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First travel lane opening on new southbound I-5 Puyallup River Bridge in Tacoma Sunday, June 20

Cara Mitchell, communications, 360-357-2703

Travelers should prepare for related weekend ramp and lane closures starting Friday, June 18

TACOMA – Construction crews building the I-5 Portland Avenue to Port of Tacoma Road Southbound HOV project will cross a big milestone soon on the new southbound Interstate 5 Puyallup River Bridge.

Weather permitting, the very first travel lane will shift over to the new bridge on Sunday, June 20.  This first lane to be shifted is the temporary southbound I-5 collector-distributor lane that is currently on the old southbound I-5 Puyallup River Bridge.

Weekend closure To move this single travel lane to the new bridge, some lanes and ramps will need to be closed leading up to the switch. The following around-the-clock closures start at 11:59 p.m. Friday, June 18, and last until 11:59 p.m. Sunday, June 20:

  • Southbound I-5 exit 135 to Portland Avenue, northbound State Route 167 and Bay Street
  • Port of Tacoma Road on-ramp to southbound I-5
  • Southbound I-5 temporary collector-distributor lane

During the weekend closure, contractor crews with Guy F. Atkinson Construction will rebuild the ramp connections to the new bridge. Signed detours using I-5, I-705 and SR 509 will be in place for both ramp closures.

The two ramps and the temporary collector-distributor lane will reopen on the new southbound I-5 Puyallup River Bridge during the early morning of Monday, June 21. Travelers using the new bridge will still see work activity behind barriers as crews finish drainage, electrical and install final striping.

Crews are moving the temporary collector-distributor lane to the new bridge in advance of demolishing the old southbound I-5 Puyallup River Bridge. The remaining three travel lanes of southbound I-5 will be moved to the new bridge later this summer. New high occupancy vehicle lanes on both directions of I-5 are scheduled to open this fall.

About the project Once finished, the I-5 Portland Avenue to Port of Tacoma Road Southbound HOV project will connect the HOV lanes to I-5 and SR 16 in Tacoma. This Washington State Department of Transportation project also:

  • Builds a new southbound I-5 Puyallup River Bridge
  • Rebuilds the L Street overpass across I-5
  • Replaces the original I-5 roadway surface from McKinley Avenue to Portland Avenue
  • Upgrades signing, lighting, and traffic data sensors
  • Improves stormwater collection and treatment facilities
  • Removes the old 1962 I-5 bridges, over the Puyallup River

Additional information about overnight ramp closures for Pierce County maintenance and construction is available at TacomaTraffic.com. Before heading out the door, travelers can find the latest road conditions on the WSDOT app and by following the WSDOT regional Twitter feed.