Nations Largest and Most Expensive Expansion Program

Seattle's East Link light rail extension project is said to be completed in 2023 and will attract about 50,000 riders a day, says Yonah Freemark. In addition, the city council wants a section of the line to be tunneled under Downtown Bellevue.

The real success of this project is "its response to local demands in the form of the construction of a tunnel through Downtown Bellevue, agreed upon by the transit agency Sound Transit last week," said Freemark.

He continues stating that "engineering studies suggests that the tunnel would cost only about $320 million over the surface line, and the city agreed to chip in half of the extra costs, making it feasible to include the underground segment in the project. After Sound Transit's agreement, the city has until November 14 to sign the accord, settling the matter once and for all."

There is opposition, mainly from Kemper Freeman, a Bellevue developer.

Full Story: Agreement on Downtown Tunneling for Seattle Region’s East Link Light Rail

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