The Sound Transit Lynnwood Link Extension (LLE) Light Rail Project will give riders a fast, frequent and reliable connection through some of the worst traffic congestion in Washington State. This extension builds four new light rail stations from Northgate to Lynnwood along the Interstate-5 corridor, two of which will be right here in Shoreline:
- Shoreline South/145th Station located at 148th Street and 5th Ave NE; and
- Shoreline North/185th Station located at NE 185th Street and 8th Ave NE.
The City of Shoreline is reviewing designs and issuing permits for the Sound Transit LLE Light Rail Project through Shoreline. The City will be reviewing and issuing permits for all facilities related to light rail in Shoreline including tracks, stations and related amenities, parking garages, and operations structures. Sound Transit anticipates the LLE Light Rail Project starting construction in 2019 and opening for service in 2024.
Construction Alerts and LLE Project Updates
April 30, 2019 - Construction Alert
Tree and vegetation removal will be starting adjacent to NE 145th Street and I-5 near the Jackson Park Golf Course as early as May 2nd. For more information, please see the document linked above or visit Sound Transit's Online Open House.
April 16, 2019 - Moving forward: Lynnwood Link construction coming this spring
See this linked article for current information on the Lynnwood Link Project and an overview of Sound Transit's program to plant and maintain more than 20,000 replacement trees along the light rail guideway.
Notice of Public Hearing for the Sound Transit Special Use Permit
Sound Transit has submitted an application for a Special Use Permit (SUP) to the City of Shoreline, and the City has judged the application to be complete. An initial notice for the Special Use Permit application was posted on September 24, 2018, and the project was re-noticed on October 1, 2018 to conform to SMC 20.30.60. The period for public comment on the SUP was revised to extend from October 1, 2018 through October 24, 2018. All comments received during the original comment period (which began on September 24, 2018) are still valid.
The public comment period for the Special Use Permit application closed on October 24, 2018 and a Public Hearing was held before the City of Shoreline's Hearing Examiner on April 24, 2019. The Public Hearing was well attended, and residents in attendance had generally positive comments about the Light Rail Project. It is anticipated that the decision from the Hearing Examiner regarding the Special Use Permit application will be issued by May 31, 2019.
Sound Transit’s Special Use Permit updated application materials as well as additional materials submitted to the Hearing Examiner in preparation for the upcoming Public Hearing can be viewed or downloaded at this link: Hearing Examiner - HE Hearing Records - Sound Transit - SPL18-0140.
For additional information, please see the Section below titled Special Use Permit (SUP).
Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project Online Construction Open House and Project Updates
Construction is set to begin on Sound Transit's Lynnwood Link Light Rail Project this spring. Sound Transit hosted an Open House on February 26th informing the public on what to expect during construction and how to stay informed as the project is built.
For up-to-date information about the Project, please visit the Sound Transit Online Open House where you can view the plans for the Shoreline South/145th Station and the Shoreline North/185th Station, as well as calendars for each station listing construction schedules and anticipated impacts. The Open House Material also includes helpful information covering the typical light rail construction sequence and photos of the ongoing construction at the Northgate Station area, all of which will help in anticipating the changes coming to our city over the next five years.
To stay current on construction and project news, please sign up to receive updates via email on the Online Open House web page..
Kiss Sculpture Relocation
Sound Transit is offsetting impacts to wetlands as a result of light rail construction in Shoreline by creating wetlands at Ronald Bog Park.
As the first step in constructing the Ronald Bog Wetland Mitigation Site, Michel Sweeney's The Kiss sculpture was moved to a new location within the park. Sound Transit constructed a new earthen mound approximately 200 feet east from the sculpture's previous location and then carefully transferred the sculpture to the new mound in March. See Sound Transit's Construction alert - Kiss sculpture relocation for further information.
Early Work to Commence on the Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project in early 2019
Sound Transit has begun submitting their first permit applications to the City for the next stage of work on the Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project. The upcoming "early work" will consist of clearing and grading as well as relocating utilities to make way for the future light rail tracks, stations, and parking garages. Removal of trees along the east side of I-5 for the future light rail route will be the most visible change early in 2019. Sound Transit is submitting these permit applications under the City's Master Permit guidelines for Right of Way Use and for Site Development. For organizational purposes, Sound Transit has divided the light rail route through the City of Shoreline into multiple work zones, and the permit submittals are being grouped by these specific work zones.
The City requirements for permit submittals are contained in Master Checklists that have been adjusted specifically for transit and light rail projects. Below are links to the five main Master Checklists that will govern the upcoming permit submittals:
Approval of the Critical Areas Special Use Permit Application for Geologic Hazard Area
Sound Transit submitted an application for a Critical Areas Special Use Permit (CASUP) for work on the Light Rail Project that will be located within the embankment of the I-5 northbound ramp, generally between NE 200th Street and the I-5/SR 104 cloverleaf loop. This embankment meets the City's definition of a very high risk landslide (geologic hazard) area. A CASUP is required to allow development in a critical area or buffer by a public agency when the strict application of the critical area standards would unreasonably prohibit the provision of public services. Sound Transit is requesting release from the applicable Municipal Code criteria for alteration of very high risk landslide areas.
The Hearing Examiner for the City of Shoreline issued a Notice of Decision on May 2, 2019. Sound Transit's CASUP application for the Geologic Hazard Area was approved, with conditions. A copy of the 2019 HE Decision PLN19-0019 - CASUP is available online on the Hearing Examiner's web page under Hearing Examiner Records - HE Decisions 2016 to 2020, or by request for review at Shoreline City Hall, 17500 Midvale Avenue North, Shoreline, WA.
Approval of the Critical Areas Special Use Permit for McAleer Creek
Sound Transit submitted an application for a Critical Area Special Use Permit (CASUP) for the McAleer Creek buffer area in the southern cloverleaf at the interchange of I-5 and SR104. A CASUP is required to mitigate the unavoidable impacts to wetlands and wetland buffers in the City of Shoreline during and after the construction of the Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project through the City. Sound Transit is proposing to construct a portion of the light rail elevated guideway in the McAleer Creek buffer area.
The Hearing Examiner for the City of Shoreline issued a Notice of Decision on January 4, 2019. Sound Transit's CASUP application for the McAleer Creek buffer area was APPROVED, with conditions. A copy of the PLN18-0114 Permit Decision and Response for Request for Clarification is available online, or by request, for review at Shoreline City Hall, 17500 Midvale Avenue North, Shoreline, WA.
Approval of the Critical Areas Special Use Permit for Ronald Bog
Sound Transit submitted an application to the City of Shoreline for a Critical Areas Special Use Permit (CASUP) in order to obtain permission to develop a wetland mitigation site at Ronald Bog Park as off-site mitigation for permanent wetland and wetland buffer impacts resulting from the Central Puget Sound Regional Transit Authority's Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project. A public hearing regarding the CASUP application was held on November 27, 2018.
The Hearing Examiner for the City of Shoreline issued a Notice of Decision on December 11, 2018. Sound Transit's CASUP application was APPROVED, with conditions. A copy of the PLN18-0086 Permit Decision is available online, or by request, for review at Shoreline City Hall, 17500 Midvale Avenue North, Shoreline, WA.
Tree Replacement Program for the Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project
In order to prepare for the installation of the light rail guideway together with the two stations and garages within the City of Shoreline, Sound Transit will be removing a number of trees beginning in early 2019. In some areas, they will also be removing invasive plant species, such as ivy and blackberries. Sound Transit has an ambitious tree replacement plan which includes an extended maintenance period to improve the survival rates of the replacement trees. Please see Sound Transit's Tree Replacement Program for more information.
Public Design Review
Sound Transit (ST) has begun submitting development permits for City review and approval in order to complete the project in 2024. Since 2010, the City of Shoreline has been actively engaged in Sound Transit’s planning, environmental review, public outreach, and the design of the LLE project in Shoreline. Council adopted an “Open House-based” public design review process for light rail facilities in Shoreline on August 31, 2015. This process includes:
- Shoreline Design Process Kick-off Open House (held January 27, 2016)
- 30% Design Open House (ST held November 16, 2016)
- 60% Design Open House (ST held May 24, 2017)
- Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project 90% Design Open House (ST held June 27, 2018)
- Light Rail Construction Open House (held February 26, 2019)
Following each of the Sound Transit Open Houses, City staff is directed to review comments and provide a recap of the Open House and recommended response letter to the Council for their review and approval. In December 2016, June 2017 and July 2018, Council provided formal direction to Sound Transit through this process.
- Council Comment Letter to Sound Transit on 30% Design
- Council Comment Letter to Sound Transit on 60% Design
- Council Comment Letter to Sound Transit on Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project Update
30% Design Meeting Documents
A 30% Design Open House was held in Shoreline on November 16, 2016. The meeting documents are attached below.
60% Design Open House
Sound Transit held their 60% Design Open House on May 24th, 2017. Informational documents from the Open House are linked below.
- City of Shoreline Presentation
- Sound Transit Presentation
- Sound Transit Open House Graphics
- Sound Transit Art Projects for Shoreline Stations
Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project Update
Sound Transit held an Open House on June 27, 2018 to provide updates to the Community on the Lynnwood Link Extension Light Rail Project. Open House graphics for both Shoreline stations are linked below.
- Sound Transit Open House Graphics - Shoreline South/145th Station
- Sound Transit Open House Graphics - Shoreline North/185th Station
In Shoreline, Sound Transit's light rail transit facilities and systems are considered to be an essential public facility and require approval first through a Special Use Permit (SUP). The SUP may be granted subject to conditions placed on the proposed essential public facility to ensure compatibility with adjacent land uses, and to ensure that special use decision criteria specific to light rail transit facilities/systems are met.
In addition to the SUP, the LLE Light Rail Project will require Critical Areas Special Use Permits, as well as site development, rights-of-way use, and building permits from the City for all aspects of the project. A Critical Areas Special Use Permit reviews development proposals from a public agency or public utility that may not be able to avoid impacts to environmentally critical areas or required buffers. Permit submittals will be reviewed for compliance with all codes and regulations applicable within the City of Shoreline. Applicable Shoreline codes include:
- Shoreline Municipal Code (SMC)
- Shoreline Comprehensive Plan (SCP)
- 2016 City of Shoreline Engineering Development Manual, effective June 13, 2017
- 2012 Department of Ecology Stormwater Management Manual for Western Washington, as Amended in December 2014
- 2015 International Building Code (IBC) with Washington State Amendments
- ICC A117.1-2009 Accessibility Requirements with Washington State Amendments
- 2015 International Mechanical Code (IMC) with Washington State Amendments
- 2015 International Fuel Gas Code (IFGC) with Washington State Amendments
- 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with Washington State Amendments
- 2015 Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC) with Washington State Amendments
- 2015 International Fire Code (IFC) with Shoreline and Washington State Amendments
- 2014 National Fire Protection Association 130 Standard for Fixed Guideway Transit and Passenger Rail Systems
SEPA Addendum now available
Sound Transit has prepared a State Environmental Policy Act Addendum for the Lynnwood Link Extension. This Addendum adds to the Lynnwood Link Extension Final Environmental Impact Statement issued in April 2015 by describing and evaluating proposed design refinements, new information related to construction, and new information related to mitigation.
Sound Transit submitted an application for a Special Use Permit in August of 2018, which the City has judged to be complete. A notice of application was published and a public comment period held in late September-October, 2018. The remaining opportunity for comment will come during the Public Hearing which is scheduled for April 24, 2019. Comments need to focus on whether the project meets or does not meet the applicable Special Use Criteria and the City of Shoreline Guiding Principles for Light Rail.
The Guiding Principles for Light Rail Facility Design were adopted by the Shoreline City Council on February 29, 2016. Developed out of the January 27, 2016 public design kick-off event, these Guiding Principles consist of eight categories, with a number of bullets under each category. The eight categories are as follows:
|1. Multi-modal Access||5. Mobility|
|2. Neighborhood Character||6. Public Amenities|
|3. Sustainability||7. Transit-Oriented Development|
| 4. Public Safety
||8. Public Art
Through this application, Sound Transit may also submit requests for modifications of the applicable development code standards for a light rail transit system/facility identified in the Light Rail Supplemental Use Criteria (SMC 20.40.438) if the standard would otherwise make the project impossible or impracticable, would result in reduced public benefits, or the proposed modification would meet or exceed the intended goals of the standards.
The final decision on the Special Use Permit for the LLE Light Rail Project will be made by the City’s Hearing Examiner based on a report from City staff, testimony from Sound Transit, and public comment presented during the public hearing.
- Special Use Permit - Light Rail Checklist
- Special Use Permit Criteria - Light Rail
- Guiding Principles for Light Rail
- Light Rail Supplemental Use Criteria
The LLE Light Rail Project required a Critical Areas Special Use Permit for proposed critical area impacts in the McAleer Creek Basin, which has potential anadromous fish habitat. Sound Transit also elected to apply for a CASUP in order to obtain code relief for the proposed Ronald Bog Mitigation Project. Both the McAleer Creek and Ronald Bog CASUP applications were approved by the City of Shoreline Hearing Examiner as noted above under the section Current Events.
An additional CASUP was recently determined necessary for work within the embankment of the I-5 northbound off ramp, generally between NE 200th Street and the I-5/SR 104 cloverleaf loop. The embankment meets the City's definition of a very high risk landslide area.
Once a CASUP application has been submitted and is deemed complete by the City, a notice of application will be sent out and a public comment period will open for community members to submit comments to the City. Comments need to focus on whether the project meets or does not meet the CASUP Decision Criteria (click on link provided below). The public participation opportunities for the CASUP are the same as for the Special Use Permit (click on the link above titled Public Participation & SUP).
The final decision on the Critical Areas Special Use Permits for the LLE Light Rail Project will be made by the City’s Hearing Examiner based on a report from City staff, testimony from Sound Transit, and public comment presented during the public hearing.
- Critical Areas Special Use Permit - Light Rail Submittal Checklist
- Critical Areas Special Use Permit Decision Criteria