Traffic Impact Fees

What Are Traffic Impact Fees?

When a person or business develops property in unincorporated Pierce County, they pay traffic impact fees (TIF). The fees are charges on new development that creates higher travel demand. They help pay for transportation system improvements 
needed by the new development. 

Fees can only be used to add transportation system capacity required to support new development. They are not used for maintenance or operations work.

Traffic impact fees are used to help:
  • Reduce traffic congestion
  • Reduce delays at intersections
  • Build more roadway connections
  • Encourage economic development

2019 Traffic Impact Fee Program changes

Changes to the Traffic Impact Fee program went into effect Feb. 1, 2019. Learn about rates, methods used to calculate rates and policies adopted by Pierce County Council Ordinance 2018-71s. You may also view the fee schedule.

In January 2017, the Pierce County Transportation Advisory Commission (TAC) began to review the Traffic Impact Free program for the 2019 update. They worked with Pierce County Planning and Public Works in the process.

The program was passed by Ordinances 2006-60s and 2006-61s with effective date of Jan. 1, 2007. It was later updated by Ordinance 2012-63.

Transportation Service Areas 

Pierce County is split and mapped into four Transportation Service Areas under the updated program. These mapped areas are based on future land use, growth, and transportation needs. Traffic impact fees by type of development vary within the mapped areas.

Projects

The total cost of roadway and intersection projects to support future transportation needs is $700 million. Traffic Impact Fees are expected to bring in $253 million for these projects.

The projects include:
  • Intersections
    • traffic signals
    • turn lanes
    • roundabouts
  • Road projects that address:
    • Concurrency (keeping roadways within allowed congestion levels)
    • Corridors and connectors (linking roadways to improve traffic flow)
    • Plateau corridors (Tehaleh and nearby communities)
    • Mobility (economic development)
    • Finished projects (waiting for further Traffic Impact Fees)

Future Changes

On January 1, 2021, the traffic impact fee schedule shall be adjusted. Changes are based on the Construction Cost Index (20-City Average) published by the Engineering News-Record.

Map showing TIF intersection projects, such as traffic signals, turn lanes, and roundabouts
Map of TIF projects, for concurrency, corridors & connectors, freight mobility, & plateau corridors

TIF Deferral Program


On October 26, 2010, the Pierce County Council adopted two ordinances. The laws allow builders to defer Traffic Impact Fees, Park Impact Fees, and sewer connection charges.

Read about the deferral program

TIF Refund Survey


Did you receive your Traffic Impact Fee refund in the mail? Tell us about your refund process.


Take the survey
open book

TIF Guides and Forms


Guides
These guides help customers with an overview of the TIF program for various types of projects.
Forms
These forms are used to run the TIF program.
More on land use can be found at the Development Center.

calculator

TIF Calculator


The TIF Calculator can be used to estimate the amount of traffic impact fees required for various projects. This calculator is for estimates only. Final fee amounts will be calculated by Pierce County.
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