PSRC Funding At Work: Tacoma’s Front Porch Re-Do

Tacoma has begun construction on a project to transform historic Pacific Avenue through its downtown.

Illustration of Tacoma's Pacific Avenue Streetscape project

Rain gardens, water features, and plantings are part of the innovative storm water improvements in Tacoma’s Pacific Avenue Streetscape project now under construction.

The Pacific Avenue Streetscape project will add new sidewalks, street lighting, paving, bike sharrows, green stormwater infrastructure, public art, and new landscaping, including 129 trees, 817 shrubs and over 3,000 new plants.
The nearly $9 million project received support from federal and state sources, including $800,000 in PSRC federal funding in 2012. The project is scheduled to be complete later this year. Updates are available on Tacoma’s website.

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PSRC’s Budget and Work Program

The process to develop PSRC’s new two-year budget and work program is underway. The draft budget totals $25.9 million and outlines PSRC’s responsibilities from July 1, 2013 – June 30, 2015. Initiatives in the draft budget are divided into four program areas: Growth Management, Transportation Planning, Economic Development and Data and Analysis.

The draft work program for Growth Management includes:

  • Regional Industrial Lands Inventory
  • Centers Guidelines
  • Monitoring Program
  • Growing Transit Communities completion

The draft work program for Transportation includes:

  • Transportation 2040 Update
  • MAP-21 Performance Based Approach
  • Regional Freight Strategy
  • PSRC Funding

The draft work program for Data and Analysis includes:

  • Regional Household Travel Survey
  • Activity-based travel model preparation for 2018 Transportation 2040 Update
  • Regional Freight Modeling

The draft work program for Economic Development includes:

  • I6 Green Challenge Grant
  • Regional Economic Strategy implementation

The draft budget will be discussed at the upcoming Executive Board meeting. See what else is on the agenda.


New Performance and Delivery Expectations for PSRC Funding

obligation chartThere are new delivery targets for federal funds awarded to local agency projects beginning in 2013.  PSRC is ahead of schedule on this effort thanks to its existing project tracking program.

Per the strategy established by the Washington State Local Project Delivery Task Force, if a region does not meet their delivery targets, the balance of unused funds will be reallocated via a first-come/first-served statewide distribution process.

The overall goals of the strategy are to 1) meet federal funding delivery expectations; 2) keep locally allocated funds local; and 3) position agencies to receive unused federal funds from other states by demonstrating the ability to deliver projects in a timely manner.

The Transportation Policy Board learned about these new expectations at its February 14 meeting. Watch the discussion or read about what else took place.



Want to go to the Paris Air Show?

Paris hosts the largest and most prestigious air show in the world.

The Trade Development Alliance and the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce are hosting a leadership mission to Paris, France from June 14 to June 21. Find out more.

Other topics will include: Biotechnology, Information Technology, Higher Education, Ports, and the EU Crises. France is the world’s fifth-largest economy.

This leadership program offers a unique opportunity to develop lasting relationships with leaders in France and in the PSRC region, as well as the chance to promote Greater Seattle and Washington State to a world-class market.

Learn more about what the Prosperity Partnership is working on in the coming months.

Safer Routes to Schools in the Works

Three projects to make it easier for kids to walk and bike to school are part of a proposed amendment to the region’s Transportation Improvement Program.

Safe Routes to School Program Begins

Safe Routes to Schools aim to improve the health and well-being of children by making it easier for them to walk and bike to school.

The Transportation Policy Board is scheduled to vote on the recommendation tomorrow.

The three projects are:

44th Street in University Place – Adding about 2,000 feet of sidewalk, bike lane, and lighting along the north side of 44th Street with crossing ramp upgrades at intersections.

Cirque Drive in University Place – Adding about 3,800 feet of biking and walking features along the north side of Cirque Drive with new signalized crosswalks at 79th & 83rd.

Federal Way High and Sacajawea Middle School Pedestrian Connection – Creating a sidewalk, curb, gutter,  bicycle pavement marking, curb ramps, and other improvements between S 312th Street and S 308th Street and continuing on S 308th Street from 14th Avenue S to Pacific Highway South.

With the passage of MAP-21, Safe Routes to School projects will be eligible to compete for funding as part of a new program called Transportation Alternatives.

Regional Transit Coordination and Funding

The Transportation Policy Board has been reviewing the history and structure of transit agencies in the region, coordination activities between transit agencies, and issues of service loss resulting from reduced revenues since the recession.

This week, the board will be making recommendations to the Executive Board that will address opportunities for improved coordination, how to strengthen the linkage between land use and transit service, and how to address the transit funding shortfall.

Also on the agenda are: the Transportation 2040 Update, new performance and delivery expectation for PSRC Funds, and PSRC’s Biennial Budget and Work Program. Watch the meeting live here.


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Pierce County Comes Together to Plan for the Future

The Pierce County Regional Council joined together this week for its annual General Assembly focusing on its work program for the next year and communication in preparation for the 2015 US Open. Watch the program below.

Features PSRC Officers Commissioner Josh Brown and Executive Pat McCarthy and Robert Puentes, Senior Fellow – Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program.