The Voice for Industry
April 23, 2009
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Seattle First - Helping Seattle Industry

Deep Bore Breakthrough



Just four months ago, the idea of replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a deep bore tunnel was dismissed by many as a fruitcake notion that was hopelessly idealistic and, in the inner sanctums of Olympia, Washington state politics, politically impossible.

But, today, the deep bore proposal is on the brink of becoming official public policy for the State of Washington.

The tunnel proposal was approved last night by the state house of representatives and it now awaits review by the state senate, which is expected to approve it. After that, all that's required is the expected sign off by Governor Chris Gregoire and the state will be committed to spending $2.4 billion for a tunnel solution to the viaduct.

We suspect that would be the largest single expenditure in the history of Washington state government and the story of how this came to be is explained in the current print edition of Seattle Industry magazine. If you want to get a copy, go here.

Next steps for the tunnel? Environmental review, design work, future funding battles involving the City of Seattle, the Port of Seattle and King County, and more political and practical challenges than we care to contemplate as the improbable journey of the deep bore tunnel proposal continues to move forward.

Visioning Seattle's Transportation Future

TOWN HALL Meeting: What will Seattle's transportation landscape look like in 20 years? How will we move people and goods, manage congestion, and cut our emissions? As the city and the Puget Sound region grapples with the many transportation challenges ahead, now is the time to have this discussion. On the heels of the stimulus package, plans are underway on how to spend future federal highway and transit dollars in the next reauthorization of federal transportation legislation later this year. Join us for a special interactive town hall discussion with our panelists:

Jan Drago, Chair, Transportation Committee, Seattle City Council
Kevin Desmond, General Manager, King County Metro
Chuck Ayers, Executive Director, Cascade Bicycle Club
Carla Archambault, General Manager, Zipcar Seattle
Eric dePlace, Senior Researcher, Sightline Institute
Carla Saulter, Transit advocate and author of the Bus Chick blog on Seattle PI.com

WHEN: Friday May 1, 12:00pm - 1:30pm
WHERE: Bertha Knight Landes Room, Seattle City Hall
5th Avenue between Cherry and James St.

This special townhall is brought to you by Transportation Choices Coalition, Futurewise, WashPIRG, Sierra Club Cascade Chapter, Bicycle Alliance of Washington, Cascade Bicycle Club, Seattle Transit Blog, and Zipcar


HEY! Watch it

The collision that occurred after a car made an illegal turn in front of a light rail train last week on MLK Jr. Way is a reminder of the importance of abiding by traffic signals and safety precautions as light rail testing ramps up in advance of passenger service starting in July.

Drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists and others can expect to see the light rail vehicles on the track at any time. Sound Transit police are also working with local law enforcement agencies to increase enforcement of all traffic and pedestrian laws along the alignment. Drivers and pedestrians should be alert and obey all traffic signs and signals; only cross the street at designated crosswalks or traffic signals. All of the locations where traffic or pedestrians can legally cross the light rail tracks are equipped with signals. For more information on Link safety, see: http://www.soundtransit.org/linksafety



Bike Maintenance 101

Presented by Bicycle Alliance of Washington's Commute Specialist
May is Bicycle to Work Month so in an effort to get ready; Join us to go over basic maintenance topics, including parts and how they work, the "ABC" quick check (Air, Brakes, Cranks/Chains/Cassette), and preventing and fixing flats. Familiarize yourself with the common repair problems you might encounter. This workshop is meant for people with little or no experience with bike maintenance. There will be a demonstration bike to work on, but you can bring your own if you like.

This workshop will be offered twice, on April 27th and May 4th. Space is limited to 10 participants in each class, so RSVP now!

April 27th, 6:30-8:00 &
May 4th, 6:30-8:00
EOS Alliance Offices
650 South Orcas Street, Suite 220
Seattle, WA 98108
Cost: $5 suggested donation
RSVP: April 27th Workshop
RSVP: May 4th Workshop
For Questions contact Noah at ngrant@eosalliance.org


Business Can Get in on the Economic Stimulus Too

How? Attend the Washington State Energy Summit: Leadership for a Clean and Efficient Energy Future. Hosted by: Washington Community Trade and Economic Development (CTED) on May 4, 2009 at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center

Who should attend? Businesses interested in applying for federal clean energy funds, policy makers, and non-governmental organizations who want to know how the state can use ARRA dollars as a catalyst for the transition to a clean energy economy.

Play your part in shaping Washington's clean energy economy. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) offers an unprecedented opportunity to use federal "stimulus" funds to advance our state's transition to a new clean energy economy.

Join your fellow business and community leaders from around the state to learn the latest about Recovery Act funding for clean energy programs.
Keynote speakers include:

Chris Gregoire, Governor, State of Washington
Matt Rogers, Senior Advisor, U.S. Department of Energy (invited)
Rogers Weed, Director, Washington State Department of Community, Trade & Economic Development
Highlights of the full-day Washington State Energy Summit include:

Up-to-date information on funding sources and federal guidance. Networking and matchmaking opportunities for prospective competitive grant proposal partners. Preview of the draft State Energy Program (SEP) funding plan that will invest over $60 million in state and local projects for the next two years.

Register on line: http://wastateenergysummit2009-emailinvite.eventbrite.com Registration questions? Contact Linda Alongi at lindaa@cted.wa.gov.


Getting Employees Across the Lake During the Bridge Closure


I-90 lane closures on the Homer Hadley Bridge (westbound direction) are starting in May! Expect congestion…well, duh! There are options and special offers for 'trans-lake' commuters, however.

Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is working with King County Metro to keep traffic moving. Here's WSDOT's offer to commuters starting new King County Metro commuter van groups on routes that routinely travel on I-405 or cross the I-90 or SR 520 bridges in either direction:

Free Metro vanpool fares or Metro vanshare fees for three months for new groups who start between May 1, 2009 and July 1, 2009!
$20 MasterCard Gift Card to new registrants on RideshareOnline.com or current registrants that go into the system and request an updated ridematch.
Who is eligible?

  • Commuters routinely commuting on I-405 or in either direction on the I-90 or SR 520 bridges.
  • Approved applicants who have completed the Metro online orientation course by 5/15/09 and take delivery of their van by July 1, 2009.
  • Commuters who have not participated in a public vanpool period in the last 90 days.

DON'T DELAY! These rewards are only available while funding lasts.

Keep moving this summer! Contact Julie Paone at (206) 684-1529 or julie.paone@kingcounty.gov for details.

I-90 Project information is available at: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/I90/HomerHadleyBridgeRepair/

Rideshare Incentive information is available at: http://www.rideshareonline.com/ridesharerewards/king.htm

Something for the Kids??

Tough economic times are tough on for-profits without a doubt, but non-profits particularly feel the pinch when their usual generous sponsors find the need to cut back. Local youth projects in Georgetown and South Park have some specific needs right now. Maybe you could lend a hand.

Opportunity Skyway Air Academy is a Seattle Public School located at the north end of Boeing Field (6524 Ellis Ave S, 98109) that combines education with hands-on learning in aviation manufacturing and career exploration. Students divide their time between the classroom and the shop where they build airplanes. OSAA's "wish list" currently includes an air compressor, band saw blades, hand tools, a time card machine, projector and first aid kits. If you can help out with these items, or just want to learn more, contact Kjell Rye at kjrye@seattleschools.org or 206-296-7452.

River City Skate Park is in final building permit review with groundbreaking in the next four to six weeks. The park will be located at 8th S and S Cloverdale in South Park, will be a free of charge, public skate park providing all levels of skateboarding, from street to bowls, beginner to expert. A number of local companies have stepped forward to provide materials and services as in-kind or at-cost contributions. Currently the project is looking for a source of steel pipe and framing lumber. If you can help out with these items, or just want to learn more, contact James Klinedinst at james@grindline.com or (206) 932-6414.




I-90
TRAFFIC ALERT: Plan now for I-90 congestion: Starting Monday, May 4 the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) will close the HOV express lanes on the Interstate 90 bridge across Lake Washington around the clock for up to three weeks. This is likely to cause significant delays for all traffic – including buses and carpools. And, the impacts could be worse in July for the second part of the project. If you regularly use I-90 or State Route 520 to cross the lake, it's not too early to make plans for dealing with the projected congestion. Metro is offering special vanpool and carpool incentives. For Commute options go to: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/I90/HomerHadleyBridgeRepair/CommuteOptions.htm


FREIGHT TRAVEL ALERT - Hood Canal Bridge Closure

START DATE/TIME: May 1, 2009 12:01 a.m.
END DATE/TIME: Construction is projected to be completed in six weeks.
LOCATION: SR 104 Hood Canal Bridge
DETAILS: The eastern half of the Hood Canal Bridge is nearing the end of its structural service life. Because repairs would not significantly extend the life of the bridge, rebuilding is the more cost-effective solution. When finished, the Hood Canal Bridge will have a new, wider east-half floating section, and new approach sections and transition trusses on the east and west ends.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: For helpful travel tips, detours, and more information, visit the project page at: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/SR104HoodCanalBridgeEast/Truckers.htm

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Spring 2009
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