Sound Transit selects two 'most promising' options for north line

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Sound Transit has identified what it calls the two “most promising” alternatives for extending mass transit between Northgate and the Lynnwood Transit Center.

One is a light rail route that would follow I-5 to Lynnwood. The other is mostly elevated light rail route that would travel along Highway 99. The agency released a comparison of the two options.

  • The Highway 99 route is 10.2 miles long with five stations. The I-5 route is 8.5 miles long with four stations.
  • The travel time between Lynnwood and Northgate is 18 minutes for the Highway 99 route and 14 minutes for the I-5 route.
  • Year 2030 ridership for the Highway 99 route is 48,000 a day compared to 52,000 a day on the I-5 route.
  • The early cost estimate to build the Highway 99 route is $2 billion to $2.3 billion and between $1.4 billion and $1.6 billion for the I-5 route.

The alternatives that weren’t identified as promising include a bus rapid transit system using I-5, SR-99 and 15th Avenue NE, and so-called Transportation System Management that features a bus baseline with new bus routes, traffic engineering, and park and ride expansions.

Sound Transit is planning three meetings in October to gather public feedback. In December the Sound Transit Board will identify which alternatives will be considered in a draft environmental impact study.

  1. Buses are fine and all but they still are subject to traffic.  While a lot of people are against trains, the fact is that by running on a dedicated track, they get there with more regularity.

    Personally I would prefer to see elevated monorail rather than light rail, but don’t think anyone is going to my lone rouge opinion.

  2. A red opinion? Maybe you meant “rogue.” 😉

    Trains may not be subject to traffic, but their frequency is low. I prefer buses because they run more often than trains. Even during the worst traffic jams, the buses still move in the HOV lane.

    Either way, the north end needs more transit options, and soon! I don’t like we have to wait many years for one of these transit options to be built.

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