LIGHT RAIL: See West Seattle station-area ‘street concepts’ in new city survey

Though the Sound Transit Board is still at least a few months away from its final decision about a West Seattle light-rail route, the city is moving full speed ahead on its share of the plan – designing how the areas around the likely station locations will change. Latest example: A new survey asks you to take a look at the “street-concept plan” for the three station areas in West Seattle.

The survey link first appeared on X/Twitter; after spotting it there, we asked SDOT for more information. Spokesperson Mariam Ali says SDOT is working on the street-concept plan with the Office of Planning and Community Development, “in consultation with Sound Transit” and incorporating previously received community feedback. Before you start the survey, in which you can give feedback on street concepts for one, two, or all three station areas, she offered a little more context:

What Are Street Concept Plans? Street concept plans illustrate how streets could look in the future with specific improvements, such as trees and landscaping, distinct paving options, relocated curbs, and features like benches or unique lighting. To learn more about how SDOT uses Street Concept Plans, visit Seattle Streets Illustrated.

What’s Happening in West Seattle? SDOT and OPCD are creating a street concept plan for the areas around the future light rail stations in West Seattle. This plan provides a vision and guidance for how streets will look and function when light rail opens. The concepts included in the street concept plan will be used to develop designs for future projects that enhance walking, biking, and transit access around these station areas.

Community Involvement: Community members are encouraged to provide feedback through a survey. This feedback will help refine the vision for these streets. Additionally, more information about the plan, the City’s role in advancing light rail in West Seattle, and the option to sign up for an email listserv can be found on the City’s West Seattle and Ballard Link Extension webpage.

If you don’t have time to answer it now, we recommend saving the link and taking a look when you can spare a bit of time – the concepts have many proposed features, such as a vehicle-free “plaza” section of 42nd SW by the Junction station entrance. What you’ll see aren’t full station designs – just the concepts for key streets/intersections nearby.

ADDED WEDNESDAY: If, like one commenter, you’d like to see the images without answering the survey (yet), we asked SDOT, and they’ve sent this PDF version of the survey, images included, replies not required. Also, there’s now a webpage from which the survey is linked – and there’s word of two opportunities to talk with SDOT in person this weekend, one at Roxhill Park at Saturday, another at the Farmers’ Market on Sunday.

51 Replies to "LIGHT RAIL: See West Seattle station-area 'street concepts' in new city survey"

  • Seth June 12, 2024 (6:09 am)

    As someone who lives in North delridge I like the Delridge changes.  It would definitely stop all the people who take 26th for a shortcut. I do worry about exiting and the increased traffic on Genesee though. I guess I could still get to the intersection by going around by the health club huh. 

  • Anne June 12, 2024 (7:39 am)

    Instead of small sketches-snippets really I’d rather see a  fuller drawing of the whole station & surrounding area-especially 42nd Ave SW. 

    • BlairJ June 12, 2024 (9:18 am)

      I’d like to see more detail around the Delridge Station north of Andover.  It barely shows any of the actual station site at all.

  • Adam June 12, 2024 (8:30 am)

    Feels like one too many stops in such a short distance. I know, the hill, but feels like a ton of money for such a small area when the damn thing doesn’t even make it to Westwood. I just don’t understand how decision-making occurs related to all this, since they clearly don’t much consider public input. 

    • Pam June 12, 2024 (9:54 am)

      One stop every mile is not “too many”. If you want light rail to eventually reach Westwood this short distance will be necessary to expand upon later. 

    • C June 12, 2024 (11:31 am)

      A plan not being exactly what you want =\= Not considering public input

    • Gary June 12, 2024 (11:37 am)

      Adam – 100% agree. I can’t help but wonder if the Avalon Station is being kept as a bargaining chip.

    • pull focus June 12, 2024 (12:23 pm)

      I went to several of the earliest community forums regarding the West Seattle route, which included breakout sessions for reactions/ideas from attendees. At every single one I attended, the need for the Avalon station was questioned by people who were there participating in the process. And the official response at that time was something about the station being legally required, bound by the vote that approved the funding for that specific plan. So it’s been interesting to see the fate of the Avalon station seemingly still in play.

      • WSB June 12, 2024 (12:45 pm)

        It’s “still in play,” technically, because dropping it was identified as a “cost-saving concept” two years ago ( ), and there has been no move to officially put that to rest, though no action is required on a “concept,” so the idea of dropping it COULD just die a quiet death without another public mention when an official final “project to be built” decision is made – TR

      • WS Guy June 12, 2024 (4:05 pm)

        Avalon needs to be deferred indefinitely.  It has almost no walkshed.  And the people who think they need it can just walk two extra blocks to one of the other stations.  I mean, if the other 95% of the people on the peninsula have to take a bus, you can walk two more blocks.

    • Keep Avalon Station June 21, 2024 (9:48 am)

      We need Avalon station. We are going to BUILD UP that whole area. Look at all this real estate begging for density. Build it up like Roosevelt!  “Can just walk two extra blocks” wow that is REALLY ableist. It is not “two blocks” either! And do you not know the INCLINE to Delridge at all???

  • Joe Z June 12, 2024 (8:55 am)

    Feels like they are missing many key elements, while asking for feedback on minor design details like benches and lights. For instance, the Avalon concept avoids the main area of potential conflict which is the 35th Ave SW and West Seattle freeway/Fauntleroy interchange. It also does not mention the proposed multi-use bike/walking trail to connect the Avalon Way bike lanes to the station via 32nd Ave SW. The Delridge concept avoids the Delridge Way / Andover intersection and does not even mention the bus transfers, which will be the main source of pedestrians according to the ridership numbers provided in the DEIS. 

  • CarDriver June 12, 2024 (8:58 am)

    WSB. Do any of the decision makers at ST live in West Seattle?

    • WSB June 12, 2024 (9:53 am)

      The chair of the board, for one.

      • Pete June 12, 2024 (4:05 pm)

        I can’t believe this website is free 😂

        • Rosey June 12, 2024 (6:17 pm)

          It’s a great free service! But you can also donate to WSB to keep them doing their thing that attracts comments like the initial one. :) it’s always a nice assurance beyond their small business sponsors and they appreciate it. (I’m not affiliated with WSB, just an occasional comment-troll on this free website who is overdue to contribute again.)

  • BlairJ June 12, 2024 (8:58 am)

    I like the idea of a pedestrian plaza on 42nd next to the Junction Station.  But also closing off Alaska Street to private vehicle through traffic seems impractical.  The alternate routes for east/west private vehicle traffic would be circuitous and hilly.

    • Also John June 12, 2024 (2:32 pm)

      BlairJ….I agree.   At a previous open house meeting I brought this up with the young man designing the closure of SW Alaska Street.    I informed him both SW Oregon St and SW Edmonds St are no where large enough to handle the east/west traffic if Alaska is closed to traffic.   Can you imagine that nightmare?!   A number of us expressed our concerns.

      • WS Guy June 12, 2024 (4:02 pm)

        I did the same.  He shrugged and was indifferent.  I assume that a street closure would trigger an EIS or traffic study that would prove our points, and either cause a major redesign of Oregon and Edmunds or an admission that access to Alaska St is still needed.

        • BlairJ June 13, 2024 (9:29 am)

          This morning I wrote to Councilmember Saka and Mayor Harrell urging them to keep SW Alaska Street open to private vehicle traffic when the Alaska Junction Station opens.  I encourage others with the same concern to do likewise.

          • walkerws June 13, 2024 (9:37 am)

            I wrote to them urging the opposite. The more streets that don’t allow vehicular traffic aroudn the Junction the better.   

          • Platypus June 13, 2024 (8:47 pm)

            We haven’t seen the design of how traffic would be handled.  People will adjust and so will the streets.

  • Dustin June 12, 2024 (9:12 am)

    Is it required to participate in the survey just to see the concepts or is there another place these documents are available? It seems rushed to provide feedback while seeing the concepts for the first time.

    • WSB June 12, 2024 (10:02 am)

      Good question! To preview this so I could write about it, without answering it, I managed to scroll through (there was one mandatory question per station, something like “how will you get to this station”) and then drop out before submitting anything. But that’s a hassle. (And one I’ve gone through before with other agencies’ surveys that included new visual information.) I’m asking SDOT if they’re on a webpage already or, if not, whether I can get a PDF of them.

    • sam-c June 12, 2024 (2:33 pm)

      I had the same question Dustin, thanks for asking, and thanks for asking Sound Transit for better info, WSB.  I did the same thing, giving fake answers in order to preview the images included in the survey.  (then dropped out before submitting).  Seems like a PDF previous of survey before entering survey process makes sense. Wish they would provide it.  The intro to the survey does include links to the project webpage but there are so many bunny trails to follow in that process I never found those diagrammatic, numbered plans except for in the survey.   I think those 3D perspective site images would also be helpful in reviewing the station area designs.  I know I did see those somewhere, at some point.

  • CarDriver June 12, 2024 (10:15 am)

    WSB. A question for you to ask ST and Metro is the future of bus service out of WS. During the monorail saga they were having discussions with Metro about ending downtown bus service. Reason being it would cut out competition making more people have to use the monorail. Metro would have only provided shuttles to the monorail stations Also note Metro would have charged for riding.Don’t know how far discussions got on this.

    • WSB June 12, 2024 (10:54 am)

      System’s long-range plan:

    • Scarlett June 12, 2024 (12:02 pm)

      Shush, CarDriver, you’re bothering the transit intelligentsia.  Why, you’re just going to  access bus transit that will effortlessly and seamlessly deliver you to a light rail station which will then whisk you to your destination…..or somewhat in the vicinity of your destination.  They’ve got it all figured out, it’s all a complex interconnected “thingie.”   

      • K June 12, 2024 (6:57 pm)

        It’s going to look exactly like it does in other neighborhoods that already have light rail stations, Scarlett.  You don’t need to make it sound more complicated.

        • WS Guy June 13, 2024 (3:53 pm)

          It’s not complicated.  You just walk a couple blocks to your nearest bus stop, wait for the bus, the bus drops you at the station, you take the escalator to the platform, you wait for the train, you take the train to SODO, you exit and wait for a train to take you downtown, the train takes you into downtown, you take the escalator to the street, you walk 5-6 blocks to your destination, and viola!  You are there.  Maybe 15-16 minutes tops.

          • walkerws June 13, 2024 (3:57 pm)

            Still better than driving :)

      • JDB June 14, 2024 (7:52 am)

        Hi Scarlett, I live near Lincoln Park and work at UW. Currently I take the C-line downtown and then hop on the Light Rail for the remainder of my commute to UW. When the Light Rail extends to WS, I will take the C-line from my house to the Alaska Station, board the train to the SODO Station. I will then transfer and take the remainder of my commute to UW as I do now. All in all I believe the commute will be about 45 mins, a time that is not impacted by car traffic, and is about how long the C-line takes to get downtown during rush hour

        Doesn’t seem too complex to me but if you have a more efficient way to get me from LP to UW, let me know and I will give it a shot!

        • Junction Home Owner June 17, 2024 (1:22 pm)

          And, ultimately, you will be able to take the C-Line to the junction, and then take light rail all the way to UW. I know this is still many years off – it comes with the new downtown transit tunnel and Ballard extension – but it will sure be nice when it does finally come to fruition!

  • Jason June 12, 2024 (12:19 pm)

    I think tunnel to Avalon and Junction is crucial over elevated track. We NEED Avalon station. The triangle is a traffic nightmare and very dangerous for Pedestrians walking or biking to C line stops. I ride this daily. Other than that, let’s stop surveying and just pick a plan and GO!

  • AR June 12, 2024 (12:23 pm)

    Please put it underground in a tunnel.:)

  • wscommuter June 12, 2024 (2:33 pm)

    But where are the gondolas?  I’m confused.  

  • Pete June 12, 2024 (4:07 pm)

    I like what I see.

    • Platypus June 13, 2024 (8:49 pm)

      Its super cool, and its getting closer!

  • CR June 13, 2024 (7:19 am)

    I am excited for light rail but also concerned about the proposed traffic pattern changes as someone who lived within a mile of the Alaska station. WS doesn’t have that many high capacity streets and closing Alaska and part of 42nd to cars will route cars through smaller streets. The traffic buildup will also impact busses. It seems like it would also limit the ability to drop people off close to the station who don’t live nearby. I feel like design that maximizes the amount of people from all areas of WS should be the priority with these stations.

    • WSrealtor June 14, 2024 (7:22 am)

      A few folks have mentioned now that this will result in Alaska Way being closed to through traffic.  Can someone point me to where this is mentioned in any of the ST plans.  I cannot imagine Oregon or Edmunds taking on all that extra traffic…yikes!

  • Gary Richardson June 13, 2024 (2:25 pm)

    Id like to see proposals for elevated pedestrian/bicycle paths to be included as site enhancements.A path at the north end of the golf course could make for a more grade friendly passage to and from Delridge while offering spectacular views.

  • 98126res June 14, 2024 (3:15 pm)

    Consider saving $4 BILLION and 7 YEARS construction with the 100% viable “No Build Alternative”, the option Sound Transit was supposed to present to the public, but hasn’t yet?? Two excellent sites:1).

    • walkerws June 15, 2024 (3:24 pm)

      the “no build option” is not serious nor is it being advanced by serious people. 

  • Scarlett June 15, 2024 (4:45 pm)

    I guess we’ll all see what right in, say, about a decade when this behemoth is birthed to grand speeches by local dignitaries  and of course followed by everyone’s first euphoric joyride.  After that, things will settle down to ghostly stations for most the of the day with a few desultory riders looking at each other.  maybe someone on a 2 hour trip to the airport via light rail (to get there 2 hours ahead) and trying to convince  themselves this is the only way to fly.   

    By the by,  I’ve taken many trips on Amtrak.  But see, I don’t have any fantasies about Amtrak getting me someplace quickly and on time, without hassles along the way,  or being a form of mass transportation – because I know it’s Amtrak.  Likewise, I look at light rail objectively for what it is, a nice little ornament that will get a few people from point A to point B, but nothing that qualifies it as mass transportation, or anything close.   But some are willing to displace people and businesses (eminent domain is cool when its someone else), cost an arm and a leg,  probably gush more CO2 in the atmosphere that can be recouped in decades, and argue that it is. 

    Cheers, my light rail peeps!  

    • Junction Home Owner June 17, 2024 (1:29 pm)

      A trip to the airport – the 50 to Link – takes ~1 hour right now. That will decrease with the WS extension.Honestly, I don’t know why I’m even replying… This post is disingenuous misinformation.

      • Scarlett June 21, 2024 (10:26 am)

         You’re calling me disengenous?  Oh, that’s rich.  The 560 is a half hour to Seatac, Central LInk is at least 35 minutes by itself.  Try again.  

    • Penelope Stewart June 21, 2024 (9:38 am)


    • JDB June 21, 2024 (10:55 am)

      I googled “why is Amtrak slower than driving a car,” and received the following response: ““Amtrak must share the rail lines with freight trains, and freight trains tend to get priority,” he says. “This is especially true west of the Mississippi where the rail infrastructure is lacking compared to the East Coast.” Waiting for freight trains is the largest cause of passenger train delays, according to Amtrak”

      Sound Transit owns their tracks so there is nothing impacting their schedules or use of the rails. When the West Seattle link is complete, my entire commute from Lincoln Park to UW will be shorter than the C-line currently takes to get me from LP to downtown before my transfer onto the Light Rail to UW.

      Just because YOU don’t see it as a viable form of mass transit doesn’t mean it isn’t a viable form of mass transit. Unless I’m missing some kind of credentials you have in mass transit feasibility?

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