SOUND TRANSIT has selected final alignments for the light rail lines in Tacoma and Seattle, which are due to open in 2001 and 2006. On February 12 the ST board picked an L-shaped route for the 2·6 km Tacoma line between the Tacoma Dome commuter parking garage and the Theatre district. The operations and maintenance depot will be at East 25th St.
A route for the $1·8bn Link line between SeaTac and the University District was agreed on February 25. Heading south from University District, it will tunnel under Capitol Hill and First Hill to the existing trolleybus tunnel, which will be converted, and then follow a busway on 5th Avenue. A tunnel under Beacon Hill will lead to Rainier Valley and Boeing Access Road. The line would fly over Interstate 5, then run at grade through Tukwila along Pacific Highway South to SeaTac international airport, terminating at South 200th Street.
However, the board deferred the $343m extension from the University District to Northgate, which would complete the 38·6 km route, until Phase 2. The next step is to complete an Environmental Impact Statement by the end of this year.