Good morning everybody!

Apparently, there’s some kind of train thing happening today.

Last night I went on the very last preview ride with Oran. Some of Seattle’s original transit supporters were present – Jim Ellis and Aubrey Davis both rode to Tukwila. This was also the first time I’ve seen state legislators on board – Representative Scott White (46th LD) was pretty pumped, although it’ll be some ten years before stations open in his district. Also from the 46th, Rep. Phyllis Gutierrez-Kenney seemed to enjoy the ride.

I have to say, the bike rack issues reported by the Stranger don’t seem so bad. The bicycle in question was that of City Council candidate and Sierra Clubber Mike O’Brien – a tall guy with a big bike. Most bikes aren’t going to stick out into the aisle nearly as much as his did, and cyclists will learn to hold onto their bikes when they’re on the hangers. There is a difference between these hangers and those on the MAX in Portland – their racks allow bikes to hang parallel to the direction of the train’s movement, so they do swing less. Perhaps when we get more trains, we can design this differently.

We’ll see you all on the train today!

20 Replies to “Just Under 3 Hours”

  1. I know nobody will be here, but someone should take a screen shot of the Link countdown clock on this page when it says 0 hours, 0 minutes, and 1 second.

    1. What’s going to be really funny is if it goes backwards. I’m going to leave it up and see what happens.

      1. I’m monitoring the Link from the east coast (I pay attention since I have family in Pierce County) and I can say you will like what the counter does.

        I’m getting ideas for when my transit agency opens its own Light Rail (see http://www.ridethetide.com)

        I will not spoil the counter secret (Ben, if you want, you may send me a private email if you need to know)

      2. I don’t need to know! It probably says something cute. I’ll find out when it happens. :)

  2. I was figuring the STB operators would have some dastardly plan and have it instantly begin a countdown until U-Link opens. :)

      1. Ops, I should have added, I was talking to Lloyd Hara yesterday and he was saying that this is the weekend when they are going to do the pedestrian bridge lift at the Airport Station.

        No rest for the weary I guess…

  3. Is it really happening? Almost too good to true. A mass transit system in Seattle? It is almost a contradiction in terms.

  4. Can you guys help? I have a foreign visitor trying to get to an Amtrak train in Seattle via bus today. Metro’s page is down (or slow) because of all the traffic. Do you know if the tunnel is open to buses today?

  5. Incidentally, if you look closely you will see that the system map above the door on the Link LRV’s shows that you can transfer to the Waterfront Streetcar at the ID station. Either ST made an error (The Horror), or maybe they know something we don’t…..

  6. The bike racks still sound immensely better than those on Sounder.

    Each Sounder car has rack space for two bikes. The second bike blocks the first bike, so if the first rider needs to get off before the second, both bikes have to be unstrapped. Then if the second rider wants to move into the first slot to make room for someone else, they need to turn their bike around inside a crowded train car, since the rack slots face opposite directions.

    From the sound of things on Link, all that’s needed is for someone to hook up some bungee cords to grab the lower wheel. Lots of Sounder riders already carry bungees instead of using the velcro strap system, I expect regular Link riders will do the same.

    1. Agreed. Another easy fix would be to just put a latch where the lower wheel leans against the wall, that could be pushed through the wheel to hold it in place. It’s not so important though, because the location of the bike hooks means there will only be other passengers right next to them when the train is super crowded (at which point I’m not sure there’s any good bike-carrying solution because they’re so bulky).

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