Tomorrow Richard Conlin will present his proposed Northgate access strategy at the Sound Transit Capital Committee. Between Sound Transit, the City of Seattle, King County and grants his proposal would fund $10 million dollars for pedestrian and bike improvements, $20 million dollars for a pedestrian and bike bridge over I-5 and $12-15 million dollars for a 450 stall shared-use parking garage. At least $10 million dollars of the $42-45 million dollars has not been identified at this point.
Boiled down his proposal essentially diverts funds away from the additional 150-450 parking stalls that ST proposal included, to pedestrian and bicycle improvements. From my understanding King County has been counting on these additional stalls to begin the conversion of County land to TOD. How this change affects these plans is unclear to me at this time, but if the County Council has the wherewithal to move forward with TOD without replacing parking this is a great move. If not, this change could put King County’s TOD ambitions up in the air.
Press release below:
Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin proposes Northgate access strategy
Matches pedestrian and bicycle access strategies with replacement parking facility
Seattle – Sound Transit Board Member and Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin will propose a coordinated access strategy for the Northgate Link Light Rail Station at the Sound Transit Capital Committee on Thursday, June 14, 1:30 p.m. at 401 South Jackson Street. The proposal will commit Sound Transit to:
- Match up to $5 million in City investments in bicycle and pedestrian facilities around the Northgate station;
- Commit up to $5 million as a 25 percent share in a bicycle/pedestrian bridge between the Northgate station and North Seattle Community College;
- Agree that Sound Transit will fund park-and-ride facilities including a new 450 stall parking garage, preferably shared use. Private funding could be used to provide additional parking garage stalls and potentially free existing surface parking for future development.
“A coordinated access strategy is critical to making light rail work and to realizing the vision of the Northgate Urban Center and enhancing the neighborhoods around Northgate,” Conlin stated. “We can accomplish so much more by recognizing that all modes of access are necessary in order to prevent gridlock and ensure that transit and urban development work together.”
The proposal includes Sound Transit being credited against the sum for any required mitigation imposed as part of permitting and other City regulations, and includes actions that Sound Transit has already engaged in to design the station to facilitate pedestrian and bicycle improvements.
Under the Conlin proposal, Sound Transit would be committing up to $10 million for pedestrian and bicycle facilities along with approximately $12 to $15 million for Transit’s share of parking garage construction. The proposed investments would be funded within Sound Transit’s budget for North Link. These investments, in turn, will leverage other public and private funding.
The City of Seattle would have to commit $5 million to bicycle and pedestrian facilities, an amount that is consistent with the City’s long-range plans for this area. A consortium of entities would have to be brought together to fund the remaining 75 percent of the pedestrian bridge.
“If the Sound Transit Board agrees to this proposal, and the other funding partners join the commitment, we will be able to invest $10 million in pedestrian and bicycle facilities and up to $20 million for the pedestrian bridge over I-5,” Conlin noted. “I am confident that the City would invest $10 million, and we will ask our regional partners to come up with the other $10 million.”
Projected public investment in access to the Northgate station:
Pedestrian/Bicycle facilities $10 million Pedestrian/Bicycle bridge across I-5 $20 million Parking garage $12-15 million Total: $42-45 million
Sources of funds:
Sound Transit up to $22-25 million City of Seattle up to $10 million Other potential partners:
State of Washington
and grant dollars
up to $10 million