WEST SEATTLE LIGHT RAIL: 3 new Sound Transit Board members nominated

With the final major decisions for West Seattle light rail expected to be made this year – finalizing the routing and station locations – the Sound Transit Board will be down to just one West Seattleite. That person is King County Executive Dow Constantine, the current chair, who just nominated replacements for three King County vacancies: Succeeding former King County Councilmember Joe McDermott, the West Seattleite who did not run for reelection, would be County Councilmember Girmay Zahilay of South Seattle; succeeding former Seattle City Councilmember Debora Juarez, who also did not run for reelection, would be City Councilmember Dan Strauss of Ballard (which is also getting a light-rail extension), and succeeding former Kenmore mayor Dave Baker would be Redmond Mayor Angela Birney. They’ll all serve four-year terms on the board if approved by the King County Council. As the announcement explains, the board “includes 17 local elected officials – 10 from King County, four from Pierce County, and three from Snohomish County, and members are appointed by their respective County Executives.” Also on the board is state Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar. The ST Board will make those major West Seattle decisions after the Final Environmental Impact Statement comes out in a timeframe ST current describes as “the middle of” this year. The board also has to find a new CEO. Its first full meeting of this year is January 25th.

19 Replies to "WEST SEATTLE LIGHT RAIL: 3 new Sound Transit Board members nominated"

  • Question Authority January 5, 2024 (4:37 pm)

    The first course of action is to dump Dow before any more dysfunction takes place, the second is installing turnstiles to stop the hemorrhaging of fare loss.

  • Alki resident January 5, 2024 (7:17 pm)

    West Seattle does not need light rail. It will completely destroy the beautiful area we treasure here. It makes zero sense to spend that kind of money when they’ve already spent millions on the new bus lanes and routes. Take the bus. Quit trying to destroy West Seattle 

    • I ride the “C” January 6, 2024 (9:09 am)

      Agree!  ST WSBLE light rail will cost  us $4 billion for 4 miles of track that will take us only to SODO.   We will then have to transfer.  Our buses are frequent,  affordable, reliable, and existing.   Let’s improve our bus service, and save West Seattle homes, businesses, and the environment from Sound Transit’s wrecking ball.

      • Derek January 6, 2024 (1:46 pm)

        You need to have both C line and trains. C line is still at mercy of space wasting and destructive cars and can’t go around traffic. You need both in a healthy city. And connecting in Sodo is fine. Connections are expected in every major train city.

      • CAM January 6, 2024 (3:49 pm)

        You will need to transfer in SODO for 5 years and then the line will be complete and will run straight through. Try to come up with non-misleading “facts” please. 

        The only way to improve bus service effectively long term is to remove personal vehicles from the roads. Should we do what London does and institute a toll system for all roads within a certain radius of the city center?

    • Derek January 6, 2024 (1:44 pm)

      West Seattle definitely needs lightrail. We waited too long. Trains a mega important for the future and it’s time we jump started development. 

  • rob January 5, 2024 (8:09 pm)

     how much are these 3 new tax payer funded folks getting paid?

  • Scarlett January 6, 2024 (10:46 am)

    Never underestimate the emotional sway that an idea  can exert over people’s minds.   This light rail fantasy/scheme has been sold to a number of cities, all of which have been flops.  In reality, this segment has zero to do with public transportation;  it is a financial windfall for the construction industry, a pitch for real estate development and whoever else  can squeeze something out of it.  

    • Honey January 6, 2024 (1:09 pm)

      We need and use mass transit but ST light rail to WS is not the solution.  Help us rethink the  WSBLE link with smarter transit options.  rethinkthelink.org and smartertransit.org 

      • 98126res January 6, 2024 (7:48 pm)

        Agree, thank you – Rethink the Link

    • K. Davis January 6, 2024 (1:26 pm)

      And the military/industrial complex – don’t forget them!

    • Derek January 6, 2024 (1:45 pm)

      Literally none of this is true? Lightrail is so incredibly successful in San Jose and every city in the conservative south that has one even enjoys success. Look at the Marta in Atlanta. This post is nonsense.

    • 98126res January 6, 2024 (7:38 pm)

      Light rail to West Seattle has been a plan politicians and pricey consultants have been trying to sell us for years. Its just too expensive and disruptive to our community and not needed.Let’s cancel the plan here and breathe a huge sigh of relief. 

  • Millie January 6, 2024 (1:51 pm)

    Scarlett, I do believe you are “spot on”! 

  • 937 January 6, 2024 (1:56 pm)

    200 year old technology boondoggle.

    At least your taxes are high!

  • Jonathan Dubman January 6, 2024 (10:07 pm)

    All you West Seattle Link skeptics are so right and give me hope that informed and smart citizens will eventually prevail. Link is great elsewhere, like north of downtown where the demand is super concentrated, but it’s just a bad match for West Seattle where the activity centers are dispersed and the travel patterns are branching rather than linear.

    West Seattle Link won’t be any faster than buses, and will often be slower, with more transfers. And those transfers are cumbersome. The plan – this is the plan! – to make everyone transfer twice – once from their local bus in West Seattle, and again at SODO – for five years – is nuts, Nobody will do that. It isn’t worth building. And IMHO the project in its final configuration isn’t worth building either. I held my nose and voted for ST3, but have started to regret it. West Seattle is the first big project delivered in Seattle and the cost and impacts of West Seattle Link are just not worth it. They really are planning to build this crazy train to SODO only.

    Instead, we should invest in better bus service that continues to leverage the West Seattle Bridge and SR 99. How about an express bus that from West Seattle straight through the tunnel to SLU that serves downtown from the north? That would be way better for a commute from West Seattle to, say Amazon than what is being proposed for 2040, and you could run it this year instead of in 2040.

    Rethink the Link.

    • James January 6, 2024 (11:37 pm)

      This is just Gondola Rebranded. We already voted. It’s coming. 

  • Convert January 7, 2024 (12:37 pm)

    Okay, I’ve come around. Seeing the enormous support for busses and targeted opposition to rail, I’ve seen the errors of my way. Why spend billions on a train system when people are so dedicated to making sure busses are just as effective and reliable as trains. So here’s the deal, as the population grows, let’s ban all car use on roads where busses drive and institute major tolls to cross all bridges carrying busses throughout Seattle. Surely those saying we don’t need trains because busses are sufficient are willing to sacrifice their cars/wallets to ensure that statement is true!

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