Ferry users, Puget Sound commuters and Snoqualmie Pass drivers came out the winners in a competition for more than $363 million in federal transportation grants.
The U.S. Department of Transportation this week announced its grant awards to support projects that improve roadway safety, maintain the nation’s roads and bridges, and make communities more livable. Seven Washington State Department of Transportation projects were awarded a total of more than $5.3 million from several grant programs, including $4.2 million to Washington State Ferries for four projects.
The project locations, award amounts and descriptions are as follows:
- WSF vessel renovations, $2 million: Making vital repairs and improvements on six vessels, including efficiency-enhancing engine retrofits and new fuel-saving boilers.
- WSF visual-paging system, $700,000: Equipping 10 terminals with a new public-messaging system, making WSF more accessible, particularly for passengers who are deaf or hard of hearing.
- MV Yakima and Kaleetan PA system, $900,000: Replacing safety equipment, including alarms and public-address systems on two vessels.
- Lopez Terminal, $600,000: Preserving the dock structure with new pavement.
- I-90, Snoqualmie Pass, $182,600: Installing LED-lighted-lane markers and high-visibility-barrier markers in places along 15 miles of Snoqualmie summit. The markers will improve visibility for drivers at night and during inclement weather to reduce the risk of collisions.
- SR 99, Alaskan Way Viaduct off-ramp bridge, $400,000: Continuing research and implementation of innovative, new products in the design of the Alaskan Way Viaduct bridge columns to improve their performance in earthquakes with little to no damage.
- Express toll lane continuous access, $520,000: Changing access to the SR 167 HOT lanes from dedicated-access points to continuous access, where vehicles can enter and exit the lane as they choose, and evaluating the effects through a before-and-after study.
A total of 20 projects in Washington, including those listed above, will receive more than $12.6 million in federal grants for projects that preserve local ferry terminals, enhance visitor opportunities along scenic byways, repair roadways, improve safety, and increase opportunities for biking, walking and sharing the ride.
A list of Washington’s federal-grant projects can be found on the U.S. Department of Transportation website.