Contact Information
Paul Hintz
Community and Economic Development
Renton, WA 98057

Within a few years, Sound Transit will expand its Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) services to Renton in conjunction with the relocation of the Renton transit center from the downtown to the former site of the Sound Ford car dealership at the northeast corner of the intersection of Rainier Ave S. and SW Grady Way.

In preparation of future BRT service and relocation of the transit center, the City of Renton is working with MAKERS architecture and urban design to create a subarea plan to guide future development and investment in the area.

What is a Subarea Plan?

A subarea plan is a strategy, based on a community’s vision for an area, intended to make effective use of public and private investments to further that vision. Subarea plans are detailed plans for a smaller geographic area within a larger community and are used to recognize and/or create unique districts and neighborhoods within an already defined or planned area. The Rainier/Grady Junction is a subarea of what is designated by the City as the City Center Community Planning Area.

Why Plan Now?

The relocation of the Renton transit center and new BRT service are significant public investments. Studies show transit systems function best when they are well-integrated with and supported by people and commerce vis-à-vis adjacent residences and businesses.

Therefore, it’s important to craft local land use and development regulations that facilitate new transit-oriented development (TOD) to meet the community’s vision and to benefit from a thoroughly planned and well-designed environment.

Explaining TOD

Transit-oriented development (TOD) refers to high-density, mixed-use development oriented around a transit station, where the development surrounding the station supports multi-modal movement (think: cars, busses, light rail, cyclists, pedestrians, etc.).

TOD supports a complementary mix of uses (residential, commercial, office) in a pedestrian-friendly environment. In other words, enabling safe and convenient travel between the transit station and final destination point(s) – retail, entertainment, employment, community services, and so on.

Benefits of TOD

Successful TOD creates a reciprocal relationship between transit and development so that each supports and strengthens the other. 

There are many benefits to TOD:

  • Reduced traffic congestion – Increased transit ridership cuts down on single-occupancy vehicle travel, thus fewer cars on the road and less traffic.

  • Health and wellness – Encourages a healthier lifestyle; more walking and less driving.

  • Fiscally conservative – Lessens burden on municipalities to provide public infrastructure and services.

  • Convenience and choice – Creates opportunity to live, work, shop, and play in the same area.

  • Business friendly – Generates foot traffic and customers for local businesses.  

  • Connectivity and access – Greater connectivity to regional destinations and amenities; jobs, entertainment, and services.

Visualize It

  • High frequency bus service running every 10 to 15 minutes, connecting you to other regional destinations for work and entertainment.

  • Ending your daily commute, deboarding your bus at the transit center and running all of your essential errands (pharmacy and dry cleaning pickup, a few items at the grocery store, and a birthday gift for your mother-in-law) without getting in your car.

  • Less congestion and cleaner air.

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