Construction alert: Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension

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Construction alert

Weekly construction update for March 17: Nighttime train and track testing will start up as early as next week

Most of the civil construction is complete, with N. I Street and Yakima Avenue restoration being the largest activity along the alignment. Testing will start up at night next week, so expect a rolling traffic control effect, along with vehicles, equipment and crews throughout the Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension area. Also, the contractor is working on final checklist items, which are any issues along the project area that need to be corrected. We are close to the completion of the civil construction phase and announced at our last board meeting we are looking at an opening window of late July to early September. The likelihood is it will be in the latter half of that timeframe.

Some of the construction and work schedule are weather dependent. The final striping is one of those activities, so we will start that activity once we receive a dry forecast. Please allow for extra travel time to get to your destination and follow detour signage. For details of the traffic control effects, please scroll down to the “Where” section.

Please support your local businesses during construction. Let’s stay Loyal to the Local!


Continued construction and traffic restrictions along Stadium Way, N. 2nd Street, N. I Street, Division Avenue, Martin Luther King Jr. Way and the Dome District. More details specific to neighborhoods are provided below.


March 17 update: Work will occur throughout both the day and nighttime hours.


Entire project area:

  • System integration testing along the Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension project continues. Starting as early as March 24, the contractor will perform various signal, vehicle and track testing throughout the project area. The testing will occur at night and have a moving traffic control with flaggers and uniformed police officers, going up and down the future alignment. The project has obtained a nighttime/weekend noise variance, a permit that allows them to make more noise than typically allowed. They will need to temporarily remove parking and shift traffic to maintain a safe working area. Work will occur at night during the week and start as early as 7 a.m. on the weekends. The noise variance will be in place until the end of April.
  • The T Line will end at the Commerce Street Station. The train will temporarily turn back at S. 7th Street and Commerce St., until we start testing in 2023. Please make sure to stay within the parking lanes, to not impede T Line vehicle access.
  • Final road and parking lane striping in various areas will occur later in the year. Crews will schedule striping when the weather allows (as early as March 27th). This activity requires dry weather, so the contractor will schedule when possible.

Dome District:

  • No civil work planned related to the project.

Commerce/Stadium Way:

  • Stadium Way, between Division Avenue and I-705, will have alternating traffic control with flaggers at night, starting March 13 to March 17. During this time, the contractor will be adjusting the overhead light rail wires and performing ride quality tests/rail grinding.
  • See entire project area information for nighttime and weekend work.

Stadium District (N. E St., N. 1st St., Division Ave.):

  • Future street closures:
    • The Yakima intersection at N. 2nd Street will fully close for roadway restoration. The work will start as early as Friday, March 24, as the concrete and subcontractors are scheduled to come in on the following Monday. We expect to finish by the end of March. Parking will be affected near the work area. This work will start after the I Street closure is done.

Hilltop/MLK Jr. Way:

  • The City of Tacoma and Sound Transit walked the project area to find items that need repair. The contractor will work on these final checklist items, which will require short term directional closures of MLK Way in sections to maintain a safe work area. Work will include track slab repair, sidewalk repair and other types of concrete repair and continues to late March. The contractor will keep traffic open where space allows.
  • Crews will need to close northbound MLK Way, between S. 11th Street and Earnest S. Brazill Street, on March 23 to make repairs on the Hilltop District Station. Parking will be removed during this work.
  • The contractor will need to perform rail testing to the repaired rail on MLK Way, between Earnest S. Brazill St. and S. 14th Street, tonight, March 17. Two-way traffic will remain, but parking will be removed to maintain a safe construction area.
  • Future street closures:
    • Crews will be working on MLK Jr. Way and Earnest S. Brazill St., installing drainage along the future light rail trackway. Work will require a full closure of the intersection. This will take about six days of work and is scheduled to start May 2023.


  • Cross the street at only designated crosswalks. Wheelchairs, walkers, strollers and bicycles should cross tracks at a right angle. Obey all traffic signs and signals.
  • Driveway and pedestrian access are maintained, although some sidewalks and crosswalks will be temporarily closed. Pedestrian detours will be in place.
  • Crews will be installing lighting along MLK Way and Division Ave. Please look out for “No Parking” signs to allow crews to easily access their work areas.
  • Buses will follow detour routes. Visit for information.
  • Prepare for construction noise related to removing pavement and operating equipment.
  • Large construction equipment or materials may have the right-of-way.
  • Work will occur during the daytime and nighttime hours. Saturday work can start as early as 7 a.m.
  • Businesses are open during construction. Support your local businesses — stay Loyal to the Local!
  • Allow for extra time to reach your destination.
  • Due to inclement weather or unforeseen issues, dates and times are subject to change.

Contact us

Community Engagement: or 206-398-5300
After-hours construction hotline: 888-298-2395

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24-hour construction hotline: 888-298-2395

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Get in touch: or 206-398-5300