A Commitment to Complete Streets
Building complete streets has been a long-standing priority in Olympia. A 2016 ordinance captures the importance of complete streets in all aspects of building and maintain our transportation system.
We build complete streets for pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit riders, as well as people driving cars, trucks, and buses. Streets built to welcome all of these modes of transportation allow people to drive less, and they support those who are not able to drive. Complete streets policies complement other goals, such as boosting our economy, reducing traffic congestion, increasing land use density, reducing air and water pollution from motor vehicles, and giving people more opportunities to be physically active.
Some examples of how Olympia is building complete streets include:
- 76% of our major streets have a sidewalk on at least one side.
- Voter-approved funding provides about $1,000,000 each year for sidewalk construction on the rest of our major streets.
- We require bulb-outs on street corners when upgrading downtown streets. Bulb-outs extend the sidewalk into the intersection. This makes it easier for pedestrians to cross the shorter distance, and they slow traffic.
- We add audible signals to traffic signals as they are replaced. This helps people with visual impairments know when to safely cross a street.
- We added approximately 30 miles of bike lanes to our streets through restriping and reducing or removing vehicle lanes.
- The City’s first Bike Corridor, which improves low-volume streets to make them attractive for people bicycling, was built in 2016 as a pilot project. The project received overwhelming support from the community, and as a result, we are planning to build more Bike Corridors.