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Audit Initiated of the 14-Mile Seattle Central Link Light Rail Project

File Attachment

In response to a request from Rep. Hal Rogers, Chairman of the House Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, we initiated an audit of the 14-Mile Seattle Central Link Light Rail Project. The audit objectives are to: (1) determine if Sound Transit and FTA have adequately addressed the concerns and recommendations made in our April 2001 report, and (2) review: the estimated costs and assess associated risks to the estimate; proposed funding, impacts on other regional transportation programs, and potential funding risks; the proposed schedule and any associated risks; safety and other issues related to running buses and trains in a downtown bus tunnel; and FTA’s determination that the project constitutes a stand-alone system, not requiring additional segments.

In an April 2001 report to the Secretary, we presented findings on issues identified during our initial audit of the Seattle Central Link Light Rail Project. Based on that audit and significant cost and schedule changes, the Secretary decided to hold up the project’s funding until some financial and timing issues were resolved and Congress had reviewed a revised grant agreement.