Seven years after voters approved ST3, four years before Sound Transit expects to start building the West Seattle light rail line, some of your neighbors want to reconsider it. They say we need more transit – but not necessarily this kind of transit. They’re launching what they call Rethink the Link, with a community walk in two weeks – here’s their announcement:
When we say “Rethink the Link,” we are acknowledging that a lot has happened in the 7 years since voters decided to approve ST 3.
-A global pandemic.
-The 2 1/2 year closure of the West Seattle Bridge.
-The work-from-home phenomenon.
In light of those events, it’s time to take a fresh look at our transit options and insure that we have efficient, safe, and sustainable connections to the places we want to go.
Starting with Link Light Rail.
West Seattle residents have been asking Sound Transit to walk the proposed route with us so we can get a better idea of what the future will look like if light rail comes to our community. They’ve promised many times to “get back to us,” but never have. We have lots of questions. Maybe you do, too. So we’ve decided to host our own walk.
Using the information Sound Transit has made public about its preferred “alternatives,” and knowledge from residents who have served on transportation advisory panels, we are going to walk the eastern portion of the route between the proposed locations for the Delridge and Avalon stations. We’ll walk the rest of the route, between the Avalon and the Junction stations, in the near future.
On this walk, you will learn about the proposed route; physical dimensions of the infrastructure; businesses that will be displaced; the effect the project will have on the Duwamish greenbelt, wildlife, and salmon habitat; and how light rail will affect the residential area.
We believe that when our neighbors have a chance to see what light rail will mean for our community, they will be better able to make up their minds about what should come next.
The walk will leave Ounces (3809 Delridge Way SW) at 11 am September 17th. They’re specifically advocating for the “no-build alternative,” which is one of the options featured in this section of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (see page 73). It “includes the transportation system and environment as they would exist in 2042 without the proposed project, and it provides a baseline condition for comparing impacts of the Build Alternatives and design options.” That section also says “No Build Alternative improvements include transit, roadway, and other transportation actions by state, regional, and local agencies that are currently funded or committed, and those that are likely to be implemented based on approved and committed funding.” Theoretically, the Sound Transit Board could decide on this option, rather than light rail, when making its final commitment to “the project to be built” at some point after the Final Environmental Impact Report comes out next year.