Check your flight after leaving the train

The Port of Seattle announces:

A new Flight Information Display now welcomes light rail riders heading into the Airport. The six-foot tall, nine-foot long display is located on the SeaTac/Airport Light Rail station’s mezzanine level just before the skybridge to the terminal. The LCD display, contained in a weatherproof stainless steel enclosure, gives light rail passengers access to flight information as they exit the trains.

While you can check flight status online, the new display is a welcome addition. The blue screens are so bright you could see them from the other side of International Blvd. So when will Sound Transit return the favor and install train information displays in the airport? People getting off planes and heading into town want to know.

84 Replies to “Airport Link Station Gets a Flight Information Display”

  1. Hopefully whenever ST gets its act together and provides proper real-time train information. May be off topic, but maybe such information at DSTT entrances as well (should I head down into the tunnel or stay on 2nd/3rd Ave?)

    1. Are you referring to how difficult it is to find one’s way into the tunnel if one has not already been there a few times? Signage, please!!!

      1. Yes! At least 50% of my trips through Westlake Station involve helping some poor tourist figure out how to exit the station. They should have big station area maps in a few places, and big “exit to __ street” signs. The weakest spot of all is the top of the elevator mid-concourse as riders get off the train.

      2. My first trip into Seattle after the renovations was to take the 194 so that I could see where I was exiting to.

        I remember reading comments on how some destinations were served by both a tunnel bus and a surface bus (and possibly Link also). That’s where real-time arrivals will come in handy: should I stay topside, or hit up the elevator to the tunnel?

      3. There’s no real-time information needed to provide useful information since the train is already sitting there. What’s needed is when is it going to depart? Well that’s contained in a schedule, which is something that Sound Transit seems to regard as a state secret.

        Here’s the secret, during 10 minute headway operations, the train leaves Seatac at :00, :10, :20, :30, :40, and :50.

        The last 10-minute headway train departure is at 9:50pm, then it leaves at :05, :20, :35, and :50 until 11:50pm (Mon-Sat) and one more at 12:10am. (Sunday last train is at 11:05pm).

        There is a message board at the start of the walkway at the terminal, and I think also on the mezzanine. Why can’t it list the next two departure times? E.g. “Trains to Seattle departing at 9:30 and 9:40” or “Next trains to Seattle departing in 3 minutes and 13 minutes”.

        They you’d know whether to hurry or stroll, whether you have time to go to the washroom, and even if you come from a city with less frequent service, that the frequency is pretty good.

        It should be easy to program these displays to share scheduled departure information, and no real time system is required.

        But it really seems like, though ST/MT operate Link on a schedule (definitely for departures from Seatac) they don’t want to provide that schedule to the riding public. It is an unnecessarily rider-unfriendly policy.

        (Footnote: during 7-8 minute operation the departure times are :05, :12, :20, :27, :35, :42, :50, and :57 – so it’s the 15-minute pattern, with the additional trains interleaved.)

      4. Carl, the in-terminal displays aren’t for us. They’re for the Seattle visitors and business traveler who end up paying $25 and waiting 30 minutes for a Greyline bus that’s actually slower (because it stops at 15 hotels downtown before it gets to yours).

        All because they don’t want to make a long walk to the train with departure time as an unknown.

        Put a screen in the terminal that says:
        “Train to downtown in 7 minutes.”
        “Train to downtown in 17 minutes.”
        “Train to downtown in 27 minutes.”
        “Fare to downtown: $2.50”

        …and all those travelers are yours.

    2. d.p. brings up an obvious detail we’ve been forgetting: Link is far cheaper than any of the other options. But I can imagine the rental car, cab, and shuttle companies that have a contract with the port suing the Port if it allows an intercom message saying the fare on Link Light Rail is only $2.50.

      1. Then have ST pay for the “ad”. A while ago, Sound Transit put up a huge ad on the skybridges at the airport: “Why ride light rail? No. 1 reason: save money”

        The airport already plays “looking for Link light rail? go to the garage and follow the overhead signs” and “the last train to Seattle departs at 12:10 am” messages.

  2. They could also put better signs up with the times of the last trains departing SeaTac for Mount Baker and Westlake. Currently there are some posters, but they’re not very prominent. The staff at the station have to put post-it notes with the last times on the ORCA readers at the mezzanine. This seems slightly ghetto-fabulous.

    Something Metro should do is extend the 1 AM – 5 AM route 7/49/Night Owl route to start and terminate at SeaTac — make it night owl 87. This would benefit night workers at the airport and provide a connection to the all-night service on Line A. Network effects and all that.

      1. Bruce, I’ll do almost anything on public transit, with little concern for my personal safety.

        But there’s no way you’re getting me to ride end-to-end on the 7 at 1:30 in the morning with luggage. Multiply x1000 and you’ve got the average person’s level of anathema.

        Oran, that late-night Rapid A schedule isn’t very helpful if you have no clue how far away “Kent-Des Moines Road” is. Couldn’t hurt to add SeaTac as a timepoint.

    1. There’s very little public transit information inside the terminal itself.

      During the Link/bus integration process, Metro proposed reincarnating the 194 as a downtown-airport Owl route. The recession’s impact on finances likely stopped that one.

      1. I agree with lack of signage (within the terminal building) telling riders how to get to the light rail station itself. When I drove the 560 2 shakeups ago, there are riders who think that they can catch a bus to downtown at the south end airport bus stop, and some even still remember the 194 and still looking for that route. I have to tell those riders that they need to walk back all the way to the north end of the terminal and cross the bridge to get to the LINK station. That is kind of annoying if you have luggage to haul.

        As for the 194 night owl. It was supposed to be called the 195, and operate to Northgate via Downtown Seattle to the airport (all freeway route, except downtown portion). Yep, budget shortfalls shelved that route for indefinite time.

      2. The 195 route you mention does sound useful, albeit much more expensive than extending the night 7 by 20 minutes. They could also extend one of the night owls north of the U-District to Northgate. All the agencies are pushing Northgate as a transit hub, and night service should be part of that package; this small extension would also be cheap.

        One final thing, Metro should take a page from London and brand the unique night busses with an N-prefix (81 -> N1). When you look at Metro’s system map, you don’t realize at first glance that the 8x routes are unique, and not useful during the day. Sometimes I think they should simply be removed from the general system map as they just confuse the uninitiated.

      3. It’s too bad the 560 operators who have to answer the question from south terminal riders trying to get downtown can’t just say “Hop on. I’m headed to the train station.” At least the 574 operators can do that.

        Might I suggest ST consider having the 560 take International Boulevard northbound (both directions on the route), so as to serve the station? People rushing to the airport won’t be slowed down, and it ought to induce more ridership to justify not pulling the plug on the 560 altogether.

      4. That’s the problem with airport transit signage. It says Sound Transit 560 and 574 and Link light rail, without their destinations, which makes them practically meaningless to the visitor.

      5. The bus stop confusion was the main reason I wished the south terminal stop would be shut down. However, if the 560 and 574 were interlined to make frequent shuttle runs to the International Boulevard stop, the south terminal confusion wouldn’t be such a nuisance.

        Perhaps ST could pay the Port to run an intercom announcement every 5-10 minutes directing visitors to the train station and the south terminal stop, listing destinations from each. Or, perhaps, the Port, out of the spirit of serving the same set of taxpayers who fund transit, could just run the announcements for free.

      6. There kind of is night-owl service to Seattle – by using Rapid Ride A to Tukwila and continuing on the 124. But there are a couple of problems with it. Other than a couple of middle of the night runs, there is no RRA schedule, so you don’t really know when it runs, and the times at Tukwila are not necessarily synchronized. This is particuarly a problem on Sundays when the last through Link service is at 11:05pm.

        Another problem is that RRA stays on Pacific Hiway (sorry, International Bvld), and the signs say that the Link station is closed. The best walking route to/from Pacific Hiway would be via the Link walkways and station – I don’t know if they actually lock the gates, but if they do, they block the walking route.

        Personally I think that during the hours that Link shuts down, there should be a single through bus service to Seatac airport, either the airport bus stop, or it could just serve the Link station on Pacific Hiway if they keep the walkway open. It could be achieved by extending night owl 7 trips, or by extending the 124 at night, or by through routing the 124 & RRA at night. I don’t think it would destroy the RRA concept if RR service terminated at midnight, and after midnight it was consider the 124 serving the RRA stops.

      7. Huh, they should add that to their “Special Service” information section for the night owls. They mention the 7/49, 180 and 280. They should also shout out the 124 and Line A. You’d never know otherwise…

      8. Bruce, I’ll do almost anything on public transit, with little concern for my personal safety.

        But there’s no way you’re getting me to ride end-to-end on the 7 at 1:30 in the morning with luggage. Multiply x1000 and you’ve got the average person’s level of anathema.

        Oran, that late-night Rapid A schedule isn’t very helpful if you have no clue how far away “Kent-Des Moines Road” is. Couldn’t hurt to add SeaTac as a timepoint.

      9. Given that Metro is apparently already running 124s from SeaTac, that kinda obviates the idea of extending the 7.

        Main conclusion I take from this is that Metro should do much better at communicating the existence of its night services.

      10. “Given that Metro is apparently already running 124s from SeaTac, that kinda obviates the idea of extending the 7.”

        I don’t see this in the online schedule.

        What that leaves for people living near MLK rail stations is a walk in the dark to ever-safe Rainier Ave, catch a 7 downtown, transfer to the 124, take that scenic route to TIBS, transfer to the A at TIBS, and then have a long walk from the bus stop to the terminal.

        For getting to the airport after midnight, the layovers at TIBS vary from 5-15 minutes. For going home, the connections miss if you don’t choose the last Link, and then have decently short layovers, except for one 24-minute layover where there is no 124 to match the A.

        For those trying to get between downtown and the airport, this is not terrible, if only it were publicized. Going any further is a 3-bus ride which I think tests the patience of even the most hardcore of us, if we have to do it every night.

        At any rate, making the schedule of 124-A transfers available at the station would be wonderful. Extending the 124 to the south terminal would be even better.

      11. Metro to and from Sea-Tac Airport

        Very little in the way of specifics, but the page implies that the 124 is extended to hit the airport for 2 night owl trips, at 2:45 and 4:00. This is the only overnight 1-seat ride to downtown. This is basically the old 174, 2 times a night. It’s not listed on the 124 schedule, and trip planner doesn’t seem to know about it either.

        Trip planner will have you either catch the 1:24 northbound A and transfer to the 2:40 124 at TIB station, or catch the 3:00 southbound A and transfer to the 4:45 177 at FW Transit center. Either of those trips is around 2 hours to downtown. Catching the 124 at the airport is only 30min to downtown.

        Sometimes it will just send you on long round-trip tours to the edge of the system, bringing you back just in time to catch the 1st train of the morning.

        Because the owl 124 runs at 2 hour headways, the transfer schedule would be very short anyway.

        At to the person who asked the 194 alignment: Starting at the Sea-Tac arrival drive, SR 518, to I-5, to the Busway and downtown transit tunnel.

      12. From the 80-series timetable (print version):

        3rd/Union 2:18 3:33
        4th/Spokane 2:29 3:44
        Int’l/112th St 2:41 2:53
        Link Station 2:53 4:08

        Link Station 1:30 2:39
        Int’l/112th St 1:42 2:51
        4th/Spokane 1:55 3:03
        3rd/Union 2:05 3:13

        Tell Metro to put this information on the web site and trip planner. As for making sure airport workers can use the bus, I would just extend the owl 124 trips to the airport service road stop, at least northbound. Extending the 7 is not only unnecessary and takes it well out of the way, it also starts to cut it close for the first trip to make it back downtown by 3:30. It has almost 15 minutes of buffer now, but that seems to be enough to extend it to Renton, not SeaTac.

        It might be nice to get rid of the owl routes from the system map (the 80-series timetable gives you practically everything you need to know to use the bus at night anyway – the 280 and A are the only owl routes with serious deficiencies in the portions of their routes shown), but then how different is that from not distinguishing peak-only and all-day routes?

      13. @Oran So, on Sundays after 11:05pm, or other days after 12:10am, where do you go to get RRA and when? And is it synchronized?

        @Lack Thereof, I don’t see any real evidence that the 124 goes to Seatac Airport, and no indication of whether, if I arrive on a delayed flight, if the 124 departs the airport.

        For all intents and purposes, transit service between Seatac Airport and downtown Seattle is inaccessible for 95% of transit riders after Link shuts at 12:10am (11:05pm Sundays) until it starts the next morning. The information is hard to come by and not confidence evoking as to where the buses run and when, and whether it is safe and connections work. Even if MT canceled the plans for the 194/195 due to funding, there ought to be a cost-efficient way to extend the 124 to either the airport or the Seatac Link station on Int’l Blvd when Link is not running.

      14. d.p., the RapidRide line map (included with the schedule) tells you the travel time between a few pairs of stops. It tells me it is about 10-15 minutes from Kent-Des Moines Road to S 188 St just two stops from the Airport station.

        Carl, use RapidRide at the Airport Station stop (before the Link station closes at 1 am or midnight Sundays) or walk to International Blvd from the S end of the terminal and get on there. Both stops are a similar walking distance from the main terminal though the path though the Link station is covered and well lit. Per the RapidRide line map, add 10 minutes to the Kent-Des Moines timepoint to get the approximate time for the airport stops. At Tukwila Route 124 is timed to depart for downtown a few minutes after the A Line arrives (on Sunday). Saturday schedule shows it departing a minute or two before A Line and Weekdays at the same time but given that both used to be the same route and people transfer between them I cannot believe Metro would let people miss their late night transfers like that (they can and do hold late night buses for people making connections).

        You can also take Link to Mount Baker or Othello and transfer to the 7 or 36, after the last downtown train departed.

      15. Oran,

        Try to think like a horrifically jet-lagged traveler arriving on a severely delayed flight, who was expecting to take Link but has now long-since missed it thanks to United Airlines’ incompetence.

        Don’t think like a Seattle-area transit expert with ready access to printed schedules.

      16. In that case, take a cab or call for a pick up. There is simply no coordinated night bus system in this area and service is way too limited. Even if they did coordinate and extend existing trips, you’ll be waiting a long time to get anywhere but downtown Seattle. Going to downtown Bellevue? Forget about it. And such information is nonexistent.

        Oddly enough, the last 36 to downtown leaves Othello on weekends at 1:25 am.

      17. Also, the 3rd-to-last and very last trains are timed to just miss route 7 buses, and if you miss that last one you’re stuck for nearly an hour.

        Those last trains don’t stop in the Beacon Hill tunnel, so the 36 can’t help.

        As I’ve pointed out before, unified agencies in other cities with intermodal coordination are very good about holding buses at transfer points for final trains.

      18. Oh, you’re suggesting catching the 36 at Othello rather than Beacon Hill.

        Unfortunately, the last 36 to downtown leaves Othello at 12:36 — good luck catching that on even the 12:20 train, never mind the 2 final trains.

        Anyone who tries to transfer to a 36 later than that is going to get stuck in either Othello or Little Saigon.

      19. All night buses leave downtown at around the same time at 2:15 and 3:30, and usually the 2:15 trips return downtown at 3:15 or later. Which is probably hardly “coordination”, but more night routes means more buses and more drivers working the night shift for probably little reward. And of course we’ve seen how well the 124-A connection works.

      20. “the signs say that the Link station is closed.”

        I saw that yesterday, and I wondered how I would get to the A at night. Going through the station is very straightforward, and I don’t see any gate that could be physically closed. But it’s something I would worry about… walking all the way to the station only to see I can’t go down to the bus stop. Then I’d be stuck because I have no idea how to get to the lower roadway going to 176th/99.

      21. You can also walk from the south end of the terminal, past the bus stop, to Intl Blvd and catch A Line there. The walking path is indicated on the station area map, which unfortunately you can’t see if the station is closed.

  3. Pet peeve warning: Come on Port of Seattle, LCD Display = Liquid Crystal Display Display. I’m filing a complaint with the Port’s department of redundancy department asap!

    1. As a proposal writer I run into this issue a lot, often with terms like BIM Model (Building Information Model…Model). I’ve concluded that while redundancy is technically wrong, it’s much clearer to many readers. Clarity trumps grammar. Particularly in airports.

    2. The D in LCD has also stood for “Diode”, and that could be the source of the redundancy you cite.

      1. @Eric G. – I’m very ready to be wrong on this one :-) For humanity’s sake, I hope I’m incorrect.

        @matt hays – I acknowledge your point, but I can’t bring myself to subscribe to redundancy = clarity. Repetition can support clarity, but repetition and redundancy are not quite the same thing. Just my 2 cents :-)

      2. I think LED is where Diode is (Light-emitting Diode)
        LCD has always been display, though often people will say LCD Screens, which is not as egregiously redundant.

      3. @ Erik G.: There’s no such thing as a Liquid Crystal Diode. Alex is correct.

        @ Everyone: Repeat after me: “One Regional Card for All Card.” *sigh*

    3. You could be generous and assume they meant that it is a display made of LCDs. The Liquid Crystal Displays are on display.

      1. Thanks. I remember when the choice in those new-fangled Digital Watches was between “LED” and “LQD”; the Q standing for Quartz.

        /so yes get off my lawn.

    4. I take it as being a dosplay comprised of LCD components. The second “display” could have been “board” or some other word.

      “The LCD display, contained in a weatherproof stainless steel enclosure,”

      I suppose the alternative would be:

      “The LCD, contained in a weatherproof stainless steel enclosure,”

      The LCD what? Watch? TV? Monitor?

      Or maybe:

      “The LC Display, contained in a weatherproof stainless steel enclosure,”

      1. I think having the routes run with 5 minute headways would be great, but ideally, anything we can do to speed up the University Link and future development of train related travel in Seattle would be wonderful.

      2. bgkev,

        I’m with you on that and then some. However, the county seems to view Link as competing for precious resources. If the county council and executive hear from enough people that connections to Link (including bus connections) should be a top priority for Metro, then the ridership is more likely to justify the lesser headway.

        As it is, I won’t be surprised if we end up with 7.5-minute headway as the peak, even after Husky Stadium Station opens, since 4-car trains are likely to be able to handle the ridership, due to Metro planning a lot of Link-redundant service.

      3. Link can’t reduce headways until the busses are all booted out of the tunnel, which will be 2016 at the earliest, but more likely whenever North Link opens (2021). Even then, once East Link opens (2023), you’ll have interlining from downtown to Northgate to meet in-city demand, and I doubt the RV can justify < 10 minute headways once we go to four-car trains.

      4. I admit, I see the problem with the transit tunnel now for link… but having traveled to Vancouver and Boston — I don’t understand why we don’t import more of their solutions and have more trains now, everywhere… And I don’t understand the resistance from those who drive, as the more people who are on trains, it would seem, the less on the roads during their precious commute time.

        Ideally, I should be able to get off work in Belltown, commute to my house in Westlake, then commute to my classes in Wallingford, then commute back home easily and affordable via mass transit, without wonky scheduling or taking up precious road space. And while the current Bus system is tenable, getting buses off the roads makes more room for cars, n’est pas?

      5. You’re absolutely right, drivers should see the confluence of their interests with public transit, particularly grade-separated public transit, but most don’t yet and that will take a while to change. Keep in mind that the whole big-city mindset is new in Seattle; until the 80’s, Seattle was a blue collar port city that built planes. Culture takes decades to change, and that’s the ultimate battle we’re fighting.

        Comparing us to Boston is a little unfair as they’re far bigger, wealthier and more densified than us. They also aren’t handcuffed to a large right-wing rural area that keeps f***ing up their government through ballot initiatives. Better comparisons are Vancouver and Portland. Portland has more rail but built much of it at-grade, which saves money up front but doesn’t scale up as well. Vancouver built and el, and they started it in the days before environmental evaluations and massive NIMBYism. It would have been nice if Seattle had done that too, but we can’t change history.

        We also have horrible topography for tunneling that makes your specific trip unlikely to be underground anytime soon. Probably the best you can hope for in the next decade is a Fremont-Ballard SLUT extension on its own ROW up Westlake.

  4. With the additional need for at least one staff person to keep an eye on the display screen (lest it become a target of youthful vandals), could we move the rent-a-ambassadors downstairs to greet visitors, show them how to use the TVMs, and they can still point riders toward which train is next?

    1. Or the train operators could point to which train is next. Have them stick their heads out the window every so often. I’m sure there is some more clever way than making a security person stand there and point and/or flip a sign.

      1. @Brent Hmm, good point. When I used that station frequently over the summer operators usually drove one train in, hopped out, and walked over to the waiting train. Of course passengers were already on-board the waiting train. This was during the afternoon commute.

        It seems like we ought to be able to do better than a person standing there flipping a “next train” sign and/or pointing to it as people arrive in the station.

      2. The electronic signs above the platform indicate which train is departing next. Labels on the train door instruct people to push the button to open them. Of course, many people don’t read signs/labels and need someone to point it out.

        The operators don’t always stay on the train for their break. There is some kind of break room they use on the mezzanine level.

  5. I wonder if more people would be willing to take trains into town (instead of taxis) if they knew when the next train was departing *from* the terminal? Granted, lots of people aren’t headed directly downtown, but quite a few probably are.

    It would also be nice to know if you should walk quickly out to the link station (train leaving 5 min) or if you could take a more leisurely walk (train leaving in 2 min, next one in 12). I hate arriving at the station and having a train depart *just* as I crest the escalators. Had I walked a little more briskly, I’d be on it.

    1. Even worse is when you come in on a Sunday night, stroll out to the walkway to Link, notice on the little poster that the last train downtown is scheduled to leave in three minutes and have to sprint to make it.

      1. Last-train announcements on the intercom in the airport would be nice: 30 minutes, 15 minutes, 10 minutes, 5 minutes … for each northbound terminus. One of the Port commissioners could record his voice and get some free advertising with his name in the announcement, like the one saying how much one of the commissioners welcomes servicemen.

    2. ‘Course, it would be even nicer if you didn’t worry about how fast you needed to walk because you knew another train would come by within 5 minutes…

      1. True, although I think the frequency of service on Link is very acceptable as it stands. The operating hours may leave a bit to be desired, particularly once University link opens, but frequency is okay for me. Once that happens, I’d like to see trains leave Westlake maybe every 20 minutes from 12 – 2:30 or 2:45.

    1. Yeah I never understand why they spend so much $$$ and built an un-weatherproof station (+ Tukwila and Mt Baker), I wonder if the stations design firm was in LA and thinks it will be nice to let the wind blow through…. and the walkway from the Airport station into the airport is just an eye-sore, plain unwelcoming concrete with yellow metals on the side, such an welcoming statement our city has for the visitors…

      1. No, the design firm, Hewitt, is based right here in Seattle. They even feature the Tukwila station on their website.

      2. I think I heard that the original design was weatherproof and fully enclosed (or at least more than it is now), but it had to be pared down due to budget problems.

      3. Even in L.A. one needs a station that shades passengers from the bright and warm sunshine!

        Of course, as in Seattle, this is “regulated” by budgetary concerns.

      4. Yeah, it was supposed to be more enclosed, but I really don’t see it as a big deal—Seattle enjoys pretty much the gentlest climate imaginable.

  6. It is a great addition to have the airline departure display at the Link station. Similar displays can be seen at many transit stops serving significant airports – like the train stations in Frankfurt and Zurich, and even the MBTA Blue line station in Boston.

  7. RE: The LINK station NEAR the airport — ZED hit this on the button.

    “The LCD display, contained in a weatherproof stainless steel enclosure,”

    That pretty much says it all. Maybe the display can tell you how far the walk is to your airline, the outside temperature and windspeed.

    Trip Advisor: “From Baggage claim at Seatac to find the Link station be prepared for a bit of a walk. The station is accessed at the far north side of the parking garage or closest to baggage claim carousel 15 or 16 which is Alaska Air or United. If you arrive on Delta or American you need to walk to the far north side of baggage claim, take the elevator up and over the skybridge and follow the signs. allow about 10-15 minutes walking time. You can bring your luggage cart with you but if you arrive from downtown luggage rentals at the station are $4.”

    Next time you drive someone to the airport – drop them off on 99 and tell them – they are AT or INSIDE the airport with a straight face. :-(

    1. You would have been willing, then, for ST to sacrifice half a billion dollars or more and several more years of construction to get a station inside/underneath the aerodrome?

    2. The new station at Dulles is going to be even further away from the terminal than the Link station. They don’t want to spend the extra $650 million that it would cost to put a station under the terminal.

      I, for one, don’t have a problem with the location of the Link station, I just wish it were more enclosed. I’ve used stations that are closer, and ones that are further away, it’s not really a big deal. The walk from the station is nothing compared to the walk to the gates, which no one seems to complain about. Air travel will probably be dead in another 25 years anyways, unless there’s some big breakthrough in energy storage technology. In which case the station will be perfectly located for the re-development of SeaTac.

      1. +1 on everything except the death of air travel. It will be far more expensive and there will be less of it, but unless modern life radically changes pace, it will still be the only way to travel >500 miles.

      2. The walk from the station is nothing compared to the walk to the gates, which no one seems to complain about.

        There are two reasons for that:

        – Once you’re inside the terminal, you’ve checked your big bags, so the walking is much easier.
        – It’s enclosed.

        If they could somehow heat/enclose the walkway, and even add curbside checkin right at the Link station, I think that would be *amazing*.

      3. Instead of building a station in the airport – we built more parking at the airport with the $$$.

        It’s really Parking Revenues that drove this decision. And because of this – we have an oversupply of parking spaces at the airport. Soon, when 2 entire floors are vacated by the rental agencies – parking rates in the structure will fall (further), off site private parking facilities will go bust and driving to the airport will become an even better option. This isn’t a good result.

        SeaTac Airport is already (and smartly) marketing the oversupply at reduced rates for alternate uses such as downtown holiday shopping and seahawks and sounders games. It’s a good reaction – but not what was planned.

      4. The SeaTac(slash)Airport Station serves both SeaTac’s City Center and the Airport.

        If the off-site parking facilities go bust, especially the ones next to the station, then there will be land to redevelop and less opposition to creating a mixed-use transit oriented town center, as planned by the City.

      5. Bellviewer,

        If there is so much surplus parking at the airport, why isn’t the Port offering a deal for all-day parking for Link commuters? They know a lot of drivers are grumbling about lack of parking around light rail stations.

      6. “SeaTac Airport is already (and smartly) marketing the oversupply at reduced rates for alternate uses such as downtown holiday shopping and seahawks and sounders games”

        So THAT’s why why there are posters at the airport encouraging people to park there and ride Link to games. I was happy to see them encouraging Link, but I couldn’t see how anyone in their right mind would pay airport parking rates and then have a 30-minute shuttle trip on top of that.

    3. There will come a day when the current walkway will be better enclosed and feature moving walkways.

      It is my understanding that the paranoid schizophrenics at USDHS wouldn’t allow the LINK train to approach any closer to the terminal building lest the mooooslim-terrarists use it for nefarious means.

      Don’t be so sure you won’t have to drop your friend off on 99 at some point in the near future. I am sure the Port, Nappy and Pissy already have the detour routes laid out and the Jersey Barriers/K-Rail ready to put in place.

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