Special Reports

Bridge Update: Jun 4

Construction this week on the new Tacoma Narrows bridge:

The Swan, the ship carrying the first 16 bridge deck sections from South Korea, will arrive in Commencement Bay this week. Tacoma Narrows Constructors thinks it will be Thursday.

The deck sections are stacked four high on the ship, which puts the top of the stack 135 feet above the water level. Bridge enthusiasts take note: It will be worth seeing.

The ship will spend two weeks at anchor at the end of the Hylebos Waterway before heading into the Narrows. Crews at the Narrows will spend this week and longer preparing the gantry cranes that will lift the sections into place, beginning late this month.

The construction catwalks on the bridge have been slackened to allow them to move downward as the deck sections are attached to the suspenders. The weight of the first section will drop the main cables 12 vertical feet. This week, crews will go back to installing permanent cable bands and suspenders.

Work on the new on-ramp to the bridge from Gig Harbor’s 24th Street overpass continues. The initial layer of pavement on the transponder-only lane should be done this week.

Road crews will be grinding pavement at 36th Street and Highway 16 on Monday. The eastbound exit to 36th will be closed from 7 p.m. Monday to 5 a.m. Tuesday, and traffic will be directed to exit at Olympic instead.