Two weeks ago Sound Transit released its 2012 Draft Service Implementation Plan. (Executive Summary, or Full Document) Given the current funding crises faced by all agencies, there is very little expansion in the plan except where new efficiencies allow for increased service. As Sounder service to South Tacoma and Lakewood opens late in 2012, the most dramatic service revisions will occur in Pierce County.
Sound Transit will host a public hearing on November 3rd at Union Station from 1-1:30pm. If you find the time or limited duration of the hearing inconvenient, you may comment anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A route-by-route breakdown of proposed changes after the jump…
510 (Feb 2012): 5 new peak-period trips.
511 (Feb 2012): 2 new peak-period trips
574 (Oct 2012): The 574 will terminate at Lakewood Sounder Station. Currently Route 574 bypasses Lakewood Sounder Station and terminates 1 mile further west at Lakewood Transit Center (a large big-box shopping center). ST estimates that of the 266 riders currently boarding at Lakewood TC, only 42 (15%) transfer from local Pierce Transit service. Connections can be made via PT 204 (every 30 minutes between Lakewood TC and SR512 P&R) and PT 51 (hourly between Lakewood TC and Lakewood Sounder). Furthermore, the SR 512 P&R is over capacity, while Lakewood Sounder Station is only 47% full. This change should ensure higher utilization of the Sounder station. This change also rectifies a current anomaly in ST service in which service between Lakewood Sounder and Tacoma Dome Station (TDS) is only provided off-peak. Because the peak-period 592 bypasses TDS, during peak periods only the Olympia Express connects TDS to Lakewood Sounder Station. This will provide all-day service between the two points.
577/578 (June 2012) The 578 will no longer serve Tacoma. Pierce Transit’s latest service change instituted all-day, limited-stop service between Downtown Tacoma and Puyallup (Route 400) that, when combined with the 2 reverse-peak Sounder trips, obviate the need for 578 service to Tacoma. In addition, hourly Sunday service will be added on the 578, interlined with the 577 to ensure half-hourly service to Federal Way and hourly service to Auburn, Sumner, and Puyallup.
586 (Oct 2012): The 586 will no longer serve downtown Tacoma. Currently 44 boardings per day would be affected (5 per trip). Service between downtown Tacoma and Tacoma Dome would still be freely available on Tacoma Link, ST 590 and 594, and PT 13, 14, 41, 42, 400, 500, and 501
590/593/594 (Oct 2012): The 593 will be discontinued, and the 593′s service hours will be converted into 14 additional trips on the 590, and additional trips will also be added to the 594. As a result, peak-period service will remain every 5 minutes, but shoulder service will increase to 15 minutes between 9:30a-12:30p and 3:45-4:45p. (If you’ve ever been stuck standing on a mid-day Gillig 594, be thankful for this change!)
592 (Oct 2012): with the beginning of Sounder service, 592 service levels will be reduced by 50%, from every 10 minutes to 15 minutes, but all service will begin at DuPont, doubling service between Seattle and DuPont. In addition, the 592 will no longer serve the SODO busway, but will adopt the 577/578 stop pattern in downtown Seattle, running nonstop between SR 512 P&R and 4th/University. This should reduce running time between Lakewood and Seattle to approximately 55 minutes.
- Running times have been published, 72 minutes between Lakewood and Seattle, with 8 minutes of schedule padding.
- 5 of the 7 peak-direction trips will serve South Tacoma and Lakewood beginning in October 2012, but reverse-commute trains will not serve South Tacoma and Lakewood.
- Sounder will connect Lakewood and industrial employment centers in the Green River Valley for the first time.
- All trips will be adjusted to depart on clock-face headways every 30 minutes during peak, leaving Seattle at :12 and :42, Lakewood at :10 and :40, and Tacoma at :23 and :53.
- The once-daily transfer opportunity between Sounder North and Sounder South will be eliminated in the AM (southbound) direction.