On a sunny day, three construction workers in yellow vests and hard hats walk along the platform at Overlake Village Station, which is still under construction
Media Caption
Overlake Village Station along the East Link Extension is taking shape. The extension opens in three years.

Four-year light rail outlook: where are we now, and where are we going?

Opening 28 new stations over the next four years

Publish Date

Well, we made it.

The election is (almost) over.

If you don't have your ballot turned in yet, check out this story with a helpful list of transit-accessible ballot boxes!

No matter how you voted, there's bound to be a lot of uncertainty as the results are tallied. 

One thing is for sure: a lot can change in four years. That's especially true for our our rapidly growing regional transit system.

In the next four years, we are growing from 22 miles of light rail to 62 miles and from 22 stations to 50 stations.

In 2016, we expanded the Sound Transit Link light rail network by opening the University Link and Angle Lake extensions that added new stations at the University of Washington, Capitol Hill and Angle Lake neighborhoods.

And over the next four years we'll open 28 new stations as extensions to Northgate, Lynnwood, Bellevue, Redmond, Federal Way and within the city of Tacoma open.

Check out our interactive map for details on each system expansion project.

Here's a look at the status of these projects in 2020:

Northgate

The Northgate Link Extension is about 97 percent complete.

Opening in September of next year, the three stations along the extension (U District, Roosevelt and Northgate) are looking great and almost ready for riders. Up next is testing and safety certification. 

A construction worker walks down a staircase to the platform of University District Station. Train tracks are visible, and the station is well lit.
Blue and orange accents will help passengers with wayfinding at U District Station.

East Link

The East Link Extension, opening in 2023, is almost 85 percent complete. 

Ten new stations will allow passengers to reach Mercer Island, Bellevue and Microsoft headquarters, and then to the Marymoor Park area and downtown Redmond the following year.

Light rail tracks are installed in the center lanes of the I-90 floating bridge, with Lake Washington visible on the left side of the photo.
Coming soon: 30-minute reliable (and beautiful) trips from downtown Bellevue to University of Washington, no matter how bad the traffic is.

Lynnwood

Looking forward to fast, frequent transit? Trains will arrive every four to six minutes when the Lynnwood Link Extension opens in 2024 providing 28-minute trips between Lynnwood and Westlake. The project is currently about 26 percent complete.

Curious about this construction work? Check out our previous Platform post for the details.

Workers stand next to a very large concrete girder span, sitting on a truck bed before getting ready to be lifted up.
Crews get ready to install the girder span that connected the Lynnwood and Northgate Link Extensions.

Federal Way

After stretching to the north and east, Link will travel south in 2024 to Kent, Des Moines and Federal Way providing fast trips past some of the toughest traffic on I-5. The Federal Way Link Extension is about 23 percent complete.

Orange, green and yellow construction equipment is pictured at a light rail construction site near Kent/Des Moines.
Crews start heavy civil construction and build the foundation for future light rail guideways along the Federal Way Link extension.

Hilltop

The Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension is about 62 percent complete. Opening in 2022, this project will more than double the length of Tacoma Link and bring the popular Tacoma Link line to the historic Stadium and Hilltop neighborhoods. 

Workers lay cement around new train tracks in the street for the Hilltop Tacoma Link Extension.
Crews install the track that will stretch Tacoma Link into the Hilltop and Stadium District neighborhoods.

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