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Metro’s proposed changes — What’s being planned for Capitol Hill routes

King County Metro has rolled out a massive set of service revisions being proposed for next fall. Before the proposals become real-life cuts, changes and frequency modifications, Metro wants your feedback. Seattle Transit Blog’s Bruce Nourish writes that the proposals are good news:

The proposed service changes would deliver almost everything I’d hoped to see in terms of making routes more direct, more frequent, less duplicative, and more focused on moving people between big ridership centers, rather than just a mostly-radial network from downtown.

We asked Nourish to help us sort through the many proposals to highlight changes to Metro service around Capitol Hill. Nourish tells us that Metro won’t be making more changes related to the start of the First Hill streetcar’s service in 2013 but that we should also be prepared for a significant overhaul to our Metro service when U-link light rail begins carrying passengers in 2016. In the meantime, here is his list of what to look for in the 2012 proposals:

Important things for the Hill for this restructure:

* Route 11 gets a major boost in weekday midday frequency from 30 to 15 minutes, while nights and weekends remain at 30.


* Route 14N (the part of the 14 north of where it turns on Pike) is split off from the 14S and will cease service around 7 PM on all days; frequency will drop to 45 minutes on the weekends and weekday midday, staying at its current rush hour frequency.

* Routes 10, 11 and 14N will now terminate on 2nd Ave & Pine/Pike downtown, exactly like the 43 does now. This means you’ll have to walk/transfer to get to the south parts of downtown and other places that those routes previously went to (Colman Dock, West Seattle, Jackson St/Mount Baker), but will make these buses much more reliable.

* Route 12 will now loop around at Colman Dock, requiring a walk/transfer to get to the north end of downtown. Its frequency will not change, but see the next point.

* Route 2’s northern segment, from the point where it now turns from Seneca to 3rd Ave will be deleted; instead, it will be routed down Madison/Marion just like the 12 (It’s probably worth showing the map below, to help readers understand this). The 2 will maintain its current frequency, but will be staggered to provide very frequent service from Colman Dock to the three-way intersection of 12th Ave, Union and Madison: 7.5 minutes during the day Mon-Sat and 15 minutes on evenings/Sundays. This is a very high level of service, some of the best in the city.

* Routes 9X, 43, 48, 49, and 60 remain unchanged on Capitol Hill, but see the next two points.

* Route 48X is replaced with more trips on the 48N, but the 48X operates only from Crown Hill to the U-District, so that shouldn’t affect riders on the south part of the route.

* Route 60 is unchanged in Capitol Hill. Way to the south, it will stop serving the VA Hospital on Beacon Hill and be extended slightly in White Center, moving its terminus to Westwood Village.

 

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what_now
11 years ago

Darn it. It’s so nice to be able to take the 2 to/from the Seattle Center, especially after shows so I don’t have to wait at 3rd & Pike at 11 pm.

Ryan in the sky
11 years ago

The 8 doesn’t help you out? Could you at least wait at Broadway and John for a 49?

Ryan in the sky
11 years ago

Unless of course you live up Union. Silly of me. Duh.

motab
11 years ago

When they split up the 7 into the 7 and the 49, the rationale was to keep buses on schedule. Yet I often see two and sometimes three 49s in a row leaving downtown (where the route starts). It has made no difference in the schedule, but HAS been a huge inconvenience for people living on Capitol Hill who work or want to get anywhere south of Pine St. It means getting off the 49 then taking another bus south.

Now they are doing the same thing to the 10/12, the 14, and the 2. This is crazy! I, for example, live in Madrona (the poor side) and take the 2 to get to work in Belltown or to go the the Seattle Center/Queen Ann. Now this means waiting downtown to catch another bus. There are a lot of commuters on my bus that ride the 2 further than Seneca.

Adding another 15-20 minutes to my commute is not earth-shattering, but why make riding the bus more difficult and annoying?

JimS.
11 years ago

The 8 might still work, because it will take you out to Union and MLK. Just depends on where you live wither that works or not.

JimS.
11 years ago

It’s not neccesarily a great solution…but they seem to be suggesting you’d instead take a #3 which turns into a #13 after downtown and continues. From Madrona that would mean boarding the #3 at Union & 34th. You have my sympathies, I’m not too fond of the #3 from Madrona to downtown.

Maggie
11 years ago

I take the 14 “N” almost every day and am bummed that the route is being split and especially bummed that it is going to terminate around 7. It’s my safe way home after a late night at the office.

P
P
11 years ago

Why would they do that to the 2?? I ride it to queen anne all the time because it’s the one bus that works for me to get there and i don’t have to walk a long distance from home like i would for the 8. it’s always packed into queen anne, so yeah, this doesn’t make a ton of sense to me.

P
P
11 years ago

Another big issue is that the 8 goes on Denny, which can make it take much much longer than the 2 at certain times of day.

JimS.
11 years ago

You might want to check out this very detailed blog post about the 2.

http://seattletransitblog.com/2011/10/17/why-current-queen-a

I could be misunderstanding the current proposal (there’s an incredible lot of info flying around here); I’m not even clear that this route 2X now exists…but if it already does, I think it still will.

NV
NV
11 years ago

I’m sorry to hear that the 60 will no longer serve the VA hospital on Beacon Hill. There’s a sizable community of veterans on Capitol Hill who use Metro to get to and from the hospital, many of them elderly and/or disabled.

Right now, the 60 takes a half an hour from in front of QFC to the hospital and drops them right at the main entrance. The alternatives will require switching buses downtown and double the length of the trip, making a doctor’s appointment a two-hour journey round trip.

I would encourage those riders to start checking into qualifying Access services now as an alternative.

Kathryn
11 years ago

Some of these changes are just plain ridiculous and stupid. Cutting service to the VA Hospital. As is stated will still go to West Seattle? WHY cut a direct route to such a major medical center? I don’t get it. And cutting buses like the 10/12, 2, etc. As some posters have stated, their going through from one place to another is what makes them such good, convenient routes! And cutting the Capitol Hill end of the #14–why? I don’t get some of these “service changes.” Metro, get real: instead of having car-driving “planners” design these changes, have real riders advise you. Then you’ll know the practice, not just the theory of service and ridership planning.

motab
11 years ago

JimS, in my case I live down the hill closer to MLK and several blocks north of Union where the #2 runs. I’d either have to hike up the hill to catch the #3 at its terminus, or walk clear down to Cherry. The other option is to walk up to Madison and catch the #11. But that’s no better than the #2 if they terminate it downtown.

wayoutwest
11 years ago

I found this through the metro blog, and I think this is the survey mentioned.

http://www.surveymk.com/s/9F7BKN5

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

Hi all,

A number of you have brought up important points that I’d like to respond to.

* Why is Metro splitting so many routes? The answer has to do with reliability. Currently, buses frequently turn onto and off of 3rd Ave at many different points. As part of its goal to make the network more efficient, Metro is working on turning 3rd Ave into a linear transit mall. This means that there will be no buses which turn onto or off of 3rd Ave between Stewart and Yesler.

By making this change, Metro is able to eliminate a major source of delays on every route which uses or crosses 3rd. Thus, as a result, every route which goes through downtown will become more reliable.

* A number of you have commented that splitting the 2/10/11/12 will add 15 minutes to your commute. Part of the goal of these changes is to make transferring significantly easier. This is done by increasing frequency on core routes, and by streamlining routing to improve reliability. For example, during peak, there will be buses from downtown to Seattle Center approximately every 5 minutes. Thus, while you will have to switch to a different bus, on average it shouldn’t involve more than a 2-3 minute wait — and because buses will experience fewer delays through downtown, your total trip time might not change at all.

Also, while the current system is useful for people making particular trips, it doesn’t work well for other origin-destination pairs. For example, what if I want to go from Madison/Boren to Ballard? Or from Trader Joe’s to Seattle Center? The proposed changes will make these trips substantially easier.

* The 14N is being cut because Metro has limited resources, and it’s hard to justify running an infrequent route that’s so close to the 43 and the 49. It’s definitely not my favorite change, but any alternative — such as reducing frequency on the main Capitol Hill/First Hill routes (10, 12, 43, 49) — would be worse.

* It’s misleading to describe the 60 as a “direct” route to the VA Hospital. In fact, serving the VA represents a massive diversion. Martin Duke of STB estimated that it costs about $360,000 a year to have the 39 and 60 serve the VA directly. That’s money that can’t be spent on other routes, like the 2/12, which serve just as many elderly/disabled hospital users (if not more). In contrast, the 36 — one of Metro’s most frequent routes — has an existing stop that is steps away from the hospital, and that is not going to change. The 36 and 60 connect at various points, so it would still be easy (if not quite as easy as today) to get from Capitol Hill to the hospital.

white knight for metro
11 years ago

“* A number of you have commented that splitting the 2/10/11/12 will add 15 minutes to your commute. Part of the goal of these changes is to make transferring significantly easier. This is done by increasing frequency on core routes, and by streamlining routing to improve reliability. For example, during peak, there will be buses from downtown to Seattle Center approximately every 5 minutes. Thus, while you will have to switch to a different bus, on average it shouldn’t involve more than a 2-3 minute wait — and because buses will experience fewer delays through downtown, your total trip time might not change at all.”

Look junior. I’ve lived on the Hill 20 years. We used to have 7’s, 9s, 10s, 11s, 12s and 14s all that ran every 10-12 minutes during rush hour. Your idiot moves here don’t give us something we didn’t already used to have. You’ve been reducing service to the Hill during the same time the city has been adding density. But with the catch now of you must transfer downtown. Every study of transit service I’ve ever read says the minute you require a transfer, it is an expected 10-12 minute wait, minimum. You did not say you’d be enforcing Transfer sync route points, something else the pre-county / pre government Metro used to do. Not a lot of you newcomers will know this, but Metro used to be a private/public company, not unlike City Light. It once used to give great service. Then some bureaucrats named Ron Sims and Gary Locke got involved in the mid 1990s and stuck Seattle Metro under this abomination of a joke called Sound Transit. Ever since, core city routes have been sacrificed as part of those silly budgetary formulas they use, 20/60/20 or something, that says the number of MILES dictates how budget is spent, not the number of riders. Translation, suburbia gets the nice new busses and the increased service, while core downtown gets cut.

Metro has been spitting in the face of Hill residents for over 10 years now. The proposed split of the 14 and other routes is the same dumb thing that they did with the 7/49 split. For anyone on the hill who works DOWNTOWN SOUTH OF PIKE STREET the changes are a giant step backwards in service and personal safety and comfort. Instead of a non stop route from home to near work down 3rd, I will now get to stand around at 3rd and Pike, no risk to personal safety there at ALL, in the rain, in the crowd, needing to leave my home neighborhood bus and needing now to board some new southend bus, with the usual crowd that hovers around 3rd and union.

The gobbledygook and nonsense Metro puts out now is lip service and lies. Metro gives no care towards Hill residents, it just cuts service or adds inconvenience in the form of shorter routes and required transfers to get anywhere.

Metro sucks because it has ruined what used to be a great transit service. Go back over 20 yrs ago, Metro used to win all kinds of transit awards given out nationally. It never does now, I wonder why. Couldn’t possibly be because of crap service and bureaucratic crap masquerading as legitimate quality now could it?

One other thing
11 years ago

On paper, the 14 on Summit or Bellevue isn’t that far to Broadway. In reality, it is a 3-4 block steep hike. Not all of us is a spry 20 year old racing up the incline. If you chop the 14, you just forced me and a lot of other long term residents on Summit, Bellevue, Belmont etc to a daily hike up steep streets up to Broadway, where we will get to mingle with the crack addicts and homeless. Thanks. But of course modern Metro is run by suburban out of towners or U-W policy graduates, not actual real users of the core bus system. What else would we expect.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

one other thing,

I understand your concern about the hill climb. Suffice it to say, budget cuts are no fun for anyone. Many other neighborhood sections are losing transit service entirely. I encourage you to fill out the survey and express your opinion.

As far as your other comments go, I assume you don’t seriously expect Metro to run separate bus routes for people who meet your standard of acceptability.

JimS.
11 years ago

Wouldn’t the #8 take you right to Seattle Center, or the northern edge of Belltown?

wayoutwest
11 years ago

Correction:
http://metro.kingcounty.gov/have-a-say/get-in-the-know/proje

Yellow box to the right> Take Our Survey

If this survey will have any effect on these PROPOSED changes, it should be much more clearly marked.

JimS.
11 years ago

Aleks,
Does the 2X already exist? Or is that a proposed route that was discussed and not adopted?

motab
11 years ago

The closest the #8 gets to my work is about 8 or 9 blocks, while the #2 drops me off 1/2 block away. Trust me, I’ve looked at the alternatives. I’ll just have to deal with a transfer downtown.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

JimS, yes, the 2X exists — it’s an express variant of the 2, which is nonstop between downtown and where the 2 and 13 split.

wayoutwest
11 years ago

Aleks – you work for Metro? (sorry if I missed this in a post)

motab
11 years ago

The “reliability” excuse was used when the 7 was split into the 7 and the 49. Yet as I noted before, I often see two and somethings three 49s within a minute or two from each other downtown where they start the route. I have not noticed that the 49 is any more reliable than it was when it was the 7. The same goes for the 60 where it starts at the north end of Broadway. It is often 15 to 20 minutes late because it arrived late. Traffic is an issue as are the “mandatory” layovers, but splitting a route and forcing people to make multiple transfers is not going to solve the “reliability” issue.

what_now
11 years ago

Oh, I’m sure I’ll end up taking the 8 and then walking the nine blocks home, I’ve just been spoiled by the 2, which drops me off a block from home.

I understand the rationale (sort of), but it’s kind of a bummer for me personally, that’s all.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

White knight,

In the early 20th century, Seattle had dozens of streetcar lines. The severe degradation of transit service since then is well documented, and sad. But it’s too late to change that now.

It’s useful to look back at the past and say, “Let’s figure out how to do that again.” And in fact, when U-Link is complete, the 3-minute guaranteed trip from downtown to Broadway/John will be the best transit service the Hill has had for decades.

However, it’s not useful to say, “Everything that’s changed in the past 20 years should be undone”. The fact is that many things have changed since then, not the least of which is that the economy, combined with Washington State’s structural revenue issues, has made it nearly impossible to fund *any* services at an acceptable level.

As you’re probably aware, the council recently approved a $20 car tab to fund Metro for two years. Without this, Metro was planning on cutting 600,000 annual service hours, or about 17% of service, simply to stay solvent. These cuts would have included things like deleting the 14 and the 43 entirely.

Every neighborhood in the city thinks that Metro is picking on them. The truth is, we just can’t fund the network we used to have. But with the right changes — including things like focusing on core, frequent routes, and avoiding unnecessary turns — we can serve almost as many riders, but for much less money.

To see what happens if we don’t do this, just look at Snohomish County, which recently eliminated all Sunday service, and a good portion of weekday local service as well. Or Pierce county, which implemented an across-the-board 35% service cut. Imagine if Metro had to cut a third of all its routes. That’s what these changes are trying to avoid.

A few specific comments:

– 60/20/20 (and its counterpart 20/40/40) are subarea equity policies. The idea was that, for every $100 spent on added service, $20 would go to Seattle, $40 to East King, and $40 to South King. Conversely, for every $100 in service cuts, $60 would come from Seattle, and $20 each from the other two regions. This was a terrible policy, and thankfully, it’s been replaced by the new productivity-based service guidelines.

– I’m not sure what studies you’re referring to about transfers. Having lived in a city with frequent service, I can tell you that it’s all about how often the connecting services come. If you’re transferring between two subway lines that each come every 2 minutes, then a transfer takes you about 2 minutes. If you’re transferring between two bus lines that each come every half hour, then yes, it takes a long time. Metro is trying to bring us closer to the former. I know things aren’t as good as they were in 1990, but unless you have a time machine, I’m not sure what else they should do.

– I know that 3rd and Pike does not feel safe. That’s a problem. The solution is to figure out a way to make it safe. It’s a major transfer point for anyone going between North Seattle and Capitol Hill, and so even if you didn’t need to wait there, many other people do.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

wayoutwest: No, I do not work for Metro in any capacity, nor am I associated with them in any way. I’m simply a transit advocate, who relies on Metro for all of my transportation needs. I strongly believe that these changes (well, most of them) are improvements, and I’m hoping that I can help explain to people why they’re being made.

motab: The only perfectly reliable transit route is one that is completely separated from any other traffic, like Link will be once it reaches Capitol Hill. Everything else is necessarily imperfect. The hope in splitting these routes is not that it will instantly fix every problem, but that, on average, it will make trips more reliable.

The specific reason for splitting these routes is to turn 3rd Ave into a linear transit mall. Left and right turns on/off 3rd Ave are a major source o delays between Stewart and Yesler. By eliminating those turns, and by setting up traffic lights accordingly, Metro can significantly speed up routes travelling along that stretch.

Anyway, of all the places to require a transfer, 3rd Ave doesn’t seem so bad. A bus comes down 3rd Ave approximately once a minute. 43 riders already do this, as do riders of any Capitol Hill bus who want to head north, or riders of the 10 who want to go further south than Madison.

SJ
SJ
11 years ago

Thanks, Aleks, for all the info you are providing, and the positive attitude that you continue to have despite others tossing tomatoes at you

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

Glad I could help! My attitude is that the burden is on us (i.e. Metro and its supporters) to explain why this plan will improve things for riders. It’s certainly not obvious why many of these changes are improvements unless you’re familiar with details that aren’t mentioned in the proposal. So I can’t blame folks at all for not responding enthusiastically. :)

Brent
11 years ago

As a frequent rider of the 60, I welcome Metro enforcing its service guidelines to cut out low-use stops (like the VA) that add significant time to each run.

I’m not saying that patients should have to walk all the way from 15th Ave S to the front door. I’m just saying the big buses don’t belong slogging through the VA parking lot traffic jam, which ruins the route for many riders not going to the VA. There are no other hospitals in town for which buses pull off the street, and add ten minutes to the route to crawl through a parking lot and drop at the hospital’s front door.

The VA caters to SOVs, and has a staff of valets. Metro could provide a pair of accessible vans to the VA, and the VA’s valets could drive those vans out to the bus stop, for a lot less cost than running all the big buses through the parking lot.

The valeted vans could deliver the passengers to any of the front doors, not just the one near which the buses stop.

Some basic cleverness could improve the service for everyone, save taxpayer money, and make the travel time of the line about ten minutes faster each way.

I say Hallelujah to streamlining the 60!

Brent
11 years ago

I’m a real rider of the 60, and I approve of not sending the big buses through the VA parking lot any more. See above comments for better ways to provide better service.

A lot of bus riders have been clamoring for this service improvement for a long time.

Jack
11 years ago

I agree. The change to No. 2 is a very bad idea. After twenty years of taking the bus to Seattle Center from Madrona every workday, I’m getting back into my car.

What?!
11 years ago

So it’s fine to go to the VA hospital as long as it’s not your bus that’s full of VA Hospital-attending riders?

songstorm
11 years ago

Yes, thank you. It’s nice to have someone providing additional information and follow-up. I work in the Two Union Square building and live up on the north end of the Hill, so the 10 is my most convenient route, followed by the 43 and the 49. If the changes truly do speed up the buses & make them more reliable through the downtown rush hour, I’ll be a happy camper, although I do feel bad for those whose routes are being negatively affected.

Ian
Ian
11 years ago

Having gone to Metro’s website, and beating the bushes to find where this survey is, I have to say I’m rather disappointed by how it was set up. It asks if we were given enough time to fill it out in order to have an effect on things – how can we answer that without knowing how much effect it’ll have?

It asks what we like about the changes, and if there’s anything we don’t like, but doesn’t provide any space to actually *describe* our criticisms.

This survey is nothing more than a stacked deck to imbue these changes with an air of acceptance, with no real attempt to actually determine what transit riders want.

JimS.
11 years ago

Aleks,
Sorry to keep yammering on the 2X. But if I understand correctly, Metro’s announcement here says they’re not doing anything to the 2X? So during peak hours there will still be 2X buses that don’t turn around downtown, but continue express to Seattle Center and Queen Anne?

motab
11 years ago

So true! I also went to the survey and came away with the impression that it was nothing more than a way for Metro to say that they fulfilled their obligation to ask for feedback. I have never seen Metro/Sound Transit ever change their plans as a result of public feedback. (Aleks, as the defacto Metro rep here, correct me if I am wrong–with specific examples.) They make their decisions (based on who knows what–“eliminating right turns on Third solves all the problems”? Give me a break!), announce them, hold a few token public meetings to give the appearance of listening, then go right ahead and implement their original decisions.

I understand that these are tough times financially, and there is more an enough pain to go around. But it seems shortsighted on the part of our public transit to cut something that supports the goal of getting people out of cars and taking public transit. Continue making transit more difficult, and everyone will be back in their cars.

calhoun
11 years ago

For those 60 and over, Senior Services has a great transportation program for medical and dental appointments within all of King County. Volunteer drivers (I’m one of them) pick people up, stay with them while they are at their appointment, then take them home again…it’s a 1:1 service so very efficient….much more so than the Access vans.

There is a suggested donation of $6 per ride, but this is voluntary. Call 206-448-5740 for more information and to register.

Bruce Nourish
11 years ago

Yes, there is currently a route 2X that runs from Pioneer Square to West Queen Anne, with limited stops after Virginia. It is a diesel bus that runs straight out of Central Base to Pioneer Square, it does not come down from Madrona/First Hill on Seneca as most of the 2/13 local buses do now. This 2X will be unchanged under this restructure.

wayoutwest
11 years ago

I checked the Metro Blog to see if I could determine HOW the Metro survey results will be used.
Alek is answering questions on there too, so although he doesn’t work for Metro, he seems to have a deep knowledge of Metro and appears to be answering questions with authority on the reasoning behind changes.
So…
Alek – can you please tell us how Metro will be actually be using this survey and how long Metro will accept input?

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

Metro performed a similar restructure this October on the Eastside. In that case, Metro ended up deleting many routes (especially poorly-used peak-only ones), and rerouting many others.

Here’s the initial proposal: http://seattletransitblog.com/2010/10/22/metro-to-reorganize

And version 2: http://seattletransitblog.com/2011/01/14/metro-revises-easts

And version 3, which was ultimately adopted: http://seattletransitblog.com/2011/03/25/eastside-service-re

The changes between versions weren’t earth-shattering, but they were made based on real feedback from riders at public hearings.

Similarly, if you feel strongly about these changes, I urge you to go to a public meeting. Upcoming meetings near Capitol Hill include:

Nov 2 (Wed), 12pm: Downtown Seattle Public Meeting
Nov 10 (Thurs), 6:15: Uptown/QA Public Meeting

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

First of all, I once again have to insist that I am neither a representative of Metro, nor do I have any inside knowledge on why they are making these changes. I’ve just read many more of Metro’s public documents than I should. :)

Also, the Seattle Transit Blog (assuming that’s what you’re referring to) is also not affiliated with Metro in any way. The blog occasionally features guest posts from Metro officials and politicians, but the main contributors are private citizens who are interested in improving Seattle’s transit system for everyone.

I have absolutely no idea how Metro will use this survey. What I can say is that the most effective way to have your voice heard is to attend a public hearing. One person at a hearing can have the effect of a thousand people on an online survey. So if you feel strongly about these changes, then I urge you to attend an event in person.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

What?!,

You might not be aware just how circuitous the current routing is. The 60 actually takes an almost quarter-mile detour (each way) off of its main route. This represents about a 5-10 minute diversion for anyone not using this segment of the route.

In contrast, alternative plans would not require this detour for anyone. The 36 already passes very close to the hospital, with no diversions needed. And like Brent said, the VA could (and might) easily add a shuttle stop near the route of the 60 and/or the 36. This would provide front-door service to riders heading to/from the VA, but without delaying the majority of riders who are not heading there.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

motab,

I can promise you that no one who works for Metro wants to make using public transit more difficult. I know it might not always seem that way, but it’s true. :)

When the King County Council approved the extra $20 car tab, they effectively granted Metro a 2-year reprieve. The idea was that Metro would use this time to implement its newly-approved productivity guidelines.

By changing the 2, riders from First Hill/Madrona will no longer have a one-seat ride to Seattle Center/Queen Anne. But they will still easily be able to get to those destinations by transferring on 3rd Ave.

Changing the 2 (and the 10/11/12) will save a lot of money. I don’t know exactly how much, but the cumulative savings from streamlining 3rd Ave could easily be into the six digits.

In contrast, other options Metro could have chosen would be to cut down the span of service (i.e. stop running buses earlier at night or on weekends), or reduce frequency (i.e. buses come every 30 minutes instead of every 15). Those are hard cuts to make. After all, which would you prefer: having to transfer downtown to get to Seattle Center, or having no service to Madrona at all after 7pm?

For better or worse, we can no longer afford to maintain the status quo. By reorganizing the network to focus on connections between high-frequency lines, rather than a labyrinth of infrequent buses, Metro can save heaps of money, and at the same time improve service for most riders (and make it only a bit worse for the rest).

wayoutwest
11 years ago

I contacted King County Metro to try and find out how long they would accept responses to the survey. I was unable to find a directory on the website. The King County operator could only offer me the “Rants and Raves” number and a “Community Relations” number that was no longer in service. The METRO operator could also offer no contact information whatsoever and gave me the number for a recorded comment.
I’m willing to believe that some of this is due to budget cuts, but not having a directory either on the website or available when you call the office seems very strange.

JimS.
11 years ago

Thanks. That explains why I’ve never known about it. Seems like they should’ve named that something else, since it actually has very little to do with the “regular” #2 and it’s not exactly an express version of it, really.

I frequently take the #2 to the CBD and into Belltown, but I’m OK with making a transfer on 3rd if this streamlining makes all those 3rd ave buses run fast enough to make transfers quick.

Since the 2 will now be turning around at the ferry docks…what does this do to the last late-night outbound trip? They say the schedule won’t change, so can we assume the last trip from the 2N will be the same originating time at the ferry docks? Being able to come back from Bainbridge really late and still hop onto a #2 would be awesome.

Aleks Bromfield
11 years ago

The naming issue is actually weirder than you might think. Officially, there are actually two separate buses called the 2. One of them goes from downtown to Queen Anne, and the other goes from downtown to Madrona. The former is nicknamed the 2N (north), and the latter is the 2S.

Thus, the 2X is an express version of the 2N. (The different downtown routing is really just about needing somewhere to turn around.)

I actually don’t know what the situation is with ferry connections, but you should definitely come to the hearings and ask. Providing better connections to ferries seems like a really useful thing to do.

Ouch
11 years ago

As Aleks mentions, we don’t have the money for our bus system anymore. Just unlimited billions for tunnels under downtown and Capitol Hill and for trains most everywhere. We voted for this, a bunch of huge, limited use projects, so now we won’t have enough money to maintain a good bus system. It’s not the money isn’t there — it’s we’ve allocated it for other transit purposes. We may be dumb, but we don’t have anyone to blame but ourselves on this score.

On top of the tunnels and trains, we also seem to have this need to paint literally thousands of bicycles on the road. So, to be fair, the money is not just going to these big transit projects that we voted on; it’s also going to the pet projects of our elected politicians. More money will go to paint more bicycles and lines on the road than for bus service, in the latest levy they want us to pass. Well, we voted all those billions for tunnels, what’s a few million more for some bicycles on the road? Just remember, good bus service is one of those things that’s just too expensive these days given our other priorities.

Metoo
11 years ago

Ouch,

Look toward the future and not your short-term needs. We are just experiencing some growing pains.

JimS.
11 years ago

Aleks,
I’m going to quote you here again for the benefit of those who might have missed it embedded in another thread; and also include another community meeeting from Metro’s website that is convenient to CapHill folks:

***Similarly, if you feel strongly about these changes, I urge you to go to a public meeting. Upcoming meetings near Capitol Hill include:

**Nov 2 (Wed), 12pm: Downtown Seattle Public Meeting
**Nov 10 (Thurs), 6:15: Uptown/QA Public Meeting

PLUS this one.

***Central District and Leschi – Presentation to Central Area District Council Meeting
**WhenThu, November 10, 6:30pm – 7:30pm
**WhereCentral Area Senior Center, 500 30th Ave S Seattle, Washington 98144

Brent
11 years ago

Has anyone noticed that the cheaper the bike infrastructure, the more bike haters complain? Paint is very cheap compared to just about any other transportation infrastructure.

Brent
11 years ago

I’ve ridden the 60 many times, including many different times of day.

I’ve never seen more than two passengers get on or off a 60 bus at the VA. The vast majority of trips, there was nobody getting on or off. All the buses accomplished was to help create a traffic jam in the parking lot.

And did I mention that no other medical facility in the county has buses pull into their parking lot?

Summit 2plus2
11 years ago

As a dweller on Summit, I’m going to give my pennies into this conversation. While I understand and respect the needs people have with this route, Summit is no longer set up for an active bus route. It is essentially a single lane road, whereas Bellevue has two. I know that there is no real place for the route to turn around, Summit has a hard time currently accomodating the line. If it is trash/recycling/moving days, it cannot pass the trucks and results in a backup. It already has a good amount of traffic, and this compounds it. Bottom line to me, if the street is requiring traffic circles, as Summit does, it should not have an active bus route on it. That means high traffic, tight streets, and what is recognized as a more residential thoroughfare.

Just my thoughts.

Harriet Wasserman
11 years ago

11 now goes directly (turning into a 125) from Seattle Central Community College to South Seattle Community College, a wonderfully easy trip. With the 11 ending downtown, we wonder if anything will replace the 125 part of the old route.

Having the 12 end at Coleman dock makes it very hard to get from it’s route (along 19th for example) to downtown shopping. That one is depressing.

JS
JS
11 years ago

I understand not liking the proposed changes, but your criticism of the Metro planners who worked on this is completely false. These folks take transit all the time. What they’re trying to do is deal with a State Legislature that holds the cards for future funding. If Metro can’t show they’ve done everything they can to improve efficiency, when the $20 car tab fee authority expires, you’ll see service cuts throughout the system.

JS
JS
11 years ago

Ouch,

Prop 1 gives ALMOST HALF of the funding to transit improvements. Less than 10% goes to bicycle projects.

JSI
JSI
11 years ago

It means you can either get off at 4th and walk, or get off at 3rd and transfer to ANYTHING northbound. The idea here is that every single bus on 3rd between Yesler and Stewart will continue without a turn. So ANY bus that comes by will be a valid transfer option to the retail core.

During peak, and even mid-day, that is a heck of a lot of options.

JimS.
11 years ago

Metro’s website will show you exactly what they’re doing to the 125.

DeAnna at Metro
11 years ago

Here’s a direct link to the survey on Metro’s suggested service changes: http://www.surveymk.com/s/SJGGP69

And, here’s more information about the public involvement process: http://wp.me/p1GXf3-6t

DeAnna at Metro
11 years ago

(206) 263-9768 (voice mail, but we listen to it every day and take down all messages as part of the public record)
[email protected]