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Transportation Services

Link light rail construction starts Jan. 4

Monday, December 30, 2019

Ten weeks of construction in the downtown Seattle transit tunnel will reduce Link light rail service beginning January 4. The Connect 2020 project will build new light rail tracks that will connect the Seattle line to the Eastside line, which is expected to open in 2023. 

Rather then shut down service completely during new track construction, Sound Transit will keep the trains running on only one track. Riders should plan for crowding and increased travel times. When Connect 2020 is done, the existing tunnel will be ready to serve riders traveling to and from 10 new East King County stations in 2023.

What you need to know

To be prepared for the construction period, we advise you to follow these tips and tricks.

Allow more time for travel

  • Four car trains arrive every 12 minutes during all service hours
  • Pioneer Square is the last stop for both north- and southbound trains.
  • Change trains will continue past Pioneer Square.

Follow the new signs

  • Trains may use different platforms. New signs will point you in the right direction.
  • Staff are available to help during the construction period and will make sure you are headed in the right way.

Spread out to avoid overcrowding

  • Four car trains use the full platform length.
  • Expect significant crowding during peak hours.
  • Pro tip: the first and fourth train cars are usually the least crowded.

Allow for priority seat and boarding

  • Allow seniors and riders with disabilities to board first and take seats. Be prepared to stand.
  • If able, take the stairs and leave escalators and elevators for those needing them.

Pioneer Square = Your train transfer point

  • During construction, Link light rail operates as two lines: Angle Lake-Pioneer Square and UW-Pioneer Square.
  • To continue past Pioneer Square, exit the train through the inner doors to transfer across the temporary center platform.
  • To exit at Pioneer Square, use the outer doors facing the permanent platform.

Explore your options of connecting

No bikes allowed at Pioneer Square station

  • During the 10 weeks of construction, Sound Transit is prohibiting bikes at Pioneer Square Station. 
  • Southbound riders with bicycles exit at University Street, northbound riders with bicycles exit at International District/Chinatown.
  • People riding bicycles between University Street and International District/Chinatown stations can use protected bicycle lanes on 2nd Avenue, S. Main Street, and 5th Avenue S.
  • Learn more about Seattle bike routes.

Consider other options

Sign up for alerts

Get more information on the Connect 2020 Project.