Street Car Openning, other transit

Here’s a bit of a streetcar opening round-up:

In other transit news:
Community Transit and Everett Transit are jumping on the BRT bandwagon with a “trainlike” (rofl) bus-service on 99 from Aurora Station in Shoreline to Everett. They have a nice map and describe BRT as this region thinks of it:

Sleek new, articulated buses will operate on a 17-mile corridor along Highway 99 — which in Everett becomes Evergreen Way and then Rucker Avenue — using automated ticketing, special lanes and signal priority at busy intersections to streamline trips. Buses are to arrive at stations every 10 minutes.

Yup, sounds like normal buses. Though I do laud Snohomish for increasing transit service up there. The program should be in affect by 2009.


  1. Martin says

    This will actually mesh pretty nicely with the RapidRide service along Aurora from Metro Transit.

    It will be a pretty good option for people that live along the corridor and work along Aurora, far from downtown Seattle.

    I’m eager to see how those 7 miles of “bus-only” lanes turn out in practice…

  2. Marky's Den says

    While it’s true Swift will be less expensive than light rail, this BRT line will also be significantly slower than the rail line proposed in Prop 1, and its reliability will have to be proven. BAT lanes and TSP will help, but lanes are missing on half the corridor and there is no plan to fund them – again, thanks to the defeat of Prop 1.

    I also find it interesting that BRT advocates always ignore growing congestion on the 99 and I-5 corridors (which will affect Swift speed and reliability in the future). They also ignore rapidly rising operations costs, which consume “new” service hours the second the rubber hits the road.

    The average speed of Swift over the 16 miles between Everett Station and Aurora Village is 13.5 mph. The average system speed of Link as proposed in ST2 was 26 mph.

    And assume, for a moment, that light rail between Everett and the county line would operate at this speed (it would likely be even faster because of wide station spacing and dedicated ROW) – the same trip would take 37 minutes instead of 51.

    Swift will provide a better intercommunity connection within SW Snohomish County than they have now (which is not difficult to achieve) but Swift is not intended or designed to address regional travel markets.

    One sure thing: BRT advocates need to start being more honest with their numbers. Overpromising transit performance gave us the monorail debacle. It seems as if BRT zealots are traveling down the very same path.

    And what’s the point of pitting buses against light rail, anyways? Without light rail, these bus agencies are looking at unsustainable service 10-20 years down the line, as congestion and high operating costs eat into any gains they make with new and (supposedly innovative) programs.

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