Transportation Milestone Timeline

A strong and reliable transportation system efficiently moves goods to markets and people to work, school and even the grocery store. See the timeline below to learn more about the actions the Governor took to create a seamless transportation system.

Year Initiative Short Summary Resources
2005 Highway safety improves in Washington Washington State Department of Transportation's Gray Notebook's before-and-after analysis shows that the average number of all collisions is down 43% and fatalities and injury are down 47% compared to pre-construction conditions at the project location. News release
2005 Gov. Gregoire signs transportation budget, other transportation bills $8.5 billion state transportation budget and a bill authorizing a pilot high occupancy toll lanes project on SR 167 are signed. News release
2005 Nickel Package projects completed on time Gov. Gregoire announces that WSDOT completed 13 projects approved by the Legislature in the 2003 Nickel Package. All were finished on time and on budget. News release
2006 Time to move forward on replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct Gov. Gregoire says the state has reached a compromise, and it's time for the region to move forward. News release
2006 Evaluating transportation options for the Puget Sound Gov. Gregoire signs legislation creating a new Regional Transportation Commission to evaluate transportation options for Puget Sound. News release
2006 Alaskan Way Viaduct plan Gov. Gregoire announces progress on deciding future of the Alaskan Way Viaduct project and calls for a public vote to move beyond the "political stalemate." News release
2007 Independent review of cable median barriers ordered Governor orders independent review of cable median barriers on state highways in response to a recent fatality on I-5. News release
2007 Enhanced drivers license for B.C. border crossings allowed Governor signs legislation she requested to create an enhanced driver's license that will be accepted instead of passports for border crossings between Washington and British Columbia. News release
2007 Agreement reached for enhanced driver's license pilot program with U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security Washington partners with Homeland Security to launch the new enhanced driver's license pilot program. News release
2007 Gov. Gregoire signs bill to ban text messaging while driving Law makes Washington roads safer by banning text messaging while driving. News release
2007 Next step for new ferries Gov. Gregoire announces Washington State Ferries has accepted a notice of intent for a joint single proposal from 3 area shipyards to build 4 new 144-vehicle ferries. News release
2007 Gov. Gregoire urges action on SR 520 Governor says that delay on the SR 520 Bridge replacement project is unacceptable as it is one of the region's top safety priorities. News release
2007 Invest for safer, more efficient ferry system Gov. Gregoire proposes investing $100 million in the state ferry system to improve safety and increase capacity. News release
2008 Funding proposal for new SR 520 Bridge Gov. Gregoire announces funding proposal for new 520 Bridge. News release
2008 Washington and Oregon governors make bi-state commitment to replace I-5 bridges Govs. Gregoire and Kulongoski announce a joint commitment to replace the Interstate bridges that connect Vancouver, Wash., and Portland, Ore. News release
2008 Gov. Gregoire signs legislation authorizing new ferry construction Law authorizes construction for up to 3 new car ferries for communities served by the Washington State Ferry system. New vessels would carry up to 100 vehicles per trip. News release
2008 Speeding up replacement of SR 520 bridge by 4 years Gov. Gregoire announces she has reduced by 4 years the time it will take to replace the economically vital SR 520 Bridge linking Seattle and the thriving east side of Lake Washington. News release
2008 Gov. Gregoire signs bill to fund new, safer SR 520 bridge House Bill 3096 funds a new SR 520 bridge. The bill closes the funding gap by authorizing tolls on SR 520 to match the state and federal contributions of nearly $2 billion. Up to $2 billion is expected to be raised through tolls. The bridge is planned to be opened to drivers in 2014, 4 years earlier than initially projected. News release
2008 Solution for long-term Port Townsend/Keystone ferry service Gov. Gregoire announces that WSDOT will move forward with construction of 2 64-car Island Home style vessels and not build a smaller 50-car vessel. News release
2008 Opening of new runway Gov. Gregoire celebrates the grand opening of the 3rd runway at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and compliments the Port of Seattle for constructing a more efficient airport to benefit both tourists and business. News release
2009 Deep bored tunnel to Replace Alaskan Way Viaduct The Governor and Seattle-area officials announce agreement to replace the aging Alaskan Way Viaduct with a deep bored tunnel under downtown Seattle. News release
2009 Governor approves 71 transportation projects for federal stimulus funding As required by federal law, the Governor approves the project list, which encompasses 4 state highway projects, 55 local projects and 12 transit projects. Funds come from the federal Recovery Act. News release
List of projects
2009 Governor statement on House 520 Bridge transportation legislation Governor lauds legislation that allows 520 construction to move forward. Legislation includes authorization for early pontoon construction, foundation of bridge construction, early tolling on 520 and financial support. News release
2009 Governor signs historic transportation budget $7.5 billion transportation budget for 2009-11 is the largest 2-year construction budget ever for the state. Projects approved will support or create 49,000 jobs. News release
2009 Governor signs bill to fund and build SR 520 Bridge replacement House Bill 2211 authorizes tolling on SR 520 beginning in 2010. Construction begins with development of pontoon casting basin in Grays Harbor, which is expected to support more than 2,000 jobs at height of construction in 2013. News release
2009 Bremerton tunnel opening Gov. Gregoire celebrates the $54 million tunnel, which offers a safe and quick commute. More than 2 million will travel by ferry to Bremerton each year and the tunnel eases congestion. News release
2009 Federal ferry funding The state's ferry docks and terminals receive additional $7.6 million released from U.S. Dept. of Transportation. Washington ferries are among those that receive the most federal funds this year. News release
2009 Washington applies for $435 million in Recovery Act High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail grants The state applies for $435 million to expand passenger rail service between Portland and Vancouver. News release
2009 Washington seeks Recovery Act TIGER grants for high-priority projects WSDOT submits TIGER grant applications for 3 high-priority projects: SR 520 Bridge replacement program ($300 million), Columbia River Crossing ($147 million) and North Spokane Corridor ($35 million). News release
2009 Gov. Gregoire, Seattle Mayor Nickels sign agreement to replace Alaskan Way Viaduct with bored tunnel Agreement ends 8 years of debate and details investments in SR 99 corridor, city streets, new Alaskan Way, Mercer and Spokane streets, waterfront promenade and central seawall. News release
2010 State wins grant for high-speed intercity passenger rail Gov. Gregoire announces that Washington will receive $590 million for projects that add jobs and increase passenger rail service along the I-5 corridor. News release
2010 Gov. Gregoire, Pacific leaders take action on clean energy, transportation, ocean conservation Gov. Gregoire joins leaders from British Columbia, California and Oregon to sign joint actions that will create jobs, strengthen the Pacific Coast economy, advance action on climate change and clean energy, and protect the marine environment. News release
2010 Gov. Gregoire signs transportation budget and measures to move forward on SR 520 project The 2010 supplemental transportation budget and a number of bills to move forward on the 520 Bridge replacement project are signed into law. News release
2010 Govs. Gregoire and Kulongoski announce independent panel to review Columbia River Crossing project The governors announce the appointment of 8 transportation experts to an independent panel to review the Columbia River Crossing project. News release
2010 Nation’s first electric highway Gov. Gregoire announces that Washington’s electric vehicle infrastructure efforts are getting a boost from $1.3 million in the federal Recovery Act. The state’s transportation and commerce departments are teaming up to implement the nation’s first “electric highway,” an initial network of public access electric vehicle recharging locations along I-5. News release
2010 Governors receive independent report on Columbia River Crossing project Govs. Gregoire and Kulongoski received the final report from the Independent Review Panel they appointed in April to assess the work of the Columbia River Crossing. News release
2010 Results of independent review and report on Washington state ferries operations Gov. Gregoire releases a report she requested on the Washington State Ferries Division by experts from the Passenger Vessel Association. The report offers 36 recommendations on ferry operations. Report
2010 Gov. Gregoire’s statement on Amtrak train route to B.C. “This is great news for Washington state and British Columbia -- especially for the businesses that have benefited from the increase in trade the second train has generated." News release
2010 Gov. Gregoire's statement on $45 million in TIGER II awards for road projects “This is a huge accomplishment for Washington state, and speaks volumes for local agencies, our Department of Transportation and other state leaders who spent countless hours on the application for this funding." News release
2011 Governor proposes formation of a Puget Sound regional ferry district The district would consist of all or a portion of Clallam, Jefferson, Kitsap, Island, San Juan, Skagit, Snohomish, King and Pierce counties. The district’s funds would come from fares, a state subsidy to fund a core level of service and regional taxing authority to ensure service levels are consistent with local and regional needs. News release
Policy brief
2011 Columbia River Crossing panel recommendations issued Govs. Gregoire and Kitzhaber commit to delivering the Columbia River Crossing project using the expert panel's primary recommendations and most cost-effective options "to ensure the future economic growth and prosperity of both Oregon and Washington." News release
2011 Govs. Gregoire, Kitzhaber announce plan to deliver Columbia River Crossing project Govs. Gregoire and Kitzhaber announce their plan to take advantage of federal funding opportunities and break ground on the Columbia River Crossing project in 2013. News release
2011 South Park Bridge construction kickoff Gov. Gregoire joins local leaders to kick off construction for the South Park Bridge replacement project. The state helped secure $54 million of federal funds and its Transportation Improvement Board and Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board contributed $15 million. News release
2011 Gov. Gregoire signs 2011-13 transportation biennial budget House Bill 1175 will put approximately 30,000 people to work and invest $5.6 billion from dedicated transportation funds in more than 800 transportation construction projects throughout the state. The Governor announces she is forming the Transportation Advisory Group, which will develop and present a transportation investment and revenue plan to the Legislature and public in 2012. News release
2011 Connecting Washington Task Force Gov. Gregoire announces the members of the Connecting Washington Task Force charged with developing a 10-year investing and funding plan for the state's transportation system and presenting it to the 2012 Legislature. News release