The City of Fife celebrated the groundbreaking of the Port of Tacoma Road Interchange Project, Phase One at the Fabulich Center 2:30 p.m. on today. Speakers included Gov. Jay Inslee, Senator Hans Zeiger, Representative Jake Fey, Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier, Port Commissioner Don Meyer, representatives from the Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board, Transportation Improvement Board, Fife Mayor Kim Roscoe and Councilmember Pat Hulcey.
The groundbreaking of this project is the culmination of decades of design, wetland mitigation, funding requests and collaboration, said Roscoe. “This project is a key step forward in solving our transportation issues in this region, and sets the stage for the future of Fife,” Mayor Roscoe said.
The Port of Tacoma Road Interchange Project marks an investment of $42.5 million and the collaborative effort between Federal, State (FHWA, WSDOT, FMSIB, TIB), Tribal and local governments. Roscoe says the scope, scale and government-to-government collaboration demonstrates the need for this project to be completed. “This interchange serves as a critical access point into and out of the Port of Tacoma, acting as a conduit for state and international trade,” she said.
This project will provide road, intersection and interchange improvements by reconfiguring the existing interchange to a split diamond with one-way couplet. The Port of Tacoma Road and its existing bridge over Interstate 5 will be converted to one-way southbound traffic, while the parallel 34th Avenue East and its new bridge over I-5 will be made one-way northbound.
At the completion of the project, access to the Port of Tacoma, safety and the operation of I-5 mainline will be improved. The design work for Phase 2 has begun and funding is currently being sought.