LAKEWOOD, Wash. – Five hundred trees along a 14-mile stretch of Interstate 5 in Pierce County are coming down. The Washington State Department of Transportation is cutting the trees down as part of an ongoing project to improve traffic congestion along that corridor.
WSDOT says the trees will be removed in order to put in seven traffic cameras. The cameras need a clear line of vision to I-5.
Traffic congestion is notorious along the stretch between Lakewood and Lacey, which includes Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
Driver Sue Linton says she moved to the area from California to escape the concrete jungle.
"Now they're turning this beautiful area into concrete," said Linton.
“Yes, traffic is bad, but why cut down trees? Aren't there other options?" said driver Sue Maniatis.
WSDOT carefully mapped and selected which trees will come down, which will begin Monday. Once the project is completed, WSDOT says it plans to plant 500 new trees to make up for the loss.