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Sound Transit's Central Link light-rail project clears federal funding hurdle


Federal Transit Administration May 8 approved the environmental review for Sound Transit’s Central Link light-rail project, bringing the agency a little closer to obtaining $500 million in federal funds.

The Record of Decision (ROD), which is FTA’s formal determination that all federal environmental requirements have been satisfied for the 14-mile, 11-station initial segment’s construction, is a prerequisite to secure federal funds.

With ROD in hand, Sound Transit may now begin formal negotiations with FTA regarding the project’s grant agreement.

"This is a major milestone for the Central Link light-rail project," said Ron Sims, King County Executive and Sound Transit board chair, in a prepared statement. "We look forward to rolling up our sleeves and formalizing the federal funding agreement to keep the project moving forward."

The line’s initial segment would run from downtown Seattle to Tukwila, Wash., and connect to a bus shuttle service to Seattle Tacoma International Airport. The line would operate regular, two-way service 20 hours daily. Agency officials expect to provide about 42,500 daily passenger trips on the initial segment by 2020.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/10/2002