July 28, 2023
We appreciate the Sound Transit Board and Seattle Mayor Harrell’s partnership as we work together to find an option that will increase access to public transit, while continuing to build on the recovery of downtown.
July 26, 2023
Amazon has long supported Sound Transit’s mission to increase access to public transportation throughout the Puget Sound region. Over the years, we’ve advocated for more funds and resources to be dedicated to this mission and contributed to the expansion of new infrastructure—from supporting legislation like the Move Ahead WA package, initiatives like Sound Transit 3, or community campaigns like “Yes for Seattle Transit,” to funding extra capacity for the busiest bus routes in Seattle. And through our Housing Equity Fund, we are providing funds to build more than 1,200 affordable homes adjacent to current and future Sound Transit stations, as we understand that this is the best way to connect families to jobs in our community.
More than a decade ago, we chose to build an urban campus rather than one isolated in the suburbs that can only be reached by car. Having a reliable and easily accessible public transportation network is key to ensuring that Puget Sound residents can travel around the region in a sustainable and affordable way. In addition to our employees commuting to Seattle, Bellevue, and Redmond, this also supports all the other residents that use public transportation daily, whether as part of their commute to work, or to shop and dine at local businesses and restaurants.
That’s why we follow Sound Transit’s expansion plans closely.
As the city’s largest private employer, we want and support new Light Rail stations in Denny Regrade and South Lake Union. However, we also know that the last three years have been particularly challenging for the small businesses located in and around the neighborhood and downtown core. The current plan calls for a new station on Westlake Avenue. This option will shut down this main artery in downtown Seattle for at least four full years. It will make mobility for our employees, neighbors, and visitors incredibly difficult, greatly increasing traffic and negatively impacting local businesses. As we've all started to see our city, foot traffic, and businesses begin to bounce back, we're mindful that now we cannot lose that momentum.
That’s why we are urging the Sound Transit Board to support the “Denny Station Shifted West” option without impacting the proposed Harrison Station. This new location, in the same block as the current plan, will allow for better access to the neighborhood during the several years of construction. We encourage the Board to not rush their decision and at least be willing to consider and study alternative options so we can ensure the expansion of public transit in the neighborhood without having to shut down economic activity in the area for several years.