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Sound Transit releases comments on light rail station proposed for Mercer Island

Some 85 people attended a Sound Transit  open house in June on the design of the proposed Mercer Island Station light rail station.

The station is to be situated below street level on the I-90 center lanes but will be accessed from structures at street level; one each on 80th Avenue S.E. and 77th Avenue S.E. where they cross the I-90 lanes.

The agency has released a summary of approximately 143 comments collected between the June 6 public meeting and June 14, 2013.

Comments on station design:

• Incorporate elements of the area’s natural environment into station design:

• The station drawings show a very white structure that does not blend into surroundings. Please use materials and color scheme that blends more in with the trees and hills.

• I love the glass lantern design.

• Art aspects might include: water, sailboats, swimmers, birds, ducks.

• Please keep the silhouette as low/unobtrusive as possible. We don’t need anything too grand.

• Understated is better. Use warm colors.

• Reduce the apparent bulk looking north/south—renderings look too massive.

Comments on station amenities:

• Maybe a kiosk near the stairs for buying coffee.

• Also would be good to add a coffee and snack stand.

• Clearly make it possible to use a toilet anytime light rail is in operation.

Comments on    station access:

• Interest in additional parking capacity:

• Seems pointless to build a station without a certainty of additional parking. Park & ride lot is full by 7 a.m.

• Why build light rail that either takes riders from buses or doesn’t have riders because there is no parking?

• Please make sure there is lots of parking. Everyone on the east side will drive and park on Mercer Island to switch to public transport into the city or airport. We don’t have enough parking now.

• A multi-story parking facility is required for commuters!

• The largest hurdle for the station will be providing parking—the Mercer Island staff partnership will be crucial to light rail. Mercer Island city needs to sell a yearly parking pass to Mercer residents to use a Mercer Island funded lot.

• A portion of the community center should be designated for residents with permits.

• Resist adding more parking on MI because that would add to traffic jam between MI & Bellevue.

• We do need some parking reserved for MI residents possibly a separate lot.

• Allocating parking for Mercer Island residents is essential to making this work for our community.

• We need allocated parking for our community!

• For the station to serve MI – that is, all of MI – it needs parking that MI residents can reasonably rely on. I don’t see that in the current plan.

• Please, work on a central parking area for M.I. residents only. Even now it is hard to find a parking spot during day.

• Consider a 3, 4 or 5 story parking garage.

Comments on bicycles:

•  More room for bikes.

• Include enough bike lockers.

• Need to be able to take bikes through the station and onto the Link.

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