by Max Erikson
At the April 8 Lynnwood City Council meeting, councilmembers and the mayor voted unanimously to adopt an ordinance approving a funding agreement between the city of Lynnwood and Sound Transit to begin the construction of an elevated light rail station at the location of the current Lynnwood Transit Center. This is the next step to bring Link light rail to the City of Lynnwood known as the Lynnwood extension.
Sound Transit has allocated $2.5 million to the transit station project with an agreement by the city to match that same amount. The city has not yet determined where the $2.5 million funding source will be drawn from at this time.
The adoption of the funding agreement allows Sound Transit to move forward on its plans to construct a new light rail station, parking garage, add enhanced pedestrian walkways, and realign the existing Interurban Trail. The project will have nine parcels covering over 18 acres and several new parking lots that will add approximately 1665 new parking spaces.
The project is located between 48th Avenue West and 44th Avenue West, south of 200th St Southwest. In addition to constructing the light rail station and parking garage, improvements will be made to include wider sidewalks, landscaping and lighting, and enhanced bicycle facilities while creating a multi-use pedestrian promenade. The project also widens the roads for 200th Street and 44th Avenue to improve vehicular circulation and pedestrian access to the station.
The Scriber Creek Trail will be paved and elevated and also include enhanced landscaping and lighting. The proposal will also daylight a segment of Scriber Creek which currently runs underground.
Public art installations will be constructed at the north and south stations along the pedestrian promenade.
The Lynnwood extension will grow the existing light rail system by 8.5 miles connecting Northgate to Lynnwood. Voters approved the extension in 2008 as part of the Sound Transit 2 (ST2) initiative. At the end of 2018 the USDOT approved a $1.1 billion grant agreement to pay for the 8.5 mile extension. Construction is expected to be completed by summer of 2024.
The Lynnwood Link will connect existing rail service from Seattle to the densely populated suburbs of Shoreline, Mountlake Terrace, and Lynnwood, with four new stations connecting Northgate to Lynnwood and other link projects under construction in the region.
The Lynnwood extension is part of a larger eff ort by Sound Transit to connect the Puget Sound region. Ballot measure Sound Transit 3 (ST3) passed in 2016 to expand the public transit system in the region as a follow up measure to ST2. The goal is to expand service from Tacoma to Everett as well as Issaquah and the Seattle neighborhoods of West Seattle and Ballard.
The $53.8 billion price tag for the regional project will be partially funded by increases in sales tax, a motor vehicle excise tax, and higher property taxes.