Mobility & Transportation

The U District’s public infrastructure is getting a major overhaul, including a new Link Light Rail station, redesigned streetscapes, and new bus routes. Below is more information about city-led development projects in the U District.


Street level drawing of U District Light Rail station

University District Station at street level. (Sound Transit / LMN Architects / Swift Company)

Link Light Rail U District Station

The new Link Light Rail Station located on Brooklyn Avenue Northeast between Northeast 45th and Northeast 43rd streets, serves University Way NE retail and businesses, nearby residents and the west side of the UW campus. Two entrances along Brooklyn Avenue Northeast take passengers to the platform, about 80 feet below ground. The station is slated to open in Fall 2021 and will eventually bring up to 12,000 new riders a day to the heart of the U District and its local businesses. The U District Partnership is closely tracking station construction developments, and will work with related public agencies on the opening of the station.

Learn more about Sound Transit’s station design and plans here.


NE 43rd Street Improvement Project

In conjunction with the opening of the U District Light Rail station, the Seattle Department of Transportation is making streetscape and pedestrian improvements on NE 43rd Street between Brooklyn Ave NE and 15th Ave NE. The NE 43rd Street Improvement Project intends to create safe access to the new U District Light Rail station for all modes of travel, including walking, biking, or taking transit to the station. SDOT also hopes the improvements will benefit the nearby businesses, including the University Bookstore, US Postal Office, a large church, multiple retail shops and restaurants. In 2019, the U District Partnership organized and managed a NE 43rd Street Task Force to convene public agencies and local businesses around the proposed streetscape changes. The Partnership will remain committed to ensuring that local businesses, property owners, and residents are aware of project updates and opportunities to provide feedback.

Learn more about the NE 43rd Street Improvement Project here.


Metro Route 44 RapidRide Improvements

Seattle Department of Transportation and King County Metro are exploring concepts for speed and reliability improvements for Metro Route 44, which runs from the Ballard Locks to the University of Washington Station. In 2019, the agencies began reviewing corridor needs and identifying community priorities. Improvements along the Route 44 line may include bus lanes, street lane changes, street signal changes, and intersection improvements. Work is scheduled to be complete in 2023. The U District Partnership is providing public comment on proposed designs, and will work to convene community stakeholders, SDOT, Metro, and other agencies to ensure that community voice is heard.

For more information, visit Seattle Department of Transportation project website here.


King County Metro Northlink Connections Mobility Project

In conjunction with the opening of the new Link Light Rail stations from the U District to Northgate, King County Metro is making changes to the bus transit network in North King County, including the U District. Other goals of the project include introducing new mobility to connect people to light rail, respond to changing transportation needs, and improve mobility and access for historically underserved populations. The work is scheduled to be completed in fall 2021. The U District Partnership is serving on the project’s Partner Review Board, which meets quarterly to learn about proposed network changes. Our goal is to update the U District community on information learned from Metro and partners in the Partner Review Meetings.

Learn more about the Metro Northlink Connections project here.