Even as Central Puget Sound adds nearly a million more residents by 2040, experts told a meeting of the state Transportation Policy Board last week that travel times by car and transit through major corridors should improve over today’s slow crawl.

For the first time in decades, funding for transportation investments is on track to meet the demands of a growing population and economy thanks to the ST3 transit levies, a statewide transportation funding package passed last year and other voter-approved local road and transit initiatives.

As examples, the Interstate-5 drive from DuPont to Lakewood, which was tracked at 31 minutes should be down to 26 minutes by 2040, according to projections. Peak travel time last year from Federal Way to Seattle was 52 minutes, but planners figure that will drop to 42 minutes by 2040, for commuters using transit instead of a car.

Transportation planners from Puget Sound Regional Council are particularly encouraged by the multiple funding mechanisms that are now in place. You can see screen slides that summarize these system improvements at this link.