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Historic Water Ditch Trail - Phase 2

Project Background

Originally part of a 110-year-old trail system that crossed Tacoma and extended to Mt. Rainier, remnants of the historic 1896 Water Ditch Trail “spine” are still used today. As more funding becomes available, the remaining project phases will restore the entire six-and-a-half mile trail which will provide the only trail linking South Tacoma with the downtown, Tacoma Dome area and the Thea Foss Waterway.

The City of Tacoma broke ground on the project in 2008. The first phase of the project is completed. The Construction included rebuilding three miles of the historic trail to modern Class I bikeway standards, including a ten-foot asphalt path with two feet of crushed rock shoulders.

Design is complete for Phase 2 which will include segments from South 76th Street to South Tacoma Way. Construction of Phase 2 will begin in July/August and is expected to be complete in March 2015.

Project Description

The Historic Water Ditch Trail Phase 2 project seeks to construct a pedestrian/bicycle trail project of 1.8 miles anchored at both ends by parks. The Class I trail standard cross-section will be ten feet of concrete asphalt with two feet of rock shoulders on each side.

To improve safety, the project has two traffic signals where the trail crosses major arterials at South 56th and South 74th streets and three pedestrian/bicycle crossing flashers at minor arterial locations of South 54th, 66th, and 72nd streets.

The project includes improved storm water treatment/drainage, utility pole relocation, construction of ADA accessible curb ramps and landings, and pedestrians level lighting.

The project will also include pedestrian/bicycle amenities (bike racks, signage, trash receptacles, benches, and lighting). An existing small parking lot will be converted to add trailhead elements at South 76th and Cedar streets.

WDT Project Map
View a larger PDF of the above map


Task Amount




Total Project Cost



Task Estimated Start Date Estimated Completion Date
Planning/Design August 2011 March 2014
Advertise & Award March 2014 June 2014
Construction July 2014 March 2015


Outreach and Public Involvement

During the planning and design phase the City of Tacoma kept the public and the stakeholders updated and involved. The City held the following meetings:
July 31, 2008
Met with Coalition for Nalley Valley Business Development.

May 04, 2014
The City of Tacoma met with Auto Dealers at South Tacoma Way.

June 18, 2014
The City of Tacoma met the South Tacoma Neighborhood Council.
The City of Tacoma will continue, during construction, updating the public via project email updates and website updates.

Be Informed, Get Involved

You can contact City Project Manager Said Seddiki (253) 591-5204, with questions, concerns or comments. You are also invited to contact Said to get email updates on public meetings, events, and notices.