[There is a newer edition of this map.]
[UPDATE 10:11 am: Oran has applied some fixes to the pdf for download.]
It has been two years since I first released my Metro Frequent Service Network map. The map highlights all corridors that have transit service at least every 15 minutes during most of the day. It was inspired by the maps produced by the transit agencies in Portland and Minneapolis. Today, I give you a brand new version of the map for your enjoyment and benefit. You may download it as a PDF for high quality printing (8.5 x 14 inch Legal size). The map reflects Metro’s February 2011 service change (tentatively) and Sound Transit’s June 2011 service reductions.
This map takes a very different approach from my previous maps. It covers only the city of Seattle, where most of the frequent service is. Gone is the “one-color-for-one-line-for-one-route” French style map. Instead, colors are assigned to the modes: bus, rapid rail, and streetcar. It is a diagram, not a geographic map, but the major water bodies remain to provide some clues and the lines follow the street grid to an extent. Other features include a table showing the time and days when frequent service is provided, a street index for downtown routes, a list of through routes, neighborhood labels in the background, and icons showing connections to Sounder and the ferries. If so desired, thinner lines can be used to depict routes with less frequent service (every 20-30 minutes).
It has been said before by many but I’ll say it again. I think Metro should promote the frequent service network. It is as significant an asset as RapidRide is and it is service that is already out there. At the very least, show it on the timetable covers and on the system map with a simple yellow highlight. In the long term, the network itself should be restructured to provide more frequent service in more places and be more comprehensible to the average user.