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Comment period begins on Draft Environmental Impact Statement for extending light rail to West Seattle and Ballard

The public can comment on route and station options in a variety of ways

Publish Date

Sound Transit and the Federal Transit Administration have published the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the West Seattle and Ballard Link Extensions project, kicking off a 90-day comment period. Members of the public can comment on the Draft EIS analysis and share their thoughts on routes and station alternatives through April 28.  

The Draft EIS, prepared in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA), evaluates potential impacts and benefits of project alternatives to inform the public, Tribes, government agencies and decision makers. 

The West Seattle Link Extension would be about 4.7 miles and includes stations at SODO, Delridge, Avalon, and Alaska Junction. The Ballard Link Extension would be about 7.1 miles from Downtown Seattle to Ballard's Northwest Market Street area and includes a new 3.3-mile rail-only tunnel from Chinatown-International District to South Lake Union and SeattleCenter/Uptown. Stations would serve Chinatown-International District, Midtown, Westlake, Denny, South Lake Union, Seattle Center, Smith Cove, Interbay, and Ballard. 

Members of the public are invited to attend an online open house at https://wsblink.participate.online, where they can review alternatives and station options, and submit formal responses. People can also provide feedback by phone, by mail, by email, or at upcoming virtual, and possible in-person, public meetings.

Virtual public meetings will take place on the following dates and times:

  • Tuesday, March 15, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. (Interbay/Ballard focused)
  • Tuesday, March 22, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. (Downtown focused)
  • Thursday, March 24, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. (CID/SODO focused)
  • Wednesday, March 30, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. (West Seattle focused)

If public health guidance permits, an in-person open house is scheduled for Thursday, March 17 at Union Station from 12 – 7 p.m. This event may transition to virtual in accordance with public health recommendations. More information on attending the public meetings is available by visiting the online open house site.

Comments may be sent via email to WSBLEDEIScomments@soundtransit.org or by voicemail at 800-471-0879. 

Written comments can be mailed to:
WSBLE Draft Environmental Impact Statement Comments
c/o Lauren Swift 
Sound Transit
401 S. Jackson Street 
Seattle, WA 98104

The Draft EIS is available for review at the online open house. Printed copies are available for review at Union Station, and at select Seattle public libraries and community centers. A list of locations is available on the open house site. 

The Sound Transit Board will consider the analysis in the Draft EIS, as well as public, agency and Tribal comments, and additional information, before confirming or modifying the preferred alternative later this year. Sound Transit will then prepare a Final EIS. After publication of the Final EIS, the Board will make a final decision on the project to be built.