Problem with concrete track supports now plagues East Link light rail project

Written by Bill Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
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Workers are now pulling track on the I-90 floating bridge.

Damage to concrete track supports on the I-90 floating bridge deck in the state of Washington has inserted another delay in Sound Transit’s East Link light rail project.

Inspections conducted on the bridge in March noted there were three concrete track supports where material had dissolved. A total of 500 out of 7,800 track supports were looked at.

Engineer consultants have been hired to take a closer look, and samples of the damaged material were sent to a laboratory to determine the cause. The executive project director believes twisting forces knocked away some of the material during installation and calibration of steel rail fastening parts on the tops of concrete supports.

Sound Transit’s System Expansion Committee has been notified of the flaw, and the cost to remedy the situation has not been revealed.

This is another delay in a long line of delays for the East Link light rail project. Officials have blamed COVID, the concrete workers strike, construction issues, and light-rail operator training for prior schedule backups. The line was supposed to open in the summer of 2023, but that date has been pushed back.

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