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


April 15, 2016


To: Mayor and Members of the City Council

From: John J. Caulfield, City Manager 

Topics of Interest and Updates

City of Lakewood's 20th Anniversary Summer Event Poster

Check out the official poster for the City of Lakewood's 20th Anniversary Celebration, which takes place June 4, 2016 at Lakewood Towne Center, by clicking on the image on the right:

  • 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 City Hall, 6000 Main St. SW


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

Did You Know? Lakewood's Bright Economic Development Future

Did You Know? Lakewood is experiencing increased activity and positive movement across the board, according to an update  from Economic Development Manager Becky Newton to the Lakewood City Council on Monday, April 11, 2016:

  • Retail sales tax increased by 5.3% in 2015
  • Retail vacancy rate decreased from 8.2% in 2013 to 5.8% in February 2016
  • The median home sales price rose from $199,000 in 2013 to $250,000 in 2015
  • Bank foreclosures and days on the market are half what they were in 2013
  • Average new home value is holding at roughly $350,000.
  • Lakewood gained 861 jobs, 2012-2014, and another 719 in 2015

New jobs are up in construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, professional/scientific & technology, healthcare, and food services. Interestingly, retail trade jobs have remained relatively flat despite gains in retail sales tax.

Hearing Officer Reinstates Star Lite Swap Meet's License Under Certain Conditions

Following an administrative hearing earlier this week, the City of Lakewood has reinstated the business license for the Star Lite Swap Meet if the business can meet certain conditions.

The decision by Hearing Officer John Unfred  - which he ordered on Thursday, April 14 – reverses the City’s original action to revoke the Star Lite’s license, due mostly to the safety hazard the business creates during its busiest times. The Star Lite Swap Meet is located at 8327 South Tacoma Way.

The decision allows for the Star Lite to reopen under a set of conditions that address several issues that came to light during this week’s testimony. To keep its business license, the swap meet must:

  • Accurately count attendance each day using a mechanical or electronic counting device at all entrances. Daily attendance must be submitted in a monthly report to the City of Lakewood
  • Submit a Traffic Management Plan to the City of Lakewood within 60 days. The plan should detail the temporary traffic control measures used to control vehicle and pedestrian traffic flow in and out of the business for weekend and other high-volume days. The proposed plan should comply with the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices from the Federal Highway Administration and, at minimum, should address the following:
    • Ensure all parking attendants maintain a current and valid Washington Flagger Certification
    • Ensure all parking attendants wear Performance Class 2 High-Visibility Apparel
    • Ensure all parking attendants use some type of handheld signaling device such as a stop sign, orange cone, reflective gloves and/or signal flag
    • Improve signage and pavement markings for all parking stalls and pedestrian walkways on the property in accordance the Lakewood Municipal Code
  • Coordinate and assist the West Pierce Fire & Rescue in conducting a fire inspection on a weekend day with 60 days.

Read more here .

Berkeley Street Girder Work to Reduce Lanes Overnight on I-5 in Lakewood

Overnight lane closures are planned on northbound and southbound Interstate 5 at Berkeley Street in Lakewood next week so contractor crews can set new bridge girders and complete other work related to the City of Lakewood’s Interstate 5 – Madigan Access Improvements  project, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation. During these closures, northbound or southbound I-5 could be reduced to a single lane.

Drivers are encouraged to give themselves extra time to reach their destinations, especially during the overnight hours of Thursday, April 21 when all southbound I-5 lanes will be redirected through the Berkeley Street interchange.

Lane closure specifics

Beginning Monday April 18 through Wednesday April 20, northbound and southbound I-5 near Berkeley Street will have reduced lanes between the overnight hours of 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. each following day.

At 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 21, crews will close one lane of southbound I-5 at Berkeley Street, followed by a double lane closure at 10 p.m. At 11:59 p.m., crews will reduce southbound I-5 to one lane and redirect that one lane through the I-5/Berkeley Street interchange. All lanes will reopen by 4 a.m.

On Friday, April 22, northbound and southbound I-5 near Berkeley Street will have reduced lanes between the hours of 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. the following day.

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.


LPD at Mariners Opening Day

Once again, members of the Lakewood Police Department had the honor of carrying and unfurling the giant American flag during the opening ceremonies of the Seattle Mariners' home game April 8, 2016.

City Council

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
  • Approving a collective bargaining agreement with the Lakewood Police Independent Guild
  • Public Hearing on FY 2016 Consolidated Action Plan
  • Public Hearing on 84th Street Right-of-Way Street Vacation
  • Authorizing the deferral of sewer connections
  • Amending the code relative to special investigative imprest funds
  • Authorizing applying for RCO grant funds for Harry Todd park waterfront improvements.
  • Adopt City Council goals
  • Reports by City Manager – Review of financial policies, Municipal Court update, and 1st Quarter Police Report


The City Council will be holding a study session on Monday, April 25, 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 25, 2016 Study Session

  • Joint Parks and Recreation Advisory Board meeting
  • Farmer’s Market analysis
  • Advertising and sponsorship policy
  • Sound Transit yard and shop presentation and Sound Transit 3 update
  • Review of Puget Sound Regional Council certification
  • Review of Walker Ridge Final Plan
  • Review of 2015 Year End Financial Report
  • Review of 2016 carry forward budget adjustments