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Sound Transit to use $4.6 million in stimulus funds for commuter-rail extension


The Puget Sound region is set to receive $131 million in federal stimulus dollars for transit projects, including $23 million for five shovel-ready construction projects in the Sound Transit district. Last week, the agency announced it plans to use $4.6 million of the recovery dollars to help complete improvements on a Tacoma-to-Lakewood, Wash., rail corridor, which will advance Sound Transit's efforts to expand commuter-rail service south to Lakewood by 2012.

The project calls for upgrading seven miles of existing track that Sound Transit purchased from BNSF Railway Co., as well as upgrading signals, improving 11 grade crossings and adding layover tracks for train storage north of Lakewood Station.

However, Sound Transit still needs to close a $39 million funding gap for the final phase of the extension - building a 1.2-mile section of track connecting Tacoma Dome Station to the rest of the rail corridor. Final design for the project is under way.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/27/2009