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SW 27th Street/Strander Boulevard Connection One Step Closer

January 31, 2012

For more information contact:

Preeti Shridhar,
Communications Director, 425-430-6569
Gregg Zimmerman, Public Works Administrator 425-430-7311
Suzanne Dale Estey, Economic Development Director 425-430-6591

Officials Break Ground on Critical Phase to Create Public Access from East to Sounder Station

Renton, WA: Renton Mayor Denis Law and members of the Renton City Council joined regional and state leaders today in breaking ground on a critical next phase of the SW 27th Street/Strander Boulevard Connection–the SW 27th Street Extension under the BNSF Railway tracks to what will be an improved Sounder Station.

When completed, the fully built-out SW 27th Street/Strander Boulevard Connection Project will create a critical east/west connection that is missing between SW 27th Street in Renton and Strander Boulevard in Tukwila, and provide an alternate route to I-405 between I-5 and SR-167. This portion of the Connection Project, the SW 27th Street Extension, promotes transit use and improves air quality by finally creating public access to the Sounder commuter rail from the east and supporting use of Sounder, Amtrak, Metro’s RapidRide (which starts service in fall 2013), and other mass transit modes.

This project is a collaboration of the City of Renton, the City of Tukwila, The Boeing Company, Amtrak, BNSF Railway, Union Pacific Railroad, Sound Transit, the State of Washington (including Transportation Improvement Board, Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board, and the Washington State Department of Transportation), Puget Sound Regional Council and the US Department of Transportation.

“We’re excited about what this enhanced access to transit will do to help spark further development in the Valley, including here at Longacres,” said Mayor Denis Law. ”Once the full build-out is completed, we will have a new corridor for freight, which is critical to so many businesses in the Green River Valley, the largest industrial area in Washington State. Thanks to the many champions of this project, including our state legislators who couldn’t join us today. We are very grateful for your help in getting us to this day.”

“The new connection between Renton and Tukwila will provide convenient commuter access to Sound Transit’s permanent Tukwila Sounder Station, which, when complete, will serve nearly 400 transit users a day—plus King County Metro’s RapidRide F line,” said Julia Patterson, Sound Transit Board Vice Chair and King County Councilmember. “Sound Transit is pleased to have served as a funding partner on the City of Renton’s SW 27th Street/Strander Boulevard project.”

Karen Schmidt, Executive Director of the Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board added at the event, “While the project has immediate benefits for transit and local access, for freight it is the first significant step in developing a through corridor that will allow truck freight from the Green River Valley warehouse area to move more efficiently, saving time and money.”
“The flexibility of the Transportation Improvement Board’s program enabled us to help get this project to construction. TIB is pleased to help move this important project forward,” said Steve Gorcester, Executive Director of the Transportation Improvement Board.

“The project is important for the region because it increases transit access and, in the long-run, will provide critical freight mobility improvements for the Green River Valley. It’s a delight to see progress and results from the partnership that made this possible,” said Bob Drewel, Executive Director of the Puget Sound Regional Council.