Public comment period for West Seattle, Ballard light rail project begins, open houses scheduled

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Opportunity for the public to weigh in online and in person on end-to-end alternatives; comment period ends March 18

Sound Transit and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) invite public and agency comment on route and station alternatives for the West Seattle and Ballard Link Extensions project.  Comments received will help inform which alternatives should be studied in the Environmental Impact Statement, the next phase of project development.  Comments can be provided online, via email, by regular mail, voicemail, or at a public open house. 

The online open house is available today through March 18 at https://wsblink.participate.online/. In-person open houses are scheduled for these locations: 

Wednesday, Feb. 27, 6 – 8:30 p.m.  
Alki Masonic Center, 4736 40th Ave. SW 

Thursday, Feb. 28, 6 – 8:30 p.m. 
Ballard High School, 1418 NW 65th St.

Downtown Seattle, March 7, 5 – 7:30 p.m. 
Union Station, 401 South Jackson St.

Comments can be emailed to wsbscopingcomments@soundtransit.org. Written comments can also be mailed to Sound Transit, Lauren Swift, Central Corridor Environmental Manager, 401 S. Jackson Street, Seattle, WA 98104. Comments can also be called in at (833) 972-2666.

Those attending an open house will hear information and have the opportunity to provide feedback on the alternatives for expanding light rail to West Seattle and Ballard. Feedback from this comment period will be shared with the Stakeholder Advisory Group and Elected Leadership Group to inform their recommendations to the Sound Transit Board of Directors on alternatives to study during environmental review. In May, the Board will identify a preferred alternative and other alternatives to study in a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS).

When complete in 2030 and 2035, respectively, the West Seattle and Ballard light rail extensions will provide fast, reliable light rail connections to dense residential and job centers. The project will also include a new light rail tunnel in downtown Seattle that will add regional system capacity to operate more trains and faster frequencies as light rail expands to Northgate, Bellevue, Redmond, Lynnwood, Federal Way, Tacoma, Everett and other communities. 

The Sound Transit Board will consider public, stakeholder and elected leadership feedback received during the public comment period. Once this scoping phase is complete and the Board identifies the alternatives to evaluate in the DEIS, the project will advance to the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) phase, which will be complete in 2022. That same year, the Board will select the project to be built and seek a Record of Decision from the Federal Transit Administration. 

More information on this project and subscriptions for project updates are available at https://www.soundtransit.org/system-expansion/west-seattle-ballard-link-extensions.