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Sound Transit Light Rail Ideas to be Presented at Tuesday Open House

Sound Transit and the city of Bellevue will hold its second open house on possible cost-saving ideas for the East Link light rail project from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall.

Bellevue residents and others interested in Sound Transit's East Link project have another opportunity to weigh in on possible cost-saving ideas for the planned light rail route through the city.

Sound Transit and the city of Bellevue will present a Cost Savings Report, with analysis of the cost-savings ideas and key findings will be provided, and staff will be available to answer questions.

Some of the ideas that are still being considered are moving the

Sound Transit and the City of Bellevue are looking for . An agreement between the agency and the city means that Bellevue will cover $100 million of that cost with tax breaks, property acquisition and other actions. The city also plans to cover $60 million of the cost of the tunnel with cash -- unless cost savings can be found in the line through Bellevue. 

However, city officials told Sound Transit at a presentation in April that cost savings are secondary to the city's concerns. The .

Sound Transit plans to present its recommendations to the Sound Transit board meeting on June 14 and to the Bellevue City Council on June 18.

The ideas that will get more engineering will be presented to Sound Transit for endorsement June 28.

The city of Bellevue in a press release stated that residents will have more chances in the future to influence the project.

"Bellevue will continue to work closely with Sound Transit, and there will be additional opportunities for public input as the project progresses. Before construction begins in 2015, Sound Transit must finalize the route design, stations, art installations, construction methods and mitigation," according to the press release.

East Link will run from Seattle, across Lake Washington on Interstate 90, through Bellevue to the Overlake Transit Center in Redmond.

The entire 14-mile line that will connect Seattle's Central Link with the Eastside through Redmond via a light rail system through Mercer Island and Bellevue will cost $2.5 billion and is expected to open in 2023.

Read more coverage of Sound Transit's East Link project on Bellevue Patch.

If you go

Sound Transit and the city of Bellevue will hold its open house on possible cost-saving ideas for the East Link light rail project from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 450 110th Ave. NE

East Link Timeline

  • June 2012 - Identify the concepts for inclusion in value engineering and environmental review: June 14, Sound Transit Capital Committee; June 18, Bellevue City Council; June 28; Sound Transit Board.
  • 2013 - Continued development of identified cost savings concepts. Prepare additional environmental documentation, if any. Final decision on cost savings concepts no earlier than 2013.
  • 2015 - Final Design.
  • 2015-2022 - Construction.
  • 2023 - Service Begins 

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