On April 8, Sound Transit announced that the concrete delivery strike impacting projects across King County will come to an end following the Teamsters’ unconditional offer to return to work while negotiations continue.
“This is great news for resuming work on the largest transit expansion program in the nation,” said Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff. “With months of backlogged concrete deliveries across the region, we all must now work together to dig ourselves out of a deep hole.”
With backlogged demand expected to continue impacting deliveries, Sound Transit says the agency will continue to assess schedule impacts that the months of project delays, combined with COVID-19 and other impacts, will have on the opening dates of major light rail extensions.
The strike has impacted four major light rail extensions in King and Snohomish counties that under original schedules were expected to add 34 miles to the regional light rail system by the end of 2024.
The four projects include the 14-mile extension of Link to Mercer Island, Bellevue and Redmond’s Overlake area; the 8.5-mile extension to Shoreline, Mountlake Terrace and Lynnwood; the 7.8-mile extension to Kent and Federal Way; and the 3.4-mile extension to downtown Redmond.
Sound Transit says the agency will do its best to minimize the degree to which the strike and other factors will delay the openings.
“While we cannot erase these delays, we will work to minimize their impact to the greatest degree possible and get these transformative projects open for service to our residents,” said Sound Transit Executive Director of Design, Engineering and Construction Management Ron Lewis.
Sound Transit says it is critical to avoid any future disruptions to concrete deliveries. To date, the strike has resulted in more than 4,300 missed deliveries – enough concrete trucks to stretch 29 miles bumper to bumper.
Sound Transit claims inability to move projects forward also caused the agency’s contractors to lay off approximately 200 people.