The historic Seattle-King Street Station has been undergoing construction for years, mainly to remove the various 'modernizations' that have plagued the historic depot building and restore its grand old ceiling in particular. The stop is a terminus for four daily Amtrak Cascades trains: three southbound to Portland, two continuing to Eugene, plus one daily northbound to Vancouver, BC and is a service (20 to 30 minute) stop on its one through train a day that runs between Portland and Vancouver, BC. Everyday the Coast Starlight leaving southbound to LA and the Empire Builder that leaves to run northbound leave from the station.
Inside the main historic, if a mess right now, depot are Quik-Trak machines, the Amtrak ticket office, a separate baggage counter and area, pay phones, restrooms and not much else because of the stations ongoing and time consuming rehabilitation. There not even concessions like a newsstand at least that most downtown railway stations have. Passengers boarding trains go through procedures a bit unique to Amtrak Cascades: first by lining up in the station at a check-in desk (there are separate ones for Business Class) staffed by their conductors, getting their ticket lifted in return for a boarding pass that has a car number and seat assignment on it (although as long as passengers don't change cars the actual assigned seat numbers are not enforced, once the train is in motion, passengers boarding at intermediate points just get assigned a car). Only then can passengers proceed to board their train. Amtrak uses four tracks with two platforms at the station. Tracks 5 and 6 are stub-ended and only begin just south of the depot and share an island platform. Track 4 is also stub-ended south and shares an island platform with track 3. This track continues north and through the station and is the only track ever used for northbound Amtrak departures and arrivals (the two Vancouver, BC Cascades trains and the Empire Builder). The platform for track 3 continues directly outside of the depot and trains often stop right outside.
Tracks 1 and 2 are next and share an island platform; their concrete crossing to the front of the depot is no longer in use regular use. These are home to Sounder's peak hour almost entirely weekday peak-direction only Commuter Rail trips. Track 1 is used for the 4 PM Peak trips north to Everett, while Track 2 is for the seven PM Peak and two reverse-peak AM trips south to Tacoma (and soon to be extended to Lakewood). Both of these tracks are through-tracks that can go north or south. Access to this platform at its northern end is via a staircase up to glass entrance on the north side of Jackson Street (that is on a bridge across the railroad tracks). At the southern end are two staircases and elevator up to a glass overpass that begins along the bridge of 4th Avenue South parallel to the station at the foot of Weller Street and continues across to a wide staircase and elevator beyond the station platforms near Third Street, where a parking lot (and some EV-Vehicle charging spaces) separates it from the depot. TVMs along the platform provide ticketing services and a single mini-high level platform serves both tracks.
Beyond the platforms are two through tracks that BNSF freight trains frequently pass trough the station on. All three platforms have modern high steel and glass canopies and the signature teal signage of Sound Transit for position letters and track numbers. Just south of the station beyond the two Seattle Stadiums is the Seattle Coach Yard where the trains passing through Settle are maintained.
Grand Rededication on April 24, 2013: The restored King Street Station waiting room was rededicated, with the original white terra cotta ceilings and features along the walls restored along with the mosaics (including shades of green) in the floors. The columns and lower walls are marble. The ticket office has been relocated to the north wall, with a narrow baggage room (and baggage belt) just next to it. Signage is historic looking gold letters. This has made the waiting room bigger. It now feels extremely grand with a mixture of a few wooden benches and more modern seating. The two desks where tickets are checked for coach passengers and northbound business class passengers (southbound business class passengers check-in at the ticket office) are along one wall. The opening of a coffee bar or cafe for minimal food service still hasn't happened but is in the work.
Last Updated: 9 December, 2011