ThinkTank

Is Light Rail on Track?

By Erica C. Barnett June 1, 2011

Sound Transit's Link Light Rail is facing some major hurdles. Ridership is falling short of projections, revenue shortfalls in South King County have forced the agency to deliver less of the line than it originally promised, fares have increased at a steady clip, and discord in Bellevue over how the eastern extension of the line will make its way through the city could lead to a lawsuit and has already delayed that extension until at least 2023.

King County Council member, council transportation committee chair, and Sound Transit board member, Larry Phillips argues that despite some hurdles, light rail is on track to succeed. Transportation researcher and longtime light-rail skeptic John Niles says disappointing ridership numbers and competing transit priorities have doomed light rail to failure. PubliCola's ThinkTank weighs in.
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