Reader Mark Bardwell pointed me to this awesome forum thread full of post-ST2 fantasy maps for our area. Mark’s maps are here. I wanted to link to the images, but that site appears down pretty often. If you see it down, just try back later.

Anyway, I love the maps.

10 Replies to “More Seattle Fantasy Map”

  1. I don’t know the suburbs very well, but I think many of the intra-city lines on those map look a little bit like the monorail maps.

  2. Awesome! Time to get back and update mine. I got locked out from the forums so I couldn’t post mine on there.

  3. I made a map that you can see at http://www.flickr.com/photos/28183055@N06/2626930426/sizes/o/.
    The thick colored lines are (grade-separated) light rail, the thin purple lines are commuter rail, and the thing green lines are streetcars. the dotted lines in the water are passenger only ferries. Some day I’ll get around to putting in a line along Aurora then down to Georgetown and Southpark. Notice that I made Tacoma Link a streetcar, and the light rail would be underground through there, only stopping at Tacoma Dome and 10th & Commerce.

  4. Alexjonlin, I love it.
    The Station names are rock-and-roll, too. I think the “Wallingford” line needs to stop at Fremont, Stone Way, Meridian and some where near I-5 on 45th.

  5. I really like your map Alexjonlin. Nice clean lines while maintaining some geographic accuracy.

    What do the ST logos mean?

  6. Thanks. The ST logos are for connections with commuter rail.
    Once I put an Aurora line in, it will stop in Fremont, Wallingford, and the Zoo before going north all the way to Aurora Village TC and possibly Edmonds.
    I think Stone Way, Meridian, and I-5/45th are more targets for streetcars, at least for now. It seems like putting light rail stations there would make them too close together.

  7. generally accepted transit performance measures.
    TABLE 1. ST 2010 Budget (Expenses and Annual Boarding in millions)
    SERVICE EXPENSES BOARDINGS $$/BOARDING
    Express bus $97.2 13.3 $7.30 each
    Comm. Rail $36.1 2.7 $13.37 ea
    Central Link $45.6 8.1 $5.62 ea
    Tacoma Link $ 4.1 1 $4.22 ea
    Obviously, Streetcar and LRT provides the least cost per boarding under this presentation.

    1. TABLE 1. ST 2010 Budget (Expenses and Annual Boarding in millions)
      SERVICE EXPENSES BOARDINGS $$/BOARDING
      Express bus——-$97.2—————13.3—————-$7.30 each
      Comm. Rail $36.1 2.7 $13.37 ea
      Central Link…….$45.6………………….8.1………………….$5.62 ea
      Tacoma Link____$ 4.1__________1.0__________$4.22 ea
      Obviously, Streetcar and LRT provides the least cost per boarding under this presentation.

  8. Digesting the Numbers – Bus, Commuter Rail, Light Rail, and Streetcar
    Now that all of Sound Transit’s (ST) business lines are in full swing for Phase 1, it’s important to examine the 2010 ST budget as a snapshot for choices made in the past and maybe a chance to refine choices going in the future. Realistically, I don’t see much change occurring in ST2 from the current plan adopted by the voters in 2008, and I’m not advocating here for change. However, proponents for future service levels should be prepared to measure success, against past plans and projections.
    As this blog’s name implies, it should be all about the best transit options for Seattle, including the Puget Sound area, rather than pitting bus and rail or one agency against the other. Of course they all have a place in the hierarchy of services, but without knowing what each mode costs or delivers, it becomes difficult to ‘check your prejudices at the door’, and look at what’s working best. Being able to select from a palette of options should ultimately lead to the highest transit ridership possible.
    Something we can all agree on is that eliminating many SOV trips in the region is in everyone’s best interest for a better place to work and live.
    So, with that said, I tried to boil down ST’s 2010 operating budget into something that is useful for discussion in a forum like this and hopefully is non-controversial when presenting key data from the report, and in a way that doesn’t make everyone’s eyes glaze over. The first table looks at total operating budget, by service, excluding expected farebox revenue or depreciation and amortization.
    Table 2 includes both revenue and depreciation according to ST, when calculating the cost per boarding. Dollars per boarding isn’t the only metric that is important, and I’m sure some here will argue it isn’t even close to THE most important, but it does serve the purpose of being able to compare ST’s budget, using publically available data and a generally accepted transit performance measures.
    TABLE 1. ST 2010 Budget (Expenses and Annual Boarding in millions)
    SERVICE…….EXPENSES…….BOARDINGS…….$$/BOARDING
    Express bus…$97.2…………..13.3……………….$7.30 each
    Comm. Rail….$36.1…………….2.7……………….$13.37 ea
    Central Link…$45.6…………….8.1………………….$5.62 ea
    Tacoma Link..$ 4.1……………..1.0………………….$4.22 ea
    Obviously, Streetcar and LRT provides the least cost per boarding under this presentation.
    When farebox revenues are deducted from expense as income, and depreciation is added to the bottom line, the picture changes dramatically. This is a fair step to take, even for government, to acknowledge the capital cost of the investment, and debt service required during construction and bonding repayment.
    TABLE 2. (adds depreciation, amortization, and gives credit for farebox revenue generated)
    SERVICE………NET EXPENSE…..BOARDINGS…..$$/BOARDING
    Express bus…….$96.5…………….13.3……….……….$7.30 each
    Comm. Rail……..$46.8……………..2.7…………………$17.33 ea
    Central Link…..$108.1………………8.1…………………$13.35 ea
    Tacoma Link……..$7.0………………1.0…………………..$7.22 ea
    Now, express bus and Tacoma link are clearly favored, with commuter rail and light rail nearly double, reflecting the higher capital cost of each. Of particular importance in the budget are the projections for Central Link. 2010 will be the first full year of operation relying on modeled data, while all the other services are mature enough to make more accurate estimates from year to year.
    A logical question sure to arise is the current cost of Metro bus service, which to some degree is replaced by rail. Metro’s “Highlights for 2008” reported $3.67 per boarding. This figure would be comparible to Fig. 2 numbers, reflecting both operating and capital expenses, along with farebox revenue.
    Central Link is projecting to have 8.1 million riders in 2010, or about 26,600 average weekday riders, followed by 33,800 per weekday in 2011, then rising to 40,000 by 2016. Meeting ridership projections of 10.3 million annual riders in 2011 would result in Light Rail cost per boarding to fall to $4.42 and $10.78 respectively for Table 1 and 2. Only time will tell on Central Link ridership and more importantly on ST2, and it is not the purpose of this article to predict future ridership or choose one mode over another. Better than expected ridership will clearly improve LRT’s bottom line, no matter what the metric you choose, but lower works in favor of the other modes.
    Other performance measures include trip cost divided by average trip length, giving a different perspective, or boardings per mile that reflect shorter trip length of the dense urban areas. Others might argue that new transit riders are more important, getting some of those SOV’s off the road. I’ll leave that for others to discuss.
    What is important, in my opinion, is that assumptions made in the past over costs and benefits must be continually evaluated to make wise decisions going forward into the future.

  9. Digesting the Numbers – Bus, Commuter Rail, Light Rail, and Streetcar
    Now that all of Sound Transit’s (ST) business lines are in full swing for Phase 1, it’s important to examine the 2010 ST budget as a snapshot for choices made in the past and maybe a chance to refine choices going in the future. Realistically, I don’t see big changes occurring in ST2 from the current plan adopted by the voters in 2008, and I’m not advocating here for change. However, proponents for future service levels should be prepared to measure success, against past plans and projections.
    As this blog’s name implies, it should be all about the best transit options for Seattle, including the Puget Sound area, rather than pitting bus against rail or one agency against the other. Of course they all have a place in the hierarchy of services, but without knowing what each mode costs or delivers, it becomes difficult to ‘check your prejudices at the door’, and look at what’s working best. Being able to select from a palette of options should ultimately lead to the highest transit ridership possible.
    Something we can all agree on is that eliminating many SOV trips in the region is in everyone’s best interest for a better place to work and live.
    So, with that said, I tried to boil down ST’s 2010 operating budget into something that is useful for discussion in a forum like this and hopefully is non-controversial when presenting key data from the report, and in a way that doesn’t make everyone’s eyes glaze over. The first table looks at total operating budget, by service, excluding expected farebox revenue or depreciation and amortization.
    Table 2 includes both revenue and depreciation according to ST, when calculating the cost per boarding. Dollars per boarding isn’t the only metric that is important, and I’m sure some here will argue it isn’t even close to THE most important, but it does serve the purpose of being able to compare ST’s budget, using publically available data and a generally accepted transit performance measures.
    TABLE 1. ST 2010 Budget (Expenses and Annual Boarding in millions)
    SERVICE…….EXPENSES…….BOARDINGS…….$$/BOARDING
    Express bus…$97.2…………..13.3……………….$7.30 each
    Comm. Rail….$36.1…………….2.7……………….$13.36 ea

    Central Link…$45.6…………….8.1………………….$5.63 ea
    Tacoma Link..$ 4.1……………..1.0………………….$4.25 ea
    Obviously, Streetcar and LRT provides the least cost per boarding under this presentation.
    When farebox revenues are deducted from expense as income, and depreciation is added to the bottom line, the picture changes dramatically. This is a fair step to take, even for government, to acknowledge the capital cost of the investment, and debt service required during construction and bonding repayment.
    TABLE 2. (adds depreciation, amortization, and gives credit for farebox revenue generated)
    SERVICE………NET EXPENSE…..BOARDINGS…..$$/BOARDING
    Express bus…….$115.6…………….13.3……….……….$8.69 each
    Comm. Rail……..$55.3……………..2.7…………………$20.46 ea
    Central Link…..$118.6………………8.1…………………$14.65 ea
    Tacoma Link……..$7.1………………1.0…………………..$7.08 ea
    Now, express bus and Tacoma link are clearly favored, with commuter rail and light rail double or more, reflecting the higher capital cost of each. Of particular importance in the budget are the projections for Central Link. 2010 will be the first full year of operation relying on modeled data, while all the other services are mature enough to make more accurate estimates from year to year.
    A logical question sure to arise is the current cost of Metro bus service, which to some degree is replaced by rail. Metro’s “Highlights for 2008” reported $3.67 per boarding. This figure would be comparible to Fig. 2 numbers, reflecting both operating and capital expenses, along with farebox revenue.
    Central Link is projecting to have 8.1 million riders in 2010, or about 26,600 average weekday riders, followed by 33,800 per weekday in 2011. Meeting ridership projections of 10.3 million annual riders in 2011 would result in Light Rail cost per boarding to fall to $4.42 and $11.52 respectively for Table 1 and 2. Only time will tell on Central Link ridership and more importantly on ST2, and it is not the purpose of this article to predict future ridership or choose one mode over another. Better than expected ridership will clearly improve LRT’s bottom line, no matter what the metric you choose, but lower works in favor of the other modes. Also, when debt and depreciation is retired, rail will improve it’s overall bottom line, less system replacement costs.
    Other performance measures include trip cost divided by average trip length, giving a different perspective, or boardings per mile that reflect shorter trip length of the dense urban areas. Others might argue that new transit riders are more important, getting some of those SOV’s off the road. I’ll leave that for others to discuss.
    What is important, in my opinion, is that assumptions made in the past over costs and benefits must be continually evaluated to make wise decisions going forward into the future.

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