Every week this calendar will be updated with many of the public meetings, hearings and events throughout Snohomish County that has to do with growth management, environmental protection sustainability as part of the Smart Growth Program. Snohomish County and its cities all have a website to find out more about issues and meetings and how to be involved. At the bottom of this calendar are the cities and counties websites, and a list of their council and planning commission meeting dates.
EVERETT STATION DISTRICT ALLIANCE (ESDA)
The Smart Growth Executive Director is one of 11 steering committee members on the ESDA, working on future redevelopment around the Everett Transit Station. To find out more and to join visit our website at www.everettstationdistrict.com
SUSTAINABLE LANDS STRATEGY (SLS)
The SLS Executive Committee is an 8 member body representing fish and wildlife habitat restoration interests and agriculture. The Smart Growth Executive Director is Secretary-Treasurer of SLS and co-chairs are Tristan Klesick of Klesick Family Farm and Terry Williams from the Tulalip Tribes. The Executive Committee along with its convenors are working on net gains for both salmon and wildlife habitat restoration and farming in Snohomish County along the Stillaguamish and Skykomish-Snohomish River Basins and Estuaries. For more information, visit our website at snohomishcountywa.gov/2194/Sustainable-Lands-Strategy
WALLACE FALLS STATE PARK PUBLIC PLANNING MEETING
Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission will continue their public process on long-term planning for Wallace Falls State Park. They will hold a public workshop from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18th at Sultan City Hall Community Room, 319 Main Street. There are 4 stages to the planning process, also known as Classification and Management Planning or CAMP, which are:
1. Identify issues and concerns of park stakeholders
2. Explore alternative approaches to address identified issues
3. Prepare preliminary recommendations to address issues or suggest a realistic compromise
4. Propose final recommendations for formal agency and Commission adoption.
At this workshop, State Parks will present preliminary recommendations to address issues identified by park stakeholders including day-use and camping opportunities, parking, overall visitor experiences, natural resources, recreation and trails and other topics of interest to the community.
SNOHOMISH COUNTY ONLINE OPEN HOUSE ON LIGHT RAIL
In anticipation of the arrival of Sound Transit's light rail service in the mid-2030s Snohomish County is launching a planning project to prepare an area of unincorporated Snohomish County. In partnership with stakeholders, the county is proactively planning with the surrounding communites to best integrate land use and transit. The county is seeking public input via on online open house from June 22 through July 23, 2018.
The survey will provide project background, purpose and timelines; allow the public to provide input on what should be considered during the planning phase; allow for input on the neighborhood and which amenities you care about most; help with identifying potential project benefits and impacts, and other public involvement opportunities and how to stay informed. Visit https://snocolrc.participate.online.
BOTHELL CITY COUNCIL MEETING
The Council will meet at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 17th at City Hall, 18415 - 101st Avenue NE. Their agenda will be to interview and appoint three citizens to the Shorelines Board, which is an advisory body to the City Council and makes recommendations concerning potential amendments to the city's Shoreline Master Program applied to lands along the Sammamish River and North Creek. No public testimoney will be taken.
BOTHELL PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
The Commissioners will meet at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18th at City Hall. Their agenda includes a public hearing on Accessory Dwelling Units or ADUs. As part of its Housing Strategy, the City Council initiated Code amendments regarding affordable hosuing options which included ADUs.
EVERETT CITY COUNCIL MEETING
The Council will meet at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18th in their chambers, 3002 Wetmore Avenue. Their agenda includes a briefing on Sound Transit and Metro Everett Plan.
LYNNWOOD LINK EXTENSION OPEN HOUSES
The Public is invited to an Open House by Sound Transit to learn about new cost-efficient station and project designs, work to secure critical federal funding and start of construction scheduled for early 2019, and project activities you'll see this year and how to stay connected. Three times are offered:
Lynnwood on Wednesday, July 25th from 6 yo 8 p.m. at the Lynnwood Convention Center, 3711 196th Street SW.
If you can't make the meetings, you can participate at your convenience at lynnwoodlink.participate.online.
For more information visit soundtransit.org/LLE, or contact Community Outreach at 206-398-5300 or email@example.com.
MUKILTEO PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
The Commissioners will meet at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 19 in the City Hall Council Chambers. Their agenda includes an update to the Shoreline Master PRogram and Mid-Year Review to the City Council.
SNOHOMISH CITY COUNCIL MEETING
The Snohomish City Council will meet at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 17th in the George Gilbertson Boardroom, 1601 Avenue D. Their agenda includes a public hea ring regarding the city's Six-Year Transportation Improvement Plan.
SNOHOMISH COUNTY PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
The Commissioners will meets at 5:30 p.m. every fourth Tuesday of the month in the First Floor of the County Administration Building, 3000 Rockefeller Avenue, Everett. For more information, click on snohomishcountywa.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/03222016-977
SNOHOMISH COUNTY AG ADVISORY BOARD MEETINGS
The Ag Board meets the second Tuesday of each month in the County Council Chambers, 8th Floor of the County Administration Building in Everett, 3000 Rockefeller Avenue, unless otherwise indicated.
WEBSITE FOR CITIES:
Gold Bar: cityofgoldbar.us
Granite Falls: ci.granite-falls.wa.us
Index: No website
Lake Stevens: ci.lake-stevens.wa.us
Mill Creek: cityofmillcreek.com
Mountlake Terrace: cityofmlt.com
SNOHOMISH COUNTY FARMERS MARKETS
Help support protection of our county's productive farmland and our farmers by shopping at our local farmers markets.
Snohomish Farmers Market--Thursdays 3 to 7 p.m. from May 3 through September 27 at First and Cedar in the city of Snohomish.
Everett Farmers Market (2 locations)--Sundays 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. from May 13 through October 14 on Marine View Drive; Wednesdays 4 to 8 p.m. from May 23 through September 26 across the street from the Everett Transit Station.
Bothell Farmers Market--Fridays noon to 6 p.m. from June 1 through September 28th at Country Village on Everett-Bothell Highway.
Edmonds Garden Market--Saturdays 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. from May 5 through June 9 in downtown at Bell and 5th Streets.
Edmonds Full Summer Market--Saturdays 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. from June 16 through October 6th in downtown at Bell and 5th Streets.
Mukilteo Farmers Market--Wednesdays 3 to 7 p.m. from June 26 to September 26 at Old Town near Ferry at Lighthouse Park.
SOUND TRANSIT 3 UPDATES
July 2, 2018
ORCA cards now free for seniors, disabled and low-income commuters
Any Puget Sound area seniors (ages 65 and older) or disabled residents who qualify for an ORCA Regional Reduced Fare Permit (RRFP) can now get their first card at no charge. The RRFP program, and ORCA LIFT card for income-eligible riders, provide a savings of 45 percent or more on transit fares.
“Getting a reduced-fare ORCA pass is now easier and more affordable for people who need it most,” said John Resha, King County Metro Assistant General Manager and Chair of the ORCA Joint Board. “We hear every day from customers whose lives have been changed by better access to transit, and we hope this encourages more people who qualify to participate in our reduced-fare programs.”
RRFPs provide riders with reduced fares on services operated by ORCA agencies, including Community Transit, Everett Transit, King County Metro, Kitsap Transit, Pierce Transit, Sound Transit and Washington State Ferries. For more information on getting an RRFP card, visit the agencies’ websites or www.orcacard.com.
An ORCA LIFT card, which is also available at no charge to income-eligible customers, provides reduced fares on all Sound Transit services, King County Metro buses, Kitsap Transit buses and ferries, King County water taxis and Seattle streetcars. Information is available on the agencies’ websites.
Both ORCA RRFP and ORCA LIFT users can use their card’s E-purse to load value on the card for one trip at a time or add a pass for unlimited rides for a whole month. While the first RRFP and ORCA LIFT cards are free under the changes that went into effect yesterday, replacing a lost or stolen card will cost the user $3.
May 7, 2018
SEPA Addendum now available
Sound Transit has prepared a State Environmental Policy Act Addendum for the Lynnwood Link Extension. This Addendum adds to the Lynnwood Link Extension Final Environmental Impact Statement issued in April 2015 by describing and evaluating proposed design refinements, new information related to construction, and new information related to mitigation.
Copies of the Addendum are available for review at Sound Transit offices and on the Sound Transit website at www.soundtransit.org/About-Sound-Transit/Environment-and-sustainability/Environmental-planning-documents. To request a CD copy or for further information about this Addendum email project staff at LynnwoodLink@soundtransit.org.
Be on the lookout for an invitation to station and project design open house meetings this summer.
April 8, 2018
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July 11, 2016
ST3 plan would cost typical adult $169 annually or $14 per mon
Sound Transit provides Expert Review Panel with updated calculation of costs for additional car tab, sales and property taxes
Sound Transit today released an updated and more precise calculation of the taxes residents would pay if the Sound Transit 3 ballot measure is approved in November.
In its June 20, 2016 letter, the ST3 Expert Review Panel (ERP) appointed by the state of Washington suggested that the typical cost per household be updated to reflect the most current data. The more accurate new calculation indicates ST3 would cost the typical adult in the Sound Transit District an additional $169 annually, $34 or 17 percent less than the $203 previously estimated.
Under the updated and more precise methodology addressed in the attached memo, the calculations for all three of the new taxes that regional voters will consider now use median values, or the amounts at which 50 percent of people would pay more and 50 percent would pay less. Previously, the calculation for the motor vehicle excise tax (MVET) used average vehicle values based on the information that was readily available in early 2015. Using a median value cancels the disproportionate impact of the relatively small number of people that own very expensive vehicles. For example, the 1 percent of vehicles in the district with values over $52,000 and 10 percent with values over $27,000 are dramatically higher than the median value of $5,333.
For both the MVET and property taxes, the new calculation is now a reflection of the typical adult who lives within the precise boundaries of the Sound Transit District as opposed to the three-county area.
The ST3 Plan would build 62 additional miles of light rail and 37 new stations to form a 116-mile regional system, as well as bus rapid transit, commuter rail and other regional transit investments to get people out of traffic as the region's population keeps growing. The plan's $53.8 billion in investments would be enabled by new taxes including: (1) a sales tax of 0.5 percent ($.50 on a $100 purchase); (2) a MVET of 0.8 percent ($80 annually per $10,000 of vehicle value); and (3) a property tax of 25 cents for each $1,000 of assessed valuation ($100 annually for a $400,000 home). Sound Transit will develop an online calculator through which residents can input information to calculate individualized annual cost estimates.
Here's how much a typical adult would pay if ST3 is approved:
- MVET: An adult owning the median value motor vehicle would pay an additional $43 per year in MVET if ST3 were passed. The updated calculation reflects an annual median value $5,333 of vehicles in the Sound Transit District. MVET taxes are determined by a state of Washington depreciation schedule for a specific vehicle's model and production year. The previous calculation relied on a less representative average vehicle value of $10,135 for the more expansive tri-county area, for a significantly higher annual cost of $78 per adult.
- Property tax: An adult with the median home value would pay an additional $47 per year in property tax if ST3 were passed. The updated calculation is based on a median $360,658 assessed value for the Sound Transit District, and 1.93 adults per household. This calculation uses actual median assessed home values for 2015 which are inflated by 9.6 percent to estimate what people would pay in 2017 following the passage of ST3.This more precise data, based on what taxpayers actually pay, was not available at the time of the original calculation. Instead, the earlier calculation used less precise Zillow home values in the entire Snohomish, King and Pierce county areas to generate an estimate of additional property tax per adult that was coincidentally also $47 per year for an assumed median market value of $360,776.
- Sales tax: An adult at the median income level would pay an additional $79 per year in sales and use taxes if ST3 were passed. This is based on an updated median household income level of $73,359 according to 2015 data from the Washington State Office of Financial Management (OFM) for Snohomish, King and Pierce counties, and 1.93 adults per household. The OFM-estimated amount that a household of that income level pays in sales taxes was then adjusted to an estimate for 2017 by adding two years of inflation at approximately 2.25 percent annually.The previous calculation was based on the older OFM 2013 median income level of $67,032, which was inflated to a $78 estimated additional cost for 2017 by adding four years of inflation. The fact there was not much change in the estimated sales tax cost under the updated calculation reflects that the earlier inflation assumptions were fairly accurate.
The ST3 Plan would construct light rail further north to Everett, further south to Federal Way and Tacoma, and further east to downtown Redmond. Extensions would connect West Seattle and Ballard to the system, in addition to a new line in East King County linking South Kirkland, Bellevue and Issaquah.
ST3 would also establish bus rapid transit service on I-405 from Lynnwood to Burien and on SR 522, with faster buses running every 10 minutes during peak commute hours. The plan would expand the capacity of fast-growing Sounder south commuter rail service linking Seattle, Tukwila, Kent, Auburn, Sumner, Puyallup, Tacoma and Lakewood, with extension of the line to reach Joint Base Lewis-McChord and DuPont. Parking and other investments would expand access about both south line and north line Sounder stations. The Tacoma Link light rail line would extend from Hilltop to Tacoma Community College.
Among a number of other projects in the plan, early investments would include speeding up existing bus routes by enabling them to run on the shoulders of freeways where possible. Details of the plan are available at soundtransit3.org, including an interactive map.
June 27, 2016
BOARD SENDS FINAL SOUND TRANSIT 3 PLAN TO NOVEMBER BALLOT
Over the course of the past 3-1/2 years, residents of the Puget Sound region have provided input on options for future regional transit investments. This update is to let you know that yesterday the Sound Transit Board adopted a Sound Transit 3 Plan that voters will consider in November. Below is the news release on the Board's action.
Sound Transit 3 includes light rail to Everett, Tacoma, downtown Redmond, Kirkland, Issaquah, Ballard and West Seattle; bus rapid transit on I-405; Sounder south expansions.
The Sound Transit Board today capped 3-1/2 years of discussion and public input by unanimously voting to send voters a final Sound Transit 3 ballot measure for consideration in November. The plan’s proposals include completion of a regional light rail network as the area’s population grows an estimated 800,000 by 2040.
The ST3 plan would build a total of 62 miles of light rail with stations serving 37 additional areas. Improvements introduced following public comment on a draft plan in April would speed up most of the extensions by two to five years.
Light rail to Everett via Paine Field would open five years earlier than the draft plan released by the Board in March. Extensions to downtown Redmond and Federal Way would be completed four years sooner, while the Ballard, West Seattle and Tacoma extensions would open three years sooner. The agency would work with partners to further improve timelines where feasible.
If approved by voters in November, ST3 would also build light rail between South Kirkland, Bellevue and Issaquah, while expediting the establishment of bus rapid transit service on I-405 from Lynnwood to Burien and on SR 522, with faster buses running every 10 minutes during peak commute hours. The plan would expand the capacity of fast-growing Sounder commuter rail service linking Seattle, Tukwila, Kent, Auburn, Sumner, Puyallup, Tacoma and Lakewood, with extension of the line to reach Joint Base Lewis-McChord and DuPont. The Tacoma Link light rail line would extend from Hilltop to Tacoma Community College.
Among a number of other projects in the plan, early investments would include speeding up existing bus routes by enabling them to run on the shoulders of freeways where possible. Details of the plan are available at soundtransit3.org, including an interactive map. The detailed plan documents adopted by the Board today will soon be added to the documents library after amendments have been incorporated.
The ST3 Plan’s $53.8 billion in investments would be funded through new voter-approved sales, MVET and property taxes, with estimated additional $200 annual or $17 monthly costs for a typical adult in the Sound Transit District.
The plan adopted today proposes to replace bus routes with rail and faster and more frequent bus rapid transit services to improve travel for riders, particularly during peak-hour commutes.
If implemented, the ST3 Plan is projected to up to quintuple Sound Transit ridership from what it is today, increasing it from approximately 145,000 each weekday to between 561,000 and 695,000 daily riders in 2040. With ST3, the share of all transit travel in the region on Sound Transit rail lines will grow from 17 percent today to 69 percent in 2040. This means more than four times as much transit travel will occur on vehicles that don’t get stuck in traffic.
Today, Sound Transit’s express buses rely heavily on regional HOV lanes that are experiencing deteriorating performance. Between 2012 and 2014 alone, the Washington State Department of Transportation reported major deterioration of HOV lane travel times:
I-5 Everett to Seattle: weekday morning average HOV travel time increased 22 percent to 45 minutes. Reliable* HOV travel time increased 17 percent to 74 minutes.
I-5 Federal Way to Seattle: weekday morning average HOV lane travel time increased 18 percent to 39 minutes. Reliable* HOV travel time increased 20 percent to 55 minutes.
I-405 Lynnwood to Bellevue: weekday morning average HOV lane travel time increased 23 percent to 27 minutes. Reliable* HOV lane travel time increased 30 percent to 39 minutes.
I-405 Tukwila to Bellevue: weekday morning average HOV lane travel time increased 38 percent to 22 minutes. Reliable* HOV lane travel time increased 65 percent to 33 minutes.
* Defined as the time allowance required to arrive on time 19 out of 20 times.
The final ST3 Plan is based on extensive public input. An online survey generated nearly 35,000 responses and more than 1,200 people attended seven open houses held across the region. The agency received a total of 2,320 written comments from individuals and more than 90 letters from jurisdictions and organizations. By far the most frequent theme was interest in completing projects more quickly.
In a phone survey that Sound Transit conducted in April, 65 percent of respondents stated they strongly (30 percent) or somewhat (36 percent) supported the ST3 draft package in a question that described the associated tax increases. Following a question describing the plan’s previously proposed project timelines, 59 percent of respondents strongly (24 percent) or somewhat (35 percent) supported the draft package. The soundtransit3.org website includes a presentation summarizing the public input and phone survey.
Learn more about the ST3 Plan and see the interactive map by visiting the soundtransit3.org website.
Questions? Call 206-903-7000. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Faster delivery timeline for light rail
Thank you to everyone who participated in the ST3 Draft Plan comment period. Nearly 35,000 completed surveys and 2,300 written comments were submitted. Survey results are available on our website in addition to all public comments, stakeholder organization letters, and more.
By far the loudest message from the public was to speed up light rail extensions. In response, Sound Transit Board members today outlined proposed changes to the ST3 Draft Plan that would complete most of the light rail extensions two to five years sooner.
Under proposed changes, the ST3 plan slated for voter consideration in November would add 62 miles of light rail with stations serving 37 additional areas.
Proposed improvements to light rail timelines outlined at today’s meeting include:
Everett via the Southwest Everett Industrial Center would open 5 years sooner, in 2036
Downtown Redmond would open 4 years sooner, in 2024, only one year following the completion of the voter-approved East Link light rail extension
Federal Way would open 4 years sooner, in 2024
Tacoma would open 3 years sooner, in 2030
West Seattle would open 3 years sooner, in 2030
Seattle’s Ballard extension would open 3 years sooner, in 2035
The Tacoma Link extension to Tacoma Community College would open 2 years sooner in 2039
New light rail stations at Seattle’s Graham Street and Tukwila’s Boeing Access Road would open 5 years sooner, in 2031
The Board also discussed a number of significant new projects and refinements for construction as the region’s population grows by nearly a million residents by 2040. Learn more about proposed project and timeline updates here.
The proposed updated projects and timelines are scheduled to be voted on by the Sound Transit Board at a special meeting on June 2. The completed language of the plan is scheduled for final adoption on June 23 to meet election submission deadlines. Watch soundtransit3.org as the plan takes shape.
Questions? Call 206-903-7000
May 26, 2016
Proposed ST3 Draft Plan changes would speed up major projects in response to overwhelming emphasis of public comments
Sound Transit Board members today outlined proposed changes to the Sound Transit 3 Draft Plan, with emphasis on completing light rail extensions sooner.
“Across the region we heard vocal support for completing projects sooner,” said Sound Transit Board Chair and King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Speeding up these light rail expansions will give riders earlier relief from our region’s ever-worsening congestion.”
Under proposed changes, the ST3 plan slated for voter consideration in November would build a total of 62 miles of light rail with stations serving 37 additional areas. Improvements outlined at today’s meeting would speed up most of the extensions by two to five years.
Light rail to Everett via Paine Field would open five years earlier than previously stated. Extensions to downtown Redmond and Federal Way would be completed four years sooner, while the Ballard, West Seattle and Tacoma extensions would open three years sooner. During the delivery of projects the agency would work with partners to further improve timelines where feasible.
“I am in full support of the revised Sound Transit 3 Plan and believe it is very good for Snohomish County and the region,” said Sound Transit Boardmember and Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers. “As presented, Link light rail will follow our preferred route, hitting Paine Field on the way to the Everett Station District. While we would all like to have light rail reach Everett tomorrow, that is not realistic. These large construction projects do take time. We need to ensure that Snohomish County is not left out of our region’s mass transit system, since the consequences of that to our economy could be devastating. With this plan, the vision of Sound Transit and the region can be realized: we connect population centers to job centers and make the spine a priority.”
“These amendments accomplish the longtime goal of a truly regional light rail system faster than we thought we could, reaching Tacoma three years earlier while extending Tacoma Link to Tacoma Community College two years earlier,” said Sound Transit Boardmember and Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy. “Our changes also include increasing investment in Sounder, which we heard today has seen ridership increases over the past year. The plan extends platforms to accommodate two more cars, provides funding for track capacity expansions for adding trains and extends service to Tillicum and DuPont, with additional parking in DuPont. These and other investments will help Pierce County thrive as our population keeps growing.”
Details of the proposed changes to the ST3 Plan are available at soundtransit3.org. Board members proposed a number of significant new projects and refinements that would be constructed as the region’s population grows by nearly a million residents by 2040. Seattle’s light rail extension to Ballard would be completely grade separated on 15th Avenue. A new light rail line between Issaquah and Bellevue would extend further to reach south Kirkland. Expanded Sounder commuter rail capital investments in South King County and Pierce County would increase system capacity, enhance service, and extend the line to Tillicum and DuPont.
Changes would expand early projects slated for completion within the first eight years, including improvements to Bus Rapid Transit on I-405 between Lynnwood and Burien with added facilities in Kirkland and Renton. A new station at 130th Street in Seattle would move from provisional to fully-funded status.
The Sound Transit Board is scheduled to vote on proposed updated projects and timelines at a special meeting June 2. The Board is scheduled to adopt completed language of the plan on June 23 to meet election submission deadlines.
The improved timelines and added projects are primarily enabled by refinements including adjusting the financing plan for the ST3 measure to modestly increase the issuance of bonds, improving the region’s financial capacity by approximately 8 percent or $4 billion. The $54 billion in investments would be funded through new voter-approved sales, MVET and property taxes. The improved timelines and added projects would not change the measure’s estimated additional $200 annual or $17 monthly costs for a typical adult in the Sound Transit District.
The two major factors influencing project timelines are the time it takes to generate sufficient revenues through taxes, bonding and grants; and the time it takes to plan and build projects, including intensive work with local jurisdictions and other partners. Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff today updated the Board on options the agency will pursue to reduce the time required to plan, permit and construct major projects, with emphasis on working with local jurisdictions to speed up project development.
“The actions this week by the Snohomish, Everett and Lynnwood councils pledging to work with Sound Transit to speed up the process is precisely the kind of partnership we need to get commuters out of traffic sooner,” Rogoff said.
Over the course of the public input period on the ST3 Draft Plan that wrapped up earlier this month, Sound Transit heard strong continuing support for mass transit extensions. An online survey generated nearly 35,000 responses and more than 1,200 people attended seven open houses held across the region. The agency received a total of 2,320 written comments from individuals and more than 90 letters from jurisdictions and organizations. By far the most frequent theme was interest in completing projects more quickly.
In a phone survey that Sound Transit conducted last month, 65 percent of respondents stated they strongly (30 percent) or somewhat (36 percent) supported the ST3 draft package in a question that described the associated tax increases. Following a question describing the plan’s previously proposed project timelines, 59 percent of respondents strongly (24 percent) or somewhat (35 percent) supported the draft package. The soundtransit3.org website includes a presentation summarizing the public input and phone survey.
LIGHT LINK RAIL UPDATES
President's budget includes first installment of potential grant for Lynnwood Link light rail extension
FTA proposes up to $1.1 billion grant to help commuters bypass rising gridlock on I-5. The proposed FY 2017 Budget released today by President Barack Obama includes the first $125 million installment of a potential $1.1 billion federal grant for the Sound Transit Lynnwood Link light rail extension.
The Federal Transit Administration also approved moving forward with final engineering work on the extension and gave the project its second-highest possible rating under its competitive grant process. Sound Transit is seeking up to a $1.1 billion grant through the FTA New Starts program.
“Thanks to President Obama including funding in his transportation package for Lynnwood Link, we are an important step closer to offering a 28-minute ride from Lynnwood to downtown Seattle, regardless of traffic or weather,” said Sound Transit Chair and King County Executive Dow Constantine. “I appreciate the President, Sen. Patty Murray and other members of our congressional delegation for demonstrating the leadership needed to fund regional transit.”
“The President has consistently recognized the importance of local transportation investments, and I am very pleased that this year’s budget is no different with the inclusion of the Lynnwood light rail extension,” U.S. Sen. Patty Murray said. “This is great news for Snohomish County, and would help relieve some of the worst traffic congestion in the Puget Sound region. I’m proud to fight year after year for long-term infrastructure investments that connect our communities and create good-paying jobs, and will keep fighting for these investments in Congress.”
Federal partnerships are key to delivering the regional high capacity transit system and the FTA New Starts program has been a significant source of funding for light rail. The proposed New Starts grant for Lynnwood Link would be the third light rail project in Seattle to partner with the FTA for a New Starts grant.
The Central Link light rail line that opened in 2009 included $500 million in New Starts funding and the University Link extension opening March 19th includes $813 million in New Starts funding.The President’s budget proposal is subject to congressional approval. As final engineering work advances, Sound Transit will continue to work toward FTA approval and execution of the grant in 2017.
Last year the Sound Transit Board selected the final alignment and station locations for the line. Trains will run along the I-5 corridor from Northgate to Lynnwood with four new stations at Northeast 145th Street, Northeast 185th Street, the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center at 236th Street Southwest and at the Lynnwood Transit Center. New parking structures at 145th, 185th, and Lynnwood Transit Center will add approximately 1500 park and ride spaces within the I-5 corridor as part of the project. The extension is scheduled to open in 2023. A trip from Lynnwood to downtown Seattle will take 28 minutes and the extension is expected to carry up to 74,000 riders each weekday by 2035.
“Lynnwood Link will be an amazing new option for those commuting into and out of Snohomish County,” said Sound Transit Board Vice Chair and Everett City Council Member Paul Roberts. “And it gets light rail one step closer to Everett, which we look forward to as part of the Sound Transit 3 vote this November.”
For more information on the project see: www.soundtransit.org/LLE
Last year the Board also directed staff to plan for potential future stations at Northeast 130th Street in Seattle and 220th Street Southwest in Mountlake Terrace. The light rail tracks in those areas will be built to accommodate construction of future boarding platforms in a way that would not severely impact service. Cost estimates for the 8.5-mile long project range from $1.5 to $1.7 billion. The project will also pay for 34 new light rail vehicles and fund a portion of a new light rail maintenance facility, bringing the total project cost to approximately $2.3 billion. A final budget will be established in 2017 with construction scheduled to begin in 2018. Lynnwood Link is the northernmost of the more than 30 miles of Sound Transit 2 light rail extensions approved by voters in 2008. By 2023, Sound Transit is also scheduled to open an eastward extension to Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond’s Overlake area, and a southward extension to the Kent/DesMoines area. By 2030, Link is expected to carry more than 280,000 riders each weekday.