Citizen Oversight Panel year-end 2005 report finds successes, concerns
The Citizen Oversight Panel (COP) appointed to monitor Sound Transit's performance released its year-end 2005 report today. The COP found that Sound Transit added to its record of significant accomplishments in 2005, however there are areas that the Panel continues to find troubling. Among the major achievements last year, the Panel cited:
- A firm plan to extend Link light rail to the Airport and the University of Washington
- Open and transparent Board debate about the elimination of the First Hill Station
- The successful closure of the Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel
"On the whole," the report found, "Sound Transit's reputation with the public and with opinion leaders and stakeholders is getting better all the time."
The Panel's Vice Chair, Dick Chapin of Bellevue, commented, "Members of this Panel feel there were more pluses than minuses this year. We continue to make progress as a region."
Notwithstanding the successes in 2005, COP identified a number of serious concerns: these include project management issues; the need for a formal "lessons learned" system; concerns about the subarea equity policy and its effect on the development of a regional system; and finally, the high cost of the agency's transit operations.
The Citizen Oversight Panel, an independent body comprised of 15 volunteer members from throughout the Sound Transit district, has been meeting since 1997. This is its 16th report to date.
Contact: Dick Chapin, COP Vice Chair, 425-462-0064
# # #
Sound Transit plans, builds and operates regional transit systems and services to improve mobility for Central Puget Sound.