Link light rail celebrates 10 years

Link light rail celebrates 10 years

Thursday marks the 10th anniversary of when Sound Transit's Link light rail started its service.
On its opening day, light rail covered 14 miles between the Westlake and Tukwila International Boulevard stations.

Light rail has transported more than 134 million total riders and has seen ridership grow from an average of just over 15,000 on a typical weekday to about 77,000.

"I want to thank the millions of riders who have made Link so successful and the voters in our region who continue to support the expansion of the system,” said Sound Transit Board Chair and Redmond Mayor John Marchione.

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Now, the service extends to 22 miles. Service to Sea-Tac International Airport that was added in December 2009, to Capitol Hill and the University of Washington in March 2016 and to Angle Lake in September 2016.

"Because of Link, riders have been spared countless hours sitting in ever-worsening traffic," said Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff. "Link's 10th anniversary comes at a time when we are expanding the network to the north, south and east. 
By the time Link's 15th anniversary comes around, we expect that more than twice as many riders as we have today will have discovered the advantages of fast, effective light rail."

In the next five years, Link will add 22 stations and expand to more than 50 miles of rail service.

In 2021, Sound Transit will begin light rail service to the U District, Roosevelt and Northgate. In 2023, trains will reach Mercer Island, Bellevue and Overlake. Next up will be the extension of light rail to Lynnwood, Federal Way and downtown Redmond in 2024.