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Capital Projects

In addition to the projects listed below, the City has several other projects in design and construction. For more information, please call 253-931-3010, or check our road closure/construction notices.

View the Interactive Capital Projects Map

Capital Project Contacts:

Engineering Front Counter
Luis Barba (Project Engineer)
Jai Carter (Street Systems Engineer)
Joel Chalmers (Project Engineer)
Matt Larson (Project Engineer)
Jacob Sweeting (Assistant City Engineer)
Kim Truong (Project Engineer)
Ryan Vondrak (Capital Projects Manager)
Seth Wickstrom (Project Engineer)

Mike Kamenzind (Construction Manager)

Feature Capital Project:  South 277th Street Corridor Capacity &
Non-motorized Trail Improvements Project


This project will widen South 277th Street from Auburn Way North to L Street NE (just west of the Trail Run community) from 2-lanes to 5-lanes. This is the last existing 2-lane segment of the 277th/State Route 516 Corridor between State Route 99 and State Route 18 (shown on the map below). Widening this segment will remove this bottleneck and reduce congestion, improve safety, and enhance overall mobility throughout the region. The project will also improve pedestrian safety by constructing a trail along the south side of the roadway that provides a connection between Auburn Way South, the Trail Run Community, and the Green River Trail system. This project has been in the works for nearly a decade and has involved several unique challenges such as re-defining jurisdictional boundaries between Unincorporated King County, Kent and Auburn, future development considerations and partnerships with RPG (the owner and developer of the old drive-in theater property), planning and permitting for environmentally sensitive areas, and securing funding.

C222A Figure 1
Figure 1: Regional map depicting the location of the only remaining 2-lane travel segment between SR-99 and SR-18. Download full size map (PDF)

Project Details:

  • Widening South 277th Street from Auburn Way North to L St NE (See Figure 2) for a total length of approximately 3,300 feet. 
  • Expanding the existing two lane travel section with no sidewalks to a total of five travel lanes. The five travel lanes will consist of 3 westbound travel lanes and 2 eastbound travel lanes.
  • Constructing a separated non-motorized trail along the south side of South 277th Street.  The trail will be 10 feet wide and will include a landscape buffer between the trail and the vehicular driving surface. This trail will complete a connection between the Interurban and Green River Trail systems and link with City of Kent's Trail located across the Green River
  • Constructing traffic signal, intersection capacity and safety improvements, and Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) improvements. 
  • Installing street lighting and streetscape improvements.
  •  Constructing storm drainage improvements. 

  C222A Figure 2
Figure 2: Typical cross section with proposed improvements shown along S 277th Street near the intersection of Auburn Way North. Download full size diagram (PDF)

Project Benefits:

 Benefit to Regional Growth and Manufacturing/Industrial Center

  • The Project supports the regional growth centers in Auburn, Kent, Federal Way and Covington, and an Industrial Center in Kent by greatly expanding the goods and person carrying capacity on a vital link between SR-99 and SR-18.
  • The Project improves local and regional access to centers for all users including residents, commuters, freight, emergency responders, transit, pedestrians and cyclists.
  • It is estimated that this connecting corridor accounts for 70% of Auburn's projected job growth over the next 20 years and supports the growth of over 5,000 projected new jobs, for a total of 10,000 combined projected and existing jobs.

System Continuity / Long Term Benefit and Sustainability:

  • The Project will eliminate the bottleneck and improve the essential connection to Puget Sound Urban & Industrial Centers, reducing overall travel time, expanding reliability, and improving freight movement across the Green River Valley.
  • The Project will improve access to the Urban Centers in Auburn, Kent, Federal Way and Covington, including three Sound Transit Bus/Rail Stations.
  • The Project eliminates a major gap in a regional non-motorized trail network creating a connection between Kent's non-motorized trails, the Green River Trail network, and the Interurban Trail network, and improving non-motorized connections to nearby transit facilities.
  • The Project includes Intelligent Transportation System improvements allowing the City of Auburn to optimize traffic signal operations on the corridor dynamically and provides improved driver information via overhead variable message boards.
  • The Project will increase vehicle capacity, establishing continuity between the valley and the hills, thereby reducing existing and future traffic congestion in the area. 

Air Quality:

  • The Project will encourage local transit usage by improving access to three local transit routes and three regional transit centers, and by constructing the trail connection between regional non-motorized transportation networks.
  • The project will enable the City, through the use of the Intelligent Transportation System, to optimize signal coordination between WSDOT, King County and Auburn controlled intersections, which will aid in relieving congestion on South 277th Street, Auburn Way North, SR-167 and West Valley Highway. 

Project Funding:

Funding for this Project is from multiple sources, including federal and state grants, and local sources. The total current Project estimate is $8.9 million.

Project Schedule:

The project design is currently being finalized, property acquisition has been initiated, and environmental permits and approvals are being secured. Assuming timely completion of these tasks, construction is anticipated to begin in late spring of 2016 and be completed approximately 18 months later.

Who to contact for more information?

For more information on this project, please contact Ryan Vondrak P.E., Capital Projects Manager at 253-931-3086 or via email.