The rural category ranges from no development (natural environment) to some light development (structures), with sparse residential and other structures mostly associated with farms. The land is primarily used for outdoor recreation, agriculture, and/or resource extraction. Occasionally non-incorporated communities will include a few residential and commercial structures.

Rural characteristics also include:

  • No or very few pedestrians – except those locations used for outdoor recreation and modal connections, school bus stops, and where socioeconomic factors suggest that walking is likely to serve as an essential form of transportation.
  • Bicycle use relatively light – except for tourist destinations, designated US Bicycle Routes, modal connection locations and between communities where bicycle travel may be expected or where socioeconomic factors suggest that bicycling is likely to serve as an essential form of transportation.
  • Low development density.
    Isolated residential or commercial activities.
    Commercial uses include general stores, restaurants, and gas stations, normally at crossroads.
  • Setbacks for structures are usually large, except in the immediate vicinity of small settlements.
  • Transit service availability is often absent or highly limited, but varies widely depending on the jurisdiction. On-demand service is typically found to provide specialized transportation services.

Rural context applies to specific mobility and economic vitality performance measures and metrics (summarized in the tables below).  Note that the rural context is relevant for practical solutions beyond those focused on mobility and economic vitality. Additional performance measures and metrics will be developed to evaluate how WSDOT projects advance WSDOT’s goals around the environment, preservation, safety, and stewardship.

Objective: Improve Accessibility
Multimodal AccessibilityMajor Destinations AccessibleAccess to jobs by driving, transit, biking, and walking (Access Score Work)Sometimes
Pedestrian Facility Availability & ConnectivityPercent of missing pedestrian facilities within xx mile on each side of corridor segmentSometimes
Pedestrian crossing opportunities per mileSometimes
Percentage of ADA accessible facilities along corridor segmentsSometimes
Bicycle Facility Availability & ConnectivityPercent of missing bicycle facilities within xx miles on each side of corridor segmentSometimes
Transit Availability & ConnectivityFrequency of transit serviceSometimes
Presence of local transit/regional serviceSometimes
Quality of ServiceMotorist Quality of ServiceTravel time (speed), automobile, transitSometimes
Pedestrian Quality of ServiceLevel of pedestrian stressSometimes
Bicyclist Quality of ServiceLevel of bicycle stressSometimes
Objective: Increase Predictability
Travel ReliabilityModal ReliabilityTravel time reliabilitySometimes
Network ResiliencyMultimodal RedundancyPercent of corridor segments lacking a connecting and parallel network (by mode: roadway, pedestrian, bicycle, transit)Sometimes
Objective: Increase Efficiency
Mode UsageMode SharePercent mode shares (by mode)Sometimes
Transit mode shift potential (commuter, non-commuter)Sometimes
Person OccupancyPersons per vehicle (PMT/VMT)Sometimes
UtilizationThroughputVehicle throughputMostly
Person throughputSometimes
Freight throughputSometimes
Objective: Mobility
Accessibility to EmploymentAccess to jobs by driving, transit, biking, and walking (Access Score Work)Mostly
Objective: Business Growth and Diversity
Investment serves infill development in priority growth areasInvestment is within an Urban Growth Boundary and is identified as a need or priority in the relevant local comprehensive plan or regional Metropolitan Transportation PlanMostly
Support for growth in an identified Opportunity ZoneProposed transportation investment or strategy is located in a designated Opportunity Zone, and aligns with the local placemaking and investment plan created for that Opportunity ZoneMostly
Alignment with Statewide Freight PlanInvestment meets the evaluation criteria outlined in WSDOT’s 2017 Freight System Plan and coinciding Freight Investment PlanMostly
Transportation cost effectivenessDirect economic activity (tax revenue) generated compared to project lifecycle costMostly
Objective: Quality Of Life
Support for areas of health disparitiesProject is in a designated location with identified health disparities and will help address those disparitiesMostly
Monetized health benefits of improved access to active transportationEstimated dollars of benefit from increased person miles traveled by biking and walking across a defined geographic areaMostly
Access to affordable housingAverage housing and transportation costs in a specified geographic area as a percentage of household incomeMostly