Shaw Road Corridor Improvement Study

Shaw Road Study Webpage Photo


The City of Puyallup is conducting a Corridor Study to identify needed improvements for the segment of Shaw Road between 12th Avenue SE and 23rd Avenue SE. These improvements will ease traffic congestion, make it easier to access side streets, and provide non-motorized improvements to connect to regional trails and retail centers.

The City has hired a consultant, KPG Psomas, to evaluate current and future projected traffic volumes along with analyzing various site constraints (such as critical areas and streams) to develop a conceptual roadway widening plan. A traffic analysis evaluated several different road widening options to accommodate the future anticipated traffic volumes for 2040. The analysis provided corridor optimization to review widening options to compare the cost/benefits of a selected roadway section. The traffic analysis concluded by recommending a 4-lane roadway section between 23rd Ave SE and Highlands Boulevard and a 5-lane roadway section north of Highlands Boulevard to tie into the existing 5-lane section south of E Pioneer. 

The future project will add vehicle capacity lanes to mitigate traffic congestion, which frequently occurs along this section of Shaw Road, especially during peak commute hours. The planned improvements will also include installing dedicated center turn lanes and two-way left turn lanes to improve safety and access to side streets. Current planned non-motorized improvements will include a shared-use (both pedestrians and bicycles use) pathway continuation and dedicated sidewalks to interconnect neighborhoods, schools, parks, shopping centers, businesses, and the regional trail system to the greater Puyallup South Hill community. 

The initial design was presented to the public during a virtual Open House in December 2021. Initial comments were received by those in attendance. Staff and the consultant incorporated feedback into the proposed design, including the following items: 

  • A conceptual roadway alignment based on the desired section as warranted by an engineered traffic study. 
  • A conceptual stormwater plan. 
  • A preliminary grading plan with conceptual wall heights. 
  • A conceptual Deer Creek realignment and culvert replacement plan.
  • A preliminary geotechnical investigation and analysis. 
  • A preliminary project funding estimate that will outline approximate construction and Right of Way acquisition costs. 

The conceptual design plans will allow the city to seek future funding partners, such as Federal and State transportation grants, to help chip away at the overall funding required to improve this corridor.


In 2018, the City began work on making improvements to a section of Shaw Road, between 23rd Avenue SE and Manorwood Drive. Improvements to that section included minor widening to add a continuous two-way left-turn lane, sidewalks with crossing enhancements, a shared-use path for biking and walking, and the replacement of a sewer line. The project finished in 2019 with an overall project cost of approximately $8.7 million with the Washington State Transportation Improvement Board (TIB) partnering to fund over 60% of the overall cost. 

As a continuation of that work, the City applied for additional Puget Sound Region Council (PSRC) Surface Transportation Program funds in 2020 to begin studying improvement opportunities for the next phase of Shaw Road between 12th Avenue SE and 23rd Avenue SE. The City was successful in securing a $614,000 grant from the PSRC to conduct this corridor study and prepare conceptual design drawings.

In December 2021, a draft of the project’s traffic analysis findings was shared with City Council. The analysis looked at potential lane widening options to improve the overall level of service (LOS) based on the methodology outlined in the 2010 Highway Capacity Manual. Four conceptual roadway corridor buildout plans were simulated in with both the current and future traffic volume projects utilizing traffic modeling software. The first three roadway sections modeled were... 

  1. Three-lane roadway section which consisted of 1 northbound and 1 southbound travel lane with a continuous two-way left turn lane, 
  2. Four-lane roadway section which consisted of 1 northbound and 2 southbound travel lanes with a continuous two-way left turn lane, and 
  3. Five-lane roadway section which consisted of 2 northbound and 2 southbound travel lanes with a continuous two-way left turn lane. 

Based on the results of this initial modeling, the City’s design team produced a 4th preferred alternative which combined both a four-lane section and a five-lane section placed at locations that would optimize the vehicular movement through the corridor. 

A detailed technical memorandum of the Traffic Analysis prepared as part of this corridor study can be found in the Documents section of this page.


For questions about this project, please email Drew Young, Senior Civil Engineer.