University Link project on track to save $100M, open early

SEATTLE - Opening early and under budget - that's the news Sound Transit shared with Sen. Patty Murray about the University Link light rail project during a news conference at the new University of Washington station Friday.

The section of rail that will run between UW and downtown Seattle is now expected to open between January and March of 2016 - six to nine months earlier than expected. According to Sound Transit, University Link is nearly 80-percent complete and on pace to come in more than $100 million under budget.

Crews are currently installing rail in the twin tunnels and continuing to work on the Capitol Hill and UW stations.

University Link will allow passengers to travel between UW and downtown Seattle in about six minutes.

Murray helped secure an $813 million grant agreement for the $1.95 billion project. She and King County Executive Dow Constantine toured the UW Station Friday morning.

An exact opening date for University Link will be announced late next year or early 2015.