Tacoma Narrows Bridge tolls focus of Olympia transportation meetings

The Washington State Transportation Commission will meet in Olympia Dec. 14-15 to review the Final Draft Washington Transportation Plan 2030 (WTP 2030) and approve its transmittal to Gov. Chris Gregoire and the Legislature. The commission will also discuss the introduction of photo tolling on the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and will likely release a photo toll rate proposal.

The meetings will be held at the Transportation Building on the Capital Campus, 310 Maple Park Ave. SE in Olympia. The meetings will start at 9 a.m. each day.

On Tuesday, the commission will finalize its work on the Washington Transportation Plan (WTP) 2030, a comprehensive statewide plan that establishes a 20-year direction for our state’s transportation network. The plan makes many recommendations to the Legislature and governor on needed changes and sets forth funding recommendations aimed at generating additional revenue for maintenance of current roadways as well as for strategic improvements across the state.

On Wednesday, the commission will review the results of several toll feasibility studies and the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) will report on the latest data on Tacoma Narrows Bridge (TNB) traffic and revenue. The TNB Citizens Advisory Committee will deliver its recommendations on photo tolling for the TNB. The commission is expected to release a TNB photo toll rate proposal at the meeting for further public review and comment.

Should the commission release their TNB proposal, a public input meeting is scheduled for Jan. 19 at 6:30 p.m. at Gig Harbor City Hall. The commission will be taking comments at this meeting and no action will be taken. A final hearing is scheduled for Jan. 25 at 6:30 p.m. at Gig Harbor City Hall. The public will be able to provide comment at the hearing and the commission is expected to take final action. Comments can also be sent to the commission via their public e-mail address at transc@wstc.wa.gov .

Other items on the commission agenda include an update on the Ferry Rider Opinion Survey, a work session on Washington State Ferries and reports on public-private partnerships.

For information on the Transportation Commission and a full agenda, visit http://www.wstc.wa.gov .