PUYALLUP, Wash. — A new parking garage at Puyallup Station opened to the public Monday.
“As a regular Sounder rider, I have seen the need for this garage for a long time. Puyallup is pleased to be part of a new day for Sounder riders in East Pierce County,” said Mayor Dean Johnson in a news release.
The existing parking spaces at the station routinely fill up early in the morning, leaving riders with a later commute with an offsite parking lot as their only parking option, according to Sound Transit.
Mandy Vargas had a positive reaction to the new garage as she walked from it to Puyallup Station.
“I think it’s awesome. It’s beautiful,” she said.
She says the days she drives will be more convenient.
“Mondays and Fridays are usually the days if I’m running behind I can drive, there’s no parking on the other days,” she said.
Along with the five-level parking garage, a new surface lot and seven new spaces at the existing lot were added, bringing the total number of parking stalls at the station to 1,044.
Eunice Masiala is a commuter who knows the regular pain of trying to find parking.
“It gets filled up so fast,” said Masiala.
She counts herself among the people who try to get to the station really early just to park.
”I live like 20 minutes away but I still have to leave a little bit earlier just to ensure that I can find parking,” she said.
Masiala is welcoming the latest parking structure to the transit area.
“It does make it a lot easier, especially because (with) the current parking there’s zero space.”
Other features of the $50 million project include a pedestrian bridge over Fifth Street Northwest that connects to the garage’s third level, a public art installation and new on-demand, secure BikeLink lockers.
Sound Transit has also contributed $3.4 million to the city of Puyallup for pedestrian improvements, including street lighting and curb ramps, and new bicycle lanes on West Stewart Avenue.
Jacob Marse also commutes and usually walks, but can see the benefit of the new garage.
“Visually, it’s nice! It feels weird having the large structure sort of in the center of town blocking the sky when you look out, (but) overall it’s not bad,” said Marse.
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