Brynn Grimley (253) 983-7761 • Fax (253) 589-3774 •
Communications Manager

Jan. 3, 2018

The City of Lakewood invites the public to honor and celebrate “The Dream Today” at its 15th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, happening this year on Saturday, Jan. 13 from 10 a.m. to noon at the McGavick Conference Center at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood.

This free public event is family-friendly and will include performances by the choirs of Tyee Park Elementary and Clover Park High School, the Little Church on the Prairie Prairie Bells Handbell Choir and YMCA dancers/The BareFoot Collective.

Students from Hudtloff and Woodbrook Middle Schools will read poetry, local singer and actor LaNita Walters will sing the National Anthem and the Negro National Anthem and The Denny & Bill little big band will provide the musical prelude.

U.S. Rep. Denny Heck, Lakewood Mayor Don Anderson and Lakewood Councilwoman Mary Moss will also offer remarks.

This year’s keynote speaker is Michael Tuncap, who has worked in education and race relations at the local, state and federal levels. He is co-founder of the Pacific Islander Studies Institute of Washington and founding director of the Pacific Islander Student Commission at the University of Washington in Seattle, the First People’s Conference, the African American Leadership Conference and the Diversity & Equity in Hiring & Professional Development in Washington State. He serves on the state faculty and staff of color conference leadership team and has spoken alongside Rev. Jessie Jackson, Gov. Jay Inslee and other renowned experts and leaders.

Three Clover Park students will also be recognized for essays they wrote for the Lakewood Arts Commission’s annual MLK Essay contest. The students were asked to write about what “The Dream Today” means to them. Lakes High School senior Connor Winterton was this year’s winner, followed by Clover Park High School seniors Anthony Grassi and Guadalupe Emanuel Ramos-Orozco, who received honorable mention.


Lakewood Mayor Don Anderson reads a proclamation at the council's Jan. 2, 2018 regular meeting recognizing Jan. 15 as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service and February as Black History Month.

Jan. 3, 2018

Lakewood City Council Swearing in Ceremony


Recognizing Jan. 15, 2018 as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service and February as Black History Month, and January as School Board recognition month.

The Lakewood City Council’s first meeting of 2018 started with the swearing in of four council members, all incumbents.

Council members Jason Whalen, Mary Moss and Mike Brandstetter were sworn in by Pierce County Superior Court Judge (and former Lakewood Municipal Court Judge) Grant Blinn, while Councilman John Simpson took the oath from Lakewood City Clerk Alice Bush.

Following the ceremonies the council voted on its Mayor and Deputy Mayor positions – selecting once again Don Anderson to serve as Mayor and Whalen to serve as Deputy Mayor. The positions are two-year terms.

Next up Mayor Anderson read a proclamation recognizing Monday, Jan. 15, 2018 as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service and February as Black History Month. Anessa McClendon, a member of the city’s Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration committee, accepted the recognition.

Anderson encouraged everyone to attend the city’s 15th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, held this year on Saturday, Jan. 13 from 10 a.m. to noon at the McGavick Conference Center at Clover Park Technical College, 4500 Steilacoom BLVD SW.

A second proclamation followed, this one declaring January 2018 as School Board recognition month. Clover Park School District board member Paul Wagemann was there to receive the recognition on behalf of the board.

Three city road projects were approved on the council’s consent agenda, including:

  • $2.14 million to Miles Resources, LLC for the construction of the Steilacoom Boulevard Safety Improvement project;
  • $551,331 to R.W. Scott Construction Company for the construction of the Military Road SW and 112th Street SW Intersection Improvement project;
  • $760,838 to Axum General Construction, Inc. for the construction of roadway safety improvements at 40th Avenue SW and 96th Street SW.

The next City Council meeting is a study session Monday, Jan. 8 at 7 p.m. in Council Chambers at City Hall, 6000 Main St. SW. Find the agenda here.

Jan. 2, 2018

Starting tomorrow morning (Jan. 3, 2018) drivers traveling Steilacoom Boulevard at its intersection with Lakewood Drive will see additional signage reminding of the 20-mile-per-hour school zone.

The new signs are mounted on the traffic signal poles at the four-way signalized intersection and will illuminate only during school zone hours in the morning and afternoon. Their purpose is to remind drivers stopped at the light that the speed limit remains 20 mph through the school zone covering Lochburn Middle School, Harrison Preparatory School and Four Heroes Elementary.

After monitoring traffic through the intersection during school zone hours, the Lakewood Police Department saw that drivers at the red light often did not maintain the 20 mph speeds once the light turned green. Instead they returned to non-school zone speeds, even though they were still in the school zone.

More than a year ago Police Chief Mike Zaro brought the concern to the Public Works Department, and the departments worked together to come up with a plan to slow traffic.

The result was purchasing the signs to be posted at the intersection of the two busy arterials to remind drivers the school zone speed limit extends past the light.

Included with this project was the lengthening of the existing bracket holding the 20 mph school zone sign and flashing lights located on the north side of Steilacoom Boulevard next to the Echelon Apartments. This change makes the school zone sign and flashers more visible to drivers headed westbound, extending visibility to 400 feet before reaching the school zone.

Set the tone for a healthy, active lifestyle in the new year and participate in our New Year's Day 5k and 1 mile walk/run. This is a perfect way to get outdoors with your family and start 2018 off right. 

The 5k course through Fort Steilacoom Park offers a wide variety of paved and trail components and is good for runners of all speeds.

Everyone is welcome (so are strollers, but please be mindful of other runners on the narrow trail sections). Walking more your speed? You can walk the 5k, or sign up for the free 1-mile Walk/Run, which is also great for kids and families.

Register here ($35 if registered before Dec. 31; $40 day-of registration). Registration closes at 9:30 a.m. day of race. Race begins at 10 a.m. Park in the lot by the dog park and register by the barns.

We can't wait to see you there!

From Sound Transit:

Jan. 2, 2018

Southbound I-5 near Mounts Road will be reduced to a single land of traffic overnight Tuesday, January 2 through Friday, January 5. Lane closures will be in effect Tuesday through Thursday from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. and Friday from 11:59 p.m. to 6 a.m. Saturday, January 6. The on-ramp at Mounts Road to southbound I-5 will also be closed.

Sound Transit crews continue to repair metal brackets on the Point Defiance Bypass rail bridge.

Dec. 29, 2017

It's that time of year again where we see our MyLakewood311 reports of potholes skyrocket as the outside temperatures plummet.

The variation in temperatures causes our roads to shrink, expand, crack and poof! potholes appear.

Looking at the numbers for December, the city received 51 reports of potholes to our 311 app. In some cases the same pothole is reported more than once, but compared to the warmer summer months where few potholes were reported, it's safe to say we've entered pothole season.

The city places a high priority on its roads and preventing potholes from forming. It does this through its crack and chip sealing programs. That’s where compromised roads – or roads with cracked pavement – are identified and a patch or seal is placed over the impaired area to eliminate the possibility for water to seep in and cause disruption.

Since incorporation the city has always contracted its road repair work out. But this summer it tried something new.

A pilot project aimed at fixing trouble areas around the city notorious for potholes was initiated. Through the program the city rented equipment that allowed its operations and maintenance crew the ability to grind up sections of pavement, apply hot asphalt and finally a sealant to the roadway.

The idea was to see how efficient it would be to do this work in-house. Crews set out with an estimate of being able to patch 3,000 square feet of pavement during the month-long pilot.

Instead they patched nearly 9,500 square feet.            

The success of the program showed that if the city owned or leased the necessary equipment its crews could spread the pothole patching throughout the year, allowing for potholes to be patched as they arise.

As a result, a request for the program will be part of the 2019-2020 biennial budget planning.

Even with the equipment in-house, remember we can’t fix every road at once, and an onslaught of bad weather (think snow followed by heavy rainfall) speeds up road deterioration and prevents us from patching the roads immediately. Heavy rainfall and cooler temperatures also limit the type of patches applied.

So please be patient as we work to repair the roadways and don’t forget to use the free MyLakewood311 mobile app to report those potholes!

See our Lakewood Operations & Maintenance crew at work patching a section of Gravelly Lake Drive SW this summer.

From WSDOT, Dec. 28, 2017:

DUPONT – Drivers who use southbound Interstate 5 near Mounts Road will encounter overnight lane and ramp closures Dec. 28 and 29, 2017. The closures allow crews working for Sound Transit to continue repairing damage to the rail bridge resulting from the Dec. 18 derailment. 

Thursday, Dec. 28

  • Southbound I-5 approaching Mounts Road will be reduced to a single lane from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. Friday, Dec. 29. The Mounts Road on-ramp to southbound I-5 will also close during the same hours.

Friday, Dec. 29

  • Southbound I-5 approaching Mounts Road will be reduced to a single lane from 11:59 p.m. to 6 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 30. The Mounts Road on-ramp to southbound I-5 will also close during the same hours.

Drivers are encouraged to plan for extra travel time.

Questions about repair work being performed should be directed to Sound Transit communicator Rachelle Cunningham.

Advance information for highway construction and maintenance is available at the Olympic Region Weekly Construction and Traffic Updates web page.


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