Crime, taxes and artificial intelligence on tap as WA lawmakers prep for session

BY: - November 27, 2023

Rising costs of transportation projects. Using artificial intelligence in Washington classrooms. Preserving affordable housing. Spending proceeds from the state’s new capital gains tax and recent cap-and-trade auctions. Those are a few topics state lawmakers will delve into when they return to Olympia for committee days, an annual fete in which they get schooled on issues […]

WA transportation services back online following cyberattack

BY: - November 10, 2023

Following three days of outages, many of the Washington State Department of Transportation public web services are restored, the agency reported Friday.  A cyberattack hit the department starting Tuesday, cutting online access to statewide traffic cameras, ferry trackers and oversized freight permitting.  As of Friday morning, ferry schedules, some ferry tracking on the mobile app, […]

Sound Transit weighs more night and weekend trips on Seattle-Tacoma train line

BY: - October 26, 2023

Ridership on Sound Transit’s Sounder South train line, which connects Seattle with the Tacoma area, is about half of what it was before the pandemic, a trend the transit agency blames on the lasting rise of remote and hybrid work. With this in mind, the agency is asking riders for feedback on whether they’d like […]

Washington fine-tunes its options for boosting electric vehicle sales

BY: - October 25, 2023

Susan Baird-Joshi spent many hours the last few months helping draw up Washington’s ambitious plan for rapidly electrifying cars and trucks in the state. As a member of the Electric Vehicle Advisory Council, the data scientist weighed in on dozens of ideas considered in drafting the long-term strategy to accelerate purchases of battery-powered vehicles – […]

Big federal dollars for small state projects aim to get more cars off the roads

BY: - October 13, 2023

A 60-mile pedestrian and cycling trail in Arkansas, an electric street sweeper in Oregon and truck parking facilities in Florida don’t appear to have much in common — let alone any similarity with a conversion of California highways to toll roads or a roundabout in Michigan. But all of the projects will be paid for […]

Judge upholds Washington’s $17B transportation package

BY: - September 22, 2023

An effort to derail a sweeping state transportation package failed Friday, with a Thurston County judge upholding the law.  But opponents hinted that the legal fight may not be over. They’d sued asserting the legislation contains multiple unrelated topics in violation of a state constitutional requirement that bills cover no more than one subject.  Thurston […]

Tough choices ahead as costs soar for Washington transportation projects

BY: - August 24, 2023

A financial reckoning is here for Washington’s transportation system. Contract prices to build roads, remove culverts, and overhaul ferries continue to soar due to a confluence of factors: inflation, supply chain woes, worker shortages, and fewer bidders. One contract alone, to construct new express lanes and bus rapid transit stations on a stretch of Interstate […]

Washington awards $150M contract to convert ferries to hybrid-electric power

BY: - August 15, 2023

Washington State Ferries announced Tuesday it has awarded a roughly $150 million contract to ship builder Vigor to convert up to three of the state’s largest vessels to hybrid-electric power. Under the deal, Vigor in September will start work on the Wenatchee ferry at its Harbor Island shipyard in Seattle. The Jumbo Mark II vessel, […]

It will cost more to travel on a state ferry in Washington this fall

BY: - August 10, 2023

The Washington State Transportation Commission on Thursday voted to increase fares for Washington State Ferries this fall. Commissioners approved a 4.25% hike for vehicles and walk-on passengers on Oct. 1 and another 4.25% on Oct. 1, 2024.  They also agreed to provide buyers of a 20-ride book the equivalent of five free trips, up from […]

State ferry system may face budget gap even with fare hike

BY: - August 8, 2023

A pending price hike for Washington State Ferries travelers may not bring in enough money to cover the agency’s operating expenses, raising the possibility of further fare increases next year. The Washington State Transportation Commission is on course to boost fares for vehicles and walk-on passengers by 4.25% on Oct. 1 and another 4.25% on […]

What do Washington’s rest stops need most? The state is trying to figure it out.

BY: - August 4, 2023

Drivers pulling into the Maytown rest area south of Olympia on Thursday morning encountered few open parking spaces. Cars, pick-ups, vans and motorcycles filled a majority of stalls at this highway pit stop at milepost 93 on southbound Interstate 5. A similar experience awaited arriving trucks as big rigs occupied nearly every space, save one […]

Tribes call for feds to ban chemical in car tires that is linked to salmon deaths

BY: - August 1, 2023

Two tribes in Washington are asking federal regulators to ban a chemical widely used in car tires that scientists have identified as highly toxic to salmon and other fish. The Port Gamble S’Klallam and Puyallup tribes, along with the Yurok, which is the largest native nation in California, petitioned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on […]