Sound Transit Board identifies route, station options for North Corridor rail expansion

The Sound Transit Board of Directors Thursday identified potential station locations for staff to study as part of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for light rail between Northgate and the Lynnwood Transit Center.
The Draft EIS will also look more closely at impacts associated with the alignment running along the I-5 corridor, and will examine impacts and benefits associated with building stations at the following locations along I-5:
  •  NE 130th Street
  • NE 145th Street
  • NE 155th Street
  • NE 185th Street
  • 220th  Street SW
  • 236th  Street SW
  • Lynnwood Transit Center

Other areas of study include alignment, profile and station design issues. Sound Transit will also seek to avoid, minimize or mitigate potential impacts of the project as the project moves forward. The Draft EIS is scheduled to be complete in spring 2013.

Last month, Sound Transit completed the latest phase of public outreach, which included ongoing consultation with local governments, and ten “listening stations” in North King County and South Snohomish County. Nearly 500 community members engaged staff to gather information and have their opinions known about future light rail options along the I-5 corridor. That input — as well as ongoing analysis — helped inform the Sound Transit board’s decision today.

The line is part of the Sound Transit 2 extensions to the north, east and south approved by voters in 2008. It is scheduled to open in 2023.

Recent analysis estimates the North Corridor light rail line will carry 52,000 riders a day by 2030 and take about 14 minutes to travel between Lynnwood and Northgate; it will feature four stations with trains running every four minutes during rush hour.

The project is estimated to cost between $1.4 and $1.6 billion. Sound Transit believes the project will be very competitive for federal funding because of its high ridership potential through one of the most congested corridors in the country.

By 2023, the line will connect with the light rail station at Northgate and travel south through the University of Washington to downtown Seattle where riders can continue on to Sea-Tac International Airport/S. 200th St. or ride east across Lake Washington to Mercer Island, Bellevue and the Overlake/Microsoft campus area.

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