Courtesy image
Here is the location of Auburn’s second parking garage.

Courtesy image Here is the location of Auburn’s second parking garage.

Auburn, Sound Transit work out Sounder parking garage's details

Second garage for train commuters

The City of Auburn and Sound Transit are at work nailing down the final details of an agreement that will see the agency acquire the property it needs to build its long anticipated — and long delayed — second parking garage for Sounder train commuters.

At the regular meeting on Jan. 2, the Auburn City Council emerged from a closed- door executive session to unanimously adopt a resolution that allows Mayor Nancy Backus to enter into an agreement with the agency related to its “acquisition of the city-owned interest in 113 parking stalls at the Northwest Corner of First and A Streets Northwest,” where Sound Transit will build the garage.

Details are scarce, and there is no indication yet how much money is involved because for legal reasons, the city is closely guarding any financial information related to the matter. Further details will be released when the agreement is finalized.

Old-timers will remember the site, one block northeast of Auburn City Hall, as the long time home of Mel’s Lumber. But for years since, it has provided parking for city employees who work at the city’s office-condominium units at 1 East Main Street.

“Sound Transit is acquiring the property to build a second parking garage to meet demand for parking by station users,” said Councilmember Kate Baldwin.

According to Sound Transit’s website, the garage was promised to voters in the 2008 ST2 ballot measure to address growing ridership on the Sounder and regional bus service. While transit ridership dipped during the COVID pandemic, the agency expects it to rebound over the coming years.

Sound Transit studied four potential sites for the garage during an “Alternatives Analysis” in 2017, and other sites were found to be infeasible due to considerations such as cost and site configuration.

The garage will offer as many 550 stalls for transit riders by its anticipated opening date in late fall 2026 or early in 2027, according to Sound Transit. The actual number of stalls will depend on the proposals from contractors in the procurement process, which the agency said “will incentivize maximizing the number of stalls at a given budget.”

While people have expressed concern that those 550 stalls will not be enough, Sound Transit has repeatedly stressed the need to balance the demand for new parking at Auburn Station with the cost and its ability to mitigate traffic and environmental impacts of a new garage.

“We know we can never build enough parking for everyone who wants a space. That’s one reason we also work with our partners on other ways to access the station, including walking, biking, rolling and taking the bus,” Sound Transit said on its website.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentnews.us.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://kentnews.us/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Northwest

Courtesy Photo, Renton Police
Renton increases hiring bonus for new police officers

Bonus is a $20,000 payment upon hire and $20,000 payment upon completion of a one year probation.

LivAway Suites broke ground near Topgolf in Renton. Courtesy image
Extended-stay hotel breaks ground in Renton

LivAway Suites to be built near Topgolf, Boeing and The Landing.

Kent Police recovered nearly 800 catalytic converters in a 2021 bust. File photo
New state legislation fights catalytic converter theft

Governor Jay Inslee signed a bill on March 26 adding new regulations… Continue reading

t
2-year-old dies in Federal Way shooting

Incident took place in a parking lot near the 100 block of Southwest Campus Drive near IHOP.

t
Des Moines woman faces prison for embezzling from Renton company

Created an account using identity of a deceased employee to file 58 claims for reimbursement.

t
Renton Police arrest ‘Kia Boys' after crime spree

Teenagers arrested after stolen vehicle chase March 26 from Renton to Southcenter Mall.

t
Q&A with the new King County Library System executive director

“It’s really about providing that space to reimagine who you are,” said Heidi Daniel.

Auburn Station’s existing parking garage. (File photo)
Alternatives for Auburn's Sound Transit parking garage

Kent Station one option as fewer floors available in Auburn

Ideal Option treatment center and lab building. (Photo courtesy of Ideal Option)
New addiction treatment center opens in Renton

Overdose deaths see record numbers in King County.

t
One dead, one injured in Federal Way shootings

Federal Way Police say they have found a connection between the two incidents.

File Photo
KC Sheriff's Office sues over Burien encampment ban

Office of Law Enforcement Oversight director calls Burien’s ordinance “unconstitutional.”