Back in 2011, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded our region a $750,000 Sustainable Communities Challenge Grant, which local governments matched with more than $500,000 of dollars and staff hours.
The cities of Olympia, Lacey and Tumwater worked with TRPC, the Thurston Economic Development Council and other partners to plan the future of four districts along the region’s urban corridor: Woodland District, Martin Way District, Brewery District and Capitol Corridor. In just five years, the initial investments have helped catalyze about $50 million in public- and private-sector investments in the districts. Meanwhile, more than $180 million has been invested in the corridor’s hub — downtown Olympia [See Infographic].
The combined $230 million has been used for:
Building construction and redevelopment projects;
Multimodal (bicycle, automobile, pedestrian, transit) transportation design and construction projects;
Economic development coordinator positions;
Stormwater infrastructure planning and construction projects;
Economic studies and planning projects.
Such investments are consistent with several of Sustainable Thurston’s goals — notably, creating vibrant centers, corridors and neighborhoods while providing a wide range of housing and active-transportation options. You might just say the region is walking the talk when it comes to its urban corridor.