David Bugher (253) 983-7739 • Fax (253) 512-2268 • DBugher@cityoflakewood.us
Assistant City Manager for Development/Community Development Director



For further information contact: Courtney Casady, (253) 983-7839

On July 18th, 2016, The Lakewood City Council unaminously approved "Alternative 2" as the design for the future Motor Avenue Project.    

Alternative 2:

                  Motor Avenue Project Presentation


Motor Avenue

The Motor Avenue SW right-of-way was established with the recordation of the Lakewood Subdivision No. 1 plat in 1910.  Motor Avenue SW was established with a right-of-way width of 125 feet, seventy five feet of  which was specifically dedicated for use by a trolley company.   Twenty-five feet on either side of the 75 feet was dedicated for public use.

The trolley car system in the greater Tacoma-Lakewood area operated from 1890 to 1930.  When the trolley car system was abandoned, Motor Avenue SW became used entirely for motor vehicles.  Parts of the right-of-way were later vacated by Pierce County well before Lakewood’s incorporation in 1996 resulting in the current right-of-way width of 80 feet.

A City Priority

In the citizens' visioning sessions that took place at the beginning of the City's comprehensive planning process, urban design was identified as the most urgent planning issue before the City.  The City's Comprehensive Plan dedicates an entire chapter (Chapter 4) to urban design and community character which includes goals and objectives pertaining to street design, public spaces, pedestrian access and walkability and bicycle amenities.

The Project

As a means of addressing the priority of urban design the City of Lakewood is embarking on an urban design project to develop a new street corridor plan for Motor Avenue SW between Whitman Avenue SW, and the intersection of Gravelly Lake Drive SW and Bridgeport Way SW.  The project includes the development of a "complete street" plan incorporating urban design concepts to create a vibrant and welcoming public space within the City's central business district.  The City has retained the services of Studio KPG as the lead firm on the project. Working with Studio KPG as part of the design team are the firms of  BERK and Framework.


Project Goals

It is the City’s goal to provide vibrant, welcoming public spaces that encourages community building and accommodates persons of all ages and demographics throughout the City’s Central Business District (CBD).  The overall goal of the project is to create an urban design/streetscape plan in a manner that helps achieve a vision for Project stakeholders and provides the following:

  • Attractive, welcoming and increasingly accessible public spaces that serve as public gathering spaces and complement the diversity of surrounding land uses;
  • Streetscape and public space design that fosters an active pedestrian environment and serves a diversity of uses, including possible retail, office, entertainment, dining, nightlife, and/or public parks;
  • A functional streetscape that preserves and highlights Lakewood’s history;
  • Streetscape designs and amenities, including simplicity of associated materials that can easily be kept clean and like-new in appearance through routine maintenance practices;
  • Sustainable design methods and practices that reflect a commitment to principles of environmental stewardship; and
  • A plan that can be implemented cost-effectively and in phases.

In addition to a broad review of streetscape conditions and associated plans, the City is keenly interested in several areas of emphasis that will be addressed through the Project. Those areas include:

♦ The redesign of  Motor Avenue SW into flexible gathering space on evenings and weekends, including considering the site as an alternate location for a farmer’s market;

♦ Inclusion of an existing Oak grove located on adjoining private property into the Project design;

♦ Related impacts regarding vehicle access to adjoining businesses and traffic movements should the Motor Avenue SW right-of-way be used, in whole or in part, as a public gathering space;

♦Community informational signage, including banners;

♦Trees and tree wells, including stormwater management features;

♦ Improved lighting design/light poles;

♦ Sidewalk improvements, including improvements in both aesthetics and stormwater management features; and

♦ Amenities such as benches, garbage and recycling receptacles.

Project Documents:

Meeting Agendas, Presentations, Design Alternatives, etc.

Agenda - Meeting #1

Project Overview

Introductory Slide Presentation

Meeting Schedule

Public Participation

Community Meeting


None currently scheduled