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CEO Corner

Joni Earl

Our job is building a mass transit system that connects you with the Puget Sound region. As Sound Transit's CEO, I can assure you that everyone here - including our Board of Directors, staff and consultants - is committed to bringing you safe and reliable service.

Joni Earl, Sound Transit Chief Executive Officer

CEO Report for August 22, 2014


Saving money

If you ride transit, you probably already know that you're saving money. It may be more than you think. A new American Public Transportation Association report shows that if you ride transit instead of driving all this month you'll have an extra $1,000 in your pocket. The August Transit Savings Report shows that Seattle-area transit riders save about $12,000 a year.

The savings are based on the cost of commuting by public transportation compared to the cost of owning and driving a vehicle. The August numbers are calculated on monthly parking rates and the Aug. 14 average national gas price of $3.47 a gallon.

Transit agencies throughout our region provide more than 150 million passenger boardings a year-that's potentially saving money for a lot of people.

Girders going up

During the night earlier this week Sound Transit's contractor, PCL Civil Constructors, began lifting huge concrete girders into place for the Angle Lake light rail station in SeaTac.

See a video of the trackway going up at that site on our Facebook page.

The pre-cast concrete pieces you see in the video are manufactured in Enumclaw by PCL Civil Constructors and trucked to the SeaTac job site. The segment construction will be ongoing through early 2015.

The overall South 200th Extension, running from Sea-Tac Airport to the Angle Lake Station at South 200th, opens for train service in 2016.

Tukwila Station platforms

Earlier this week, both platforms at the permanent Tukwila Sounder station were back in service. That means passengers can use all sidewalks in the plaza area to access the improved pedestrian undercrossing and the east platform.

Work on the permanent Tukwila Station began a year ago, with much of it finished, including a new 390-space parking lot on the west side of the tracks and the passenger platforms with covered waiting areas. The station, located south of Longacres Way and along the BNSF Railway Company tracks in Tukwila, replaces the temporary station that has been in use for several years.

Overall construction on the permanent station is going well and it remains on schedule to open this fall.

Reaching our customers

It's been a busy summer for our Sound Transit public outreach teams. The Customer Outreach Team has been at a number of fairs and festivals talking with people, issuing our popular "Undriver Licenses" and delivering information on Sound Transit services.

In the last week alone, we were at the Tacoma Broadway Farmers Market, Summer Streets in the Rainier Valley and the Othello Park International Music & Arts Festival. Next week you'll find us at the Lakewood Farmers Market followed by the Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival on Sep. 6 and 7.

The fair and festival season will be over soon, which is another indication that fall is right around the corner.

Our Community Outreach team, meanwhile, has been just as busy this summer. This team offers a valuable service by organizing and holding community meetings and open houses, providing updates, working with businesses and residences to minimize project impacts and giving advance notification of construction activities.

It's a lot of work, but keeping the public up to speed on our projects and services is important.

Mike Harbour, Deputy CEO