Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sound Transit Expansion

In rather exciting news, Sound Transit has finally approved the new light rail and transit package, ST2, that will appear on the ballot this November. As you can see from the picture, there will be extensions of the light rail network out to Lynnwood, Tacoma and Bellevue. Plus it includes an expansion of the street car to connect Downtown with the International District, First Hill and Capitol Hill.

Perhaps even more exciting is the studies for new routes that will be funded with this ballot. They include two new light rail projects with one from U-District to Ballard to Downtown, and a similar route from Downtown to West Seattle to Burien. The Seattle Transit blog has a more thorough look at the potential expansions. It may be an unbelievable amount of time until these projects are complete, but it looks like Seattle is finally starting to build the kind of transit system it has always deserved.

Alas such a shiny transit system does not come for free. According to the Seattle Times The ballot will fund the expansions with a 0.5% increase in the sales tax. Hopefully this number will not scare away the voters. I am sure there will be more on this later.

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