Panel will discuss options under study for Sound Transit future plans

An independent Expert Review Panel, appointed to provide review of Sound Transit’s Phase 2 Planning for the Regional Transit Long-Range Plan, will meet on April 4 and 5 to discuss the options under study for extending high-capacity transit in the region. The panel’s role is to pose and assess critical questions, review key methodologies and assumptions in the Sound Transit 2 Plan, and ensure that the assumptions are appropriate and reasonable. The panel held its first meeting in February.

The agenda for the meeting includes briefings and discussions regarding several issue papers recently completed by Sound Transit, including papers on I-90/East King County High Capacity Transit Analysis; SR 522 Corridor High Capacity Transit Assessment; Potential Tacoma Link Extension; High Capacity Transit System Development Issues in the South Corridor (between King and Pierce Counties); and I-5 Corridor, Northgate to Everett, High Capacity Transit Assessment.

The meeting will take place at the Harbor Steps Conference Center, 1301 First Avenue, Level A, in downtown Seattle, from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. both days.

The eight-member panel was appointed in November 2004 by former Governor Gary Locke, Legislative Transportation Committee Chairman Ed Murray, and Secretary of Transportation Doug MacDonald. The panel’s technical review of the Sound Transit 2 Plan is necessary to guarantee that Sound Transit’s Board can make appropriate decisions for Sound Transit 2 investments in the region’s high-capacity transportation system.

The panel members were selected from across the country to provide expertise spanning key technical areas. These include: project cost estimating, capital finance plan review, ridership forecasting, modal analysis, legal and political architecture of Sound Transit’s legislative charter, environmental impact statement preparation, local design and constructability, and transit operations and maintenance.