Topic

congestion pricing

Ask Not for Whom The Road Tolls

This article, published by the Puget Sound Business Journal, refers to an article by Cascadia Fellow Matt Rosenberg: The Cascadia Center just posted a valuable piece about funding a replacement for the ailing State Route 520 Bridge between Seattle and the Eastside. The piece by Cascadia Fellow Matt Rosenberg highlights the $2.38 billion funding gap, and discusses the various plans to close the Read More ›

Time To Go “All In” On Tolls

Just putting tolls on the Evergreen Point Bridge is not going to cut it. Instead, the region needs to apply tolls all along the 520 corridor and broadly across our highway system. Here's an encouraging progress report. The four-lane Evergreen Point Floating Bridge across Lake Washington on State Route 520 is a relic of a bygone era, congested and disaster prone. How urgent is the need for a planned six-lane replacement? The Washington State Department of Transportation has gone so far as to graphically model on YouTube how the bridge might buckle under duress, threatening lives and paralyzing the region's highway network. And is the region stepping up to the challenge? Less than half the funding is secured. The Seattle-side configuration is still being debated. More broadly, the project begs a more comprehensive regional tolling strategy because our bridges and highways are all connected. We can't keep doing transportation mega-projects on a disjointed, one-off basis. A key to any solution is tolling, and soon. Here and nationwide, 40 years of sizzling growth in vehicle miles traveled has left too many sections of highways, arterial roads, and bridges overburdened, in disrepair, and obsolete in the face of seismic and other hazards. Those ballyhooed federal stimulus funds were a mere drop in the bucket, amounting to less than one-quarter of what a landmark Congressional commission report says is needed annually. The per-gallon gas tax is badly failing at the federal and state levels. The federal gas tax trust fund is bankrupt, and living on bailouts. Even tripling state gas tax contributions to pending mega-projects in Washington state would do little to close wide funding gaps, state data show. A big new federal transportation bill — which may well include the first hike in the U.S. gas tax since 1993 — will help some, but not that much. (More) Read More ›

The Viaduct Decision’s Next Step: Tolling

In an interview with Ross Reynolds on KUOW-FM – MP3 audio file here – Washington Governor Chris Gregoire said it was “very likely” that tolling would be applied to the new deep bored tunnel planned to replace the seismically vulnerable Alaskan Way Viaduct on State Route 99 in Seattle. (A state rendering of the bored tunnel’s cross-section is below, right.) Read More ›

Toll-booth-free Tolling On SR 520 And I-90

The State Route 520 Tolling Implementation Committee’s “November Scenario Evaluation” document (pdf) released last week shows that the most robust regional financing for replacing the dangerously sub-par 520 bridge comes from time-variable tolling starting in 2010 and tolling the parallel I-90 span across Lake Washington, starting in 2010 or 2016. Tolling in this key east-west corridor would be done on Read More ›

HOT Lanes Expansion Urged

The report featured Cascadia Center Director Bruce Agnew, and aired repeatedly in the late afternoon through evening drive, and the next day (Saturday). Longer version: .wav file (minus intro & outro) Short version: .wav file (minus intro & outro)

Tolling Is Bridge To New Era Of Ground Transportation

This article, published by the Puget Sound Business Journal, mentions the Cascadia Center of Discovery Institute: But can tolls and the gas tax work together? That was the rhetorical question posed by David Dye, chief operating officer for the Washington State Department of Transportation, who spoke at Cascadia Center’s recent Seattle workshop on Tolling and Traffic Management. The rest of Read More ›

Tolls – And A Transport Revolution – Are Headed Our Way

This article, published by the Puget Sound Business Journal, mentions the Cascadia Center of Discovery Institute: In Seattle on June 26, the Cascadia Center for Regional Development held a West Coast Workshop on Tolling and Traffic Management. The rest of the article can be found here.