Sound Transit 3 ballot measure campaign kicks off with Capitol Hill party ahead of November vote

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(Image: CHS)

2016_0324_st3_draftplan_boardhandout-600x927This November Seattle voters will be deciding on arguably the most important transportation funding package since the launch of the city’s light rail system.

The $53.8 billion Sound Transit 3 package would extend light rail lines to Redmond by 2024, Ballard by 2030, and West Seattle by 2035. Extensions into Everett and Tacoma would come in the following years.

This month the transit group Transportation Choices is kicking off its pro-ST3 campaign Mass Transit Now with a series of events around the region. Mayor Ed Murray and King County Executive Dow Constantine will be at Neumos on Tuesday for the campaign’s Seattle kickoff.

Campaign manager Abigail Doerr was in the middle of a 90-minute, bumper-t0-bumper car ride from Seattle to Everett when she spoke to CHS about the campaign. “We have to do something about this,” she said.

For those who oppose the measure, including members of the Seattle Times editorial board, Doerr said they need to face the reality that one million people are coming to the region in the next 20 years, a region that is already struggling to efficiently move people around. “This is truly a once in a life time opportunity,” she said. “Our region had a choice 50 years ago and we made the wrong decision.”

According to Doerr, the campaign chose Neumos to show off the recently opened Capitol Hill Station and the improved mobility expanded light rail can bring to the city. On September 24th Sound Transit will open its latest station at Angle Lake, just south of the airport. Construction on the Judkins Park Station is slated to start next year as part of the already funded East Link line, which will span across the I-90 bridge to Bellevue by 2023.

In addition to the new light rail lines, the package also includes a variety of bus and bus rapid transit (BRT) projects—BRT lines on I-405 and SR 522, capital improvements to Metro’s existing C and D Rapid Ride lines, and potentially using highway shoulders for buses during peak congestion hours on the likes of I-5 and I-405—as well as three studies of potential future investment including light rail lines from Ballard to the University District, West Seattle to Burien, and further north to Everett Community college.

Mass Transit Now will be at Neumos Tuesday from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The program will begin at 6:30 p.m.

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7 thoughts on “Sound Transit 3 ballot measure campaign kicks off with Capitol Hill party ahead of November vote

  1. Oh, Seattle. 20 to 25 years to get to West Seattle and Ballard. This city moves at a snails pace.

    This should have been done decades ago. Because it wasn’t, the initiative should be an all hands on deck task and fully built out over the next 5 years. The city is choking and needs relief.

  2. “Extensions into Everett and Tacoma would come in the following years” as in the following years after West Seattle? So like MAYBE by 2040? Good God, won’t we have self driving cars by then?

    • “The $53.8 billion Sound Transit 3 package would extend light rail lines to Redmond by 2024, Ballard by 2030, and West Seattle by 2035. Extensions into Everett and Tacoma would come in the following years.”

      Pretty sure that’s wrong. I think West Seattle comes first (2030), Ballard is second (2035), Tacoma Dome is actually 2030 (Tacoma Extension is later), and Everett is 2036. ST2 gets to Redmond Overtake by 2022 (or thereabouts) – it just won’t get to downtown Redmond until 2024.

      But, yes, we may be in jet packs or hovercrafts by then. You should check out the timing and projects yourself on the ST3 website before you vote.

  3. I’m going to vote for ST3, because obviously we need relief from our traffic-choked streets, but I think that many will reject it because of 1) the enormous price tag, and 2) the very long timeline.

  4. I’ll probably vote no on this — way too expensive and not much help for Seattle in the near future. I’d likely be dead before it got to Ballard. Meanwhile I’ll take the bus, for which I am grateful.

    Seriously, property taxes are on target to become prohibitive if Seattle voters continue to approve every single “ask”, as is typically done.

    This concerns me a lot.