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


April 22, 2016


To: Mayor and Members of the City Council

From: John J. Caulfield, City Manager 

Topics of Interest and Updates

Harry Todd Park Waterfront Improvements

The City of Lakewood is developing a master site plan for the waterfront area at Harry Todd Park.

This week, Parks and Recreation Advisory Board reviewed a draft site plan of the 17-acre park that's intended to produce various upgrades for the public. The City’s main goal is to ensure the waterfront area is ADA compliant and more useable by the public. The City will also assess the playground, restrooms and other site needs.

The Lakewood City Council is scheduled to meet with the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board this during its study session 7 p.m., Monday at Lakewood City Hall, 6000 Main St. SW. (See below for full agenda)

Parks Appreciation Day Proclamation

On Monday, April 18, the Lakewood City Council read a proclamation for Parks Appreciation Day, which this year is April 23, 2016. Parks Appreciation Day. There will be opportunities to better parks and natural areas throughout Pierce County. In #IamLakewood:

  • Fort Steilacoom Park, 8714 87th Ave SW, Lakewood, WA
  • American Lake Park, 9222 Veterans Dr SW, Lakewood, WA
  • Wards Lake Park, 88th Street side of the park, Lakewood, WA
  • Springbrook Park, 12601 Addison St, Lakewood, WA
  • Harry Todd Park, 8928 N Thorne Ln SW, Lakewood, WA

For more information, contact Cameron Fairfield, (253) 983-7827.

Business Showcase: Ardesson's Shoe Repair and New Shoes

Also on Monday, the Lakewood City Council recognized Ardesson's Shoe Repair and News Shoes as its April 2016 Business Showcase . Owner Alex Bennett, who has worked at the longtime Lakewood business since 1970, accepted the honorary business plaque. Here is some of Ardesson's story:

If all of the shoes that have been given new life at Ardesson’s Shoe Repair & New Shoes could talk, they would have nearly 70 years worth of stories to tell.

Of course, shoes can’t talk. Luckily, Alex Bennett can. He can do it well, in fact. He can speak about the intricacies of the shoe repair industry – how most shoes these days are molded directly together, rather than the old days of welts. That’s where the leather rim is sewn around the edge of a shoe top, attaching to the sole.

Bennett - who began working at Ardesson’s in 1970 – has seen the store change, along with the community around it. A lot of the shoes that the store originally sold were more orthopedic in nature, but over the years they began to also emphasize a sense of style.

He can recall generations of families walking through the doors at 9635 Gravelly Lake Dr. SW, in need of a shoe fix. Often, a nice pair of shoes they had purchased was starting to hurt, and that’s where Ardesson’s earned its dollar.

To read the rest of Ardesson's story, check out its Business Showcase .

Pizza Studio Proceeds to Benefit Lakewood Organizations

Here’s another example of a new business making a impact in the Lakewood community.

For those who haven’t noticed, Pizza Studio at Lakewood Towne Center - 5605 Lakewood Towne Center Blvd. SW – is now part of the center that already features La Palma Mexican Restaurant, Five Guys & Fries and Panera Bread within walking distance.

As the literal new kid on the block, Pizza Studio is already working to help Lakewood. Throughout this upcoming weekend, the restaurant will hold special events in which all pizzas are $5 and the proceeds will benefit the following organizations:

  • Emergency Food Network, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, April 23
  • Clover Park High girls and boys basketball teams, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday, April 24
  • Lakewood Boys & Girls Club, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Monday, April 25

Pizza Studio’s official opening day is Monday, April 25.

For those who are unfamiliar with Pizza Studio, it is a pizza place where customers can “Create Your Masterpiece” with every order. Its variety of crusts, specialty sauces, premium meats and fresh-cut and roasted veggies lets people customize individual pizzas exactly the way they want.

So c’mon. Check out this new Lakewood business, enjoy great pizza and support local organizations with every slice.

For more information on Pizza Studio, visit .

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.

Project update: Point Defiance Bypass Track and Signal Work

Construction work will take place on Joint-Base Lewis McChord, south of Murray Creek, this upcoming weekend, according to Sound Transit.

Neighbors, motorists and businesses can expect work along the existing rail road 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.

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

Following an administrative hearing earlier this month, 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 .

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.


Assistant Chief John Unfred Throws First Pitch at Lakewood Baseball League Jamboree

Assistant Lakewood Police Chief John Unfred and Command Sergeant Maj. Risley with 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, threw and caught the first pitch for the Lakewood Baseball League Jamboree on Friday, April 15. Wonder what you called for? Slider down and in, perhaps? Whatever the case, great work!

City Council

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

-Sponsorship and naming policy

  • Sound Transit yard and shop presentation and Sound Transit 3 update
  • Review of Walker Ridge Final Plan
  • Review of 2015 Year End Financial Report
  • Review of 2016 carry forward budget adjustments


The City Council will be holding a regular meeting on Monday, May 2, 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:

May 2, 2016 Regular Meeting

  • Youth Council Report
  • Proclamation Certificated Employee Appreciation week – Mr. Jim Schell, Clover Park Education Association President
  • Proclaiming May 15-21, 2016 as National Public Works Week
  • Proclaiming May 15-21, 2016 as National Police Week
  • Clover Park School District Report
  • Approve Walker Ridge Final Plat
  • Set June 6, 2016 as a public hearing date on the Six Year TIP
  • Public hearing on the 2015-2016 carry forward budget adjustments
  • Adopt of FY 2016 Consolidated Plan (CDBG & HOME) funding recommendations
  • Adopt 84th Street right-of-way street vacation
  • Adopt financial policies