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Sound Transit's Lynnwood Link light-rail extension project cleared the final steps of the federal environmental review process, the agency announced yesterday. The Federal Transit Administration gave formal acceptance for the project in a "Record of Decision," which marks the close of the environmental review process and prepares Sound Transit to move into the final design phase early next year. This also means the project is one step closer to receiving anticipated federal grant funding, Sound Transit officials said in a press release. The project calls for adding 8.5 miles of light-rail line between Northgate Mall and the transit center in Lynnwood, Wash. It's the northernmost project within the Sound Transit 2 ballot measure, which voters approved in 2008.The cost of the extension ranges from $1.5 billion to $1.7 billion. Sound Transit officials will establish a final budget in 2017, with construction slated to begin in 2018.The line is expected to open in 2023.