If you've spent any time on the New York subways (or a number of other transit systems), you know that the stations and sometimes even the trains feature all sorts of performers. (MSG even created a televised tournament for New York's performers.) And if you've spent any time in the Metro bus tunnel, you know that it almost(?) never contains performers.*
Anyway, it got me wondering whether performers will be allowed at light rail stations. According to Sound Transit spokesperson Bruce Gray, "On the platforms, no. But there will be plaza areas around all of our stations...where people can park a bike, drop people off, and they can perform there" as long as the performance doesn't consist of political campaigning or harassing people, etc. Asked if they'd need a permit, Gray laughed. "Oh, no, he said.
As for other station amenities like newsstands, "We don't plan on having those in our plazas right now. The stations are going to be around areas that will provide ample opportunity for anyone who wants to pick up a paper or a cup of coffee." (But the Tukwila station, for example, isn't looking too promising in that respect.) Gray said he'd check on whether permits will be available to those who do want to set up shop.
Either way, here's hoping that when the plazas open, we can score ourselves some of this action:
* Update: Metro's Linda Thielke says that performers are welcome in the mezzanines and plazas of the bus tunnel stations. They're not allowed on the platforms for safety reasons, and groups of more than four that want to perform on a mezzanine must get an approval letter from Metro to avoid "battle of the bands" situations. (Sadly, that includes A Moment in Time, who should be allowed to perform anywhere without approval.) The letters are handed out on a first come, first served basis. She also adds that there are regular performers at the 3rd and Pine entrance to the Westlake station.