Scott Gutierrez has the story:
[The] opening date [is] now pegged in early 2022 or 2023, Sound Transit’s governing board was informed Thursday.
The extension of light rail from Seattle to the Eastside was planned to open in 2021. It would open at the latest completion date if Sound Transit opts to tunnel through downtown Bellevue instead of running trains at-grade, project manager Don Billen said.
There’s temptation to put all the weight of this on the Bellevue City Council, but in fact Mr. Billen told me that “it was the decisions in late 2009 and early 2010 to study 4 new alternatives in downtown Bellevue and then 6 design options on 112th that delayed in the EIS process, which is now rippling into revenue service.”
The city is hardly being helpful, but ST itself was dissatisfied with the options coming out of the original EIS.
Mr. Billen added that “There maybe opportunities to shorten the construction schedule but those opportunities are being overwhelmed by the risk of further delays in the decision making process.”