Puget Sound Transportation Projects
North/South Link Light Rail Extensions
The passage of Sound Transit 2 in November, 2008 provides the opportunity to expand the initial Central Link light rail system. Along with extensions to the Eastside and the University District, extensions will reach North to Lynnwood and South to Federal Way.
The North extension will take Link from the U District to Northgate and past to Lynnwood, at the junction of Interstate 5 and Interstate 405. The South extension will take Link from the airport along SR 99 to the Star Lake Park and Ride, at South 277th, in North Federal Way.
Both of these extensions will set the stage for future extensions: North into Everett and South into Tacoma. They should also dramatically increase ridership by continuing the mission of bringing riders into the city's core from outside downtown.
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Building these extensions will add to the usefulness of the system and help ease traffic congestion. Just extending the line to Northgate would allow riders who currently take buses to take the train into town. By extending the line to Lynnwood riders from Everett and vicinity could head into downtown.
Extending the line South allows South end commuters to access the airport and downtown Seattle without having to take Interstate 5 most of the way as they must do now. This allows users to bypass congestion North of South 272nd and the Southcenter Hill.
Yes, the line does mostly parallel the Sounder heavy rail line, but this line will run more frequently, run through more populated areas, and have more stations.
The real jewel of the line is the cross-connection with Eastside Link in downtown Seattle. With Microsoft and other major tech companies on the Eastside, this would allow users now constricted by Interstate 405 to travel from outside the city to the Eastside.
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