration Medical Center (VA), the North Lake and American Avenue detour will not be necessary.
To read more about the Veterans Drive project and see overhead shots of the project on the project website.
The contractor also continues to work on the American Lake Park parking lot. When completed, in addition to improving traffic flow through the parking lot, this project will add 6 ADA parking stalls to the lot and create a ADA walkway from the road to the park restroom. The restrooms at the park will remain closed due to this work. Parking at the park is currently limited to the boat launch area.
JBLM-NORTH ACCESS IMPROVEMENT PROJECT
In totality, this project completely rebuilds a 3.5-mile stretch of road along the Washington Blvd/North Gate Rd/Edgewood Ave corridor from the western city limit to Gravelly Lake Drive. It also will rebuild a section of Vernon Avenue between Washington Boulevard and Veterans Drive. Gravelly Lake Drive will also see two sections rebuilt, one between Washington Boulevard and Veterans Drive and the second section just east of its intersection with Veterans Drive to Nyanza Road.
The project will be split into two phases:
JBLM North Access Project – Phase 1: This phase of the project will rebuild Gravelly Lake Drive between Washington Blvd and Nyanza, a total of 0.98 miles in length.
JBLM North Access Project – Phase 2: This phase of the project, which totals 1.61 miles, will make the following improvements add curb, gutter,
sidewalks (both sides), associated storm drainage, overlay, landscaping, bike lanes, and lighting along North Gate Road, Edgewood Drive, and Washington Blvd between Edgewood and Interlaaken
Learn more about the project and various phases here.
Currently, construction has not started on this project. Phase 1 is anticipated to get started in late spring/summer of 2021.
Want real-time updates on detours and project status when the project gets started? Subscribe here:
City Council January 11, 2020 meeting preview
The Open Public Meetings Act (OPMA) waiver by the state legislative leadership was extended through January 19 for jurisdictions not in Phase 3 of the “Safe Start” Plan. Pierce County is currently in Phase 2. As a result, City Hall Council Chambers will not be open for City Council meetings.
Residents can virtually attend City Council meetings by watching them live on the city’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/cityoflakewoodwa
Those who do not have access to YouTube can participate via Zoom by either calling by telephone: Dial +1(253) 215- 8782 and enter participant ID: 868 7263 2373.
To learn more about how to provide public comment and/or public testimony at City Council Regular Meetings, click here.
Items scheduled for the January 11, 2020 Lakewood City Council Study Session include:
- Review of 2021 citizens’ advisory boards, committees and commission Work Plans
- Review Surface Water Management Utility Revenue Bonds
- Review Camp Murray Annexation Analysis
- Reports by the City Manager – Review Joint City Council and Clover Park School District Board Meeting Agenda
Items tentatively scheduled for the January 19, 2020 (Tuesday) Lakewood City Council Regular Meeting include:
- 2020 Larry Saunders Service Award Presentation – Lakewood Community Foundation Fund
- Proclamation declaring January as Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month – Ms. Christine Gilge, Director and Ms. Kawehi Marshall, Compassion Connect Puget Sound
- Association of Washington Cities (AWC) Retro Refund Presentation – Mr. Peter King, CEO
- Approving the 2021 citizens’ advisory boards, committees and commission Work Plans
- Authorizing the execution of an interlocal agreement with Pierce College
- Appoint Community Services Advisory Board members (tentative)
- Appoint Planning Commission members (tentative)
- Appoint Parks and Recreation Advisory Board members (tentative)
- Ordinance providing for the issuance, sale and deliver of not to exceed $4,100,000 aggregate principal amount of surface water revenue bonds to provide funds to finance the utility’s share of transportation and other capital projects; fixing or setting parameters with respect to certain terms and covenants of the bonds; appointing the City’s designated representative to approve the final terms of the sale of the bond; and providing for other related matters
- Review applications for appointment to Lakewood City Council Position 5
Join a community advisory board
Do you like to give back to the community? Are you looking to get better connected to Lakewood? Have some free time you want to fill? Consider joining one of the city’s community advisory boards. Board members often have experience or expertise they can lend, can meet on a monthly basis and can commit to serving a full term, or longer.
Boards with openings:
- Landmarks and Heritage Advisory Board: Up to 5 vacancies. Open until filled.
Board and commission descriptions, meeting schedule and application form can be found online.
The City of Lakewood is currently hiring for several positions. For a full list of current job opportunities, please visit here.
Stay up to date with MyLakewood311
Did you know Lakewood has its own free mobile app? All you need to know about the city is at your fingertips. Updates on road projects and detours around the city and other city announcements can be found under the “Public Announcements” header.
Contact the city using the “submit a new request” button and select from the appropriate category. The app allows you to track city staff’s response to your request and follow it through the process.
Please only submit one request per item – submitting multiple requests for the same item slows the review process. Note: This app is not monitored 24/7. If you are reporting an emergency that needs immediate assistance, please call 911.
Stay connected with e-mail notifications
Get the latest news and updates from the city of Lakewood delivered directly to your inbox. To subscribe click here.
You can subscribe to the following city newsfeeds:
- City Manager’s Weekly Bulletins (Weekly)
- City Council Agendas and Meeting Schedules (Weekly)
- Lakewood Connections and Recreation Brochures (Quarterly)
- Public Notices
- Coffee with the Mayor (Monthly)
- Bids, Requests for Proposals (RFPs), Request for Qualifications (RFQs)