City, Port to celebrate Lincoln Avenue Corridor project completion

The Port of Tacoma and the City of Tacoma are scheduled next month to celebrate the completion of two major infrastructure projects within an area on the Tacoma tideflats known as the Lincoln Avenue Corridor.

In June 2011, the Lincoln Avenue Bridge closed for a rehabilitation project that replaced two deck spans and re-paved the remaining two deck sections. The bridge was also completely re-painted and underwent bearing, sidewalk and guardrail repair. The project also included a minor amount of street improvements on Lincoln Avenue from the west end of the bridge to Portland Avenue.

In September 2009, the Port of Tacoma began the Lincoln Avenue grade separation project, which raised Lincoln Avenue over key railroad tracks, removing the at-grade conflict between rail activities and heavy vehicular traffic. At that time, the Port had completed three surface streets and relocated utilities to support the overall project. The final piece, the overpass itself, remained unfunded until the Port received $15.4 million in March 2009 from American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds. Scarsella Brothers Inc., of Kent, Wash., was awarded the $21.8 million contract to build the overpass.

In June 2011, the Port celebrated the project’s completion. According to Port officials, the Lincoln Avenue grade separation significantly improved rail and road efficiency, aided in the flow of goods through the Port’s South and North Intermodal Yards and APM Terminals, and enhanced air quality by giving truck drivers direct access to APM Terminals instead of idling while trains pass. Rail plays an essential role in moving freight quickly and efficiently in and out of the Port, with trains averaging 8,000 feet in length. Lincoln Avenue is a major arterial, serving as the primary connector between Interstate 5 and the Port for a high number of trucks. Historically, rail switching operations and mainline trains cause vehicular delays of up to 30 minute every two hours.

Port and City officials are scheduled to celebrate the opening of the Lincoln Avenue Corridor on Mon., April 2 at 2 p.m. at the Gog-Ie-hi-te Wetland located at the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and Stewart Street. Parking will be available at Cascade Sierra Solutions, located at 2202 Stewart Street.

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Lincoln Avenue Bridge now open for traffic (12/29/11) —

Lincoln Avenue Bridge opening delayed (12/14/11) —

Bridge projects abound in Tacoma, Pierce County (06/14/11) —

Lincoln Avenue Bridge closes today for construction (06/13/11) —

Above The Fray: Port of Tacoma completes vital Lincoln Avenue overpass project (06/08/11) —

Lincoln Avenue Bridge re-opens (11/07/06) —

Lincoln Avenue Grade Separation —

Lincoln Avenue Bridge Project Web site —