Major track upgrades clear way for Sounder expansion, wrap up in time for Mariner’s home opener

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Construction crews will wrap up a major rail crossing upgrade and expansion in Seattle’s SODO district this weekend, clearing the way for Sounder commuter rail expansions later this year. Completing the work also reopens Royal Brougham Way in time for the Seattle Mariner’s home opening game on Monday, April 2.

Contractors for Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway installed an additional set of railroad tracks and new utility work across Royal Brougham Way over the past five weeks. The work required a complete closure of Royal Brougham Way.

The new tracks are part of a series of rail improvements between Seattle and Tacoma that will allow Sound Transit to add five additional Sounder trains a day between Seattle and Tacoma. Sound Transit is working with BNSF to add two more Sounder trips between Seattle and Tacoma by this September with one trip being a “reverse commute” train running from Seattle to Tacoma in the morning. The other train will run from Tacoma to Seattle. Three more round trips will be added following the completion of final track and signal upgrades – tentatively scheduled for the fall of 2008.

Contractors planned the Royal Brougham Way work to fall after several major events at Qwest Field and before the Mariner’s opening day. Sound Transit and the contractors partnered with the City of Seattle to finish the work over the five week period with the full road closure rather than partially close the road over several months.

“Home Run” service

For the seventh year in a row, Sound Transit will run special “Home Run” Sounder trains to King Street Station for select Mariner’s games. This season Sounder will serve all Sunday games starting at 1:05 p.m. and Saturday, April 14th game against the Texas Rangers which starts at 12:55 p.m. The train arrives in downtown Seattle approximately one hour before the first pitch and departs King Street Station approximately 30 minutes after the game ends. The special Sounder “Home Run” service averaged more than 2,500 riders per game last season. The games and train schedule are below.
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April 14, Texas
April 15, Texas
July 1, Toronto
July 15, Detroit
April 29, Kansas
July 29, Oakland
May 13, New York
Aug. 5, Boston
May 20, San Diego
Aug. 19, Chicago
June 3, Texas
Sept 16, Tampa
June 24, Cincinnati
Sept 30, Texas

Tacoma - Seattle Service

Departs Tacoma – 11 a.m.
Departs Puyallup - 11:12 a.m.
Departs Sumner – 11:17 a.m.
Departs Auburn – 11:25 a.m.
Departs Kent – 11:32 a.m.
Departs Tukwila – 11:39 a.m.
Arrives Seattle – 12 p.m.

Everett - Seattle Service

Departs Everett – 11:15 a.m.
Departs Edmonds – 11:40 a.m.
Arrives Seattle – 12:13 a.m.

 

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Sound Transit’s regional network of express buses, commuter rail, light rail and transit facilities connects communities in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties.