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East Link Position

Move Bellevue Forward supports Sound Transit’s East Link project.  East Link, approved by 58 percent of Bellevue residents, supports long held City policies to expand transportation options to meet future growth and development.  

Move Bellevue Forward’s position is as follows:
  • Move forward as expeditiously as possible with East Link , the planning for which began over five  years ago.  The studies and planning process conducted by Sound Transit have been fair and thorough, as attested to by the independent studies commissioned by the City of Bellevue.
  • The ultimate alignment for Bellevue must:
    • Be affordable with existing Sound Transit and City of Bellevue funding and capable of being built within the anticipated timeline

    • Have the fewest environmental impacts and the lowest construction risk
    • Serve our neighborhoods, Downtown, the Hospital district and the Bel Red area in ways that maximize access and ridership
    • Serve Downtown via a tunnel
    • Yield sufficient savings to provide for the supplemental funding necessary for the tunnel option
  • There is no perfect alignment through South Bellevue.  However, the only alignment that satisfies  these criteria is Sound Transit’s preliminary preferred alignment- the Bellevue Way/112th route to Downtown, serving Downtown through a tunnel and station on 110th Ave and serving the areas east of Downtown by an elevated and at grade alignment. We support this preferred alignment.
  • As citizens and business leaders in Bellevue we are keenly aware of the current economic environment facing Bellevue and the greater Eastside. Consistent with the City’s Light Rail Best Practices Report, we believe Bellevue citizens and economic interests are best served through collaborative efforts by the City of Bellevue and Sound Transit to design and build East Link.  To this end we urge the City to:
    • Change the focus from spending scarce Bellevue funds looking at alternative alignments to investing these resources in identifying effective mitigation measures that address construction and operational impacts.
    • Develop the tunnel full-funding agreement with Sound Transit to ensure the tunnel is built.  We are pleased that Bellevue’s 2011/12 East Link Work Program supports full engagement by staff in developing this agreement.
    • Avoid litigation or withholding permits as means of negotiating with Sound Transit. Bellevue citizens are best served when Bellevue and Sound Transit work together.
    • Resist attempts by some to pit Bellevue neighborhoods against one another and use Bellevue resources to increase outreach to those who may be impacted by alternative alignments.
    • Maintain Bellevue’s high standards of transparency and good public process in all matters related to East Link decision making.