Puyallup Bridge Weight Limits Become More Restrictive May 7

A routine bridge inspection haportland_ave_puyallup_bridges found joint damage to the Portland Avenue area Puyallup River Bridge that’s causing the City of Tacoma to further reduce the maximum vehicle weight from 18 tons down to 10 tons.

City staff are preparing signs and notices to inform the public of the change, which is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, May 7.

The necessary weight restriction will primarily impact bus routes and about 400 commercial trucks a day. However, an estimated 14,600 passenger vehicles and light trucks will be able to continue using the bridge.

“It’s unfortunate, but not unexpected. It is an old bridge and we’ve been working to raise the funds for its replacement for some time,” said Public Works Director Kurtis Kingsolver. “The financial cost of replacing bridge infrastructure is a challenge to jurisdictions across the nation.”

The City has nearly $40 million in funding to begin a project to replace two of the bridge sections and has applied for additional grants to continue work on four remaining sections in the future. The remaining sections could cost an approximate additional $100 to $110 million.

“It’s a precaution. We make these decisions in the best interest of the public and their safety,” said Kingsolver.

Weight restriction won’t be lifted until the entire bridge, which was built in 1927, is replaced.

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