Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin proposes Northgate access strategy

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Councilmember Richard Conlin

Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin proposes Northgate access strategy
Matches pedestrian and bicycle access strategies with replacement parking facility

Seattle – Sound Transit Board Member and Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin will propose a coordinated access strategy for the Northgate Link Light Rail Station at the Sound Transit Capital Committee on Thursday, June 14, 1:30 p.m. at 401 South Jackson Street. The proposal will commit Sound Transit to:

  • Match up to $5 million in City investments in bicycle and pedestrian facilities around the Northgate station;
  • Commit up to $5 million as a 25 percent share in a bicycle/pedestrian bridge between the Northgate station and North Seattle Community College;
  • Agree that Sound Transit will fund park-and-ride facilities including a new 450 stall parking garage, preferably shared use. Private funding could be used to provide additional parking garage stalls and potentially free existing surface parking for future development.

“A coordinated access strategy is critical to making light rail work and to realizing the vision of the Northgate Urban Center and enhancing the neighborhoods around Northgate,” Conlin stated. “We can accomplish so much more by recognizing that all modes of access are necessary in order to prevent gridlock and ensure that transit and urban development work together.”

The proposal includes Sound Transit being credited against the sum for any required mitigation imposed as part of permitting and other City regulations, and includes actions that Sound Transit has already engaged in to design the station to facilitate pedestrian and bicycle improvements. 

Under the Conlin proposal, Sound Transit would be committing up to $10 million for pedestrian and bicycle facilities along with approximately $12 to $15 million for Transit’s share of parking garage construction. The proposed investments would be funded within Sound Transit’s budget for North Link. These investments, in turn, will leverage other public and private funding.

The City of Seattle would have to commit $5 million to bicycle and pedestrian facilities, an amount that is consistent with the City’s long-range plans for this area. A consortium of entities would have to be brought together to fund the remaining 75 percent of the pedestrian bridge. 

“If the Sound Transit Board agrees to this proposal, and the other funding partners join the commitment, we will be able to invest $10 million in pedestrian and bicycle facilities and up to $20 million for the pedestrian bridge over I-5,” Conlin noted. “I am confident that the City would invest $10 million, and we will ask our regional partners to come up with the other $10 million.”

Projected public investment in access to the Northgate station:

Pedestrian/Bicycle facilities $10 million
Pedestrian/Bicycle bridge across I-5 $20 million
Parking garage $12-15 million
Total: $42-45 million

Sources of funds:

Sound Transit up to $22-25 million
City of Seattle up to $10 million
Other potential partners:

    King County
    State of Washington
    and grant dollars
up to $10 million


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