Sound Transit completes new Tukwila Sounder Station

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Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Adam Smith help cut the ribbon on expanded parking, bus connections, access for pedestrians and bicyclists

Local dignitaries including U.S. Sen. Patty Murray and U.S. Rep. Adam Smith joined Sound Transit today in marking the completion of a permanent Tukwila commuter rail station.

The new regional transit hub replaces a temporary structure and offers 390 parking spaces, improved bus access, storage for 80 bicycles and four electric vehicle charging stations. The facility serves 10 round-trip Sounder south line trains each weekday and four daily Amtrak Cascades round trips, with expanded bus facilities that offer easy access to Sea-Tac Airport, the Tukwila International Boulevard Link light rail station and other destinations via Metro's RapidRide F Line and route 154. The $46 million project was supported by $13.5 million in federal funding.

"Expanding our rail system is an important step toward building a strong foundation for long-term economic growth that will help families and businesses throughout Washington state," said Senator Murray. "I was proud to be a voice for this community and fight for the federal investments this project needed and the results are worth it. This station will continue to link communities throughout the region, support local businesses and help commuters every day."

Joining the program were Rep. Adam Smith, Sound Transit Board Chair and King County Executive Dow Constantine, Washington State Department of Transportation Assistant Secretary Amy Scarton and Tukwila Mayor Jim Haggerton.

"This newest transit hub gives commuters in South King County faster access to destinations across the region," said Constantine. "My thanks to Senator Murray for helping secure the federal funding needed for this project."

The Tukwila Station is one of nine Sounder stations on a popular commuter rail south line that serves more than 13,000 riders a day. Voters approved Sounder in the 1996 Sound Move ballot measure, with service from Tacoma to Seattle beginning in 2000, and to South Tacoma and Lakewood in 2012. A temporary rather than permanent station was built in Tukwila to allow time for the city to establish its downtown development plan and the City of Renton to develop plans for reconfiguring the intersection of Southwest 27th Street and Strander Boulevard into a needed east-west connection. Sound Transit delayed final design of the permanent station to allow the cities to complete their work.

The new transit facility includes two 600-foot-long platforms, two new passenger shelters, improvements to the underpass connecting the two platforms, a plaza, improved walkways and lighting and stormwater facilities to help manage runoff. A signature entryway art piece by artist Sheila Klein welcomes commuters to the station, which serves 1,800 Sounder riders each weekday.

The project's $13.5 million in federal funding includes $4.6 million in Federal Transit Administration American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, $1.5 million in FTA Fixed Guideway funds and $7.4 million in High Speed Rail grant monies.