Skip Top Navigation

Construction in the Tacoma area

Tacoma HOV construction closures for May 29 – June 8

Multiple overnight ramp and lane closures are scheduled while contractor crews continue progress on two HOV projects.

An estimated two-week around-the-clock closure of the northbound Interstate 5 exit to southbound State Route 7 begins at 12:01 a.m., Saturday, May 30. The ramp closure will allow crews to build a retaining wall. A signed detour will direct motorists to SR 7 via Interstate 705 and State Route 509.

All lanes of northbound I-5 will close from 12:01 a.m. to 4 a.m. Tuesday, June 2 so crews can restripe the lanes. This work is weather dependent, and could be re-scheduled for the same early morning hours of Wednesday, June 3. Drivers will be routed through the northbound I-5 collector/distributor lanes, and detoured via either SR 7 or I-705.

Drivers who use the northbound I-5 collector/distributor lanes from State Route 16 and East 38th Street to SR 7 and I-705 can expect a full ramp closure during the overnight hours of Tuesday, June 2 or Wednesday, June 3. Ramp closure hours are from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. each night. Again, the work requiring the ramp closure is weather dependent and could be rescheduled at a later date.

A full weekend closure between East 28th Street/Bay Street and northbound State Route 167 is planned beginning 10 p.m. Friday, June 5 through 4 a.m. Monday, June 8. Southbound I-5 drivers exiting to northbound SR 167 will detour to southbound SR 7 to northbound I-5 and the Portland Avenue exit.

Drivers are also advised of the following ramp closures:

Continued ramp closures
Northbound SR 7 on-ramp to southbound I-5 through early 2016.
A Street on-ramp to northbound I- 705/I-5 through project completion.

Night ramp closures

Monday, June 1
Southbound I-5 exit to southbound SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m. Tuesday.

Tuesday, June 2
From 10 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Wednesday, the following ramp will close:
Port of Tacoma Road on-ramp to southbound I-5

Wednesday, June 3
From 10 p.m. Wednesday to 6 a.m. Thursday, the following ramps will close:
Southbound I-705 exit to southbound I-5
Pacific Avenue on-ramp to southbound I-5
Southbound I-5 exit to westbound SR 16/South 38th Street. Drivers will detour via South 56th Street.

Thursday, June 4
From 11 p.m. to 6 a.m., the following ramps will close:
Southbound I-705 exit to southbound I-5
Pacific Avenue on-ramp to southbound I-5
Southbound I-5 exit to westbound SR 16/South 38th Street. Drivers will detour via South 56th Street.

Saturday, June 6
From 12:01 a.m. to 6 a.m. Saturday, the following ramps will close:
Southbound I-705 exit to southbound I-5
Pacific Avenue on-ramp to southbound I-5
Southbound I-5 exit to westbound SR16/South 38th Street. Drivers will detour via South 56th Street.
54th Avenue on-ramp to southbound I-5
Port of Tacoma Road on-ramp to southbound I-5 (opens at 7 a.m.)
Southbound I-5 off-ramp to Port of Tacoma Road (opens at 7 a.m.)

Night lane closures
Drivers can expect overnight single and double-lane closures in segments of both northbound and southbound I-5 between M Street and Port of Tacoma Road.

City Streets
Drivers will encounter a closure of East Bay Street between East 27th Street and East 28th Street. Drivers will follow a signed detour.
Friday, May 29 from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. the following day
Monday, June 1 from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following day
Tuesday, June 2 from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following day
Thursday, June 4 from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following day

New I-5 ramp meters aim to bring congestion relief to Pierce, Thurston counties

Traffic may soon move a little more smoothly along 15 miles of Interstate 5 between Lacey and Tacoma with the help of several new ramp meters, traffic signals that manage the flow of vehicles merging onto the highway.

The Washington State Department of Transportation will activate new ramp meters at 11 interchanges (pdf 144 kb) near Joint Base Lewis-McChord where traffic routinely slows to a crawl during the morning and afternoon commute. WSDOT will activate the new meters at these interchanges as soon as Monday, May 18.

“Ramp meters are a proven, cost-effective approach to reducing freeway congestion and collisions, and provide drivers a better, more reliable trip,” said WSDOT Olympic Region Administrator Kevin Dayton.

The new ramp meters, traffic cameras, and variable-message and travel-time signs are part of a federally funded project specifically designed to help alleviate congestion through this corridor by installing intelligent transportation systems (ITS) tools to better manage traffic.

The newly installed ramp meters are located on these on-ramps:

  • Mounts Road to southbound I-5;
  • Center Drive to northbound and southbound I-5;
  • Steilacoom/DuPont Road to northbound and southbound I-5;
  • JBLM main gate to northbound and southbound I-5;
  • Berkeley Street to northbound and southbound I-5;
  • Thorne Lane to southbound I-5;
  • Gravelly Lake Drive to northbound and southbound I-5;
  • Bridgeport Way to northbound and southbound I-5; 
  • State Route 512 to southbound I-5.

WSDOT previously installed and activated meters at these locations along I-5, and they will be tied into the above meters:

  • Marvin Road to northbound I-5;
  • Nisqually to northbound I-5;
  • Mounts Road to northbound I-5.

Ramp meters are traffic signals that operate according to real-time conditions on both the freeway and the ramps. They help reduce congestion by providing timed intervals between vehicles, rather than allowing multiple vehicles to enter the freeway at once. Studies show that ramp meters reduce collisions by as much as 30 percent.


Extended closure of Pacific Avenue overpass in Tacoma underway

The Pacific Avenue overpass at Interstate 5 in Tacoma is closed around the clock, through March 2016. Depending on the weather, the overpass could be closed longer. During the closure, the over pass will be demolished and rebuilt as part of WSDOT's I-5 - M Street to Portland Avenue - HOV project. All Pacific Avenue traffic has been detoured. If all goes according to schedule, in March 2016 the Pacific Avenue overpass will reopen to two lanes - one lane of traffic in each direction. Two months later in May, 2016, all lanes will reopen over the new Pacific Avenue overpass. 

Pacific Avenue detour map

Around the clock ramp closures

  • The northbound SR 7 on-ramp to southbound I-5 remains closed until early 2016 for bridge construction.
  • The A-Street on-ramp to northbound I-5/southbound SR 7 remains closed until spring 2017 for bridge construction.

Around the clock road closures

Long-term closure of 20th Street East in Fife in place through 2017

A segment of 20th Street East in Fife is closed. The road closure and detour will be in place, until spring 2017.  The road closure is needed while crews build a new northbound Interstate 5 bridge over the Puyallup River. The bridge, which will be built adjacent to the existing northbound I-5 bridge, will be wider and straighter than the existing bridge, and will feature a new northbound high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane. Other improvements will also be made on I-5 between Portland Avenue in Tacoma and the Port of Tacoma Road in Fife.


Tips for Driving Through Work Zones

  • Pay attention - driver inattention is the number one cause of work zone accidents.
  • Leave room between you and the car ahead of you - most work zone accidents involve someone running into the car ahead of them. Drive defensively - be aware of what is happening around you.
  • Merge into the proper lane before you reach the work zone.
  • Don't use cell phones or adjust your radio while driving through the work zone.

Summer construction season map for Pierce county (pdf 443kb)

Want to see WSDOT construction efforts? Take a look at the Construction Season Projects Map.

Weekly construction and traffic updates for the Olympic region

Sign up for Thurston and Pierce County Traffic News e-mail updates

Check out WSDOT on social media such as Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, and the WSDOT Blog

For more information on these projects, please contact WSDOT Olympic Region Communications staff during office hours at 360-357-2789 or by emailing