Panel to discuss $54B ST3 light-rail ballot measure

LYNNWOOD — A forum later this month aims to educate voters about the most complex and expensive regional issue on the Nov. 8 ballot: Sound Transit 3.

The plan, known as ST3 for short, promises to extend light rail to downtown Everett from Lynnwood by 2036, among other upgrades for commuters. It would come at an average cost that Sound Transit estimates at $169 annually per adult taxpayer, through a combination of sales taxes, car-tab fees and property taxes.

Panelists from both sides of the issue are scheduled to appear at a meeting in the Lynnwood Public Library at 7 p.m. Sept. 19. The League of Women Voters of Washington organized the event.

Slated to speak in favor of the measure is Shefali Ranganathan, executive director of the pro-ST3 Transportation Choices Coalition. Speaking against it is Maggie Fimia from Smarter Transit, a group that favors alternatives such as bus rapid-transit over the light-rail focused expansion envisioned in ST3. Also expected to participate is Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff. Members of the audience will have the chance to ask questions.

The ST3 measure will appear on ballots in much of Snohomish, King and Pierce counties.

Of the $54 billion in improvements proposed for areas from Everett to DuPont, $9.3 billion are supposed to make their way to Snohomish County.

Future light-rail stops would be built near Alderwood mall, the Ash Way Park-and-Ride, 128th Street at I-5, Paine Field, Evergreen Way near Highway 526 and Everett Station. Unfunded in the plan is a provisional stop at Highway 99 and Airport Road in south Everett.

Other new services for Snohomish County commuters include a bus rapid-transit line on I-405 between Lynnwood and Burien by 2024; adding more parking at the Edmonds and Mukilteo Sounder stations by 2024; and re-configuring some freeway shoulders to accommodate regular bus traffic between 2019 and 2024.

Light rail is projected to start serving the Lynnwood Transit Center by 2023 as part of the ST2 ballot measure that voters approved in 2008.

Noah Haglund: 425-339-3465, Twitter: @NWhaglund.

To learn more:

The ST3 ballot measure is the focus of a panel discussion organized by the League of Women Voters on Monday, Sept. 19 at the Lynnwood Public Library on 19200 44th Ave. W. The start time is 7 p.m. More info: or email

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