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

The City of Lakewood and its Police Department are saddened to share the passing of retired Police Chief Bret Farrar.

Earlier this morning, Bret’s family notified us that Bret passed away Tuesday in Arizona. Bret had been battling another bout of cancer for several months. He was surrounded by family and friends at the time of his passing.

Bret had a long and successful career in law enforcement, with the majority of his time spent serving the citizens of Lakewood. Bret played a large role in the creation of the Lakewood Police Department and served as the chief from 2008 until his retirement in April of 2015.

Under Bret’s direction the police department continued to build its relationship in the community, a move that helped reduce crime across the board and made Lakewood a safer place to live.

His leadership was especially critical in 2009 when he was faced with leading the department through one of its worst tragedies – the shooting death of a sergeant and three of its officers.

Through it all, Bret united the department and reaffirmed the conviction of the Lakewood Police Department to serve and protect the city.

Bret will be missed by all of those who knew him. His influence and leadership are still felt by those who worked with him both at the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department and Lakewood PD.

“Bret’s commitment to the community went above and beyond his role as Police Chief,” Lakewood City Manager John Caulfield said. “He cared about our community as demonstrated by his commitment to countless charities and service groups in Lakewood.

“The city expresses its sympathy to Bret’s family and friends during this difficult time,” Caulfield said. “His family should be proud of the legacy he left in Lakewood. He will be missed.”

Our thoughts and condolences are with Bret’s family and close friends.

“As much as Bret meant to the Police Department and the City of Lakewood it pales in comparison to what he meant to his family,” said Lakewood Police Chief Mike Zaro. “They were extremely close and I can’t imagine the loss they are feeling.”

We will not be offering any additional comments or interviews at this time.

If Gravelly Lake Drive between 100th Street and Bridgeport Way (near the Colonial Center) is part of your daily commute chances are you've been wondering: "When in the world will the construction end?!"

Well daily commuters you're in luck, the light at the end of the tunnel is growing brighter by the day.

Since June contractor RW Scott has performed work on the busy thoroughfare, starting with upgrades to storm runoff catch basins before moving on to installing improved sidewalks with curb and gutter that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

When all is said and done this $1.84 million will provide continuous sidewalks along Gravelly Lake Drive from its intersection with Steilacoom Boulevard all the way down to Nyanza Road.

Other improvements with this project include updating the street lighting to LED lights and reconfiguring the right turn from Mt. Tacoma Drive onto Gravelly Lake Drive. Previously there was an island that separated right turning traffic from the rest of the lanes on Mt. Tacoma Drive. This right turn channel will be replaced with a dedicated right turn lane and a new signal at the intersection. The focus is on pedestrian safety by improving visibility at this intersection.

Other significant changes for Mt. Tacoma Drive include big changes to parking on front of the Colonial Center. The current configuration of angle-in parking along the storefronts causes significant traffic congestion during busy times as cars back out of the spaces and into oncoming traffic on Mt. Tacoma Drive.

This typically results in backups onto Gravelly Lake Drive. To fix this problem the angled parking spaces will be replaced with eight parallel parking spaces. The hope is this will reduce the backups onto Mt. Tacoma and Gravelly Lake drives during peak times.

Check out the video below to hear from project manager and Lakewood civil engineer Paul Candler about the proposed improvements.


Have plans for tonight? Come join us out at Waughop Lake for our trail dedication.

Mix and mingle starts at 5:30 p.m. at the new picnic shelter followed by a short presentation at 6 p.m.

Then the newly paved trail is all yours to discover and walk from 6 to 7 p.m. There will be stations at different points around the lake trail for you to learn about the lake habitat, see how the trail has transformed and learn how invaluable our volunteers and community partners were in making the improvements happen.

There will also be live music around the lake.

Park in the recently paved parking lot by the dog park and follow the signs to the new picnic shelter at Waughop Lake for the ceremony.

Sept. 8, 2017

The B&I Public Marketplace was shut down Aug. 17 by the City of Lakewood and West Pierce Fire & Rescue because it is unsafe for people to be inside.

During the week of Aug. 21 power was shut off to the building at the recommendation of the state Department of Labor & Industries, which determined electrical work done to the building is unsafe and hazardous.

City and fire officials are in regular communication with the building owners and their agent and all parties are working together.

The city and West Pierce Fire & Rescue have requested the following items from the owner:

  • Copy of Fire Protection Engineer evaluation of the building’s fire protection system.
  • Copy of electrical reports from Labor & Industries and utility providers Lakeview Light & Power and Tacoma Power.

These reports will include recommendations from the experts who inspected the property. City building officials and West Pierce Fire & Rescue representatives will use these recommendations to prioritize the work that must be done in order for the building to reopen.

City and fire officials will work with the building owner and their agent to create an action plan with the intent to address the most severe problems first. Once the items affecting public safety are fixed, the building can reopen.

A timeline for the completion of additional items not impacting public safety will also be drafted for the owner.

Once the action plan is complete it is up to the owners to hire licensed, bonded and insured contractors to do the work. That includes filing for permits and passing inspections once the work is done, as required by law. In some cases work may be required to be done sequentially, which could take time.

It is unknown how long it could take to complete the work, but it is not something that will be done in a matter of days. An accurate timeline is unknown until the prioritized list is created and the building owners hire contractors. Re-opening the building also depends on the work passing inspections.

The building will remain closed until it is safe for the public to be inside.

Triple the fun this holiday season and stay in shape while having a blast by signing up for the Triple 

the Fun Run series -- three races put on by Lakewood and held at our beautiful Fort Steilacoom Park. 

Save money by registering for all three races instead of registering individually.

And after you finish your last race you will walk (or run) away with a crazy hat, t-shirt and scarf, as well as a special medal for those who complete all three races!

Register at .


  • Triple the Fun Run Early Bird Special: $55 for all three races (on or before Oct. 16).
  • Triple the Fun Run Regular Fee: $75 for all three races (Oct. 17 to Oct. 29)

Individual race fee:

Race details:
All races begin at 10 a.m.; day of registration and packet pick up is from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m.

Halloween Crazy Hat 5k & 10k Run/Walk and FREE 1-Mile Run/Walk
When: Sunday, Oct. 29 
What: Wear a crazy hat to this upbeat fun run. Don't have one? All 5k racers will get the coolest, funky hat as part of registration (instead of t-shirt). Feel free to walk or run. All ages welcome in the free 1 mile run/walk.

Jingle Bell Rock 5k Fun Run and FREE 1-Mile Run/Walk
When: Saturday, Dec. 9
What: Dig out your favorite elf hats, Santa beards, striped stockings and other holiday gear. Everyone is welcome, including dogs, so bring the whole family and get your jingle on at Fort Steilacoom Park. 
Moms and dads with strollers are welcome to join the free 1 mile run/walk that is on paved paths. Warm up around the fire pit at the end and roast s'mores! T-shirts come with the 5k registration. Prizes for best individual adult costume, kid costumes, and best dog costume.

New Years Day 5k run/walk and free 1 mile run/walk
When: Monday, Jan. 1, 2018
What: What better way to ring in the the New Year than with a beautiful run at Fort Steilacoom Park. It will be chilly, but all 5k racers will get a scarf! Bring the kids to join in the free 1 mile run/walk.

Fort Steilacoom Park
8714 87th Ave SW
Lakewood, WA 98498

Race distance:
3.1-mile Run/Walk
1-Mile Run/Walk for all ages and abilities

Volunteers needed:
We need about 25 volunteers to assist with various portions for each event. Call Sally at (253) 983-7758 or email

Do you own or manage a rental property in Lakewood? If you answered yes you won't want to miss one of the upcoming informational meetings planned to bring rental property owners and managers up to speed on the soon to be implemented Rental Housing Safety Program.

Please mark your calendars to attend one of the following meetings held at City Hall in Council Chambers, 6000 Main St SW, Lakewood:

Wednesday, Sept. 27, 6 – 7 p.m. OR Monday, Oct. 9, 12 – 1:30 p.m.

At these meetings city staff will offer training and information on the new Rental Housing Safety Program, which requires all owners of residential rental properties to register their property every year and have it inspected once every five years.

The training and informational session will include a general description of the program, registration timeline and requirements and a “how-to” session on registering your property and navigating the program website.

On Monday, Sept. 11 West Pierce Fire & Rescue and the City of Lakewood will hold a short ceremony to honor those who died on Sept. 11, 2001 and pay tribute to our first responders and military service members.

The program will include speeches by local officials from Lakewood and West Pierce Fire & Rescue and Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The ceremony begins at noon and will be held at the flag plaza in front of City Hall, 6000 Main St. SW, Lakewood.



The City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin is a roundup of news items, happenings and other items of note for the City of Lakewood.

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