Making Transportation Work


“With bipartisan commitment and cooperation, we've crafted a roadmap to better transportation and speedier economic recovery .” Governor Gary Locke, after the Legislature passed the 2003 Transportation Improvement Package

Washington motorists want to spend less time in traffic and more time with their families. Manufacturers and farmers want their goods at the market, not snarled on our roads and highways. A good transportation system is critical to the livelihood and well being of Washington citizens. We must make long-term investments in a transportation system that moves people quickly, using transportation dollars wisely. Our citizens and businesses have a right to a good transportation system, and we cannot afford to give them any less.

We are One Washington, connected by one multi-modal transportation system. As key transportation projects are completed on-time and on-budget, we must work to reinvest in all parts of the state transportation system, from rural county roads to the interstate highway system, from bus service and passenger rail to our state ferry system.


Governor Locke's Major Accomplishments

Washington Road MapGovernor Locke has helped put into place landmark reforms and efficiencies to strengthen public confidence and commitment to make long-term improvements to Washington's transportation system. These money-saving reforms range from quicker permitting of projects to more contracting out and teaming with state and regional governments to speed up critical transportation projects. In addition to reforms and reinvestment, Governor Locke has enacted major life-saving traffic safety improvements that make Washington State a leader among the states.


Semi-truckPreserve and protect what we already have: Washington's economic and social mobility depend upon the proper maintenance and preservation of the over $100 billion investment in our state transportation system.

Use what we have most efficiently: We are using existing road, ferry, and rail capacity more effectively, by eliminating traffic chokepoints, giving travelers real-time traffic information, and removing accidents and other traffic incidents to get traffic flowing again.

Replace and expand critical parts of the system: We have enormous transportation needs, from replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct, concrete decking on I-5 and I-90, and bridges across the Columbia River, to building the new North Spokane Freeway and expanding US 12 to four lanes from Pasco to Walla Walla. The 2003 Transportation Improvement Package provided an excellent start. For public safety and mobility, we must continue to reinvest in our transportation system.

Related Activities and Information

Recommendations for reauthorization of the six-year federal surface transportation act TEA-21 Report (PDF 1.8m)

The Northwest Maritime Trade Summit

On November 12, 2003, approximately 175 representatives from government and industry joined in the first Northwest Maritime Trade Summit. This meeting, which was held at the Bell Harbor Conference Center in Seattle, fulfilled two key goals: it helped to raise the level of awareness of the critical role maritime trade plays in our economy and it provided a forum for discussion and adoption of a series of policy recommendations designed to sustain and strengthen maritime trade competitiveness in the Pacific Northwest.

In addition to opening remarks by Governor Gary Locke, presentations were given by Jon Hemingway, President and CEO of SSA Marine; Marcel Chang, Chairman of Evergreen America Corporation; and many other leaders in the maritime industry and in federal, state, and local governments.

A significant portion of the summit involved a roundtable discussion on a series of proposed policy recommendations developed by the maritime community. These policy recommendations, as well as a list of key themes, were all supported.

Key Policy Themes:

  • We must raise the profile of freight mobility in transportation.
  • We must ensure a level playing field for regulatory efforts in security and environmental protection. Where appropriate, we should follow the current regulatory hierarchy: international and federal protocols first, then regional and state regulation. Regulatory actions taken in isolation often leads to competitive disadvantages.
  • Infrastructure investment to remove barriers to freight mobility is essential, and should be based on sound data and planning. Regional and statewide planning should include a vision for freight transportation and maritime trade.
  • The state should take a greater role in advocating for maritime trade by collecting valuable data and information and serving as a catalyst for competitiveness.

Key Background on Northwest Maritime Trade: Commit to Compete (PDF 585k)

Maritime Summit Presentations

Global Trends

Industry Perspectives

Public Role in Maritime Competitiveness

» Return to Economic Growth/Job Creation

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