The Sound Transit Board on Sept. 23 voted not to approve a full one-year contract extension for Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff. Chair Kent Keel said during the Board meeting that after more than six years of service, Rogoff recently informed Board members that “he did not foresee remaining in his role beyond the end of 2022”; Keel said he and others did not believe they should wait until 2022 to start searching for a new leader of the transit system serving the Seattle metro area.
Sound Transit will receive up to $3.84 billion in Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loans to finance the Downtown Redmond Link Extension and refinance five additional projects, the U.S. Department of Transportation reported Sept. 17.
The Southern California Regional Rail Authority (Metrolink) will test an Earthquake Early Warning System. In addition, the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) on Sept. 10 unveiled the reconfigured 42nd Street Shuttle; California’s Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) on Sept. 12 restored complete Blue Line light rail service; and Sound Transit on Sept. 13 kicked off its Fare Ambassador Pilot program.
Denver Regional Transit District’s (RTD) Board of Directors has adopted a new five-year strategic plan. In addition, Sound Transit is teaming with the city of Seattle to address homelessness; Washington Area Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) will redevelop the West Falls Church (Va.) Metro Station site; and WSP USA’s Tanya Adams and Ruben Landa have been elected to the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials’ (COMTO) National Board for the 2021-23 term.
Responding to a $6.5 billion affordability gap, the Sound Transit Board has adopted a realignment plan that guides delivery dates for voter-approved transit projects that are not already under construction.
California’s North County Transit District (NCTD) will boost COASTER regional/commuter rail service between Oceanside and downtown San Diego this October. Also, Sound Transit, the city of Shoreline and King Conservation District have partnered to “re-green” the Lynnwood Link light rail corridor under construction in Shoreline, Wash.
Chicago’s Metra is offering an onboard rider satisfaction survey; Southern California Regional Rail Authority (Metrolink) has launched a Small Business Partnership Program (SBPP); Phoenix’s Valley Metro has introduced a real-time light rail and bus tracking and trip planning app; Sound Transit has debuted a Northgate Link website ahead of the 4.3-mile light rail extension’s Oct. 2 opening; and Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) has opened a new Fare Inspector and Special Constable Complaints (FISCC) Office.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Massachusetts Bay Area Transportation Authority (MBTA), Keolis and CIC Health have teamed on the Commuter Rail Vax Express to boost access to the COVID-19 vaccine; San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) will begin restoring cable car service by early September; Amazon is committing $100 million in below-market funding for affordable housing units on Sound Transit surplus properties; and Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA) A-train commuter rail turns 10.
The U.S. Department of Transportation reported on June 11 that 22 transit projects in the Capital Investment Grants (CIG) program will receive a total of $250 million in American Rescue Plan funding allocations; four are rail-related and will receive a total of $64.9 million.
The first of Sound Transit’s 152 new Series 2 light rail vehicles from Siemens Mobility have been launched into revenue service.