Sound Transit is transitioning to an alphanumeric system for naming its light rail lines and bus routes. The public transit agency announced the decision last week to adopt the new system of numbers and letters that will change the line currently connecting north and south through the city via Capitol Hill to the 1 Line.
In November, CHS reported on the agency’s ill-fated “Red Line” designation of the route serving Capitol Hill Station as Sound Transit was preparing for the launch of the Blue Line serving a new connection to the Eastside.
“As the term Red Line became more visible we heard concerns from members of our community, that this term carries unfortunate associations with the punitive practice by lenders of ‘redlining,'” Sound Transit said at the time.
CHS wrote about the practice and the use of racial covenants around Capitol Hill and the Central District here.
New signs and system maps are now being readied for the opening of light rail service to Northgate planned for 2021.
“When the system is complete in 2041, Link light rail will have five lines (1, 2, 3, 4, and T), Sounder will have two lines (N and S), and Stride bus rapid transit will have three lines (S1, S2, and S3),” Sound Transit’s announcement reads.
Meanwhile, the enveloping economic pains of the COVID-19 crisis for governments from Seattle to Olympia is also hitting Sound Transit.
The agency is “financially well-positioned to maintain operations” to keep trains and buses moving, the Seattle Transit Blog reports, but the timeline for its longer term plans for expansion to serve Ballard and West Seattle could now be in jeopardy.
Sound Transit, like transit agencies across the region, has also suspended fare enforcement amid a major downturn in ridership during the COVID-19 restrictions.
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