Sound Transit rail sees strong ridership growth

Ridership data from the first three quarters of 2017 has been released and shows a 12 percent increase over 2016.

According to a press release issued by Sound Transit, ridership has increased even more when compared to the first three quarters of 2016, up 26 percent.

Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff said in the release this indicates that the additional 90 miles of rail, approved in the Sound Transit 3 package, will serve new communities well.

Through the third quarter of 2017, light rail service moved some 17.5 million riders, or an average of more than 72,000 rides each weekday.

The marked 26 percent year-to-date increase in growth reflects the University Link light rail station didn’t operate for the first quarter of 2016 and the Angle Lake station opened in September of 2016.

“Simultaneous work to expand north, south, east and west – will dramatically expand access to congestion-free light rail service, with new stations opening every few years,” the release said.

This includes new stations coming to Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond’s Overlake neighborhood in 2023. A second station will be opening in Redmond’s downtown the following year.

Other improvements include the 2024 launch of bus rapid transit on I-405.

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