The Economic Development Board of Tacoma-Pierce County has endorsed the package of transit improvements on this fall’s ballot known as “ST3”.
At its meeting Sept. 15, the board of directors representing more than 90 companies and governments approved a resolution that calls for the EDB “to support the passage of Sound Transit Proposition 1 (ST3) and recommends the citizens and businesses of Pierce County strongly advocate for its passage as well as vote in favor.”
“The gridlock we experience now, left unaddressed, does not bode well for future businesses being able to move goods to market,” said Bruce Kendall, EDB’s CEO and president, after the vote. “A reliable and robust transportation system is essential for an economy that works for everyone.”
Here is the resolution:
By the Board of Directors of the Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County
Whereas, according to the Puget Sound Regional Council, Pierce County is expected to be the home of approximately 265,000 more people by 2040 – a 31 percent increase overall; including 58 percent more people in Tacoma; 62 percent more people in Lakewood; and 51 percent more people in DuPont;
Whereas, mobility of people and products through the region is suffering now because of severe traffic congestion on key corridors such as Highway 512 to Puyallup and Interstate 5 around Joint Base Lewis-McChord and the Tacoma Dome, and that will only grow worse without more public transportation options;
Whereas, a gridlocked transportation system will hurt the Pierce County economy by making businesses reluctant to locate, expand and grow here because they can’t reliably move goods nor have full access to a robust regional workforce;
Whereas, the fastest growing public transit ridership in the region is Sound Transit’s “Sounder South” train service from Lakewood, in Pierce County, demonstrating demand for public transportation;
Whereas, Sound Transit has placed Proposition 1 on the November ballot, a $53.8 billion plan also known as “ST3” that includes expanding the capacity and service of Sounder trains south to better serve Sumner, Fife, Puyallup, Tacoma, Lakewood, DuPont, and extending light rail from Sea-Tac International Airport to Tacoma and on through to Tacoma Community College;
Whereas, the Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County believes Pierce County has much to gain from the passage of ST3 because it will make important improvements in intra-Pierce County and inter-County mobility, provide fast access to the airport, foster transit oriented development, and very likely increase the value of properties and businesses in the South Sound;
Whereas, the EDB is a private non-profit corporation founded in 1978 with the mission of growing primary jobs for the citizens of Tacoma-Pierce County, and we believe that ST3 aligns with this mission by connecting our people to a more robust regional transportation system allowing them greater mobility and choices;
Therefore be it resolved that the EDB supports the passage of Sound Transit Proposition 1 (ST3) and recommends the citizens and businesses of Pierce County strongly advocate for its passage as well as vote in favor.
Passed by the EDB Board of Directors on September 16, 2016