Project update: Northgate Link tunnel boring machines being refurbished and dismantled

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Northgate Link Extension Project moves the shield section of TBM #1 from the University of Washington Station to the future U District Station site.

Tunneling crews haul a tunnel boring machine’s shield through the U District early in the morning on Sunday, April 24.

Northgate Link tunnel boring machines being refurbished and dismantled 

Tunneling contractor JCM has one Northgate Link tunnel section left to build and the option of two machines to build it. JCM’s choice is to use the machine that just completed the future northbound tunnel between the University of Washington Station and the north portal in the Maple Leaf neighborhood. Crews estimate it will take until summer to transport, reassemble, refurbish and relaunch TBM #1 from the U District Station site to the University of Washington Station. JCM will dismantle TBM #2 and remove it from the U District Station site over the coming weeks.

Tunneling crews are also working hard to excavate cross-passages, or emergency exits between tunnels, every 500 to 800 feet along the tunnel alignment. 

The Northgate Link extension is scheduled to be complete in 2021.

Where can you find Sound Transit staff this summer?

Sound Transit plans to attend several community events this spring and summer. Stop by to ask questions or get project information at the following events:

  • U District Farmers Market – Saturday, April 30 – On the “Ave” at NE 50th Street.
  • U District Street Fair – Saturday, May 21 and Sunday, May 22 – Corner of the “Ave” and NE 43rd Street.