A good day for Puget Sound transit advocates (especially this one)

On the same day the Secretary of Transportation announced federal approval of the light rail extension to UW (another step on the way to federal funding), I was officially introduced to Car #2, the first of the Link rail cars to arrive in Seattle. (Car #1 was initially sent to New Mexico for speed testing and will be arriving shortly.)

Hey, good lookin'!

Sexy, no?

Richard Eacker, an electrical engineer on the project (and, incidentally, a faithful 255 rider), was kind enough to show me around the brand new maintenance building where it’s being stored.

Richard with Car #2:

Richard and Car #2

Me with Car # 2 (and the edge of Richard’s finger):

Bus Chick and Car #2

I was diggin’ the hard hat and safety goggles.

The auxiliary equipment is on top of the cars, so maintenance is performed from platforms.

Maintenance platform

Richard also gave me a tour of the construction progress.

This is an erection truss, a ridiculously huge contraption that connects the trackway:

Truss

I’m sorry I didn’t take notes on how exactly this thing works, but I’m hoping a transit nerd (possibly Richard) will comment and explain in more detail. (Google the term at your own risk.)

Here’s the Tukwila station:

Tukwila station

I never get over the hugeness of this project–both in terms of the amount of energy and brainpower required to make it a reality, and in terms the impact it will have on the future of transportation in our region.

Of course, it won’t have an impact unless we actually use it. Who wants to fight me to be first in line?

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