John Caulfield (253) 983-7703 • Fax (253)
City Manager


April 8, 2016


To: Mayor and Members of the City Council

From: John J. Caulfield, City Manager 

Topics of Interest and Updates

Coming June 4: City of Lakewood's 20th Anniversary Summer Event

In 1996, Lakewood officially became a City. This year, we are celebrating the 20th anniversary of incorporation with a huge summer party! Bring your family and friends to celebrate:

  • WHAT: City of Lakewood’s 20th Anniversary Summer Event “Celebrating Our Dynamic Future!"
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, June 4, 2016
  • WHERE: Lakewood Towne Center, 5831 Main Street SW (near Loews AMC Theater and Barnes & Noble)

Enjoy a fun-filled day of FREE activities! Bring your family and friends as the City of Lakewood celebrates its first 20 years with a huge summer birthday bash:

  • Come hungry for a taste of local foods from mobile vendors and food trucks in Lakewood’s first Food Fest:
    • BBQ ribs
    • Pulled chicken
    • Mac & cheese, tacos
    • Fish & chips
    • Hot dogs
    • Lumpia, pancit, adobo and other ethnic foods
  • Listen to live music and dance to one of the Northwest’s most popular bands - the Afrodisiacs
  • Join in the fun with interactive trivia and win prizes
  • Lots of activities for youth:
    • Instagram scavenger hunt
    • Arts, crafts and activities
    • Hear entries from our local school competition winners about their future vision for Lakewood (See below)
    • Balloon artist
    • Tattoo artist
  • Much, much more

Lakewood Police Department Year-End Report

On April 4, 2016, Lakewood Chief of Police Mike Zaro presented his 2015 Year-End Report to the Lakewood City Council.

Zaro said the department had another successful year, continuing Lakewood’s trend of being a safe community thanks to its Police Department. Here are some numbers from the report:

  • The Department received 57,000 call for service in 2015, and 2,700 of those calls resulted in arrests. Of those total calls, officers used force 89 times, Zaro said.
  • There were 42 officer pursuits
  • There were 28 officer-involved collisions
  • The Department received 66 letters of praise from residents
  • The Lakewood Officers’ Charity again helped the community via efforts such as Moody Meals and Shop With An Officer
  • The Behavioral Health Contact Team was a smashing success, connecting 200 individuals with the mental health resources they need
  • There were 15 total allegations of policy violations, but only 12 actual investigations. Those allegations ranged from personal conduct to use of badges and insubordination. Also of note is that there were no allegations of bias based policing and one complaint of excessive force (both of which require a “Professional Standards” investigation). The officers involved in the excessive force allegations were exonerated.
  • The rate for overall, violent and property crimes remained about the same compared to 2014.

To view the full report, visit the Lakewood City Council packet for April 4, 2016 .

Lakewood's Promise Signing Ceremony

On Monday, April 4, 2016, the Lakewood City Council conducted an official signing ceremony for the organizations who pledge to be part of Lakewood’s Promise.

For those who don't know, Lakewood’s Promise seeks access to provide youth with five fundamental resources – or “wrap-around supports” that young people need for success in life:

  1. Caring Adults
  2. Safe Places
  3. A Healthy Start
  4. Effective Education
  5. Opportunities to Help Others

This approach has made the Lakewood community a proud six-time winner of the prestigious 100 Best Communities Serving Young People award by America’s Promise – The Alliance for Youth. Lakewood's Promise strives to encourage collaborations and youth-serving programs to keep Lakewood a city that values young people.

To view a photo album of the event, visit the City of Lakewood's Facebook page .

Point Defiance Bypass Construction Update

(The following construction update from Sound Transit could affect drivers and residents in the City of Lakewood)

  • Rail improvement work impacts overnight traffic on I-5 near Nisqually

Drivers can expect night time single lane closures on I-5 northbound between Mounts Road exit and the rail bridge to build access ramps. The closure will occur Friday, April 8 from 9 p.m. through Saturday, April 9 at 8 a.m. and on Monday, April 11 from 8 p.m. through Tuesday, April 12 at 8 a.m. The rail bridge is being rehabilitated as a component of the Point Defiance Bypass project which will route Amtrak Cascades passenger trains to an inland rail line through DuPont, Lakewood and Tacoma.

The I-5 northbound left lane will be closed starting as early as Friday night and the I-5 northbound right lane will be closed starting as early as Monday night.

  • Sound Transit is replacing existing railroad track in your area through April

While construction started on the project earlier this year, we are now moving closer to your area. This alert is to provide you with details on what to expect during construction.

What to expect:

Construction work will be located between Berkeley Avenue Southwest and Camp Murray this weekend. Neighbors, motorists and businesses can expect work along the existing railroad track route that includes:

  • Welding       
  • Grading
  • Track installation
  • Signal work
  • Improvements of at-grade rail and roadway crossings
    • Noise impacts sound similar to a truck engine running, with occasional rail cutting and beeping.
    • Work will take place continuously during the weekend track closures.

WSDOT has contracted with Sound Transit to deliver the track and signal work, including upgrading crossings, bridge rehabilitation and construction and retaining wall construction.

The Point Defiance Bypass project includes a new Amtrak passenger train station in Tacoma’s Freighthouse Square, new and upgraded track between Tacoma and DuPont and five reconstructed at-grade crossings, each with advanced warning and signal systems. When all work is complete in 2017 it will provide more frequent, reliable and faster Amtrak Cascades passenger rail service in Washington.

Plan Ahead For Full Weekend Ramp Closure in Lakewood

Drivers are encouraged to plan ahead for a full weekend closure of the southbound Interstate 5 exit to Berkeley Street in Lakewood. The closure will allow crews to pave areas of the intersection. The improvements are related to the City of Lakewood’s Interstate 5 – Madigan Access Improvements project.

The work is weather-dependent and could be rescheduled.

Closure specifics

The southbound I-5 exit to Berkeley Street will close around the clock from 11 p.m. Friday, April 8, to 4 a.m. Monday, April 11. Southbound I-5 drivers wanting access to Berkeley Street will want to use the southbound I-5 exit to Thorne Lane. Northbound I-5 drivers exiting at Berkeley Street will not be affected by the closure.

Meet Sherman Alexie on April 29 at Clover Park Technical College

Lakewood will host the signature event of the Pierce County Reads 2016 program  on April 29 when the community welcomes Sherman Alexie - outspoken poet, novelist and screenwriter explores modern-day Native American issues.

The event, titled “Meet Sherman Alexie,” is schedule for 7 p.m., April 29 at the Sharon McGavick Conference Center, Clover Park Technical College, 4500 Steilacoom Blvd SW.

The free event headlines this year’s program, which unlike years past will focus on five books written by the Northwest native, giving participants an extra month read and discuss the selections. The five books are:

  • “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven” (1993)
  • “Reservation Blues” (1995)
  • “Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian” (2007)
  • “Flight” (2007)
  • “War Dances” (2009)

Alexie, who was born and raised in the Northwest, connects readers around the world to the American Indian experience, making them laugh, cry and think through his semi-autobiographical writings, according the Pierce County Library System.

The New Yorker named Alexie one of the 20 top writers for the 21st century. He is “the world’s first fast-talking, wisecracking, mediagenic American-Indian superstar,” according to Men’s Journal. Read the rest of the story .

Call To Artists for Mayfest Event

Are you an artist who would like your piece on display during Lakewood's biggest art event of the year? Consider entering your work for Mayfest, 2016.

Artists are encouraged to enter a juried show to be exhibited during the Mayfest celebration, May 3-8 at Lakewold Gardens. This highly touted celebration is sponsored by the Lakewood Arts Commission. Artists who are residents of Lakewood or who work within the Lakewood city limits are encouraged to enter.

All artistic media will be included in this event. Details are available on line at the City's website  or by mailing a self-addressed stamped envelope to:

  • City of Lakewood Arts Commission
  • Attention: Dennis Higashiyama
  • 6000 Main Street SW
  • Lakewood, WA 98499

View a detailed flyer of the competition

3rd Annual Studio Fitness Healthy Start 5K

Attention runners, joggers, walkers and anyone else interested in fun activities while supporting a great cause.

The 3rd Annual Studio Fitness Healthy Start 5K returns Saturday, May 14. The event benefits the City of Lakewood's Healthy Start Program - an after-school program that provides kids with physical activity and nutritous snacks. In 2015, the event generated $8,000 for the program.

This year, the race will once again start and finish at Studio Fitness, 11112 Gravelly Lake Dr. SW in Lakewood. Registration is $40 a person, and the registration deadline to guarantee yoursel an official t-shirt in Saturday, April 30, 2016.

Register for the event

About the Healthy Start Program

The program starts when the school day ends, with a snack that includes uncommon fruits and vegetables. After the snack, children do a few minutes of journaling, followed by warm-up exercises, large group games and butrition lessons. Oakwood, Tyee Park and Tillicum Elementary Schools host the program. Funding for student transportation is necessary to keep the program running.

Economic Development

Rep. Heck Visits Stina's Cellars

This week, the City helped facilitate from Congressman Denny Heck to Stina's Cellars, a great Lakewood business that's committed to the community.

Accompanied by Ecoomic Development Manager Becky Newton, Heck got a tour of the family owned, boutique winery from owner Perry Preston.

Opened in 2006, Stina's Celllars has increased production in recent years, although it remains focused on producing small lots of high quality wine at affordable prices.

In an email to Stina's Cellars, Heck said he "really appreciated the opportunity to learn more about you, your passion and winery."

City Council

The City Council will be holding a study session on Monday, April 11, 2016, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW.  Agenda items for the meeting include:

April 11, 2016

  • Western State Hospital update. – Mr. Ron Adler, CEO
  • Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department Presentation – Mr. John Sherman, Assistant Division Director for Environmental Health
  • Review Towne Center CCRs and easements
  • Economic Development update
  • Reports by the City Manager – City Council goals


The City Council will be holding a regular meeting on Monday, April 18, 2016, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW.  Agenda items for the meeting include:

April 18, 2016 Regular Meeting

  • Proclamation recognizing Parks Appreciation Day
  • Business showcase – Ardesson’s Shoe Repair
  • Public Hearing on FY 2016 Consolidated Action Plan
  • Public Hearing on 84th Street Right-of-Way Street Vacation
  • Approving a collective bargaining agreement with the Lakewood Police Independent Guild
  • Authorizing the deferral of sewer connections
  • Adopt the City Council goals
  • Authorizing applying for RCO grant funds for Harry Todd park waterfront improvements.
  • Reports by City Manager – Title 18A update, review of financial policies (ie cost recovery development services), Municipal Court update, and 1st Quarter Police Report