West Seattle/Ballard project updates
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The West Seattle and Ballard Link Extensions will provide fast, reliable light rail connections to dense residential and job centers throughout the region. In addition, a new downtown Seattle light rail tunnel will provide capacity for the entire regional system to operate efficiently. These two separate Link extensions are part of the regional transit system expansion approved by voters in November 2016.
- West Seattle to downtown
- Adds 4.7 miles of light rail service from downtown Seattle to West Seattle's Alaska Junction neighborhood.
- Includes 4 new stations between SODO and Alaska Junction.
- Ballard to downtown
- Adds 7.1 miles of light rail service from downtown Seattle to Ballard, including a new downtown Seattle rail-only tunnel.
- Includes 9 new stations between Chinatown-International District and Market Street.
Current project status
Sound Transit and the Federal Transit Administration published the West Seattle and Ballard Link Extension Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for public comment on Jan. 28, 2022. The Draft EIS evaluated potential impacts and benefits of the alternatives on the natural, built and social environment, and identified potential mitigation measures. The formal public comment period for the Draft EIS closed on April 28, 2022. The Sound Transit Board will consider the analysis in the Draft EIS, comments received on the Draft EIS, and other information before confirming or modifying the preferred alternative for the project later this year.
What can I expect as a project neighbor?
- If you're a resident, business or property owner near a potential WSBLE route or station alternative, visiting the project’s Online Open House and signing up for email updates are the first steps to ensuring you are up to speed on the project. If you have any questions or you would like to set up a meeting to learn more, contact the project team at email@example.com.
- After reviewing the Draft EIS and the comments from the public, agency partners and Tribes, the Sound Transit Board will modify or confirm the "preferred alternative" for the Final EIS, expected to occur in 2023. A preferred alternative is a statement of where the agency is leaning based on information available at the time. It is not a final decision.
- The Sound Transit Board will make a final decision on routes, stations and the project to be built after we issue the Final EIS in 2023.