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Sound Transit advances light-rail extension projects

The Sound Transit board last week selected Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. to design and build the Federal Way Link light-rail extension.
Photo – Sound Transit Facebook


Sound Transit's board last week identified preferred design alternatives for the 11.8-mile West Seattle and Ballard Link light-rail extensions to study in a draft environmental impact statement (EIS). 

The route alternatives, which include design of 14 stations, were based on 18 months of public engagement with community groups, agency partners and local elected officials, Sound Transit officials said in a press release.

Sound Transit’s Stakeholder Advisory Group and the Elected Leadership Group screened the project alternatives to recommend which to move forward. The alternatives can be viewed here.

The agency will work with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to prepare the draft EIS, followed by a public and agency comment period in late 2020. The final EIS is anticipated to be completed in 2022, after which the board will select the project to be built.

The West Seattle and Ballard Link extensions would expand light rail from downtown Seattle to West Seattle’s Alaska Junction neighborhood, and to the Ballard’s Market Street area.

Also last week, the board selected Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. to design and build the Federal Way Link light-rail extension in a $1.4 billion contract. 

The project calls for extending light rail nearly 8 miles from the Angle Lake station in SeaTac to Federal Way. It includes final design and construction of a light-rail guideway that will connect to the existing Angle Lake Station and extend south to the Federal Way Transit Center bus station. 

Other work includes construction of three news stations, three parking garages, the overhead catenary system, traction power substations, train control and communication, special track work, utilities and street improvement. 

It is anticipated that early demolition and utility relocation work will begin later this year, officials said. Major civil construction activities are expected to begin in 2020, with service scheduled to begin in 2024.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/28/2019