December 26, 2012
NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012
The state Department of Transportation delivered gifts to holiday travelers — tips to avoid travel-related headaches.
The agency offers numerous travel information tools for motorists headed out between Christmas and New Year’s Day.
Travelers planning to hit state highways can find information on the Department of Transportation website about the times and places drivers can expect to experience holiday weekend delays, including U.S. 2, Interstate 90, and Interstate 5 at the Canadian border, and between Olympia and Tacoma.
December 25, 2012
Redevelopment plan calls for more than 7,000 residences
City leaders raised the building height limit to 125 feet in the business district and raised the stakes for redevelopment in the decades ahead.
The roadmap to redevelopment — a document called the Central Issaquah Plan — also creates a framework to add more than 7,000 residences on about 1,000 acres stretched along Interstate 90.
In a series of decisions reached Dec. 17 after years spent re-envisioning the business district, a relieved City Council adopted the Central Issaquah Plan, but delayed action on a key piece until at least April.
“It’s the right plan at the right time,” Councilman Fred Butler said. “It will not happen overnight, but when the time is right, we will be ready.”
December 25, 2012
Snow crept into forecasts in recent days, but aside from a dusting in higher-elevation neighborhoods and a delay for Issaquah School District students, winter weather did not cause significant disruptions in the area.
In response to slushy conditions on roads and some snowfall overnight, school district administrators delayed the start of school two hours Dec. 18. The day before, as forecasters issued a winter weather advisory for Western Washington, Issaquah and King County road crews prepared for snow.
December 18, 2012
Residents in unincorporated King County — including Klahanie, Mirrormont and Preston in the Issaquah area and more than 200,000 people countywide — no longer face a $20 vehicle-license fee to fund road maintenance.
King County Council members dropped the proposed fee from the 2013 county budget, and approved the spending plan Nov. 13 in a unanimous decision. Instead, officials plan to lobby the state government for additional road dollars — a challenge as the state faces another budget shortfall next year.
In September, King County Executive Dow Constantine proposed a $20 fee to fund road maintenance and storm response in rural and unincorporated areas.
December 16, 2012
NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 16, 2012
State troopers plan to crack down on aggressive motorists through May in a regional effort to change drivers’ behavior around commercial vehicles.
Officials said collision data shows cars cause the majority of crashes involving cars and commercial vehicles. Washington State Patrol troopers received a grant to conduct a Ticketing Aggressive Cars and Trucks, or TACT, emphasis in King County.
In King County, most collisions involving commercial vehicles happen on interstates and state highways. Troopers plan to patrol Interstate 90 from Seattle to North Bend, plus stretches of Interstate 5, state Route 18 and more from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. — the time most collisions occur.
December 11, 2012
Issaquah, circa 2040, could sport a skyline.
The central business district is on the cusp of change, as city leaders plan for redevelopment on about 1,000 acres stretched along Interstate 90.
Nowadays, suburban sprawl dominates the landscape — traffic-clogged streets unfurl next to strip malls. Residents live elsewhere and climb into cars to reach the area’s amenities. Underfoot, 75 percent of land in the area is encased under parking lots.
Imagine, instead, buildings up to 125 feet tall, storefronts and residences arranged along tree-lined sidewalks, and perhaps decades in the future, a station on the regional rail network.
December 11, 2012
NEW — 10 a.m. Dec. 11, 2012
Transportation is a high priority as King County prepares to ask state and federal leaders for assistance to upgrade roads and other infrastructure.
King County Council members adopted legislative agendas for the state and federal governments Monday. The lists focus on transportation improvements and efforts to preserve human services.
“The challenges facing Olympia and Washington, D.C., have a direct impact on how King County can serve its residents,” council Chairman Larry Gossett said in a statement. “The adopted agendas are clear directives from both the council and the executive on what the county’s priorities are and how we plan to work with our delegations to achieve those priorities.”
November 29, 2012
NEW — 10 a.m. Nov. 29, 2012
The state Department of Transportation awarded more than $3.5 million to Issaquah and King County to replace aging bridges, officials announced Wednesday.
The projects — a plan to replace the Northwest Dogwood Street bridge in downtown Issaquah and a plan to redo a bridge across 15 Mile Creek at the base of Tiger Mountain — received a portion of $130 million in federal funds to repair or replace aging bridges.
Replacing the Northwest Dogwood Street bridge across Issaquah Creek is a long-held goal among city officials, but a lack of funding prevented the project from proceeding in the past. The city project is in line to receive $2,254,400 in federal funds.
Reconstruction is meant to help reduce flooding by creating more capacity for the creek beneath the replacement bridge. The project could also add safer access for pedestrians — a change from the narrow bridge in place now.
November 27, 2012
The mercury dips a little lower as November turns to December, winter starts in mere weeks, and the agencies responsible for ensuring roads remain passable in ice and snow readied removal plans for the months ahead.
Issaquah, King County and the state prepare detailed ice and snow response plans long before the flakes start to fall. The agencies face challenges in Issaquah and the surrounding area due to steep terrain, narrow roads and limited funding.
November 27, 2012
Thanksgiving ranks at No. 2 in King County for the holiday with the most arrests for motorists driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Washington State Patrol troopers urged revelers not to turn celebration into stress by driving under the influence throughout the holiday season.
The state patrol, Issaquah Police Department and other law enforcement agencies statewide launched the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over DUI crackdown Nov. 21, the day before Thanksgiving.