WEEKEND PREVIEW: Rethink the Link walks potential light-rail route Sunday

1:30 PM: “All opinions are welcome.” That declaration is part of the invitation on the flyer for Rethink the Link‘s “route walk” of the proposed Delridge light-rail station vicinity (and beyond) on Sunday. They’re looking ahead to a community forum requested by King County Executive and Sound Transit Board of Directors chair Dow Constantine (we checked with ST this week and there’s no date set for that yet). They’ll be gathering at the West Seattle Health Club (28th/Andover) at 10 am Sunday (June 9). The map is on the group’s website in case you can’t join the walk or prefer to explore on your own. The group in general contends there are better alternatives for moving more West Seattleites across the Duwamish River, such as improving existing transit service. The Sound Transit Board is on a track to finalize a light rail route later this year, but first the agency has to release the Final Environmental Impact Statement, expected in the next few months. This is the second major public “route walk” that Rethink the Link has offered since it formed last year.

3:04 PM: This afternoon, Sound Transit sent its email list a note reiterating what we noted above – no date yet for the West Seattle light-rail final EIS to be published. From that email:

… We expect to publish the Final EIS later this year, which will include responses to comments received on the Draft EIS. While we’re getting close, we do not have a date set for publication yet. We will share more information about specific timing for the availability of the Final EIS when we can.

After the Final EIS is published, the Sound Transit Board will select the project to be built. Their decision will consider the years of technical study and public engagement since 2018. In the past, we gathered your feedback through station planning and neighborhood forum events, scoping and Draft EIS comment periods, community briefings, and one-on-one meetings. Following the Board’s decision and the Record of Decision by the Federal Transit Administration, the project will move into the design phase.

What is the design phase? The design phase will focus on advancing detailed design of the guideway and stations and preparing for construction. This includes refining what the facilities will look like, how the stations fit within neighborhoods, and how people will move through the station. We look forward to engaging with you as the design advances. …

55 Replies to "WEEKEND PREVIEW: Rethink the Link walks potential light-rail route Sunday"

  • Honk June 7, 2024 (2:17 pm)

    People need to stop acting like trains are some mysterious never-before-tried experiment rather than the well-proven gold standard in efficient, low carbon transit. Absolute bad faith waste of time and public funds to delay any longer.Just build it already! 

    • Brandon June 7, 2024 (3:22 pm)

      Complaints about waste of public funds while advocating for sound transit is one hilarious take. Round of applause for cognitive dissonance!

      • Pep June 7, 2024 (6:26 pm)

        Building a useful public transit system is an investment. Waste is building a few scraps, spending a ton of money changing plans last minute, then calling it all off before building out a useful system.

  • CarDriver June 7, 2024 (2:23 pm)

    Waiting to read all the “these people are nimby’s” comments from people who are afraid to show up and walk with them to show why they’re wrong.

    • Josh June 7, 2024 (2:36 pm)

      No thanks.  Bring on the rail.    Bring on the change.  Bring on high speed, high efficiency localized transit options.

    • Bbron June 7, 2024 (2:38 pm)

      yeah, I have 100 better things to do on a Sunday (heard of the Farmer’s market?), but the reason I’m not showing up is due to fear. delusional take. Rethink’s points have been thoroughly countered; what’s the point of continuing to argue when they have nothing new to offer? while we’re here, tho, maybe I could get an answer about this: how does increasing the tire and brake pollution going over the Duwamish river, which impacts salmon more than any other pollutant, suppose to be greener?

    • Alki Parent June 7, 2024 (2:48 pm)

      Don’t need to go on a walk with NIMBYs to know they’re NIMBYs.Trains are necessary both for a growing city and for reducing overall carbon footprint. 

    • WSLink June 7, 2024 (2:54 pm)

      Yawn. Don’t even acknowledge these people. We had a vote, it passed, enough studies and start building.

    • Mickymse June 7, 2024 (6:23 pm)

      I showed up last time they did this… And when I pointed out things they were lying about or saying to mislead people they got angry.

  • Jay June 7, 2024 (2:31 pm)

    This is the same people behind the gondola. I don’t know if it’s appropriate for me to list the names here but it’s the exact same group of people. I’ve talked to them and it’s pretty apparent that they’re being disingenuous about these campaigns, their goal is to run up to cost of reviews and delays in hopes of making the project too expensive to proceed. They say all opinions are welcome, but if you talk to them from a perspective supporting the light rail they get angry and make emotional arguments. It’s really frustrating. We really need major infrastructure decisions like this to be a democratic and collaborative process. I don’t think it’s right how a small handful of trolls are getting more visibility for their attempt to obstruct and subvert the process than the overwhelming majority over West Seattle residents who voted for ST3 and want the train.

    • My two cents June 7, 2024 (6:32 pm)

      Gondola = Monorail Expansion effort

    • Scarlett June 8, 2024 (9:14 am)

      No, actually Jay, some of us see this link for what it is, an absurd, wildly expensive piece of infrastructure that will never make the slightest dent in traffic, will never get substantial numbers out of their cars, and will be forever a monument to emotion over reason.  It’s an dreamy lollipop  for upper middle class who fancy themselves zipping around on rail and for those economically struggling, they’d sooner have a few more buses that actually take them closer to where they want to go.  But if you call that “trolling,” go for it.  

      • Hoot June 8, 2024 (10:49 am)

        You can oppose the Link, but please spare us this nonsense that trains are an implausible, fantastical pipedream. Trains have been providing effective, efficient, popular mass transit around the world for over a century. Go to any major city anywhere in the world and people commute by train. The idea that people would rather sit in traffic on a bus is laughable.

        • K June 9, 2024 (8:10 am)

          And also in Rainier Beach, Columbia City, Northgate, and other parts of the city since the light rail was opened here.  It did allow people to get out of their cars and zip around the city.  Light rail ridership was at an all-time high in 2023.  It’s very popular.  The head-in-the-sand approach Scarlett and other Gondola proponents have taken, which relies entirely on ignoring the reality of how light rail has performed elsewhere in Seattle, is why no one can take them seriously except those whose heads are lodged in the same pile of sand.

      • Ozander June 8, 2024 (6:21 pm)

        To belive that it will be a failure is a grimm fairytale. You wish it to fail,  but it will not.  Ridership will boom. Growth in west seattle will boom. Change and growth is inevitable for the next 5 decades. 

      • Georgia June 10, 2024 (4:24 pm)

        You’re speaking the truth.

  • k June 7, 2024 (2:37 pm)

    They’ve already walked it once.  I know it’s hard when no one is paying attention to you, but you’d think they’d try a little harder to be creative for future echo chamber assemblies.

  • Pete June 7, 2024 (2:56 pm)

    Let me see now…..we have been attending forums, open houses, zoom meetings, and now walks for over 6 years. This topic has been sliced, diced and regurgitated beyond recognition. It is time for Sound Transit to make the final decisions and move this project forward. I hope that this walk is better than the prior one with such a one sided view against moving forward with progress. Once this walk produces nothing new AGAIN will they revert back to their gondola proposal? We have been given the facts in more detail than a normal human can typically consume in one lifetime.  Buckle up and bring on the trains. 

  • TomJones June 7, 2024 (3:09 pm)

    Maybe chain yourself to one of the trains in protest like people chain themselves to trees, just a thought 

  • CAM June 7, 2024 (3:10 pm)

    Anyone riding a bus to work this morning on 99 can easily explain to you why buses are not the answer. Unless of course part of your argument is to ban personal vehicles from the stadiums north to Queen Anne and from the sound east to Broadway. 

    • CarDriver June 7, 2024 (5:50 pm)

      Cam. Defund Metro?

    • WS Guy June 7, 2024 (6:16 pm)

      If the buses had their own dedicated bridge that flowed into the 4th Ave busway you would not have been stuck in traffic.  And you’d still be connected to light rail at the SODO station, which is all we are getting until at least 2037 anyway.

      • West Seattle Mad Sci Guy June 7, 2024 (8:12 pm)

        Take a bus between downtown seattle and U District.  Then take light rail between downtown seattle and U District. Tell me which is faster. (By leaps and bounds – light rail) I know from a lot of experience. Transfers between bus and light rail are also a pain here. I can’t say how the final line transfer designs will be here, but within agency (generally without exiting stations) is also a lot easier and often coordinated – certain transit systems I have used intentionally have trains wait for timed transfers. Buses do not. Especially inter-agency ones. And buses here are far less reliable vs light rail.  Though… light rail here does sure seem to have a lot of construction modifications. Hope those are less frequent over time.

      • Arbor Heights Resident June 7, 2024 (9:46 pm)

        Great idea! A separated-grade right of way would allow buses to avoid all traffic for a direct cruise to their destination. Of course, for environmental reasons these buses should be electric- connected to the power grid with wires so there’s no need for a battery system. And their rolling efficiency could be improved if the inefficient rubber tires were replaced by metal wheels on metal rail. These “super-buses” could even be chained together to vastly increase capacity! Sound Transit should give this idea serious consideration!

        • WS Guy June 7, 2024 (11:47 pm)

          1.  You’re on the right track (LOL)..  The buses could be battery powered and charge while dormant from a small number of inexpensive bays rather than by a new and expensive electrical distribution route.  And on the same time horizon as ST3 maybe they could be self-driving on their re-programmable routes.  And guess what – they could stop ANYWHERE.  Right at the curb too.  No need to take an escalator.  They just need their own dedicated roadway to bypass the key bottlenecks across the Duwamish.2.  I meant the busway yes, I thought it was at 4th but that’s not correct.  Pretty much the same route as the proposed train through SODO.3.  Nothing would stop you from transferring to LR at SODO station if you want to ride the train to one of its few fixed destinations.  I mean, most people I suppose need to take a bus to one of the stations anyway so you might as well ride the busway and transfer at SODO rather than swap modes at Delridge.I used to bike or take the 54/55 to downtown every day.   That took only 14 minutes before those routes were cut, the viaduct torn down, etc.  Rail is not going to beat that.

          • Bbron June 8, 2024 (12:20 am)

            “small number of inexpensive bays” makes no sense at all. the whole point of no train is to be replaced with buses, and you think over the course of the day that only a “small number” will be charging for hours? automated driving is a pipedream without infrastructure to assist it, which at that point a rail is cheaper and more failsafe. you want to add all this complexity, which comes with increased maintenance, more limited labor pool, and great chance of breaking in any way when a proven solution exists already. it’s disingenuous and obstructionist.

      • CAM June 7, 2024 (10:35 pm)

        Do you mean the 6th Ave busway? 4th Ave is absolutely car central so that doesn’t make a lot of sense. And no, one bridge does not fix the bus problem. Unless again you get rid of all the personal vehicles that block buses from pulling out from stops, block bus lanes, block the box at intersections, etc. You are being completely disingenuous by trying to argue there is any equivalency. Try to make a valid argument because the “buses are just as good as light rail” is a nonstarter. 

  • CarDriver June 7, 2024 (4:03 pm)

    I rest my case.

    • Bbron June 7, 2024 (8:56 pm)

      and just like the Rethink folks, no substance behind what you said

  • Arbor Heights Resident June 7, 2024 (4:33 pm)

    Every single “argument” on their website is hilariously, transparently wrong, but the most blatant one is the supposed “damage” to the west Duwamish greenbelt. That whole area is dominated by noxious weeds, and light rail construction would mandate environmental restoration there, as it has all up and down the line from Lynnwood to Tukwila and Bellevue. Opposing the light rail is opposing native plants in favor of ivy, holly, and laurel. Native species will be far better off if these NIMBYs don’t get their way.

  • WS Guy June 7, 2024 (6:13 pm)

    This group has a lot of good points.  Personally I think they should build the bridge portion of the link as a bus-only bridge that can serve the entire peninsula rather than fixed rail that only serves 2 locations.

  • D E F U N D S O U N D T R A N S I T June 7, 2024 (7:47 pm)

    New York Governor Hochul did the right thing by indefinitely suspending the congestion tax in Lower Manhattan, effectively defunding the corrupt MTA by $1 billion per year. Our lawmakers need to follow her lead and drain Sound Transit of their spending orgy and stop the bleeding of their mismanagement. 

    • Arbor Heights Resident June 8, 2024 (3:02 pm)

      No. Our lawmakers need to respect the will of the voters who passed ST3, and continue to fund this vital infrastructure project. 

      • Canton June 9, 2024 (11:50 am)

        That original vote was 28 years ago(1996). Minds change in nearly 3 decades… Maybe a revote?

    • My two cents June 8, 2024 (4:47 pm)

      Take a look at the seattle times article … people are paying $15 to save three minutes (toll pricing) … willingly.  Also, seems that you are comparing apples (corruption … buzzword) to oranges (Orgies and mismanagement).

      • D E F U N D S O U N D T R A N S I T June 8, 2024 (9:29 pm)

        My two cents, the key word is “willingly”. It’s against our collective wills to pay Sound Transit taxes when we register our vehicles. It would’ve been against the wills of NYC workers and residents to pay congestion pricing to come and go from their homes and jobs. The convenience lanes here are options for wealthy people.

        • My two cents June 9, 2024 (11:20 am)

          My bad! Totally forgot about the ballot initiatives that we “willingly” voted for and passed. 

          • D E F U N D S O U N D T R A N S I T June 9, 2024 (8:42 pm)

            Many, many tens of thousands of Seattle-area residents didn’t live here when the initiative was on the ballot. Also, we never got a chance to vote on the convenience 405 and 167 toll lanes for the impatient well-to-do.

  • ladybug June 7, 2024 (10:45 pm)

    I just want a gondola from White Center to Columbia City via Georgetown for weekend service only, Friday happy hour through Sunday brunch.

  • Jim June 8, 2024 (6:47 am)

    Defund Sound Transit 

  • Art June 8, 2024 (6:58 am)

    Such a shallow attempt to stop something that’s good for everyone in the neighborhood.Build the light rail!

  • Admiral-2009 June 8, 2024 (12:03 pm)

    Enough already, ST just make the decision and build the Light Rail.  All this dithering adds to the cost of the project.  

  • Westseattletransit June 8, 2024 (4:46 pm)

    Light rail is absolutely needed for our future generations! Excited for light rail :)

  • Mike June 8, 2024 (5:41 pm)

    While I’m extremely disappointed with Sound Transit’s dismal performance, the basic need for the infrastructure is quite clear. I hope the individuals behind this are summarily ignored and construction of the rail line proceeds. 

  • Georgia June 8, 2024 (6:22 pm)

    Defund Sound Transit. Their incompetance and lack of accountability with our tax dollars must not be tolerated. 

    • heartless June 8, 2024 (7:21 pm)

      I think you’d be happier not in a city.  Just something to think about.

      • Georgia June 9, 2024 (12:03 am)

        Cute response. Just because I dont like corrupt government agencies doesn’t mean I dont like our city. Born and raised here sweetie. Time to grow up. 

      • Adam June 9, 2024 (12:06 am)

        Because you disagree with them? Nice. Maybe you should rethink living in anything that resembles a “community” of any kind. Cuz you’ll otherwise run into opposing opinions quite often, which appears to bring you fear. I mean, this person really only said the money is mismanaged. Scary!

        • heartless June 9, 2024 (6:44 pm)

          Sorry to scare you, Adam!  If you find differing opinions scary, you might be happier not in a city.  Just something to think about.

          Georgia: how much money are you out because of Sound Transit?  This is a serious question,  and if you cannot answer it I really can’t be bothered to care about you complaining about wasted tax dollars.  So, really–how much are you out of pocket because of light rail?

          It was already obvious you were born and raised here…  There are generally tells!

    • 98126res June 9, 2024 (5:48 pm)

      Way more west seattle people need to see the research by ReThinkTheLink.org
      This $4 billion project for a 10 min ride just to Sodo has more saying it’s not necessary!!!  Pull the brake!

  • Admiral-2009 June 8, 2024 (7:23 pm)

    Mike well said!

  • Think Bigger June 8, 2024 (10:35 pm)

    Can someone explain to me why the light rail doesn’t go further south through Morgan-Westwood-WhiteCenter-Burien-Airport? It’s almost as though the people planning think the Junction is West Seattle. 

    • K June 9, 2024 (8:02 am)

      That is the plan for future expansion, but right now the only approved money and plans are to the Junction.  Like how it used to only go to UW, but now you can go all the way to Northgate.  That aside, you are not wrong that most politicians think the Junction is all of West Seattle.  I would love to see a White Center-Burien route.  

  • José zavala June 9, 2024 (5:43 am)

    Ive taken the rail twicein the 6 months ive been here. Once when my 2 grown  children and I went to  Mainers game.  We drove from Everett to Northgate parked the car and got on the rail. We went downtown for lunch and some touristy stuff and continued to the game. On the back the rail was standing room only. The second time I returned a rental car back to Seatac and returned to Everett on the rail/bus combo. Each time it was very easy to use and actually very enjoyable. I dont know what the fuss is about extending it. I would extend all the way to. Canadá. Its a no brainer.

  • Neighbor June 9, 2024 (12:11 pm)

    I know we all want the light rail and these gatherings are frustrating to see but please stop feeding the trolls.  It only encourages them.  Don’t engage with these people.  Just ignore them and go about your day.

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