Breaking News
More () »

Washington Sen. Maria Cantwell talks about how the Infrastructure bill will benefit Washington state

Washington's bridges, roadways, airports and ports will see boosts in funding from the recently passed $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Bill.

WASHINGTON — The $1.2 trillion bi-partisan infrastructure bill is now on President Joe Biden’s desk.

U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell is expected to be in Washington, D.C. for the signing. But on Thursday, she spent time seeing all the future impacts as part of an exclusive tour with KING 5’s Chris Daniels.

Daniels and Cantwell surveyed King, Pierce and Snohomish counties to see what the Senator said would be done with the funding and whether the country can actually afford it all.

Cantwell's tour kicked off at Meadowdale Beach Park, the site of a salmon recovery project in Snohomish County that is creating space for salmon to pass underneath a BNSF rail line. Similar projects addressing obstructions to returning salmon could see a boost in funding from the new bill.

"Well, it's a problem all over Puget Sound," said Cantwell. "You can see that if you build a railroad without a proper infrastructure to help salmon get back to their breeding ground. We have a thousand projects like this in Washington that need approval, so we just, as part of the infrastructure bill, passed something that will target culverts in our state and in other states."

>> Download KING 5's Roku and Amazon Fire apps to watch live newscasts and video on demand

"We think our state could get hundreds of millions of dollars. We just saw a salmon migrating, which is what we wanna see," Cantwell continued.

Washington's bridges, many of which are long overdue for maintenance and repairs, could also get some much-needed attention. In the state, 416 bridges were listed in poor condition, according to a federal report on Washington state's infrastructure.

"We know that our bridges have not seen the kind of investment," said Cantwell. "We know that we have a lot of bridges that qualify for those lists and funds."

The Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is also projected to get $228 million in federal funding for improvements. Paine Field in Snohomish County will get $16 million, and Boeing Field/The King County Airport can expect $6.8 million in funding.

"If you want to increase capacity of flights, you have to have gates, and you have to have the ability to move flights in and out of those gates with some predictability," explained Cantwell.

Some funds will also go to addressing improvements to the ports in Tacoma and Seattle.

"It's about moving product, and it's about improving infrastructure, getting it moved through the port facilities and trying to figure out how to do that without that wait time... so coming up with new systems, even looking at electrification," said Cantwell."

For a daily roundup of everything you need to know for across western Washingtonsign up for our 5 Things to Know email newsletter.