The executive committee of the SR-167 Completion Coalition, the new stakeholder working group aimed at completing SR-167, met for the first time Friday.
Pierce County business, labor and community leaders have worked to secure the funding necessary to complete SR-167 for decades. The new working group is aimed at bringing together the stakeholders who have been working on this issue into a single group with a unified agenda and message.
“Completion of SR-167 is arguably the single largest economic development project in Washington state, generating 80,000 permanent jobs and $10 billion in payroll,” said Port of Tacoma Commissioner Dick Marzano, one of the groups co-chairs.
“As a leading region when it comes to our nations exports, investment in our transportation infrastructure is key to maintaining our competitive edge. Completion of SR-167 is the single most important transportation project as it relates to improving the Pacific Northwest ability to move people and freight,” said John Parrott, President of Totem Ocean Trailer Express and the group’s other co-chair.
The uncompleted portion of SR-167 is a critical missing link in Washington’s transportation system. Without completion, over the next two decades Washington risks losing out on significant amounts of new public and private revenue to other ports along the Pacific coast. The new revenue would be generated primarily by increased containerized cargo traffic.
Completion of SR-167 would also reduce congestion and commute times between Tacoma and Puyallup as well as provide other indirect benefits to the local economy.
“Completing SR-167 will be a big deal for Western Washington’s economy, and the federal government has an important role to play in making sure it gets done. I’m excited to get to work on finishing this long overdue project,” said Congressman Denny Heck.
The working group named Tim Thompson of Thompson Smitch Consulting Group to coordinate efforts amongst the stakeholders. Thompson is president of the firm and has long been involved in issues that jointly benefit the public and private sectors.
The members of the SR-167 Completion Coalition’s executive committee are as follows:
- Co-Chair: Dick Marzano, Port of Tacoma Commissioner
- Co-Chair: John Parrot, TOTE (Totem Ocean Trailer Express)
- Congressman Denny Heck, Washington’s 10th Congressional District
- Pat McCarthy, Pierce County Executive
- Marilyn Strickland, Mayor of Tacoma
- Pete Lewis, Mayor of Auburn
- Glen Hull, Mayor Pro-tem City of Fife
- Tom Pierson, Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber President
- Bill Sterud, Puyallup Tribe
- Scott Mason, International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 23
- Toby Murray, Murray Pacific Corporation
- Tim Thompson, Project Consultant
Information provided by Smitch Consulting Group