Reducing traffic congestion is not listed as a transportation priority in Washington State. In 2007, Democrat lawmakers removed congestion relief as a funding priority for the state. They also created a list of six goals of transportation policy—congestion relief did not make the cut.
The Washington Policy Center points out that the average Puget Sound Commuter sits in traffic jams 48 hours every year. Though it is the 15th largest metropolitan region in the United States, Puget Sound ranks 8th worst in traffic congestion. Facing these real problems, it is hard to imagine a scenario in which “reducing congestion” is not a goal of transportation policy. Except, of course, if the scenario involves those whose top priority is forcing everybody onto trains, buses and bicycles.
Last year, Republican lawmakers in the state Senate attempted to remedy the state’s lack of consideration for Washington’s working families and growing businesses. They introduced a transportation plan that includes “reducing transportation congestion” among the state’s transportation goals. Unfortunately, as Shift reported, Democrats backed by extreme transit groups with a vested interest in ensuring that doesn’t happen, refused to participate in or support the plan.
The Washington Policy Center just released a short video on how traffic congestion is affecting families and businesses in Washington State. You can check out the video below.