Sound Transit PROJECT UPDATE: University Link Extension

First phase of University Link testing complete

Sound Transit contractors have completed initial work to integrate and test University Link light rail signal and power systems as part of the push to open the extension in early 2016.

Over the past several months Sound Transit contractors have installed and tested new power, safety, train control and communications systems in most of the 3.1 miles of tunnels between Westlake Station in downtown Seattle and the University of Washington.

The work included installing and testing new light rail control and safety systems for the entire light rail line. Workers also energized the new overhead lines in the University Link tunnels that power the trains.

Over the next months contractors will remove the temporary wall and doors between the Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel (DSTT) and the University Link tunnels and install the last 600’ of power and communication lines in that section.

A new video shows a view from the cab of a light rail train during testing as it made a run from Capitol Hill Station to the University of Washington Station.

Ride with Pride

More than seventy Sound Transit employees and friends marched in the Seattle Pride parade. Check out video from the event here.

Reminder: alarm testing in July

Alarm and speaker system tests will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Capitol Hill Station the following Thursdays: July 9, July 16, July 23, and July 30. Nearby neighbors and passersby may hear intermittent noise from testing inside the station.

Get ready for more light rail–and new and better signs along the way

When University Link opens in early 2016, Sound Transit will unveil improved signage throughout the entire light rail system. That includes the Angle Lake Station at South 200th Street which opens later in 2016 as well as the Northgate Link Extension with its U District, Roosevelt and Northgate stations opening in 2021.

The East Link and Lynnwood Link extensions, opening in 2023, will also receive the new-look signage with simplified easy-to-read route maps showing riders how to get around. The improvements include upgraded and easy-to follow maps at station ticket-vending machines.

Pictograms, which are also part of all current and future light rail stations, are visual tools that quickly tell travelers where they are on the line.

Finally, look for changes in the actual names of the light rail lines. For example, the Link line between Northgate and South 200th becomes the “Red Line.” Trains running between Northgate and Overlake in East King County will be the “Blue Line.”

The Red Line/Blue Line names, along with the improved signage, will make it easier for riders to get around.

Construction at a glance

UW Capitol Hill
Demolition 100% 100%
Station Excavation 100% 100%
Tunnel construction – TBM mining 100% 100%
Tunnel Construction – Cross Passage Excavation and Lining 100% 100%
Station construction 100% 93%
Power Systems & Track (overall) – 84.4% 84.4% 84.4%
U-Link Overall 95.3%

For more information

For more information about the University Link Extension project, please contact the University Link team at 206-398-5300 or

You can also visit the University Link Extension web page.

To report urgent construction matters: please call Sound Transit’s 24-hour construction hotline at 1-888-298-2395.

24-hour construction hotline: 888-298-2395

Sound Transit | Union Station, 401 S. Jackson St. | Seattle, WA 981041-800-201-4900/ TTY Relay: 711 |

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To request accommodations for persons with disabilities, call 1-800-201-4900/ TTY Relay: 711 or e-mail

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