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News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, September 28, 2007

Light rail proposal presented for Bellevue residents

Bellevue residents viewed plans for a light rail line through Bellevue at a briefing the evening of Sept. 27 at City Hall. Sound Transit's East Link project team, which presented details about the project to Bellevue residents on Sept. 13, covered specifics again and answered questions.

The presentation included information about the environmental process, an overview of the project, how East Link is part of the Sound Transit 2 improvements package and other related information.  

Sound Transit just recently completed four public meetings as part of the early environmental scoping process for the light rail project. Those meetings, in Bellevue, Redmond, Seattle and Mercer Island, focused on what will be covered in the environmental impact statement for the project, including route alternatives to be considered and elements of the built and natural environment to be evaluated for project impacts. 

Sound Transit will accept comments for the EIS until 5 p.m. on Oct. 2.

More information about the East Link project can be found on the Sound Transit website. Persons seeking additional information may call Brooke Belman at 206-398-5238, or e-mail her at belmanb@soundtransit.org. A copy of the East Link Environmental Scoping Information Report is available online on the Sound Transit website and at area libraries.

The scoping process is the first step in a multi-year environmental review for the proposed East Link project, which will go before voters for approval next year as part of a larger regional transit and highways improvements package.

Project Description
The Eastside is a major economic engine in the Puget Sound area and is home to global leaders in technology, manufacturing, retail and finance. Sound Transit’s proposed East Link project will connect the region’s biggest population and employment centers in Seattle, Bellevue and Redmond, along with Sea-Tac International Airport.

The East Link project consists of an approximately 19-mile corridor between downtown Seattle, Bellevue and Redmond via I-90 and Mercer Island.  Project length could vary between 11 and 19 miles, depending on how the project is implemented. 

East Link is part of a proposed Sound Transit 2 package that includes more light rail and improvements to Sounder commuter rail and ST Express regional bus systems. Sound Transit 2 is part of a Roads & Transit package that will be presented to voters in November 2007.

The Sound Transit Board and the Regional Transportation Investment District are identifying projects that will be part of that package. This package will define the East Link project’s length and implementation schedule.  Besides Sound Transit 2 investments, the Roads & Transit plan will include a series of potential investments to major roadways and bridges in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties.

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