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Sound Transit and government officials yesterday marked the opening of the new commuter-rail station in Tukwila, Wash.The regional transit hub replaces a temporary structure and serves 10 round-trip Sounder south line trains each weekday and four daily Amtrak Cascade round trips. The station also offers expanded bus facilities that provide access to Sea-Tac Airport, the Tukwila International Boulevard Link light-rail station and other destinations.The $46 million station features two 600-foot platforms, two new passenger shelters, improvements to the underpass connecting the platforms, a plaza, improved walkways and lighting, and storm water facilities to help manage runoff, Sound Transit officials said in a press release."Expanding our rail system is an important step toward building a strong foundation for long-term economic growth that will help families and businesses throughout Washington state," said U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) in a prepared statement. "This station will continue to link communities throughout the region, support local businesses and help commuters every day."The project was partly funded with $13.5 million in federal funding, including $4.6 million in Federal Transit Administration (FTA) American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, $1.5 million in FTA Fixed Guideway funds and $7.4 million in high-speed rail grants.Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County yesterday opened a new station in downtown Houston on the agency's METRORail Red Line. The station will provide a transfer point for riders when the new East End/Green and Southeast/Purple lines open in April, METRO officials said in a press release.
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