Congressman Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) announced today that he has requested funding for the Shaw Road extension in Puyallup.

“Improving rail-road intersections is an important part of improving our region’s traffic and congestion problems,” Smith said. “The Puyallup area is a growing and thriving community in the Puget Sound region, and it’s important that we make improvements such as the Shaw Road extension.”

This project involves creating a link between Shaw Road at its current terminus at Pioneer Way, NW across the BNSF Railroad tracks, and then connecting with East Main Street.  This would be accomplished via an elevated grade separation of the BNSF tracks.  This project will address longstanding deficiencies in cross-track movements in the area.  The project will complement other area projects, including rail upgrades in anticipation of safety and movement improvements planned to facilitate anticipated Sound Transit passenger rail service.  This has been identified as a priority improvement within the FAST Corridor.  Preliminary studies and environmental work is done.  Some right of way has been acquired.  Selection of a preferred alignment is expected by the end of the year.

Smith requested funding through the 2005 Transportation, Treasury and Independent Organizations Appropriations bill. It is expected that this bill will be finalized before Congress adjourns this year.