Transportation Alternatives

Transportation Alternatives (TA) projects and activities encompass smaller-scale transportation projects such as pedestrians and bicycle facilities, historic preservation, safe routes to school and other transportation-related activities.

Since 1991, the Federal Transportation Acts have provided funding for transportation alternatives/enhancement activities, through a set-aside from the Surface Transportation Block Grant STBG) program.

Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) act Transportation Alternative - STBG set-aside allocations (federal funding)

Distribution formula

In 2013, the federal transportation act allocations for the Transportation Alternatives (TA) are distributed as follows:

  • Over 200,000 population – Distributed based on 2010 Census data as required
  • Under 200,000 – 5,000 population – Distributed based on 2010 Census data for these population areas.
  • Under 5,000 population – Distributed based on 2010 Census data for this population area.
  • Flexible:
     Prior to distribution, $2.4 million (even year) and $1.7 million (odd year) is provided to the statewide Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program.
     Distributed based on 2010 Census data for the total population of the area.

Also, the MPO Coordinating Committee determined they would maintain the TA funds distribution as modified under MAP-21.

Reporting

The FAST Act requires WSDOT to report to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) on the status of Transportation Alternatives (TA) projects. FHWA then compiles all the states reports and submits the national report annually to the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) Secretary, as well as making it available to the public. The reports are to be based on each federal fiscal year (FFY) and are due to FHWA in early December.

Annually, each Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), Regional Transportation Planning Organization (RTPO) and County that receives a TA allocation is to submit to WSDOT a report for that FFY’s TA allocation that includes:

  • Number of project applications received that FFY;
  • Aggregate cost of the projects for which applications were received that FFY;
  • Number of projects selected for funding that fiscal year, including:
     Aggregate costs of the projects selected, and
     Location of the projects selected.
  • Types of projects to be carried out, based on the following seven categories:
     Pedestrian & Bicycle Facilities
     Recreational (recreational trail projects only)
     Turnouts, Overlooks, Viewing Area
     Historic Preservation
     Environmental and Wildlife
     Safe Routes to School
     Other – Inventory, control or removal of outdoor advertising

8,683 animals crossed the Snoqualmie Pass East Project area

as recorded by WSDOT and partners in 2020 and 2021.

46% increase in Amtrak Cascades ridership to 251,000 passengers

in 2021 compared to 172,000 in 2020.

Nine wetland and stream mitigation sites across 32.7 acres added

to our monitoring program in 2021 to help offset climate change impacts.