Final section of Shoreline’s Aurora project to break ground

The City of Shoreline will be breaking ground on the last section of its Aurora Corridor (SR 99) project in January.

New sidewalks with stormwater features are being added along SR 99 in Shoreline.

New sidewalks with stormwater features are being added along SR 99 in Shoreline.

Since 2007, the city has been working on redeveloping three miles of SR 99 that run through the heart of Shoreline.

PSRC has awarded the city $19.9 million for the Aurora Corridor project since it began.

The goal of the project is to promote economic development, and improve safety, traffic flow, transit speed and reliability, aesthetics, and environmental quality.

Changes to the last portion – 192nd to 205th — will include a landscaped median with left and U-turn pockets, new sidewalks, street trees, lighting, underground utilities, and natural stormwater treatment features.

Green screens of low maintenance plants will enhance the retaining walls along SR 99.

Green screens of low maintenance plants will enhance the retaining walls along SR 99.

Because this section of Aurora has steep grades, the project will build six large retaining walls.

To enhance the appearance of these structures, the city will incorporate green screens – low maintenance plants that will grow on and cover the walls.

Shoreline’s Aurora project is one example of the kinds of regional projects that have competed successfully for federal funding managed by PSRC. The region is expected to receive about $240 million annually through federal transportation programs.

In March 2014, PSRC will announce a new “call for projects” to compete for the region’s federal funds.

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Support Cultural Access Washington in 2014

Access to science, heritage and arts experiences advances education, enhances the economy, enriches quality of life and strengthens communities.

Kids with access to cultural activities excel in school and are more comfortable working in diverse communities.

Kids with access to cultural activities excel in school and are more comfortable working in diverse communities.

The Cultural Access Washington coalition, an alliance of business, non- profit, educational, labor and government leaders across the state, is mobilizing legislation in 2014 to increase access to cultural experiences (from arts organizations to science centers museums and zoos) for children and adults across Washington. If successful, cultural education programs for students and residents would be widely available, and school transportation would be provided to these experiences.

Communities that are home to vibrant cultural organizations are more competitive for high-paying jobs and high-quality workers, and enjoy greater economic prosperity. Studies show that students who are engaged in cultural activities excel in school and are more comfortable working in diverse communities.

This legislation provides access and sustainable funding to enable local communities to connect citizens with cultural organizations and educational experiences. It’s a top priority for the region’s economic strategy in 2014.

Sign on to support for this effort.

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Transportation 2040 Briefing on January 15

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On January 15, PSRC is hosting a briefing on the Transportation 2040 Update for state and local agencies. The briefing will be held from 1-3 p.m. in the PSRC Board Room.

PSRC is reaching out to agencies with expertise in conservation, historic preservation, environmental protection, natural resources, and land use management, as well as other environmental stakeholders in the central Puget Sound region.

While this is a briefing focused on getting input from state and local agencies, anyone is welcome to attend. Please RSVP to Sean Ardussi, sardussi@psrc.org, 206-464-7080, if you plan to participate.

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Pierce Transit is alternative fuels pioneer

Pierce Transit was recently honored by Western Washington Clean Cities for the transit agency’s long-standing commitment to powering its buses with natural gas.

Pierce Transit fuels all its buses with compressed natural gas, improving air quality and saving money.

Pierce Transit runs all its buses on compressed natural gas, improving air quality and saving money on fuel costs.

On December 5, the agency received the 2013 Alternative Fuels Sustainable Commitment Award at the Western Washington Clean Cities annual meeting.

Pierce Transit began the move from diesel fuel to compressed natural gas in 1986, and converted its entire fleet by 2004.

It was one of the first transit agencies in the nation to make the switch.

The compressed natural gas fuel reduces nitrogen oxide and carbon monoxide emissions by 90% and virtually eliminates particulate emissions when compared to conventional diesel.

Earlier this year, Pierce Transit signed an agreement to run most of its bus fleet on renewable natural gas from the Cedar Hills landfill.  Read more here.

Western Washington Clean Cities is an organization dedicated to promoting the use of cleaner domestic fuels and efficient vehicles.

The organization is part of a network of more than 80 communities within the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Program.

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Coming Up in January: CityClub’s Legislative Preview

Registration is open for Seattle CityClub‘s annual legislative preview, which will be held on January 10, 2014 at the Grand Hyatt Seattle.

CityClub's 2014 Legislative Preview is January 10.

CityClub’s 2014 Legislative Preview is January 10.

The event is a special opportunity to speak directly with top leadership from the State House and Senate at a time when leadership questions are still being solved.

Featuring: (With more to come)

  • Rep. Pat Sullivan (D), 47th Legislative District
  • Rep. Dan Kristiansen (R), 39th Legislative District
  • Sen. Sharon Nelson (D), 34th Legislative District
  • Sen. Rodney Tom (D), 48th Legislative District

Moderators: Austin Jenkins, Olympia Correspondent, Public Radio Northwest News Network and Essex Porter, Reporter, KIRO 7 Eyewitness News

Doors Open: 11:30 a.m. | Luncheon & Program: Noon – 1:30 p.m.
Luncheon: $45-$ 55 | Dessert & Coffee: $12-$18


Port of Everett plays key role in $4 billion logistics and shipping

With over $4 billion in gross business income, a new economic impact study shows the maritime industry’s logistics and shipping subsector pumped over $1.1 billion in wages into Washington State’s economy in 2012.

The Port of Everett ranks 5th on the West Coast in terms of cargo value.

The Port of Everett ranks 5th on the West Coast in terms of cargo value.

The Port of Everett alone directly employed almost 14,000 workers and the port’s activities directly supported a total of 34,000 jobs. Because of its special relationship with the aerospace industry, it ranked second statewide in terms of port export value and is fifth on the West Coast by cargo value.

Home to seven shipping lines, the Port of Everett operates the largest public marina on the West Coast with over 2,300 slips, and plays a strategic role in serving the state’s aerospace industry by importing parts for assembly of aircraft by Boeing and others.

To learn more about the impact of this key seaport, check out this video produced by the Port of Everett.

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Parking inventory tracks off-street parking data

The number of parking facilities and parking stalls in the region increased slightly from 2010 to 2013, according to PSRC’s latest parking inventory.

seattle-eparkAt the same time, the region’s average costs for off-street parking were down slightly.

This data comes from PSRC’s parking inventory, which surveys off-street parking facilities in the region’s central business districts, ferry terminals, and some urban neighborhoods.

Among the findings:

Amount of Parking

  • There was a 3% increase in the number of off-street parking facilities and 4% increase of parking stalls from 2010 to 2013.
  • Bremerton and Tacoma had the largest percent increase of parking facilities in the central business district areas, 13.1% and 5.3%, respectively.
  • Bellevue and Seattle had slight decreases in parking facilities, 2.1% and 1%, respectively, during that same period.

Costs

  • Overall, the region’s costs for off-street parking decreased slightly between 2010 and 2013.
  • Seattle continues to be the city with the highest off-street parking costs in the region. Seattle’s average two-hour, daily, and monthly costs are $7.95, $17.54, and $214.95, respectively.
  • With the exception of Seattle’s monthly parking, off-street parking costs are down slightly compared to the 2010 parking inventory.

Occupancy

  • Average daily occupancy dropped slightly between 2010 and 2013.
  • Seattle had the highest average daily occupancy rate for downtown areas, 55.5%.
  • Of the ferry terminal areas, Bainbridge had the highest occupancy rate, 68.6%. The Southworth ferry terminal had the lowest occupancy rate of the study areas, 32.7%.
  • Bremerton and Bellevue were the two central business districts to show changes in occupancy rates, decreasing by more than 10% from 2010 to 2013.

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For more information, check out the latest issue of Puget Sound Trends and visit the Parking Inventory page.

 

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