City clears up ownership history of Mercer Island Park and Ride

  • Wednesday, December 28, 2016 6:47pm
  • News

Parking, or lack thereof, has been a discussion topic in Mercer Island for the past few years. City officials have said that one of their goals is to secure more Island-only parking before East Link light rail operations begin.

Recently, some residents have asked if the city could purchase the Park and Ride for resident use. The current lot is filled by 7:30 a.m. most mornings, with about 50 percent of the cars coming from off-Island. That number could increase when the South Bellevue Park and Ride closes next year.

The city clarified the ownership history in its weekly newsletter and a social media post.

“There’s been some confusion recently about the ownership of, and history behind, the Park and Ride garage next to I-90 on North Mercer Way. It is owned and operated by Sound Transit, and the land has never been owned by the city,” city communications manager Ross Freeman wrote.

The Sound Transit Park and Ride facility on Mercer Island opened in early 2008 and includes a two-story parking garage on the site of a previous (smaller) parking lot. The garage is owned and operated by Sound Transit, supports Sound Transit and Metro bus routes and provides 450 parking stalls on two levels.

The city of Mercer Island has never owned the Park and Ride property. In 1987, it was sold by a private owner to the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) as the Interstate 90 widening project was fully underway. When parking expansion plans were approved by the voters, the property was purchased in 2005 from WSDOT for $1.5 million by Sound Transit, and is part of its regional park and ride network. Some citizens have questioned if $1.5 million is market value.

The city posted a more extensive history at www.mercergov.org/Page.asp?NavID=1399.

As part of its ongoing mitigation discussions with Sound Transit over the impacts of light rail construction, the city is negotiating for additional parking specifically intended for Mercer Island’s commuters, according to its website.

More in News

Mercer Island still active real estate market

There are 65 single family homes and six condominiums listed on Mercer Island.

Washington state auditor: More accountability audits needed for state agencies

Auditor’s office seeks $700,000 from Washington Legislature

Islanders report thefts of packages, backpacks, kayaks | Police Blotter

The blotter consists of officers’ accounts of crimes and other incidents in… Continue reading

Transportation solutions on Mercer Island Council docket | City briefs

Transportation solutions on council docket As the city of Mercer Island continues… Continue reading

Nominations open for Pathfinder Awards honoring MIHS alumni

The Mercer Island School District is now seeking nominations for its third… Continue reading

‘Tis the last rose of summer | Eye on MI

This photo reminded an Island resident of a song

Islander’s watercolor art on display at MIVAL gallery

Owen Hall, an 87-year-old resident at Covenant Shores, is the featured artist… Continue reading

Mercer Island city manager appoints citizen budget advisory group

Two months ago, the city of Mercer Island began recruiting volunteers willing… Continue reading

Seattle’s income tax could serve as test case for other Washington cities

As the city of Mercer Island faces looming budget deficits and serious… Continue reading

A walk through The Lakes on Mercer Island | Eye on MI

Send the Reporter your unique photos

East Link construction continues on Mercer Island

On Nov. 9, Sound Transit posted an East Link update on the… Continue reading

Initial returns point to a power shift in the state Senate

Democrats went to bed Tuesday night confidently declaring their party will control… Continue reading