in 1968, the first Forward Thrust transit vote got 50.8% of the vote, but failed to get the 60% needed to pass. It was voted on again in 1970, but it got only 46% of the vote that year. The vote came at the height of the Boeing bust, and voters were worried about the local economy and didn’t want to approve new taxes, even though the Federal Government was going to pay $880 million of the rapid transit system’s $1.3 billion price tag. The one that got away…

  • Oran has great video (above) of Orca being used usable in Washington State Ferry fare turnstiles.
  • Community Transit unveiled its first Swift BRT station at its base in Everett. (H/T to Erik)
  • Is the Seattle Times actually in favor of something, anything around light rail? It’s hard to tell but I think so.
  • Fred Jarrett, who is running for King County Exec against Larry Phillips, Ross Hunter, Dow Constantine and Susan Hutchison, is apparently is in favor of removing 40/40/20, the rule that dictates that new Metro bus service is split 40% for the Eastside, 40% for South King County and 20% for Seattle and Shoreline. Metro is in such a budget bind today that won’t have much effect in the short term, but getting rid of that rule could provide buses in need-based formula in the long term. Along with Phillips and Constantine, three of the candidates I know support some alteration to 40/40/20.

19 Replies to “News Round-Up: 68 days”

  1. Actually, I’m not sure if the video captured anyone using ORCA but I did see someone use it.

  2. So the CT BRT busses have onboard bike space…anyone know if Metro plans to do the same on RapidRide routes? Makes sense for both for capacity and faster boarding rather than waiting for people to figure out and manipulate the front mounted racks.

    1. I like bike racks and bike lockers at stations, but I understand that a lot of people want to ride on both ends of the trip. Caltrain had specific bike cars that had a lot of room for bikes. Bringing bikes on board make sense, but no one crowded buses.

      We’re going to have to look at how crowded rapid ride buses, but the show-coach and the APTA bus rodeo didn’t have a bike rack on the front.

  3. At first I thought it was a rendering but after looking closer at the photo for Swift, one of their new BRT buses is hiding behind another bus. The front end is just sticking out. Looks good!

    I’ll have to see if I can get a tour of the new coach and post about it.

    1. It would be nice to think that three wasn’t enough but sadly the bike racks seem to be way underused. OTOH it’s hard to commute by bike if you can’t be realatively assured that you’ll be able to load.

      My concern is that if the inside bike racks are convertable to people space, even standing room only, then bikes will have no place to go during peak commute which is when it’s most needed. Reserving room for bikes that doesn’t get used doesn’t make sense either. Nobody wants to ride on the bike rack (well, maybe some people would) and they fold up when not in use. Given the relatively straight express routes and articulateds are already a super tanker it seems silly to put the bikes inside. On a well used route the bike is loaded before the rest of the passengers get on board and a bike rider should make sure they exit quickly and remove their bike.

      Is the problem that the front door will be entrance only on some routes? I can see where that would be a problem but a “bike bell” like the request for stop could solve that problem.

  4. Article in today’s online P.I. about how incidents on Metro buses are up. One interesting fact from the article, 10 routes account for half of all incidents, with the route 174 leading the bunch.

    1. Maybe we should have a thread on transit safety? Tips on waiting at the stops at night, etc…

      1. It’s very strange, honestly. Late last year it was ‘don’t build east link, it’s too expensive’ and now it’s ‘pick the most expensive option!’

      2. They know its going to happen, they just don’t want to have to look at it once it’s built!

      3. I think it’s simpler than that. They’re just a paper with eastside interests.

      4. I know it’s so funny. I agree with Ben, they haven’t changed their minds about LRT, they just want to appeal to their eastside interests and advertisers.

      5. I didn’t read the article as an endorsement for the tunnel. It says it’s the preferred alternative by Bellevue but also the question of who’s going to pay and is it worth it.

        Opposing something but supporting the high cost alternative isn’t necessarily in conflict. I’m opposed to spending $6B on the current 520 plans (way too expensive for what we get) but I’d fully support an $8B plan that replaced the concrete rafts with a double deck bridge that had rail six lanes. I’m opposed to the Pacific Street interchange unless it’s the expensive tunnel option it is design primarily to incorporate high capacity transit.

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