Special Reports

BRIDGE UPDATE

Construction this week on the new Tacoma Narrows bridge:

Concrete crews are scheduled to pour the second layer of the distribution cap on the Tacoma caisson on Monday. Except for a small closure pour, that will complete construction on the caisson.

Meanwhile, on the Gig Harbor side, crews already are at work on the towers. They'll pour an 11-foot starter lift on one tower leg Tuesday and pour the pedestal for the other leg Friday.

On Thursday, Tacoma Narrows Constructors will haul the first set of moveable forms, called "bird cages," to the Gig Harbor caisson from the company work yard at the Port of Tacoma.

Roadways: Another major traffic shift is coming up this week. Early Wednesday morning, westbound traffic on the Gig Harbor side of the bridge will be moved to a new swath of Highway 16 between the 24th Street Northwest overpass and the weigh station.

The realignment will create a larger median between eastbound and westbound traffic, where crews will start building the eastbound roadway.

In preparation for the shift, westbound Highway 16 will be reduced to one lane between 9 p.m. Tuesday and 7 a.m. Wednesday, when both westbound lanes will reopen in their new temporary alignment.

Q&A

Q: I heard the bridge people are going to take out a bunch of old pilings at Titlow Beach. How come?

A: TNC is taking 16 pilings off Titlow Beach this week because they're soaked in creosote, a transparent, oily liquid that is toxic to marine life. It's part of the environmental mitigation required for the bridge project.

Rob Carson, The News Tribune

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