Yesterday Sound Transit gave elected officials and media the most in-depth tour to date of Capitol Hill Station, set to open sometime in Q1 2016. Mayor Murray, Executive Constantine, and others praised ST’s project management, nearly breaking into a repetitive chant of “$150m under budget and 6-9 months ahead of schedule.” They also renewed their call for Olympia to pass a transportation package with ST3 authority.
Officials announced that “substantial station completion” will occur in August, at which point testing can begin and Broadway can be fully restored with a protected bike lane and parking, where for over a year it has been reduced to just one travel lane in each direction.
Sound Transit brought a four-car train up to Capitol Hill for the tour, providing a glimpse of what service levels could look like in 2021. Spokesman Bruce Gray noted that while two-car trains will still be the norm for U-Link, three-car trains will be mixed in during peak, with flexibility for four-car trains for special events. In 2018, three-car trains will be the norm, and four-car trains will run full-time upon the opening of Northgate Link in 2021.
The station itself is compact, deep, and tall. Relative to the DSTT, the mezzanines are graciously much smaller, and the center platform really narrows the feel of the station box. The overall feel is reminiscent of a cross between an industrial cathedral and the flight pod from Battlestar Galactica.
More photos below the jump. [Read more…]