SEATTLE – Sound Transit Board members Mayor Ed Murray and City Councilmember Rob Johnson introduced amendments to the Sound Transit 3 (ST3) plan during today’s Board meeting in conjunction with other board members around the region. The amendments effectively expand light rail and other transit services throughout the region.
“These changes are big wins for West Seattle, Ballard, and the neighborhoods near Graham Street and North 130th Street,” said Mayor Murray. “The public told us we need more light rail connections and we want them sooner. This expanded service and shorter timelines will help Seattle grow more sustainably and affordably.”
“As a daily transit rider, I’m proud to have worked with my fellow board members to deliver more transit to Seattle residents in a faster timeline than originally proposed – all while incorporating important public feedback on lines in West Seattle and Ballard, and infill stations at Graham Street, Boeing Access Road, and N 130th Street,” said Johnson, who also chairs the City Council’s Planning, Land Use and Zoning committee.
Murray and Johnson, joined by King County Councilmember Joe McDermott, put forward changes today that are consistent with the stated priorities of the City of Seattle:
- Fully grade- separated light rail to West Seattle and Ballard three years sooner than the initial plan;
- Improve access to existing or previous planned routes with new stations at Graham Street, Boeing Access Road, and N. 130th Street; and,
- Address immediate transit needs with investments in the RapidRide C and D Lines and Madison Street Bus Rapid Transit.
“Today’s decision to expedite the Graham Street Station by five years demonstrates our commitment to social equity and investments in District 2,” said Council President Bruce Harrell, District 2 (South Seattle). “The station will serve approximately 81% of minorities living within half-a-mile of the station. This will significantly enhance access for our seniors, walkability and transit use. I am thankful for the support the community has shown for this project. If it wasn’t for them this wouldn’t have been possible.”
“ST3 is a once in-a-generation opportunity we must not take lightly,” said Councilmember Sally Bagshaw, District 7 (Pioneer Square to Magnolia). “Our Ballard, Magnolia and Queen Anne neighbors deserve a grade-separated alignment to keep cars, freight, transit and commuters predictably moving.”
“As a city-wide representative and West Seattle resident I am incredibly pleased with the accelerated timelines, commitment to city-wide stations and the expanded service of Rapidride lines in the interim,” said Councilmember M. Lorena González, Position 9 (Citywide).
“I’m thrilled that Sound Transit has found a way to reduce the projected timeline by 3 years to deliver light rail to WS. Additional funding for near-term C line improvements is also a welcome improvement,” said Councilmember Lisa Herbold, District 1 (West Seattle).
“With full grade separation and an accelerated timeline to Ballard, I am happy to see that the ST3 package reflects what I’m hearing from Ballard, Crown Hill, Fremont, Greenwood, Green Lake and Phinney Ridge,” said Councilmember Mike O’Brien, District 6 (Northwest Seattle). “The draft plan remains flexible enough that if our communities continue to be united, I am confident we can make significant improvements even after the passage of ST3, in the years to come.”
The Sound Transit Board is scheduled to adopt these and other sub-area amendments at special meeting Thursday, June 2nd, and send a complete package to voters on June 23rd. More information about Sound Transit is available online: soundtransit.org
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