A large piece of construction equipment is pictured on the rails next to I-90 in Mercer Island.
Media Caption
Heavy equipment on the new rails near Mercer Island Station

Fresh pics from East Link: Mercer Island, Redmond and connecting to Seattle

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Can you believe it’s already the end of February? This has been the shortest 29-day month ever.

In honor of Leap Day - let’s leap into the latest fresh pics from light rail construction around the region!

Our resident photographer braved the elements this past month to bring you these new images of progress along the East Link Extension.

With 14 miles of new rail and 10 stations, East Link will connect Seattle, Mercer Island, Bellevue and the Bel-Red and Overlake neighborhoods (Microsoft headquarters).

And with the Connect 2020 project nearing the finish line, we’re that much closer to opening this new line for service in 2023!

Sound blocking curtains hang at International District/Chinatown Station, where the Connect 2020 construction work is being done.
What’s going on behind the curtain at International District/Chinatown Station during Connect 2020? Read on for more!

If you enjoy these photos, follow us on Instagram and tune in on Fridays for our regular "Field Trip Friday" stories where we visit Sound Transit construction sites. 

For more information about East Link check out the project web page, sign up for project alerts and join the East Link Facebook Group for the latest construction news.

And of course, subscribe to The Platform to get the latest news and photos delivered to your inbox!

Mercer Island Station

The first stop on our tour of East Link is Mercer Island Station.

When service starts in three years, riders will be able to get from here to downtown Bellevue in 10 minutes, even if traffic on the highways is terrible. 

This station is getting close to being “substantially complete” – and you can see why.

The south headhouse of Mercer Island Station can be seen, as well as some of the tracks and the platform, covered by plastic tarps.
Looking good at Mercer Island Station where plastic sheeting protects final painting on the platform!
Small shrubs have been planted next to the rail on Mercer Island.
Rails have been installed, head houses are taking shape and crews have even started landscaping!

Redmond Technology Station

Out at the end of the line (for now – until the Downtown Redmond Link Extension opens in 2024), work is progressing smoothly.

A new garage, which provides increased parking for 300 cars and covered facilities for 100 bicycles, is taking shape.

Construction fencing surrounds a new parking garage and future light rail station at Redmond Technology Center.
Redmond Technology Station on a rainy day.
Colorful art was installed on the ceiling of the parking garage at the future Redmond Technology Station.
Art by Kate Sweeney was recently installed on the garage ceiling. It’s inspired by the algorithm known as the Apollonian Gasket – which is a collection of tangent circles contained within a single larger circle.
A sign reading "bus bay" in the foreground, with a shuttle in the background.
The transit loop on the first floor of the new garage is already open!

Overlake Village Station

From this station, riders will be able to enjoy a reliable, traffic-free ride to Bellevue, Mercer Island and Seattle. The trip to Pioneer Square will take just 30 minutes.

The platform and rail at Overlake Village Station, with SR-520 in the background.
Trains go here ↑.
An elevated pedestrian path under construction at Overlake Village Station.
Building pedestrian paths at Overlake Village Station.

Connect 2020

Before we expand to the Eastside, we’re doing some work in the downtown tunnel stations to connect this new line to our existing service.  

This project, which we’re calling Connect 2020, ends March 15! 

Two workers dig a trench to install new rail at International District/Chinatown Station.
Crews have been hard at work installing rail and conduit (pipes) for new power and communications lines.
A worker cuts a piece of rail with a big saw at the construction site at International District/Chinatown Station. The top of a Link train can be seen in the background.
We’ve been able to run trains around the construction sites, but we know the temporary changes have been an inconvenience for our riders.

More stories on East Link construction

Hopefully this isn't the first time you've run across our continuing coverage of East Link construction.

Check out our past stories for more action shots and information.

Building bridges to connect light rail to the Eastside

Fresh pics: laying rail around the region

Restoring and creating new wildlife habitat along East Link

Or you can see all of our East Link stories by clicking on the East Link category listing below (or on the right if you're reading this on your desktop or tablet).

Here's an overview of the whole extension:

East Link Extension project map

More light rail to the north, south and west

We’re not just expanding light rail to the east – we’re also stretching to the west, south and north.

In fact, the Northgate Link Extension is set to open next year!

You can check our system expansion page for details on the overall regional expansion taking light rail all the way to West Seattle, Ballard, Everett and Tacoma.

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