Greening Capitol Way

Olympia, Washington

Client: US Environmental Protection Agency

Role: Lead Consultant

Project Duration: 2014 – 2015

Key Features

  • Shared street concepts and implementation strategies, including quick-build and ultimate designs and a shared street district
  • Development of innovative green street concept designs and strategies – especially those suited to urban conditions
  • Redesign of urban main street for enhanced vitality, identity, and multimodal circulation


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Greening America’s Communities program provides technical assistance to cities to serve as case study projects emphasizing design concepts and strategies to implement green infrastructure to manage stormwater and improve water quality, as well as provide secondary urban and environmental benefits.

For Olympia, Washington, CD+A led a team to provide green and complete streets design and policy options focused on the downtown’s main street, Capitol Way. The team identified opportunities, proposed green and complete streets design strategies for green infrastructure, multimodal, and placemaking improvements, and suggested implementation strategies and measures. Over three days, CD+A led a series of focused group meetings and public meetings to workshop conceptual design options, obtain feedback and input, and address community concerns over issue areas that included stormwater management and water quality, pedestrian safety, bicycle and bus facilities, on street parking, gateways to downtown, and a unified street character.  

Design concepts included transforming two blocks of Capital Way into a curbless shared street, with both quick build and ultimate improvement alternatives; a shared street district on low volume streets; a 5 to 3 lane road diet to provide space for green infrastructure, widened sidewalks, pedestrian amenities, and on-street parking; grated tree wells in parking lanes to provide stormwater management, street trees, and placemaking; improved multimodal pedestrian, bicycle, and transit circulation and facilities