Scroll through this site to learn what East Link Connections is and how it helps link transit and your community.
The purpose of the project is to implement a coordinated regional transit network on the Eastside that gets people where they need and want to go.
By 2024, Sound Transit will open 12 new light rail stations connecting downtown Seattle and the Eastside.
Metro and Sound Transit are initiating a mobility project on King County’s Eastside to implement a coordinated regional transit network that gets people where they need and want to go. The project will deliver an updated mobility network that integrates with and complements Sound Transit’s 12 new Link light rail stations connecting downtown Seattle and the Eastside.
Implementation for the updated mobility network will start in 2023 in conjunction with the first service change immediately following the opening of light rail service between International District/Chinatown Station and Redmond Technology Station, followed by two additional stations in 2024 serving SE Redmond and Downtown Redmond. Find out more in the background section.
Overview of online open house:
- Learn about East Link Connections
- Provide feedback on draft ST Express and Metro route changes to connect riders to 12 new Link light rail stations as part of East Link and Downtown Redmond Link extensions opening
- Find background information about the East Link Connections
- Explore the benefits of connecting to Link light rail
- Review the transfer experience at each new Link light rail station
- Find out more about proposed fares
- Learn about how we measure equity and view the project timeline
Shape the future of transit on the Eastside
Survey open from September 13 – October 18
Share your input on the routes
Join us at one of our virtual community information sessions.
Join King County Metro and Sound Transit for a discussion on the upcoming restructure of Metro and Sound Transit bus service on the Eastside as a result of the expansion of Link light rail. You will have an opportunity to preview potential route changes, talk with service planners, and provide feedback.
Wednesday, September 29, 2021
6 – 7 p.m.
Register for one of these free virtual events
Both events will have Spanish translators and closed captioning/CART available. For questions, additional language translation, and/or accommodations please contact email@example.com or leave a message at 206-263-9768.
Once you register, you will be provided with the Zoom meeting link to join by computer, tablet, or smart phone and the conference call line to join by phone.
What is East Link Connections?
East Link Connections is a coordinated, co-led process for improving transit connections throughout the Eastside as Link light rail service expands through 2024.
- Improve mobility for priority populations, as defined by Metro’s Mobility Framework, including un(der)served populations.
- Equitably inform, engage and empower current and potential customers.
- Deliver integrated service that responds to Link expansion.
- Minimize duplication of bus service with Link.
- Improve connections to Link.
- Be consistent with Metro Connects and current and future mobility needs.
Bellevue, Bothell, Clyde Hill, Duvall, Issaquah, Kenmore, Kirkland, Lake Forest Park, Medina, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Redmond, Renton, Sammamish, Shoreline, Seattle (Chinatown/International District, Central District, Mt Baker and Rainier Valley), Woodinville, Yarrow Point
B Line, 200, 202, 203, 204, 208, 212, 214, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226, 232, 237, 240, 241, 245, 246, 249, 250, 251, 252, 256, 257, 268, 269, 270, 271, 311, 541, 542, 544, 545, 550, 554, 555/556, 630, 930, 931
East Link Connections Phase 1 Study Area and Routes
East Link Connections Phase 1 West Study Area and Routes
Understanding the needs of the Eastside
In our first phase of engagement, April 5 - 25, Metro and Sound Transit sought to identify needs and priorities, including important connection points, availability, frequency, reliability, overcrowding, safety, barriers to transit use, as well as improvements that would encourage more transit use.
Metro and Sound Transit identified the following needs and priorities through conversations with community-based organizations, local employers, local mobility groups and a public survey:
Make transfers easier by being frequent, safe and accessible.
Faster travel times to get me where I need to go.
Minmize transfers for long-distance travelers who may already have multiple transfers.
More connections to new locations like Sea-Tac airport, UW, Northgate and downtown Seattle.
Make transfers fast and easy especially for seniors and riders with disabilities.
Improve and add local connections.
More service outside peak periods and more service on weekends.
How Metro and Sound Transit are using what we learned:
To map destinations that are important to the community.
To address barriers and increase transit use and access.
To find improvement that will encourage more transit use.
What are the benefits of riding Link?
From Redmond to downtown Seattle, Link light rail trains will travel on dedicated or semi-dedicated right-of-way at speeds up to 55 mph. Up to four-car trains will run every eight minutes during rush hour.
Projected travel times:
- 18 min downtown Redmond to downtown Bellevue.
- 24 min Seattle (Westlake Station) to downtown Bellevue.
- 50 min South Bellevue to Sea-Tac Airport.
Light rail moves more people in less space
Trains arrive every eight minutes during rush hour
four-car light rail train can move 800 people
Link light rail provides
Easy access. Find local bus connections and parking at many stations.
No schedule needed! Service every few minutes.
Fast, traffic-free travel. Arrive at the same time every day.
Connections at stations. Reach your final destination with sidewalks, bike paths and buses plus pick-up and drop-off areas.
Transferring from bus to light rail
As the Link light rail continues to expand, bus service around the area will continue to evolve in order to better serve the new light rail stations. This will mean that many riders will need to transfer from a bus to light rail in order to reach their final destination.
We do understand that this may be a change for some riders and so we have provided some references to help you understand what the transfer experience will look like at each new light rail station. For each station you will find a station rendering, a site plan map which will show the station entrances and adjacent bus stops, and a vertical circulation map which will show you how a rider can navigate from the entrances to the station platform to catch the train.
What will my fare be?
The easiest way to pay for your ride is with an ORCA card that you can purchase at any one of our ticket machines. You can also pay your fare with cash or the Transit Go Mobile Ticket app. Please note that when paying in cash on a bus you will want the exact fare because you do not get change back. When paying cash to use the Link system, you must first purchase your ticket at a ticket vending machine.
Why use an ORCA Card – because it makes transferring is easy!
When you use the ORCA Card to transfer between ORCA-family transit services, like Link light rail and Metro or Sound Transit buses, your first-leg fare counts toward to the second leg of your trip. If the second leg of your trip costs the same or less than your first, your transfer is free. If your second-leg fare costs more than your first, your ORCA card will automatically deduct the difference from your E-purse balance. Transfer value expires two hours after you first tap your ORCA Card to begin your trip.
Currently Sound Transit’s Link fare model is distance-based and ranges from $2.25 - $3.50 depending on how far a rider is traveling.
Sound Transit’s fare ranges from an adult single ride fare at $3.25 with cash, ORCA Card or Transit Go Mobile Ticket to lower or no cost fare for those who qualify for a reduced fare using an ORCA card.
What are the guidelines and policies we are using to make sure service is equitable?
December 2020 – February 2021
Identify community stakeholders, needs and priorities.
Develop proposed concepts for service changes and collect public feedback
Summer 2021 – We Are Here
Present a proposed network of service changes to the public and gather feedback
Winter 2021 – 2022
Revise and finalize a recommended network
Summer – Fall 2022
Metro presents recommended changes to the King County Council.
2023 – 2024
New scheduled bus service begins with opening of Sound Transit’s Link extensions.