On May 4, the City Council voted unanimously to reject Sound Transit’s latest bus intercept proposal.
“We concluded that there was no combination of minor revisions and mitigating efforts that could lead us to approve what had been presented,” Deputy Mayor Dan Grausz wrote in an email update to Islanders. “It included adding over 12 bus parking spaces, laid out an arrangement that was likely to significantly impact vehicle, pedestrian and bicycle traffic on 80th Ave. and nearby streets, and included no operating limitations that would enable us to cap the impacts.”
Grausz said that this is not the final word on the bus intercept, as the idea of having bus/rail connections throughout the light rail network is a cornerstone of regional transportation policy.
Sound Transit and Metro first presented the idea to the City Council in January 2014.
The city will still try to secure mitigation money from Sound Transit for loss of mobility, though there’s a concern that those funds have become tied to acceptance of the bus intercept.
“The Council also decided that for the present, we would focus our negotiations with Sound Transit on obtaining mitigation for loss of mobility due to closure of the I-90 center roadway,” Grausz wrote. “In my opinion, mitigation must include additional commuter parking for Islanders but also should look at other measures (such as shuttle service to and from the north end) as we will never be able to find enough space in our Town Center to meet what I expect to be substantial parking demands once light rail is operational in 2023.”