Service on the South Sounder line will be temporarily truncated to Puyallup later this month. The service revision will begin on February 17th and run through the morning of February 22nd. Regular service will be restored in time for the afternoon commute on the 22nd. With service curtailed to Puyallup, trains on the line won’t be calling at Lakewood, South Tacoma, and Tacoma Dome stations.
The reason for the temporary service revision is to allow uninterrupted construction of a new bridge promised by the Tacoma Trestle project. After completion of the bridge work, trains will use the new double-track crossing instead of the historic wooden single-track trestle it’s replacing. To bridge the service gap, Sound Transit will be running four special bus shuttle routes to connect train riders south of Puyallup. Sound Transit will also be running its regular express bus service (Route 580) from Lakewood to Puyallup via South Hill.
The press release from Sound Transit provides additional details on the temporary service revision and project:
Dedicated shuttles will be in place at the Tacoma Dome, South Tacoma and Lakewood stations in the morning to shuttle passengers to Puyallup station where they will board Sounder trains. In the afternoon, shuttles will be at Puyallup station to return passengers to their stations of origin.
Sound Transit will share details with riders in advance of the change through a variety of channels, including signage, social media and rider alerts. Sound Transit representatives will be on-site during the service change to help direct people to their connections. Riders can find information about the temporary change and sign up for alerts at soundtransit.org/SounderDisruption.
The south track will be complete on the new bridge, and all Sounder trains will begin using the south track. After the cutover to the new bridge, the old single-track timber railroad trestle will be removed, and Sound Transit will continue construction of the north track. Trains will operate on both the north- and south-bound tracks in 2018.
The $160.9 million Tacoma Trestle Track and Signal Project also includes signal upgrades, roadway improvements, utility relocation and erosion control. The project will support more Sounder and Amtrak trains, and reduce delays in the heavily used rail corridor.