Link closed downtown this weekend as Connect 2020 completion nears

Shuttle buses operate instead of Link light rail in downtown beginning Friday night and all day March 14–15 as crews prepare for regular service

Publish Date

Work to connect downtown Seattle's light rail tracks to the Eastside for service starting in 2023 will require closing downtown stations beginning Friday night at 9 p.m. and continuing until regular service resumes Monday morning. This closure marks the planned end of a 10-week period of construction and reduced service, known as Connect 2020.

During the weekend closure there will be no Link light rail service through downtown Seattle. Shuttle buses will make surface stops at the closed stations between Capitol Hill and SODO. Fares will not be required for train or shuttle bus passengers. 

As with two previous weekend closures, light rail passengers should pack their patience and: 

  • Allow extra time for their trip. Surface shuttle buses will run every 7 minutes over the weekend and every 10 minutes on Friday night. Light rail trains will run every 13 to 15 minutes on the segments north and south of the closed stations.
  • Pay attention to signage and direction from Sound Transit staff ambassadors.
  • Sign up for Rider Alerts and go to https://connect2020.soundtransit.org/ for more information.

When Connect 2020 construction is complete, the existing tunnel will be configured for the 2023 opening of East Link's 10 new stations between downtown and Redmond's Overlake area. Completing the work early gets it out of the way before the 2021 opening of three new stations serving the U District, Roosevelt and Northgate.

Connect 2020 is another phase of the "Seattle Squeeze" (see below). Sound Transit and partner agencies are working together closely during this period to keep people moving. Sound Transit's commitment over the next five years is to complete light rail extensions that will more than double the reach of current service, expanding congestion-free commuting options for thousands of new riders each day.

Managing the 'Seattle Squeeze'

As the "Seattle Squeeze" continues over the next five years, Seattle's downtown will continue to undergo transitions to meet the needs of a growing city. Regional transportation partners including the City of Seattle, the Washington State Department of Transportation, King County Metro, Sound Transit and the Port of Seattle are all working together to keep people and goods moving safely to and through downtown.

The latest developments in the Seattle Squeeze began this past fall with the demolition of the Alaskan Way Viaduct and the construction of the new waterfront continuing to change travel behavior. Also last fall, WSDOT began tolling the SR 99 tunnel, again altering how people travel to and through downtown. Connect 2020 began in early January, reducing light rail capacity for 10 weeks. Learn more about the Seattle Squeeze at www.seattle.gov/traffic.