Submitted by Sound Transit.
Sound Transit needs additional public feedback on route alternatives and station locations for extending light rail from Federal Way to Tacoma and will give an update on siting a new operations and maintenance facility between Kent and Tacoma.
An online open house will be available August 31-September 21 at tdlink.participate.online/. In-person open houses are taking place in September at the following locations:
6-8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19 at Best Western Plus Tacoma Dome Hotel, 2611 E. E St.
Based on feedback from spring open houses, Sound Transit staff developed and evaluated alternatives for the regional light rail route and station locations. Additional public input this month will inform the project’s Elected Leadership Group in making recommendations for narrowing the route and station location alternatives that move forward for continued study.
Through mid-2019, staff will engage the public and stakeholder groups in an intensive public involvement process that is expected to lead to the Sound Transit Board identifying a preferred alternative, as well as other alternatives, to evaluate in an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). More information on the public involvement process is available at www.soundtransit.org/tdlink
Identifying a preferred alternative earlier in the EIS process will jump-start public conversations about project decisions, reveal areas of broad agreement, and help focus project leadership on areas needing problem-solving and consensus building. This streamlined process is also intended to reduce overall project delivery time by reaching early public consensus on the preferred alternative and reducing the risk of new alternatives being introduced late in the environmental review process or after the environmental process is complete. The Sound Transit Board will make a final decision on the project to build after completion of the environmental review.
The regional light rail extension from Federal Way to the Tacoma Dome is 9.7-miles of elevated and at-grade light rail from the Federal Way Transit Center to the Tacoma Dome with a new rail-only fixed span across the Puyallup River. It includes four new stations in South Federal Way, Fife, East Tacoma and at the Tacoma Dome. This project will also consider locations for a new operation and maintenance facility between Kent and Tacoma.
In addition to the Tacoma Dome Link Extension, Sound Transit is simultaneously working to extend light rail north, south and east, opening new stations every few years to form a 116-mile regional system by 2041. The agency is on track to open extensions to Seattle’s University District, Roosevelt and Northgate neighborhoods in 2021, followed by service to Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond’s Overlake area in 2023. Additional extensions to Kent/Des Moines, Federal Way, Shoreline, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and Downtown Redmond are planned to open in 2024. Further light rail extensions are scheduled to reach West Seattle in 2030; Seattle Center, South Lake Union and Ballard in 2035; Paine Field and Everett in 2036; and South Kirkland and Issaquah in 2041.