The state House approved an amendment to its $10 billion transportation legislation Tuesday that added $30 million for improvements to the Interstate 5 interchange at Marvin Road in Lacey. Rep. Sam Hunt, D-Olympia, sponsored the amendment, which was adopted on an unrecorded vote.
Final passage of the larger House transportation measures – including House Bill 1955 and HB 1954– was postponed, possibly to Wednesday.
Hunt said the interchange had fallen out of the conversation as the transportation talks bogged down earlier in the session but that Lacey recently brought it back to lawmakers’ attention.
In a floor speech he said improvements along I-5 are needed to help with the “daily, hourly traffic jam” along the freeway including at Joint Base Lewis McChord.
The larger transportation package, which phases in a 10.5 cent increase in the gas tax, has other money for South Sound projects including:
$500,000 for an interchange justification study for west Olympia along State Route 101.
$5 million for improvements to Intercity Transit’s maintenance facility in Olympia
$3 million for the Mason Transit’s transit center project
$8.4 million in the 2013-15 biennium for the Belfair Bypass highway project.
$200,000 for a feasibility study of adding a carpool lane along Interstate 5 from Joint Base Lewis McChord to 38th Street in Tacoma.
Detailed transportation-package documents are linked here.
The Republican-steered Senate has not yet committed to passing a transportation package but Gov. Jay Inslee wants lawmakers to act on one once they agree on an operating budget needed to avoid a government shutdown on July 1.