TACOMA – During the overnight hours of Friday, April 12, contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation successfully implemented a traffic shift on eastbound State Route 16 and associated ramp closures in Tacoma.
As of 7 a.m. Saturday, April 13, the South Sprague Avenue on-ramp to southbound Interstate 5 is now closed around-the-clock through June. Drivers will follow a detour to westbound SR 16, to Union Avenue, to eastbound SR 16 where they will merge left to new temporary lanes to southbound I-5.
New temporary route for Eastbound SR 16 to southbound I-5
Eastbound SR 16 travelers going to southbound I-5 are now temporarily shifted onto newly-built HOV lanes. Eastbound SR 16 drivers will now merge left between Union Avenue and South Sprague Avenue to reach southbound I-5. There is no change for travelers going to northbound I-5. We have linked a graphic to Flickr to visually show this temporary change.
This ramp closure, detour and the traffic shift for eastbound SR 16 travelers will remain in place until work on the eastbound SR 16 to southbound I-5 collector/distributor lanes are complete.
Eastbound South 38th Street ramp closed
As of 7 a.m. Saturday, April 13, the eastbound ramp to South 38th Street is now closed for approximately one week, so it can be modified for a future phase of construction. Currently this ramp allows drivers from southbound I-5 and State Route 16 to exit to eastbound South 38th Street towards Tacoma’s South End and Eastside neighborhoods.
During the closure, travelers intending to exit at eastbound South 38th Street will be detoured as follows:
- Eastbound SR 16 drivers will follow southbound I-5 and exit to South 56th Street, merge onto northbound I-5 and use exit #132 to South 38th Street.
- Southbound I-5 drivers will exit to South 56th Street, merge back onto northbound I-5 and take exit #132 to South 38th Street.
Southbound I-5 drivers coming from Fife who normally use the eastbound South 38th Street exit can avoid detouring to South 56th Street by taking the exit to SR 7 to reach South 38th Street.
During this seven-day closure, the southbound I-5 exit 132A to westbound South 38th Street will remain open, but as an exit only. If the weather cooperates, crews are planning another round of ramp closures over the weekend of April 20-21 to reopen this ramp to all traffic.
WSDOT would like to thank travelers for their continued patience while crews finish this important work at the I-5 and SR 16 interchange. The I-5 – SR 16 Realignment – HOV Structures and Connections project is expected to be complete this summer.
Updated HOV construction information is available on 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.