Lakewood Council Corner: Sept. 26, 2022
The Lakewood City Council began its Sept. 26, 2022 study session with a review of proposed updates to the city’s tree preservation code.
Twelve “Key Issues” were outlined for Council. These included recommendations from the city’s ad hoc tree committee and Planning Commission. Council used the study session to provide direction to the city’s planning staff. With this input and consensus a draft ordinance will be finalized for Council consideration.
- Set a goal to have 40% tree canopy coverage throughout the city by 2050. This aligns with the recommendation of the ad hoc tree committee.
- Establish an urban forestry program that would implement adopted tree preservation policies to preserve significant trees, promote safe and healthy trees and expand tree coverage throughout the city.
- Add a position to the city’s planning division in 2023 to assist with implementation and execution of an urban forestry program and developed policy guidelines. It is proposed the city also contract with a certified arborist to serve as an expert to review future action. The addition of these positions will come in a separate action tied to adoption of the proposed 2023-2024 Biennial Budget.
- Develop a program to identify heritage and historical trees to help with their retention and preservation.
Council could take final action on the draft tree code ordinance as early as its Oct. 17, 2022 regular meeting at 7 p.m.
Read the full summary of the meeting, including a recap of the joint meeting with the Landmarks and Heritage Advisory Board, an update from Tacoma Public Utilities on rate increases, a pilot project with the Nisqually Tribe of Indians and a review of Council’s Rules of Procedure.
Watch the meeting: City Council Meeting of September 26, 2022
What’s on deck: Council will hold a regular meeting Oct. 3, 2022 at 7 p.m. Tentative agenda items include:
- Proclamation recognizing October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month
- Reports from the Lakewood Youth Council and Clover Park School District
- Approve a partnership project with the Nisqually Tribe of Indians
- Presentation of the proposed 2023-2024 Biennial Budget
Volunteer opportunity: South Sound Wildlife Area
Looking for an opportunity to volunteer in Lakewood? Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022 join Lakewood civic club members from Kiwanis, Lions and Rotary and Pierce College students for a community work day at the Lakewood South Sound Wildlife area.
Meet at 9 a.m. and help with the fall cleanup. Work to be done includes installation of a new concrete pad for two new picnic tables donated by Lakewood Rotary.
Also known as the Old Game Farm, the wildlife area is just across Phillips Road from Hudtloff Middle school. This public space was adopted by the Clover Park Rotary Club as a signature local project to improve public accessibility and to return it to the educational area it was 50 years ago.
The cleanup runs 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Join some fun, safe outside time and help make our community a better place and improve the wildlife area.
Introduction of the proposed 2023-2024 Biennial Budget
The Lakewood City Council will get its first look at the city’s proposed 2023-2024 Biennial Budget at its regular meeting Monday, Oct. 3, 2022 at 7 p.m.
City Manager John Caulfield will present the budget as part of his City Manager updates.
Council will hold two special meetings to hear from each of the city’s departments about their respective proposed budgets. The first meeting is Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2022 and the second is Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022. Both meetings start at 6 p.m. in Council Chambers at Lakewood City Hall, 6000 Main Street SW.
Read more to find out how to attend.
Lakewood Road Roundup
Here’s a look at some of the more visible road projects currently happening in the city of Lakewood and potential impacts to drivers.
Paving North Gate Road
Paving occurred this week on a portion of North Gate Road SW and Edgewood Avenue SW in the Lake City neighborhood. This is part of Lakewood’s JBLM-North Access road improvement project.
It is important for people to remember, this paving does not mean we are ready to fully open the North Gate Road/Edgewood Avenue roundabout. We’ll maintain “soft” closures while the contractor begins building the roundabout at Edgewood Avenue and Washington Boulevard. That is expected to start next week (Oct. 3, 2022).
Want to know the latest about the work happening with this project? Visit the project page to sign up for email updates.
Steilacoom Boulevard sidewalk installation
Sidewalks are now on the south side of 88th Avenue SW near Custer Road. The city’s contractor is actively working on pouring the sidewalks on the north side of the road.
While this work is done westbound traffic is detoured to avoid 88th Avenue SW. The detour bypasses 88th Avenue SW from Custer Road down to Steilacoom Boulevard. The section will re-open as soon as equipment can move far enough away for cars to safely pass.
Work also started this week on wall designs for the southern portion of Steilacoom Boulevard SW between Phillips and Weller roads.
Next week (Oct. 3-7, 2022) preparation beings between 88th Avenue SW and Phillips Road SW for the addition of sidewalks in this area. Crews will also conduct cleanup of 88th Avenue SW where they are finishing up.
Construction will stop on this project for the winter period. This is due in part to a delay in when new signals will be available, which is the result of a number of factors outside the city and contractor’s control. The new signals will be installed at 88th Avenue SW and Steilacoom Boulevard SW and Phillips Road SW and Steilacoom Boulevard SW. The contractor expects to get as much work done as possible before entering the down period.
Pavement patching begins Wednesday on 112th Street SW
The city’s contractor will repair 112th Street SW between Holden Road SW and Butte Drive SW on Oct. 5 and Oct. 6, 2022, patching the section of road that degraded from increased use.
Traffic mitigation measures will be in place and traffic will be reduced to one lane while work is done.
This stretch is a route for drivers detouring around the work on Washington Boulevard.
Repair work coming to roundabout at Gravelly Lake Drive and Nyanza
Repair of a damaged curb in the roundabout at Gravelly Lake Drive and Nyanza Road will occur the week of Oct. 3, 2022.
The city’s contractor will work on the curb while traffic is still able to move through the roundabout. Drivers are asked to use caution and drive slow during this work.
The damage occurred this spring when a vehicle hit the roundabout.
We’re hiring! Be part of the city of Lakewood team
Are you looking to make a career move? The city of Lakewood has a variety of career opportunities available for people looking to join a collaborative work environment where teamwork and public service take priority.
Current openings include:
- Civil Engineer
- Communications Coordinator
- Court Compliance Officer
- Crime Analyst
- Maintenance Worker (two positions one in parks division and one in streets division)
- Planning Manager – Development Services
- Police Officer (lateral hire)
To see the full job descriptions, health and retirement benefits and paid holidays, or to apply, visit the city’s job listing website.
An update on library services in Lakewood
Next week the Lakewood Library Buildings Citizen Advisory Committee will hold a meeting to review building options in Lakewood. BERK Consulting will share a report about projected costs associated with different scenarios to return library services to downtown Lakewood and costs associated with improvements for the Tillicum library site.
The committee will also hear about the historic building designation process in Lakewood and continue its discussion about evaluating and identifying its recommendation for quality library services in Lakewood and Tillicum. A final recommendation is expected by Nov. 17. It will be presented to the Pierce County Library Board of Trustees and the Lakewood City Council. The Board of Trustees will determine how to proceed.
The meeting is Tuesday, Oct. 4 from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Attend in-person at the Pierce County Library System’s Administrative Center, 3005 112th St. E., Tacoma, or join the meeting via Zoom with meeting ID: 844 0001 3158 or call: 253-215-8782 and enter the meeting ID.
Public comment can be submitted by emailing [email protected] or provided at the meeting during a brief public comment period.
Access library services in Lakewood
The Pierce County Library System continues to serve Lakewood with pop-up libraries and other services with community partners throughout the city. From book talks for adults and tech help, to family story time for all ages, the Library System is still offering programs for residents. Some of the services will be held at the Tillicum Community Center and some at Lakewood City Hall, while others will pop up in various places around the community.
Visit lakewoodlib.pcls.us for up-to-date info on services and locations.
In June, the Library System closed the aging Lakewood Library at Wildaire Road SW because it was in critical and unsafe condition and needed significant maintenance and repair. In addition to the Current Lakewood Library Services, the Library System encourages people to visit nearby DuPont, Steilacoom, Tillicum and University Place libraries. This month, workers installed tarps on the roof of the downtown library to prepare for the rainy season. Currently, the Library System is working with the city of Lakewood to install cyclone fencing around the building to protect the property.
Truck & Tractor Day is one week away!
Join us Saturday, Oct. 8 from 12 to 3 p.m. for our annual Fall Festival: Truck & Tractor Day.
This family-friendly event has something for everyone. Get there early to get a free pumpkin and hard hat (while supplies last). We’ll have food options, vendor booths, entertainment and hands-on kids activities. Stay for hayrides around Fort Steilacoom Park and let the kids crawl on the trucks and tractors on display.
Everything happens at Fort Steilacoom Park near the playground, main picnic shelter and the Pavilion. Fort Steilacoom Park is located at 8714 87th Ave SW.
FAB Fest returns
Mark your calendar, the Film, Art, Book (FAB) Fest is Oct. 14-16 at the McGavick Center at Clover Park Technical College, 4500 Steilacoom Boulevard SW.
This year’s event will feature 18 entries from Lakewood’s Reel Life 96 short film contest, held in February. These locally produced, five minute long films had to be shot and edited within a 96 hour period and incorporate a dance scene, a lit candle and the dialogue “sometimes you have to be happy for what you don’t get”. Some of the films are emotional, some moving and some outright hilarious.
The films will be shown Saturday, Oct. 15 at 1 p.m. in three groups of six films each. Audience discussion will occur following presentation of each group.
Throughout the three-day event visitors can view art exhibits, meet authors and see special entertainment. Following the Reel Life 96 film viewing Saturday guests can stick around for a 6 p.m. showing of the Oscar-nominated film “Elvis & Nixon”, followed by a Q&A.
Admission and parking are free. Doors open at noon. An indoor concession stand and TinHut BBQ food truck will serve food. View the complete schedule.
Lakewood PD Chief search: Online survey
Have you heard? Lakewood is conducting a national search to find its next police chief to replace Chief Mike Zaro who will retire at the start of 2023.
As part the process the city wants to hear from residents about what qualities they want in a new chief. Please take a minute to take a short, anonymous online survey.
Take the survey. The survey closes Oct. 21, 2022.
Answers will be used by the firm to help identify well-qualified candidates for consideration.
Comcast RISE grant application open
Small businesses owned by women and people of color continue to recover from the pandemic and the impact of rising inflation. With this in-mind, Comcast’s RISE program continues to invest in the success of these critical businesses by providing valuable and practical support.
As part of Comcast RISE, small businesses owned by women and people of color, including Black, Indigenous, Hispanic, and Asian American owners, among others, in King and Pierce counties may apply for a $10,000 grant from the Comcast RISE Investment Fund. Comcast will award $1 million in grants to 100 eligible businesses in these two counties, as well as technology and marketing resources to eligible businesses statewide.
Applications will be accepted Oct. 3-16. Find more information at www.ComcastRISE.com. Winners will be notified in November.
Join our Community Services Advisory Board
Want to get involved with the city of Lakewood? The city’s Community Services Advisory Board is accepting applications to fill up to five vacancies.
This board advises the Lakewood City Council on items related to Human Services and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and HOME Investment Partnership Act (HOME) programs. Members are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council.
Wanted: Entries for Holiday Parade of Lights
Lakewood’s annual Holiday Parade of Lights and annual Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony return to Lakewood Towne Center this December and we need you to join the parade!
We are accepting applications now for those who want to be part of the fun. Sign up your business, organization, youth group or team and gain great visibility in front of the roughly 7,000 people that line the route specifically to see the floats and displays as they make their way to Lakewood City Hall.
Awards will be given for floats/displays in the categories of “Most Original”, “Most Spirited”, and “Best Overall Appearance”.
This year’s event is Saturday, Dec. 10 from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. The parade ends at Lakewood City Hall in time for the countdown to light the city Christmas tree.
Interested? Fill out at a parade application today.
Road project updates
- Patching of 112th – Holden to Butte: The city initiated an emergency contract to get this section of road repaired. That work will occur Oct. 5-6, 2022. The city’s contractor will be on the road milling the potholed sections and patching them. The road will be reduced to one lane while the work is done.
- JBLM-North Access Improvement
- Phase 1: The curb in the roundabout at Gravelly Lake Drive and Nyanza Road that was damaged this spring will be fixed next week. This repair work will be done while cars still have access to the roundabout, please use caution. In the coming weeks Comcast will also work on the poles along Gravelly Lake Drive south of Nyanza Road and at the intersection of Washington Boulevard and Interlaaken Drive. Once Comcast has relocated, the contractor will pour the final three sidewalk panels south of Nyanza Road along Gravelly Lake Drive.
- Phase 2: Grading of the intersection of Washington Boulevard/Edgewood Avenue and along the road in preparation for curb will begin next week. This week asphalt paving was done on North Gate Road between Nottingham Road and Edgewood Avenue and along Edgewood Avenue between North Gate Road and Washington Boulevard.
- Steilacoom Blvd, Weller to Custer: Next week (Oct. 3-7, 2022) preparation beings between 88th Avenue SW and Phillips Road SW for the addition of sidewalks in this area. Crews will also conduct cleanup of 88th Avenue SW where they are finishing up sidewalk pouring this week. Construction will stop on this project for the winter period. This is due to a delay in when new signals will be available, which is the result of a number of factors outside the city and contractor’s control. The new signals will be installed at 88th Avenue SW and Steilacoom Boulevard SW and Phillips Road SW and Steilacoom Boulevard SW. The contractor expects to get as much work done as possible before entering the down period.
- Pacific Highway/South Tacoma Way from 108th to SR 512 Overlay: Permanent striping is scheduled for the week of Oct. 10, 2022, contingent on weather.
Upcoming city events
Two of our favorite, signature city events remain this year. Mark your calendars now so you don’t miss them!
- Oct. 8, 12-3 p.m.: Truck & Tractor day at Fort Steilacoom Park. Learn more.
- Dec. 10, 4:30-5:30 p.m.: Lakewood Holiday Parade of Lights & Christmas Tree Lighting, downtown Lakewood and Lakewood City Hall, 6000 Main Street SW. Learn more.