King County Metro tells CHS that a new bus stop for routes 43 and 8 will be in place by the weekend:
SDOT has approved Metro’s request for a new bus stop eastbound on Olive Way on the far side of Harvard Ave E. It replaces the bus stop that was closed eastbound at John & Broadway.
The new stop should be in service beginning this Saturday morning, March 13.
Stops removed because of light rail construction and an SDOT decision to make for a more efficient transit route had created a long stretch with no service near the Hill’s main Broadway artery. CHS commenters complained about the lack of communication and coordination between the city and the county that lead to the situation while Metro assured us they were working on a solution.
With massive infrastructure projects underway on the Hill, the likelihood of poor coordination between government agencies is likely increasing. Given these details shared by a CHS commenter who says he is a Metro driver, this situation seems to be a classic case:
Don’t Blame the Drivers
I drove the 43 earlier this week and found out about these stop closures the same way that many passengers found out – by seeing that the stops had been removed and reading the laminated temporary stop closure signs put up. Normally when there’s a stop closure (short or long term), there is a bulletin put up at the base on a board that all drivers review before heading out on their runs. I have seen no bulletins on these stop closures, and have been as in the dark as passengers as to the reason for them, location of temporary stops (if any), etc.
The closure at Broadway and John is especially painful for thsoe with mobility issues as the next stop in either direction is almost 2 blocks away from Broadway. These “mercy stops” (see image on this article) are great – but can create problems for drivers for “breaking the rules” as well as confusing customers about expectations if they get a different driver unwilling to make such a stop.
Regardless of how it handled the situation, Metro acted relatively quickly to address the situation once it surfaced. It’s almost enough for you to believe in the power of community and the new local media. Meanwhile, over in the Central District, they just got a bank to clean up its derelict empty lot. But let’s keep a level head, shall we.