Soil sample drilling continues for North Link Light Rail

Earlier this week, whilst driving east on Ravenna Blvd, I happened upon the following scene in the grassy median (at Ravenna Blvd and 12th Ave NE):


A few tweets and emails later, I get the scoop about the digging from Bruce Gray, who does media relations for Sound Transit:

Yes, that work is part of our advance geotechnical work for the North Link project to extend light rail from UW to Northgate.

The crew you saw, or are seeing, on Ravenna near 12th are taking soil samples to give us an idea of the type of materials we will encounter during tunneling for that extension. This is all part of the final design work for the alignment. We take soil samples along the entire alignment to get something akin to an underground profile of conditions the tunnel boring machines could encounter. The line is scheduled to open in 2021.

Bruce was also kind enough to reply in an earlier North Link Light Rail post to a commenter regarding the proposed names of the stations. (You can read his reply here.)