The Voice for Industry
September 30, 2009
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Seattle First - Helping Seattle Industry

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Green Expo Oct. 9
A New Partnership for Technical Education
Most industrial business owners and managers express frustration that today's education system does not provide the types of workers that they need. If you feel the same, you can do something about it by participating in the October 9, 2009 Green Industrial Business and Career Expo at the Puget Sound Industrial Excellence Center in Georgetown.

New State Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn is the keynote speaker. He wants to reinvigorate technical education in our state and wants advice from the private sector about how to go about that.

The expo will also include workshops about new curriculum guides for high school and middle school construction and manufacturing programs that are just now being published by U.S. construction and manufacturing trade associations. Private sector input is being sought for those efforts and future curriculum implementation efforts at the Puget Sound Skill Center, a technical high school in Burien, and the Seattle Public Schools.

Co-sponsors for the Expo include the City of Seattle Office of Economic Development, The Boeing Company, Nucor Steel Seattle, South Seattle Community College, Mr. Dorn and the Office of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Manufacturing Industrial Council of Seattle, the ML King County Labor Council, Aerospace Machinists 751, the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee and the King County and Washington State Building and Construction Trades Councils.

The Seattle Times published an excellent column today about what the partnership seeks to achieve. You can find it here.

You can learn more about the expo at http://www.greenexpo-wa.com. Advance registration is required and you can register through the web site. Questions? Call 206-762-2470.

Green River Valley Flooding Resources

Residents, businesses and farms along the Green River are at a higher risk for flooding this fall and winter, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The agency reports seeping water and suspicious depressions at the Howard Hanson Dam could mean major flooding in Auburn, Kent, Renton and Tukwila. That could affect SR 167 and other key Green River Valley highways and county roads that people depend on to escape the flooding, get to work and move freight. The Corps is making emergency repairs on the dam and planning long-term repairs.

King County has a flood preparedness Web site (http://www.kingcounty.gov/safety/FloodPlan.aspx) with more information, including ways you can prepare for a flood, how to register for alerts and where to find the latest information about what King County is doing to address flooding. Upcoming public meetings for businesses and residents also are posted on King County's Web site, and on the city of Auburn and the city of Kent Web sites.

WSDOT is coordinating efforts with King County, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and many other agencies, and will keep you updated about our highways through an e-mail service. Sign up for updates to your email or phone.
Source - WSDOT bulletin "I-5 Connections Transportation News" addition 131.


ORCA Card Rollout Kicks Into High Gear

The ORCA fare card is now expanding to more bus, train and ferry riders around the region, as the seven transit partner agencies encourage their customers to trade up for a new electronic card.

ORCA One Regional Card for All is a smart card-based electronic fare system for public transportation agencies serving King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish counties. ORCA replaces about 300 various passes, tickets and transfers with a single card that works by simply tapping the ORCA card on a reader device.

ORCA was launched last April in a "limited rollout" phase to ensure the system could handle its complex transactions before greatly expanding its customer base. Now, it's ready to expand.

Riders who purchase their own monthly transit pass online or by mail likely have already been converted to an ORCA card. Starting this month, riders who purchase passes in person will receive an ORCA card for their October transit pass. Riders who get their transit passes from their employers are being converted to ORCA as their employers' annual contracts come up for renewal.

For information about ORCA, visit the website, or call 1-888-988-6722 (ORCA)/ TTY Relay: 711/ 888-889-6368.
Source from "News Center Transportation Today" King County




WSDOT Asks Drivers To Expect Delays Over Snoqualmie Pass

From now until November, motorists traveling over I-90 east of Snoqualmie Pass should prepare for delays and traffic backups that could add up to one additional hour of travel time to their trip. Since WSDOT waited to start heavy construction activities on the Lake Easton to Bullfrog Road concrete replacement project (milepost 70 to milepost 80) until after the Labor Day holiday, WSDOT and contractor crews are racing against the clock by working both day and night to complete improvements before the first snowfall. Crews have been working only at night since early July, to reduce impacts to the high volumes of summer traffic.

Traffic will be restricted to one lane in each direction late Sunday night through Friday morning using the existing eastbound lanes. For the safety of the travelling public, concrete barrier is being placed to separate opposing traffic through the work zone.

On weekends, three travel lanes will be open - with two lanes in the peak travel direction to accommodate higher traffic volumes. To make these lane shifts possible, construction crews have built lane crossovers that allow westbound traffic to cross into the eastbound travel lanes. Drivers may encounter the crossovers prior to seeing crews on the roadway.

The posted speed limit through the construction zone is 50 mph. Motorists are advised to maintain this posted speed limit through the construction zone and focus on safe driving behaviors.

For more construction information visit: www.wsdot.wa.gov/Regions/SouthCentral/Construction

Big Paving Push Coming Up On I-405 In Renton
Adding lanes to I-405 means a lot of night work, when traffic is lightest and crews can move more quickly and safely around the freeway work zones. We'll be on a big paving push in the next month on I-405 in Renton and Tukwila to open new lanes this fall. When we're done drivers will have a new lane in each direction on I-405 between I-5 and SR 167.

Just across the I-405/SR 167 interchange crews have started the process of dowel bar retrofitting sections of the freeway. The dowel bars are inserted into slots in the pavement and link the panels together. The dowel bar retrofit process extends the life of existing pavement by 10 to 15 years.

Crews are planning nighttime closures of lanes and ramps in the area to do the work, so if you travel at night check our I-405 Construction Update Web site for the latest schedule information.


An Amazing Number of Freight Advisories

FREIGHT TRAVEL ADVISORY CENTRAL PUGET SOUND
Highlights:

  • I -90: Snoqualmie Pass Lane Closures - Long term closures from Easton to Bullfrog. For information see: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/I90/LkEastonToBullfrogWB/ for information.
  • I-5: Ship Canal bridge inspections - Lane Closures - September 19th thru September 25th
  • I-5: Bridge deck repair at Military Road in Federal Way - Nightly Lane Closures
  • I-5: S. 272nd Street to Southcenter Parkway - Nightly Lane Closures
  • I-5: Boeing Access to I-90 sign bridges - Nightly Lane Closures
  • I-5: Boeing Access Road to King and Snohomish county line pavement repair
  • I-90: I-5 to 12th Avenue S. Seismic Retrofit - Nightly Lane and Ramp Closures
  • I-90: Lake Washington Active traffic management - sign bridges - Nightly Lane Closures - May also have closures on SR 520.
  • I-405 - Construction Updates - For closure information see http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/I405/conupdates.htm#renton%20stage%202
  • SR 900: SE 78th Street Vicinity to Newport Way Widening Project - Alternating one-way traffic. See: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/SR900/SE78th_Issaquah/.
  • I-5: 52nd Avenue to State Route 526 Paving - Nightly Lane Closures
  • SR-16: Sprague Avenue on-ramp to westbound SR 16 is closed
  • I-5: Port of Tacoma Road to King County Line Add HOV Lanes - Nightly Closures - http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/projects/PiercecountyHOV/I5_PortTacomatoKing/



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