HCT Virtual Open House

<-- back to HCT Feasibility Study


Welcome!


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Why Are We Doing This Study?
To establish a north/south High Capacity Transit (HCT) link in the heart of Pierce County to serve Pierce Transit’s busiest transit corridor.

Where is the Study Corridor?
14 miles of the Pacific Avenue | SR 7 Corridor between downtown Tacoma and Spanaway, currently served by Pierce Transit’s Route 1.

What Can You Do Today?

  • Learn more about Bus Rapid Transit (BRT).
  • Let us know which BRT design alternative you think works best.
  • Tell us what you think about potential BRT station locations.
  • Fill out the comment form and talk to our staff.

What is the Corridor Study Process?


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Step 1: Corridor Conditions (2017 Q2)

What is the condition of the study corridor now and what can we expect in the future?

  • Transit riders
  • Traffic
  • Land use
  • Population

Step 2: Project Purpose (2017 Q2)
What problems are we trying to solve and why are solutions necessary?

Step 3: Mode Selection (2017 Q3)
Which HCT mode (Enhanced Bus, BRT, Streetcar, or Light Rail) makes most sense for this corridor?

Step 4: Develop Alternatives (2017 Q3 – 2018 Q1)
What could transit in the study corridor look like? Which options best meet our goals and objectives?

Step 5: Select Alternative (2018 Q2)
Which of the HCT modes and service options do we select as our Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA)?

Step 6: Environmental Review (2018 Q3 – Q4)
What are the potential environmental impacts of the selected LPA project?

Step 7: Project Funding (2018 Q3)
Identify and apply for project funding.

Study phase ends at the end of 2018 and project phase begins at the beginning of 2019.

Step 8: Design and Construction (2019 – 2021)
Finalize detailed design plans, and construct the new HCT service.

Step 9: Service planned to begin (2022)
Begin HCT service on Pacific Avenue | SR 7.

What are the Study Goals?


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  • Provide faster, more reliable, and frequent transit service and enhanced transit comfort and convenience
  • Provide cost-effective service to meet current and future demand
  • Improve access to stations for pedestrians, bicyclists, and people with disabilities
  • Support planned growth and economic development efforts
  • Improve access to transit and connections to other bus routes and regional transportation
  • Promote environmental stewardship by promoting smart growth and reducing vehicle dependency
  • Increase transit capacity to meet current and future travel demands
  • Attract new funding sources
  • Accessible to everyone including minorities and low-income community members
  • Enhance safety and security for all transit patrons
  • Consistent with local and regional transportation plans
  • Minimize permanent impacts to corridor (property, business, traffic)

Key Decisions


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What key decisions have been made so far?
Mode Evaluation
BRT best meets all study goals, scoring higher than existing Route 1 service, enhanced bus, streetcar and light rail transit options.

Alternatives Analysis
Curbside and median design alternatives are being assessed because they are flexible, provide the best service benefit while being the most cost-effective and having the least impacts to property and better opportunities for economic development for the corridor.

What key decisions are yet to be made?

  1. Select the Preferred Alternative: Choose among the No Build, Curbside Alternative, or Median Alternative.
  2. Determine a funding plan: Local funding is in place. Need to secure federal funding.
  3. Secure environmental clearance: To be eligible for federal funds, the project will need to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

What Makes a System BRT?


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Minimum Requirements for BRT

DEFINED STATIONS
The route must have defined stations that comply with DOT standards for buildings and facilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act, offer shelter from the weather, and provide information on schedules and routes.

TRANSIT SIGNAL PRIORITY
The route must provide faster passenger travel times through congested intersections by using active signal priority in separated guideway if it exists, and either queue-jump lanes or active signal priority in non-separated guideway.

BRANDING
The system must have a separate and consistent brand identity. Branding should apply to the buses, the stops/stations, and to passenger information materials.

FREQUENT SERVICE
The route must provide short headway, bidirectional service for at least a fourteen-hour span of service on weekdays. BRT service should have minimum 15-minute service frequency throughout a weekday or a combination of 10-minute peak service and 20-minute off-peak service frequencies.

Additional Key BRT Features

  • Level Boarding Platforms
  • Real Time Bus Arrival Time Information
  • Off-board Fare Payment (Ticket Vending Machines, ORCA Readers)

Source: US Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration

Specialized BRT Vehicle


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Unique Vehicle Features

  • 60-foot articulated bus
  • Low emissions vehicle
  • Electric vehicle available
  • Passenger doors on left and right sides available
  • Low floor/level boarding
  • Easier wheelchair access
  • Open and spacious interior
  • Increased standing room
  • Room for bicycles on board

Defined BRT Stations


Slide 8 Download

BRT Station Features

  • Off-board fare payment
  • Attractive and safe
  • Accessible to pedestrians, bicyclists, and persons using wheelchairs
  • Level boarding platforms
  • Passenger information
  • Real-time bus arrival information
  • Unique brand identity

Defined BRT Stations


Slide 8 Download

Proposed Station Locations

Design Concept – Mixed Traffic: Right Lane


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The Curbside Alternative includes BRT in mixed traffic in less congested parts of the corridor and business access transit (BAT) lanes in congested segments, such as the SR 512 interchange area.

Features and Tradeoffs

All Segments

  • Enhanced curbside stations with unique brand identity
  • Traffic signals will provide priority to BRT vehicles
  • No change to center two-way left-turn lane

Mixed Traffic Segments

  • Quicker to build and begin operation
  • Minimizes impacts to property and existing roadway
  • Least economic development potential
  • Least expensive to construct

BAT Lane Segments

  • Faster travel time
  • Higher potential for property impacts
  • Increases distance to cross the street
  • BAT lane provides “buffer” between sidewalks and traffic lanes
  • Better economic development potential than mixed traffic option
  • Most expensive to construct

Median Alternative


Slide 10 Download

The Median Alternative includes BRT in the median center lanes with mixed traffic in less congested parts of the corridor and in exclusive transit lanes in congested segments, such as the SR 512 interchange area.

Features and Tradeoffs

All Segments

  • Enhanced median stations with unique brand identity and a separate lane for buses to safely stop
  • Provides a center refuge for pedestrians crossing Pacific Avenue
  • Pedestrians crossing to a median bus station instead of curbside station
  • Traffic signals will provide priority to BRT vehicles
  • Eliminates center two-way left-turn lane

Mixed Traffic Segments

  • Exclusive bus lanes around median stations provide travel time benefit
  • Property impacts at station locations
  • Limited economic development potential
  • Least expensive to construct

Exclusive Median Lane Segments

  • Most travel time benefit
  • Fewer property impacts than BAT lane option
  • Maximizes economic development potential
  • More expensive than mixed traffic options, and less expensive than BAT lane option

Transit-Oriented Development (TOD)


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What is TOD?
TOD is the creation of compact, walkable, mixed-use communities that are centered around high quality transit systems.

TOD Features*

  • High density, walkable districts
  • Walkable design with pedestrian amenities
  • Mixture of uses in close proximity (office, residential, retail and civic)
  • Connection to other transit systems (streetcar, trains, buses)
  • Bicycle and pedestrian network connections
  • Reduced and managed parking near stations

* Source: Transit Oriented Development Institute (http://www.tod.org)

Advancing the Project Purpose
Pierce Transit is working with agency partners to identify opportunities for TOD that would advance the purpose of the HCT project, including:

  • Better places to live, work and play
  • Greater mobility and easier to move around
  • Increased transit ridership due to higher density and mixed use zoning
  • Reduced traffic congestion, car accidents and injuries
  • Reduced household spending on transportation, resulting in more affordable housing
  • Higher, more stable property values
  • Increased foot traffic for businesses
  • Economic competitiveness

Linking Planning and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)


Slide 12 Download

Process

  1. Define Purpose and Need (Planning)
  2. Develop and Screen Alternatives (Planning)
  3. Identify a Preferred Alternative (Planning)
  4. Conduct Detailed Evaluation of Preferred Alternative (NEPA)
  5. Prepare Environmental Documentation (NEPA)
  6. NEPA Decision (NEPA)

*Information gathering, public and agency input occur during process 1 through 4 and possibly 5, project dependent

Benefits
Collaborative and integrated approach to transportation decision making that:

  • Provides early consideration of environmental impacts
  • Improves environmental outcomes
  • Improves public and agency coordination
  • Results in higher quality, faster environmental review
  • Saves time and money by eliminating redundant studies

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was signed into law on January 1, 1970. NEPA requires federal agencies to consider the environmental effects of their proposed actions prior to making decisions.

Source: US Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration

Design Concept – Median Lane: Left-Side Boarding


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Typical Features

  • Similar features as Median Lane: Right-Side Boarding except for the following – Left-side doors allow use of a center platform allowing both directions to be served by a single station

For constrained areas, a single, bi-directional lane could be considered


Comment Form

Welcome to the Pacific Avenue | SR 7 Corridor High-Capacity Transit Study Open House Your input and comments are much appreciated!

The following Evaluation Criteria are being used to select the transit alternative that best meets community needs. Please rate on a scale of 1 to 5 how important each of the Evaluation Criteria are to you.


Evaluation Criteria

Increases Transit Ridership
Reduces Peak Period Transit Travel Time (Spanaway to Tacoma Dome Station)
Reduces Peak Period Transit Travel Time (Spanaway to Downtown Tacoma)
Reduces Peak Period Auto Travel Times (Spanaway to Downtown)
Minimize Impacts to General Traffic Access and Circulation
Reduces Operating Cost per Passenger
Improves Transit Travel Time Reliability
Population within ½ Mile Walk Shed
Improves Pedestrian Access and Safety
Facilitates Connections to Other Transit Services
Supports Corridor Revitalization
Minimize Impacts to Private Property
 
 

 

Tell us which of the design alternative you like the best (check only one box)

 
 

Looking at the proposed BRT stations on the map

 

Are there any stations you think can be removed?

If yes, please provide the closest intersection, e.g., Pacific Ave/184th St S

 

Are there any stations you think should be added?

If yes, please provide the closest intersection, e.g., Pacific Ave/184th St S

 

In your opinion, should Pierce Transit move forward with the development of a BRT system on Pacific Avenue | SR 7?

 


Why or why not?

  Other thoughts or comments you would like to share?
 

 
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Trip Planner Help

Trip Planner Tips - Entering Locations

To create a trip plan you need to enter both a starting location (origin) and an ending location (destination). For information about stops, schedules, or service at a specific location, you only need to enter one location.

The Trip Planner recognizes most street intersections and addresses as well as many landmarks in Pierce, King, and Snohomish Counties. If what you entered is not immediately recognized, the Trip Planner will offer you a list of options. You can choose one of the options, but if your intended location is not there, select the "Revise Original Entries" link to return to the entry page and change the entries you have already made.

Addresses

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Intersections

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  • You don't need to type in St., Street, Ave., or Avenue, or similar street types. The Trip Planner shows the possible alternatives as options if needed. (Example: type Conifer & Jones instead of Conifer Circle & Jones Boulevard.)
  • You don't need to type in the directional designations for streets, but if a direction name is part of a street name, you should include it. (Example: type 3rd & Main instead of 3rd S & S Main. But type 34th & West Viewmont for 34th W & West Viewmont Way W.)
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Landmarks

Government Sites: Pierce County Health Dept, Pierce Co Sheriffs Office, Tacoma City Hall

Major Commercial Sites: Tacoma Mall, Sheraton Hotel

Transportation Facilities: Sea-Tac Airport, Greyhound Bus Depot

Schools & Colleges: Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma Community College

Sports & Leisure: Cheney Stadium, Pt Defiance Zoo

Medical Facilities: Group Health, Tacoma General Hospital


 

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