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6/7/2007



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Sound Transit, University of Washington reach tentative University Link agreement


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Sound Transit and the University of Washington recently reached a tentative agreement to extend light-rail service to the UW-Seattle campus.

The agreement establishes an interim terminus for the light-rail line at the University of Washington Station; supports Sound Transit’s tunnel construction plans; identifies public entrances to the underground University of Washington Station; establishes a construction schedule of 66 months; and sets monitoring measures for magnetic field and vibration thresholds to protect UW research facilities during light-rail operations.

Under terms of the pact, UW would receive $20 million for property to be used for Link light-rail construction and operations easements, $10 million for the permanent loss of up to 100 parking spaces at Husky Stadium and temporary use of 600 parking stalls for construction staging, and $5.2 million to review and approve design, relocation and light-rail operating plans, and coordinate construction.

The agreement still has to be approved by UW’s and Sound Transit’s boards. The contract must be in place before Sound Transit can apply for a federal grant to help fund the line’s $1.6 billion cost. The agency hopes to secure a $750 million Full Funding Grant Agreement through the Federal Transit Administration. Sound Transit plans to begin construction in late 2008.


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