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Practical Solutions: Integrate Systems & Modes

How do we integrate systems & modes?

WSDOT is integrating transportation modes to complement each other, considering system needs and operations–whether on the federal, state or local system–while managing demand to maximize underutilized capacity. We do this by (click through the tabs to discover):

Updating policies, procedures, guidelines and manuals

How do we measure policies, procedures, guidelines and manuals updated?

WSDOT audited its key manuals, policies and other guidance to identify potential revisions to better support a sustainable and integrated, multimodal transportation system. The Multimodal Technical Forum audited fifteen technical manuals, exceeding the target of 14 manuals by August 2019.

Progress Target
August 2019
August 2019
15 manual audits completed  Arrow to right  14 manual audits complete Meets or exceeds target status icon
Exceeds goal

More about updating policies, procedures, guidelines and manuals

Why is it important to update policies, procedures, guidelines and manuals?

WSDOT’s Multimodal Technical Forum, comprised of staff from WSDOT’s Multimodal Development and Delivery Section as well as WSDOT Regions, is auditing WSDOT’s key manual and policy guidance to identify needed changes to better achieve a sustainable and integrated, multimodal transportation system. The group is auditing manuals, policies, guidance and procedures to see where WSDOT needs to make updates that will better achieve integrated, multimodal outcomes. The Forum initially identified a prioritized list of 15 manuals to audit for language use, lack of multimodal discussion, absence of modal analysis methods and/or tools/data, prioritization of capital solution types, and more. In addition to auditing manuals, the group is identifying and examining possible gaps in policy, data and performance analysis capabilities that will ultimately help the agency achieve better multimodal outcomes and Practical Solutions implementation.

How are we doing?

WSDOT’s Multimodal Technical Forum identified recommended changes and shared those with manual owners. Many of the manuals are undergoing changes as a result of the audits. Ultimately, this work is intended to better support a sustainable and integrated multimodal transportation system.

What are we working on?

WSDOT has completed audits of the highest-priority manuals that help our agency better develop multimodal projects under our programs, administer grants to local agencies who then develop projects, recommend improvements to private developers based on land use impacts, and provide guidelines for planning studies that inform the predesign project phase. The following manual audits are completed and work is underway to update them:

Manual owners develop audit responses and work plans to update their manuals. Another high priority manual, the Traffic Manual, is not being audited because a work plan is being developed to completely rewrite the manual. The Forum will review the Traffic Manual in early 2020. For a list of all manuals, see Multimodal technical Forum manuals audit timeline (pdf 106 kb).

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Spotlight on near-term action agenda for I-5

Spotlight status icon Spotlight on near-term action agenda for I-5

All transportation systems—highway, transit, local roadways, freight and national defense—rely on I-5 to succeed. Addressing I-5’s challenges will require all jurisdictions and transportation agencies to work together on the tough issues facing I-5 and identify innovative mobility strategies. I-5 is part of a larger transportation system that goes beyond highway mileposts. The system includes local roadways, transit systems, freight access and all transportation modes that feed into and impact demand on I-5. The systems and strategies must be aligned, starting with a new kind of partnership among all transportation partners—public and private, all transportation modes, and all jurisdictions.

This understanding became the driving force behind WSDOT’s I-5 Near-Term Action Agenda, an initiative to enhance near-term performance in the I-5 corridor. This initiative brought together transportation partners in an iterative process to develop lists of multimodal near-term actions. Near-term actions are those that can be implemented within a zero-to-four year timeframe, and that can demonstrably improve I-5 performance. Throughout this process, we targeted important segments of I-5 from Thurston County to Snohomish County and brought together inter-jurisdictional stakeholder groups from each of these geographic areas:

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Near-Term Action Agenda for I-5 (Image: I-5 Ship canal bridge)

This spotlight focuses on the segment from Tumwater to DuPont. WSDOT and local partners produced a list of near-term projects for the I-5 system in this area, established measurable performance targets and obtained funding for every project on the list. Most of the projects are underway. A few are pursuing additional funding, mostly through grant programs. Many of these project ideas are also being pursued in other I-5 corridor segments.

Examples include ramp meters; expanded use of vanpools, telework and compressed work weeks; and upgraded signals and transit signal priority on parallel arterials. Also included on the near-term list are efforts to support longer-term solutions: a preliminary investigation to explore opportunities for peak shoulder use and expanded transportation models.

More about the near-term action agenda for I-5

Why is the near-term action agenda for I-5 a priority?

The need for transportation performance improvement on I-5 in the Puget Sound region is immediate. It’s not just about growing traffic congestion - improvements are needed to enhance safety, resiliency and sustainability; support economic growth and health and serve everyone more equitably. WSDOT and our community partners are learning to better plan and integrate key Practical Solutions strategies into our work.

What are we working on?

WSDOT and local partners are using a two-pronged Practical Solutions approach: we are simultaneously implementing near-term solutions and conducting long-term planning.

Near-term solutions were developed and are delivered collaboratively with local agencies. They must produce measurable transportation performance benefits within four years. As a result, they are largely focused on traffic and transit operations on both state highways and local roadways and transportation demand management.

In addition to the near-term work outlined above, we are ultimately determined to engage in the long-term strategic planning that will be necessary to transform I-5 into a 21st century travel corridor. This effort started in 2018 with the I-5 System Partnership, a stakeholder group made up of representatives from transportation agencies, community organizations, the business community, and jurisdictions throughout the 107-mile study area from Tumwater to Arlington.

The Partnership worked collaboratively throughout 2018 and 2019 to review the pressing challenges of the I-5 system and establish a set of goals and strategies for the future of the system. The Partnership recommended development of an I-5 System Master Plan that identifies specific improvements that should be made to each part of the I-5 system. More information on the I-5 System Partnership can be found here.

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