This afternoon I joined the Sound Transit Board of Directors in voting to put the Sound Transit 3 plan on the November 2016 ballot. Now you, the voters, will have the opportunity to decide on this proposal to invest in a comprehensive mass transit system. I want to thank everyone who shared their feedback throughout this process – your input helped us shape the final plan.
You will likely be hearing a lot about this over the next few months, but I want to give you an inside look at the Eastside projects in the package today.
As your Sound Transit representative on the Board of Directors, I spent much of my time over the past several months meeting with individuals, constituents, community and elected leaders on the Eastside to make sure we were creating the best possible package of transit investments.
This package includes key projects that help us get where we need to go in a quick and reliable way via transit, like light rail and bus rapid transit. The plan for the Eastside includes:
- Extensions of Eastlink light rail to serve Downtown Redmond, Issaquah, East Bellevue and Bellevue College, and South Kirkland.
- New Bus Rapid Transit lines from Lynnwood to Tukwila along I-405 with multiple stops in Bothell, Kirkland, Bellevue and Renton, and between Woodinville and Shoreline via SR522.
- Increased parking at South Kirkland Park & Ride and Kingsgate Park & Ride, as well as brand new facilities in Sammamish and Renton.
- A fund to make sure people can access transit by car, bicycle and foot. We want to make sure using these facilities is easy and convenient for every rider.
- Studies to determine the best route option, in the future, for connecting Bothell to Bellevue with High Capacity Transit, whether it be along the Eastside Rail Corridor or I-405.
If approved, the ST3 package will be funded by a combination of continued and existing taxes, new sales tax (0.5 of 1%), motor vehicle excise tax (0.8 of 1%), and property tax (25 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation). The ST3 proposed projects and services build off light rail extensions approved by voters in Sound Transit 2, which is currently under construction and will connect Mercer Island, Bellevue, the Overlake area of Redmond and Seattle via light rail in 2023.
To learn more about the ST3 plan and the various projects coming to the region, visit soundtransit3.org.
Until next time,