$583 Million to Sound Transit in Omnibus Bill Will Extend Light Rail South to Federal Way and North to Snohomish County

Bill provides $329.14 million for Federal Way Link Extension; $254 million for Lynnwood Link Extension

WASHINGTON, D.C.  Today, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA), who chairs the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, announced that she has secured funding for two key Puget Sound region transit projects in the final Fiscal Year 2023 Omnibus Appropriations bill, which funds government programs through September 30, 2023.

The Federal Way Link Light Rail Extension will receive $329.14 million in FY23 funding. The Lynnwood Link Light Rail Extension will receive $254 million in FY23 funding.

“Big news -- the Sound Transit Federal Way Link Extension is now fully funded, and we are one step closer to getting light rail service into Snohomish County,” said Sen. Cantwell. “Sound Transit is in the midst of the largest transit expansion in the country, and with the historic rise in inflation and costs for construction materials, it was critical that the federal government step up to help transit agencies expeditiously fund these types of large projects.”

For the Federal Way Link Extension, the additional dollars mean that the project is now fully funded three years ahead of schedule. With the money in hand now, Sound Transit will save tens of millions in taxpayer dollars. Once the project is completed, riders will be able to get from Federal Way to SeaTac Airport in just 15 minutes, and from Kent/Des Moines to Downtown Seattle in 42 minutes.

The funding for Lynnwood Link Extension, which extends Link to Snohomish County, puts the project on a path to be fully funded in FY24.

All of the funding comes from the Federal Transit Administration’s Capital Investment Grants (CIG) program. This discretionary grant program funds transit capital investments, including heavy rail, commuter rail, light rail, streetcars, and bus rapid transit.

As committee chair, Sen. Cantwell has long been a champion of investment in Washington state’s transportation infrastructure and has helped secure federal funding for important infrastructure and transit expansion projects throughout the state. Sen. Cantwell helped deliver large funding increases for transportation in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which included $8 billion for CIG funding over five years.

The Senate is expected to vote on the bill as soon as today.