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Sound Transit releases final environmental study for maintenance facility


Sound Transit has issued the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) for the agency's Operations and Maintenance Facility South, which will support the storage and maintenance of Link light-rail trains for future expansion, including service to West Seattle and Tacoma, Washington.

The FEIS responds to comments on the 2021 and 2023 draft EIS documents, provides a look at project benefits, potential impacts and mitigation measures that would help inform the Sound Transit board as it considers the final project, according to a news release. 

The Operations and Maintenance Facility South will provide the necessary space to store and service the light-rail vehicles the agency needs as the system grows from the current 35-mile, 39-station, two-line system into a 116-mile, 83-station regional network. When completed, the facility will service about 144 light-rail vehicles for train cleaning and repairs, the release said. 

With the Final EIS released, staff anticipate providing a project update to the Sound Transit Board’s System Expansion Committee on June 13. At that meeting, the committee is expected to consider recommending a project to the full board. Then, the full board is expected to select the project at its June 27 meeting.

The project alternatives under consideration include the South 336th Street Alternative in Federal Way, the previously board-identified preferred South 344th Street Alternative in Federal Way and the Midway Landfill Alternative in Kent.

Once Sound Transit's board selects the final alternative, the project will advance to final design work and construction. The board's target in-service date is sometime in 2029. The FEIS indicates a completion date of 2032-2037, depending on which alternative is selected, and actions are being taken to reduce the schedule, Sound Transit officials said.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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