Sound Transit announces creation of independent review -group for Central Link light rail

Publish Date

Sound Transit Board Chair Dave Earling and interim executive director Joni Earl today announced the creation of the Central Link Project Review Committee (CLPRC). The CLPRC will provide an independent review of the project and identify ways to lower the cost, shorten the schedule, reduce risk and improve the project.

"This independent review, as part of our six-month workplan for Central Link light rail, is being created to help us build a better project and build community understanding of the project," Earling said.
In January, the Board adopted a six-month workplan for Central Link light rail that called for the creation of a technical advisory committee to assist the Board and staff. That group, the CLPRC, will:

• Advise the executive director and Board on technical issues and contracting strategies; potential refinements to reduce costs, schedule and risk; and project improvements,
• Review existing studies and updated information to understand the decisions leading up to the selection of the Board-adopted preferred alignment, and • Compare alternatives for reducing costs, shortening the schedule, and lowering risk against the Board-adopted preferred alignment.
Key issues for the committee to evaluate may include:
• Assessing refinements and modifications to alignment and design,
• Reviewing third party agreements and costs,
• Providing an independent assessment of actions recommended to the Board by staff and taken by the Executive Director, and
• Developing a recommendation for an ongoing independent review and oversight of the project subsequent to completion of the six-month work program.

Charley Royer, the National Program Director of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Urban Health Initiative, former Director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University, and former mayor of Seattle, will chair the CLPRC. Earl, in consultation with Royer, will appoint 12 additional members to the committee, including five Sound Transit Board members representing the three county region.

The Sound Transit Board members on the committee were announced today and include Seattle Mayor Paul Schell, King County Executive Ron Sims, Tacoma Councilmember Kevin Phelps, King County Councilmember Cynthia Sullivan, and Snohomish County Executive Bob Drewel.

The committee will also include one Citizen Oversight Panel member with construction project expertise, two outside experts familiar with light rail projects (especially tunnel construction), one outside expert familiar with financing of large public works projects, and at least three citizen/business representatives. Persons who have financial relationships with Sound Transit will not be appointed.

The initial phase of the CLPRC is estimated to last six to nine months. At the conclusion of the initial work program, the CLPRC may reconfigure the membership and scope to focus more on ongoing technical issues related to the further design and implementation of the Central Link light rail program.

Voter-approved in 1996, Sound Transit is on track to implement a three-county regional transit system plan known as Sound Move. Sound Move is an integrated regional transportation system that includes Sounder commuter rail, Link light rail, Regional Express buses and improvements to transit centers, park-and-ride lots and HOV access.

More information on Sound Move is available on the Sound Transit web site at www.soundtransit.or / or by phone at (800) 201-4900.


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Sound Transit plans, builds and operates regional transit systems and services to improve mobility for Central Puget Sound.