Transportation

Flickr Photo/Atomic Taco (CC BY-NC-ND)

Ross Reynolds talks with KUOW Olympia correspondent Austin Jenkins and state Rep. Jessyn Farrell, D-Seattle, about a possible transportation package in the legislature. 

This weekend, the Seattle metro area launched an initiative to address income inequality through public transit. People in low-income households can now ride buses, trains and ferries at reduced fares.

The initiative is among the first of its kind in the U.S., and transit experts across the country are watching closely. Thomas Sanchez, a professor of urban affairs and planning at Virginia Tech, discusses the initiative with Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson.

KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Changes are afoot at King County Metro. Bus fares went up over the weekend by 25 cents. Bus drivers started accepting the county's new reduced fare cards, called ORCA Lift. And Metro's gone on a hiring spree as it gears up to fulfill Seattle's custom order, approved by voters last fall, for 10 percent more bus service.

A panel in the Idaho House agreed to introduce legislation Thursday that would define ride-sharing services like Uber in state law -- and trump local efforts to regulate them.

Bertha, the tunnel boring machine, emerges from more than a year of captivity. The machine's turbines can be seen beneath the plume of dust.
Washington State Department of Transportation

The tunnel machine that’s been stuck underground for more than a year reached daylight Thursday.

Now Bertha is slowly inching into position for repair work to begin. 

The cutterhead on Seattle's troubled tunnel boring machine broke through the wall of a rescue pit at midday Thursday.

Workers prepare to snap in a new section of roadway on the east side of the SR 520 bridge.
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

Construction of the new state Route 520 bridge is about halfway along now. But just as our tunnel mega-project has a major complication, SR 520 has its own mega-snag: we lack the minimum $1.6 billion to complete it.

The state’s highway department is also not clear on the final design of the "Rest of the West," as this embattled section of the 520 bridge is called.

According to the Idaho Supreme Court, an apparent error in Idaho’s legal code could make certain highway speed limits unenforceable.

This week’s fiery oil train derailment in West Virginia has lawmakers thinking about oil-by-rail safety through the Northwest. There has been a dramatic increase in oil trains traveling through the region to reach West coast refineries.

KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

United States Labor Secretary Tom Perez sat down Tuesday with both sides in the labor dispute that’s slowed down shipping at 29 West Coast ports. The two sides are stuck on a disagreement over how to handle disputes. The protracted slowdown has begun to hurt some local businesses. 

On Monday, a panel of Idaho lawmakers said the time has come to boost the gas tax to fix roads and bridges that are in disrepair. Father and son truckers Cliff and Rusty Irish have seen the problem first hand.

KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

TRANSCRIPT

Highway 520 no longer opens and closes for boat traffic. Today crews begin construction on a section of the new bridge that will block the opening in the old one. Two concrete pontoons will be moved into position today.

KUOW Photo/Keva Andersen

KUOW acquisitions producer Keva Andersen spotted some familiar pieces of scrap metal near the parking lot of Salty's on Alki. 

Could it be? Is this pile of detritus a souvenir from the Kalakala, the infamous former Washington state ferry that recently took its final voyage to the junk yard? If so, why is it there?

Update: West Seattle Herald has the answer! 

traffic, transporation Variable speed signs on northbound Interstate 5 into Seattle.
Flickr Photo/Wendi Dunlap (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks with Mark Hallenbeck about the implications of reducing speed limits in Seattle. Hallenbeck directs the Washington State Transportation Center at the University of Washington.

bus traffic transportation
Flickr Photo/Steve Mohundro (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks with KUOW Olympia corespondent Austin Jenkins about the bipartisan state Senate transportation package. 

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