When first posted as such in January 1964, SR 512 began at Jct I-5 in Lakewood and headed east, ending at Jct SR 161 near what is today South Hill Mall. The original route followed today's SR 512 freeway from I-5 to Steele St, then headed south on Steele to 112th St, then east to SR 161. During the mid to late 1960s, the SR 512 freeway was extended in stages east to the South Hill area. This freeway was extended further in the early 1970s, curving north and ending at the SR 167 Valley Freeway NE of Puyallup. The SR 512 designation was extended coincident with SR 161 along this freeway extension from South Hill to Jct SR 167. Part of this final extension of SR 512 was two lanes for a few years, including the Puyallup River bridge. Today, SR 512 is 12.06 miles long.
Before 1964, SR 512 had been SSH 5G.
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