When talking about Link ridership, I’ve said time and time again that monthly ridership totals are basically meaningless. We won’t have meaningful information till the end of 2010 at the earliest, and preliminary conclusions about the line’s “success” or “failure” can’t be made for at least a decade, when development has had a chance to occur.
But people love the horse race, so for entertainment purposes only, 1,526 people rode Swift on Monday. That’s compared to a daily SR99 corridor bus ridership of about 4,500. Ridership probably wasn’t helped by the fact that there are no paper transfers between Swift and regular CT service — it’s ORCA, or pay twice. Regardless, CT spokesman Martin Munguia says “street teams are reporting more people riding Swift than at the same time yesterday.”
As always, the real test will be what kind of construction occurs in the coming years. The land use in this corridor is a total disaster — think strip malls behind massive parking lots, all the way up*. Will Snohomish County residents and developers accept a different principle on which to organize their communities? Is a BRT line enough to spur that? We’ll get to find out.
*with apologies to Central Everett, which isn’t like that.