The saga of restructuring bus service for University Link continues this week, with Metro transmitting the official restructure details in two packages (A and B). These packages are the marching orders needed for each department (marketing, facilities, operations etc) to implement the changes in time for March 2016 service change. There are lots of small changes in these packages, and we’ll cover the rest of them in a subsequent article. But the big news isn’t in these packages, because it’s a non-change: the Capitol Hill restructure is basically dead.
Due to the technical inability to make the 135° turn from East Madison to 19th Avenue, Routes 8 and 11 will no longer move to 19th Avenue and E Thomas St, but will continue on their current routings, with Route 8 on John/Thomas and Route 11 on Madison/Pine (though Route 8 will still split from Route 38 and get a boost to 12-minute frequency). As an “administrative change” – in which no stop is more than a half mile from its current routing – the 19th Avenue deviation was neither part of the restructure as adopted by Council nor released for public feedback. We are told that its inclusion met political objectives to secure Council votes, but Metro apparently did not test the operational feasibility of the the route prior to the restructure’s adoption.
Analysis and lamentations after the jump. [Read more…]