A rendering of the future Redmond Technology Center light rail station. Courtesy graphic

A rendering of the future Redmond Technology Center light rail station. Courtesy graphic

Overlake Transit Center parking lot closes for light rail construction

As part of construction of the East Link Light Rail extension, the Overlake Transit Center Park and Ride parking lot in Redmond will close on Monday.

The lot will be closed for up to six years as crews will be constructing the future Redmond Technology Center (RTC) light rail station, which has a scheduled opening for 2023.

Rachelle Cunningham, public information officer for Sound Transit, said while people won’t be able to park at the transit center, a temporary transit loop will be constructed at the south end of the site as some buses and shuttles will continue to serve the location. The north end of the site will become an active construction zone.

As part of the project, Cunningham said a new 320-stall parking garage will be constructed onsite and it is possible that the garage may be complete and ready to use before the 2023 target date for the light rail station.

With the site’s parking lot closing during construction, she said drivers will need to park in other places, such as newly added park and ride spaces.

For more information, on these new parking spots and to learn about other commute options such as carpools and vanpools, visit www.soundtransit.org/eastlink.

One-on-one trip planning service is also available through King County Metro’s Just One Trip program at justonetrip.org/resources for anyone who needs help planning their future commute.

Becky Range, communications and marketing specialist for the City of Redmond, said another tool people can use is Go Redmond, which has a page dedicated to helping people with this.

“It’s exciting to see progress on the light rail extension, but we know this closure may be an inconvenience for some,” Range acknowledged.

To increase mobility on the Eastside, Cunningham said Sound Transit has also added new trips and additional service on Eastside bus routes to increase mobility.

Like Range, Cunningham said Sound Transit knows the transit center parking lot closure will be hard for people and so they are working to provide resources to help people find alternative options.

Cunningham said it is difficult to get any kind of ridership estimate for the park and ride because there is so much bus traffic, including Sound Transit routes, King County Metro routes and Microsoft Connector shuttles. She did say that there are 222 parking spots on site and those are usually full by 7:30 a.m. or 8 a.m.

Once the new station is complete, Cunningham said in addition to light rail, it will serve buses, paratransit and Microsoft Connector shuttles and feature a bike and pedestrian bridge across State Route 520.

The RTC light rail station is part of Sound Transit’s East Link, which will extend light rail 14 miles from Seattle’s International District to Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond.

Cunningham said once it is complete and operational, it will be a game changer as light rail will provide a reliable form of transportation for people other than sitting in traffic. She said from the RTC station, it will take 40 minutes to get to the University of Washington, 29 minutes to the International District, 64 minutes to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, 47 minutes to Northgate and 60 minutes to Lynnwood.

“This is really exciting,” Cunningham said about finally taking a tangible step toward bringing light rail to the Eastside after so many years of planning.

As part of the East Link construction, the South Bellevue Park-and-Ride also will close in the coming months, a Sound Transit press release states. The closure will be announced in advance through Sound Transit construction alerts. To stay informed, visit www.soundtransit.org/subscribe.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@redmond-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.redmond-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in News

Co-owners Sarah Cassidy and Luke Woodward stand in front of The Grange (photo by Cameron Sheppard)
Co-owners Sarah Cassidy and Luke Woodward stand in front of The Grange (photo by Cameron Sheppard)
How a King County restaurant and farm work together to make a true farm-to-table experience

The Grange prepares sustainably produced meals pulled from the soil of the Snoqualmie Valley.

NW Carpenters Union members strike in front of downtown Bellevue construction site (photo by Cameron Sheppard)
Carpenters union strike interupts some prominent Eastside construction projects

Union representative says members are prepared to strike “as long as it takes.”

Map of proposed landfill expansion sites (screenshot from King County website)
Waste management expert knocks county’s plan to expand landfill

The waste management advocate said the decision to expand seems pre-determined despite assessment.

Participants in fundraiser previous event (courtesy of Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter)
Walk To End Alzheimer’s returns to Eastside on Sept. 25

Alzheimer’s Association moves forward with plans for an in-person event.

file photo
State employees including first responders sue state over vaccine mandate

The lawsuit filed on behalf of more than 90 plaintiffs claims Inslee’s order is unconstitutional.

Photo of construction of Westside Park renovations (courtesy of City of Redmond)
Redmond’s Westside Park renovation is expected to be complete this Fall

Renovations are focused on increasing recreational space while also preserving “woodsy” aesthetic.

Pixabay photo
Union carpenters to go on strike, expected to impact Eastside Microsoft projects

Members authorized strike after rejecting AGC offer for the fourth time.

file photo
The state’s hospitals face “unprecedented collapse” amid COVID uptick warn healthcare unions

Union spokeperson says understaffing was a problem even before the pandemic.

Most Read