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November 17, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Sound Transit to proceed with final East Link design

The Sound Transit board on Thursday authorized CEO Joni Earl to begin final design of the East Link light-rail line from Seattle to Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond.

The board gave the green light for the nearly $2.8 billion project two days after Earl and Bellevue City Manager Steve Sarkozy signed an agreement pledging that the city and the transit agency would work as partners to reduce costs and pay for a tunnel through downtown Bellevue.

Construction is slated to begin in 2015 and the start of service in 2023. A funding plan approved Thursday by the Sound Transit board allows up to $110 million of North King County “subarea” funds to be used for the Eastside project.

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