Construction Of Burien Transit Center Parking Garage To Begin in October

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by Ralph Nichols

The official groundbreaking ceremony for the Burien Transit Center parking garage is scheduled for Oct. 23.

And by then, work on the King County/Sound Transit Transportation-Oriented Development (TOD) project, including physical groundbreaking for initial construction activity, will be underway.

Dick Loman, Burien’s economic development manager, said the ceremony was delayed until later in the month “to fit the schedules of a number of important officials involved in the funding for this project.”

The Metro Transit park-and-ride lot at the northeast corner of SW 150th St. and 4th Ave. SW will be closed on Saturday, Oct. 2, to clear the way for construction activity.

Transit parking during construction will be relocated at the old BBC Dodge site at 1st Ave. South and SW 148th St. Bus routes that stop at the transit center will also stop there.

Developer of the $20.5 million parking garage is Los Angeles-based Alliance Property Group. Pankow Construction is general contractor for the project.

The five-story facility, with another level underground, will be located on the south part of the existing park-and-ride lot. It will have 466 parking spaces – 50 of them with plug-ins for electric cars.

An additional 36 parking spaces will be located on an adjoining surface area in the north part of the existing park-and-ride lot.

The project will give a boost to the local economy, Loman noted. It “will create a number of new jobs in Burien. They will be temporary jobs, like all construction work, but they will be well-paying jobs.”

Most of the money for the parking garage will come from Sound Transit, which is contributing $14.73 million in taxpayer-approved ST2 funds. The balance will come from King County through a joint agreement with the transit agency.

Sound Transit and Metro have targeted November 2011 for completion of the parking garage, which is Phase I of the King County Department of Transportation’s TOD project in downtown Burien.

In addition to commuter parking, the facility would provide evening and weekend parking for movie-goers if a proposed multiplex theater is built in Town Square at the southwest corner of SW 150th St. and 4th Ave. SW.

Preliminary plans for Phase II call for construction of approximately 100 affordable multi-family units on the south side of the facility, with retail and office space located on the ground level.

Phase II will begin after the parking garage is built – when market conditions permit, Loman said.

A new Transit Center used by Sound Transit and Metro buses opened in early summer 2009.

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