You are on page 1of 2
FACT SHEET THE PROPOSED PRAIRIE LINE TRAIL AGREEMENT ‘The Prairie Line railroad right-of-way, owned by the BNSF Railway, traverses the heart and soul of downtown Tacoma. Given its unique and strategic location, the Prairie Line right-of-way provides a tremendous opportunity to further enhance the quality of life for ‘Tacomans by enabling a non-motorized trail link between the esplanade on the Thea Foss Waterway, the University of Washington-Tacoma, downtown amenities, and a future opportunity to tie into the Water Ditch Trail along South Tacoma Way. Once fully funded and constructed, this Trail will be a source of enjoyment and improved mobility for years to come. Toward securing this right-of-way, the City has reached a proposed ‘win-win’ agreement with the BNSF that provides each party with tremendous value. This agreement along with another separate, paraliel agreement on property in South ‘Tacoma is being proposed for City Council and Public Utility Board consideration in May and June. Under the proposed Prairie Line Agreement: * BNSF will convey to the City, at no charge, a strip of property, generally 20 feet wide, located within the Prairie Line right-of-way (map attached), generally between S. 15" St. and (just north of) S. 27" St. ° BNSF will convey to the City, at no charge, an additional strip of land connecting the trail property to the City's Public Works Storage lot between S. 23” and S. 25" St. ‘* The City will permanently close the crossing of BNSF’s right of way on “A” Street JE. 22” Street at Dock Street. ¢ BNSF will authorize expansion of an existing bridge structure at S. 415" St. and will authorize an air space easement for a future pedestrian overpass in a mutually agreed location between “A” and “D" Streets. * BNSF and the City agree to explore potential future exchanges of BNSF remnant properties to be used by the City for streetscaping and other park-like amenities in the vicinity of 17" St/Hood Ave. and Pacific Ave. + BNSF will participate in discussions with the City and the Washington State Department of Transportation on potential future donation of easement rights for the purpose of constructing slip ramps for SR 509 in the vicinity of "D" Street. Contingencies of note in the proposed agreement include: H:Amregan\BNSF Fact Sheet-Prairie Line Project Page 1 May 13, 2008 * The BNSF obligation to convey its interest in the Prairie Line Property to the City is subject to BNSF obtaining final approval from the U.S. Surface Transportation Board (“STB”) to cease rail operations and abandon and convey the Prairie Line Property. «In the unlikely event that the STB does not grant such approval, BNSF will work diligently with the City to develop an alternative cost-effective trail alignment and will provide that property to the City at no charge. * "A" St. will not be closed until the new “D" Street overpass project (that provides access to Dock Street) has been open and operating for 90 days. At that time, the “A” St. crossing will be closed using temporary barriers, until such time that the STB has approved Prairie Line abandonment or (if the STB denies the request to abandon) that the City and BNSF have agreed upon an alternative trail routing. Following either outcome, the “A” St. Crossing closure will be made permanent. © BNSF shall have closed the sale of its South Tacoma property which is the subject of the separate, parallel agreement mentioned above. If the City Council and the Public Utility Board approve the proposed agreements, then more definitive agreements would be developed, signed, and implemented to enable the transactions noted above. H:\mregan\BNSF Fact Sheet-Prairie Line Project Page 2 May 13, 2008