Rainier/Grady Junction TOD Subarea Plan

Contact Information
Paul Hintz
Community and Economic Development
1055 Grady Way
Renton, WA 98057

The Rainier/Grady Junction TOD Subarea Plan provides a vision and strategies to guide future growth and achieve a holistic, people-oriented neighborhood around Sound Transit's expanded bus rapid transit (BRT) line and transit center at the corner of Rainier Ave S and S Grady Way.

The City of Renton contracted MAKERS Architecture and Urban Design to facilitate a planning process to prepare for anticipated new development surrounding the planned transit center. The end result was a subarea plan to guide future development and public investment in the area. The strategies in the plan aim to facilitate mixed-use development, maximize multimodal transportation options, improve pedestrian connectivity, and integrate the subarea with adjacent areas.

The new transit center and bus rapid transit service are scheduled to open and be operational in 2026. For project updates please visit Stride S1 Line.

Light Rail Transit Alignment Advisory Committee

The Light Rail Transit (LRT) Alignment Advisory Committee met On June 9 for a preliminary and high-level review and discussion of LRT options.

As an extension of our Rainier/Grady Junction Subarea planning process, we’ve contracted Perteet Engineering to develop conceptual LRT alignments and station locations in Renton for future consideration upon available funding. This work will build on the 2005 White Paper developed by Parametrix and Parsons Brinkerhoff with updated key assumptions, such as the presence and opportunity created by the current light rail spine and station located in Tukwila.

To date, we’ve held several work sessions with City staff and transit agency partners to create a decision matrix, determine potential alignments and station locations, and prioritized two options for consideration. The next phase of this work includes the formation of a one-time Advisory Committee comprised of elected officials and public transportation/transit agency professionals. At the Advisory Committee meeting the group will discuss the pros and cons of the two prioritized alignments/station locations and recommend either one or both options be selected for presentation to the full Renton City Council.

On March 18, 2021 the City and Perteet Engineering held a workshop with outside agency representatives from Tukwila, Sound Transit, and WSDOT to discuss future LRT expansions into Renton. This workshop focused on identifying preferred LRT station locations from the options developed at Workshop #1 on March 1, 2021 via a scoring exercise to evaluate specific criteria.

Developer Forum

The City hosted three developer forums to facilitate a discussion between the City and local and regional developers familiar with Renton and with experience in transit oriented development projects. The developer forums were intended to attract new investment and development into the City but also learn from the experiences of those doing this critical work, including barriers to development, opportunities and challenges. The forums were held Jan. 25, Jan. 26, and Feb. 3.


What is a Subarea Plan?

A subarea plan is a strategy, based on a community’s vision for an area, intended to make effective use of public and private investments to further that vision. Subarea plans are detailed plans for a smaller geographic area within a larger community and are used to recognize and/or create unique districts and neighborhoods within an already defined or planned area. The Rainier/Grady Junction is a subarea of what is designated by the City as the City Center Community Planning Area.

Why Plan Now?

The relocation of the Renton transit center and new BRT service are significant public investments. Studies show transit systems function best when they are well-integrated with and supported by people and commerce vis-à-vis adjacent residences and businesses.

Therefore, it’s important to craft local land use and development regulations that facilitate new transit-oriented development (TOD) to meet the community’s vision and to benefit from a thoroughly planned and well-designed environment.

Explaining TOD

Transit-oriented development (TOD) refers to high-density, mixed-use development oriented around a transit station, where the development surrounding the station supports multi-modal movement (think: cars, busses, light rail, cyclists, pedestrians, etc.).

TOD supports a complementary mix of uses (residential, commercial, office) in a pedestrian-friendly environment. In other words, enabling safe and convenient travel between the transit station and final destination point(s) – retail, entertainment, employment, community services, and so on.

Benefits of TOD

Successful TOD creates a reciprocal relationship between transit and development so that each supports and strengthens the other. 

There are many benefits to TOD:

  • Reduced traffic congestion – Increased transit ridership cuts down on single-occupancy vehicle travel, thus fewer cars on the road and less traffic.

  • Health and wellness – Encourages a healthier lifestyle; more walking and less driving.

  • Fiscally conservative – Lessens burden on municipalities to provide public infrastructure and services.

  • Convenience and choice – Creates opportunity to live, work, shop, and play in the same area.

  • Business friendly – Generates foot traffic and customers for local businesses.  

  • Connectivity and access – Greater connectivity to regional destinations and amenities; jobs, entertainment, and services.

Visualize It

  • High frequency bus service running every 10 to 15 minutes, connecting you to other regional destinations for work and entertainment.

  • Ending your daily commute, deboarding your bus at the transit center and running all of your essential errands (pharmacy and dry cleaning pickup, a few items at the grocery store, and a birthday gift for your mother-in-law) without getting in your car.

  • Less congestion and cleaner air.

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