Seattle Sound Transit’s newest light rail facility earned Leadership Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council for its use of sustainable practices in the design and construction of the Angle Lake Station, which opened in the city of SeaTac last fall. LEED Certification provides independent verification of a building’s sustainable design and is the most widely used sustainability rating system in the world.
“The Angle Lake Station exemplifies the creative ways in which transit facilities can function as sustainable resources in their communities,” said Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff. “Achieving LEED Gold status for our newest Link station is a testament to Sound Transit's commitment to use taxpayer dollars to design and build facilities that contribute to the health of our environment here in the Puget Sound region.”
Using the “Environment in Motion” theme, contractors who designed and built the transit facility incorporated several environmentally sustainable features in the station. A 60-panel, 14-kilowatt solar array on the platform canopy provides up to 18,000 kilowatt hours of power per year to the station. When not in use, escalators from the platform to a plaza area slow to a reduced speed to conserve energy. A pedestrian walkway covered by a 50-kilowatt solar array that also provides weather protection leads to a garage enfolded in a blue, wave-like façade of anodized aluminum that requires little maintenance. Four charging stations for electric vehicles are housed in the garage, and storage for 52 bicycles is available on site.
Station construction also incorporated regionally produced and recycled materials. Particular attention was paid to selecting materials that do not contain toxic chemicals, such as rock wool and cellular glass insulations. The station predominately uses LED lighting to reduce energy use.
Public art also reflects an environment in motion. Artist Laura Haddad’s “Cloud” sculpture, made of 6,000 eco-resin disks that glimmer with variations in sunlight and wind, hangs above the train platform as a prominent visual element of the station. The artwork illuminates in changing colors at night. Above the grand open staircase leading from the plaza to the garage, artist Jill Anholt’s “Immerse” sculpture appears to hang weightlessly in three delicate arcs that transfer and filter light into a parking area below. Unobstructed views of Puget Sound and the mountains from the station platform offer some of the best views along the Link light rail line.
The elevated station, which includes a guideway, garage and pedestrian plaza, was the first design-build project completed by Sound Transit. The team included PCL Civil Constructors Inc. with HDR Inc. and VIA Architecture to design and construct the aerial station and guideway; joint venture Harbor Pacific Graham, along with Berger ABAM and Brooks + Scarpa, to design and build the plaza and garage. WSP USA provided project management, and Huitt Zollers provided pre-design and design services. Johansen Excavating Inc. was awarded the public bid to construct roadway improvements.
Sound Transit will pursue LEED Silver status for its future Operations and Maintenance Facility on the Eastside, and plans to pursue LEED certification for applicable stations and facilities that will serve future light rail extensions to West Seattle, Ballard and other cities.