Local Information

WSDOT, Tacoma officials celebrate station construction kickoff July 13

Friday, July 8, 2016 - 12:41

Barbara LaBoe, communications, 360-705-7080
Janet Matkin, communications, 360-705-7966

Amtrak Cascades station at Freighthouse Square will open in fall 2017

TACOMA – City, state and railroad officials will celebrate the start of construction of the new Amtrak Cascades station in Tacoma’s Freighthouse Square with a construction kickoff ceremony Wednesday, July 13.

The 10,000-square-foot station will be a new structure that replaces an existing portion of the historic Freighthouse Square building. It is adjacent to Sound Transit’s Sounder station in the building and across the street from the Pierce Transit Tacoma Dome Station.

The ceremony celebrates the station’s construction and a new era in train travel. The station was designed to align with ongoing transit-oriented development within Tacoma’s Dome District, aimed at further developing the area as a vibrant transit hub that includes retail and residential spaces. The ceremony will include speakers from Tacoma and the Washington State Department of Transportation, as well as congressional and community representatives.

“This is an important milestone for Washington’s high speed rail program and the city of Tacoma,” said Ron Pate, director of WSDOT’s Rail, Freight, and Ports Division. “This station helps improve passenger train travel throughout the Amtrak Cascades corridor and we’re pleased to celebrate with community and state officials.”

The station was designed in consultation with an active citizen advisory committee and city officials. It features large glass windows for a bright, welcoming lobby, wooden columns, terrazzo flooring and sliding and vertical lift doors to create an indoor/outdoor public space. When it opens in fall 2017, the station will serve six daily roundtrip Amtrak Cascades trains and Amtrak’s Coast Starlight long-distance service. 

Businesses within Freighthouse Square will remain open during construction. They also will be featured during the ceremony.

Ceremony details

What: Construction kickoff of Amtrak Cascades Station

Where: Tent on the East 25th Street Plaza between D and G streets and directly across from Freighthouse Square, 2501 E. D St., Tacoma

When: 3 to 4 p.m., Wednesday, July 13

Speakers: Roger Millar, acting state Secretary of Transportation; Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland; Ron Pate, WSDOT’s Rail, Freight and Ports Division director

Visuals: Shots of outside of existing building; large banners showing rendering of new station; speakers at podium; miniature Lego versions of Amtrak Cascades trains (created by City Blocks – Tacoma’s Brick Art Center within Freighthouse Square).

The new station is part of the $149.9 million Point Defiance Bypass high-speed rail project, which will reroute passenger train traffic through DuPont, Lakewood and Tacoma, creating a faster and more reliable travel route. Point Defiance Bypass is one of 20 projects in the federally funded Cascades High-Speed Rail Program. When complete in 2017, the projects will add two more daily roundtrips between Seattle and Portland, for a total of six; reduce travel time between the two cities and improve on-time reliability.

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