Tonight: 23rd Ave Open House

Tonight, from 4:30 to 7 PM at the Miller Park Community Center, SDOT is hosting an open house on the 23rd Ave corridor, a Complete Streets project that will remake 23rd Ave to improve mobility and safety for all road users. The project’s current primary elements include, in addition to repaving, a road diet (four lanes to three, except at major intersections), transit priority (bulbs/islands and signals), repaired and widened sidewalks, an adjacent neighborhood greenway, and some design work towards future trolleybus overhead.

23rd is the primary arterial for north-south travel in eastern Seattle, between Mount Baker Station and the future University of Washington Station. With no major transit investment slated for this corridor, the new 23rd Ave design’s success in accommodating buses will likely define north-south mobility in this part of the city for the foreseeable future; getting it right is essential. If this is a part of the city you care about, you should be there tonight to make your voice heard.

WSDOT Recommends Funding Plan for 405 Express Toll Lanes

A massive experiment in road tolling is getting underway here in Puget Sound. A 40-mile stretch of I-405 and SR-167 is being converted to include “express toll lanes.” These HOT lanes will replace the current HOV lanes throughout the corridor. You can read STB’s previous coverage of the project here.

Phase 1 of the project, between Bellevue and the junction with I-5 in Lynwood, is set to open next year at a cost of $334M. Phase 2 will extend the toll lanes from Lynwood to the Pierce County line, resulting in a single, 40-mile tolled corridor with a direct flyover ramp connecting 167 and 405. That phase is expected to cost $1.1B and is not yet funded.

To address the funding issue, last week WSDOT released a comprehensive report including recommendations on how the tolls should work and how the project should be funded. Among the recommendations:

  • Allow carpools of 3 or more to use the HOT lanes for free in the peak, and carpools of 2 or more to use them free off-peak (drivers would have a switchable transponder that they could turn off so as not to get charged when carpooling)
  • Fund the project with $960M in gas tax revenue and $215M in tolls.

The latter recommendation is important because state law mandated that the project bring in enough in tolls to recoup operating expenses within two years, or be shut down. The legislature also stipulated that the lanes must maintain speeds of 45 miles per hour at least 90 percent of the time during peak periods.  This is important, because the current 2-person HOV lane has been failing in this regard, hurting transit on the corridor.

So the goal is to set the prices in such a way as to not only generate constant speeds, but also hit a minimum revenue target. As Sightline documented last year, that can be difficult to achieve. Looking at the same SR-167 corridor that would be expanded in this project, they noted that WSDOT grossly overestimated how much people were willing to pay.

The SR-167 was, relatively speaking, an inexpensive experiment: converting existing HOV lanes to HOT lanes. The 405/167 project is far more ambitious, so the funding scheme requires commensurately detailed scrutiny.

To WSDOT’s credit, this study updates their previous models to take into account what we now know about people’s willingness to pay (hint: not very much). That, in turn, leads the agency to reduce by half its estimates of how much revenue can be brought in by tolling. However, the report still references PSRC’s estimate that daily trips on the corridor will increase from 950,000 to 1.5M by 2030, even though traffic on 405 has actually been flat for the last 15 years.

Toll lanes strike me as the hyperloop of roads: an idea that draws attention all out of proportion to its actual utility. While there’s an undeniable appeal to the pay-as-you-go capitalism of it, it always seems to get confused as to what the point of the toll is.  And it turns out that people don’t value their time nearly as much as economic models would predict. On the other hand, it does have some positive feedback loops: the more people have transponders in their cars, the more tolling becomes a fact of life. That in turn drives greater acceptance of tolling and, potentially, all-day dynamic congestion pricing throughout the region. That’s something worth aiming for.

News Roundup: Finalist

This is an open thread.

Editorial: Uber, Lyft, and the City Council

Photo by Denise Hazard

The City Council Committee on Taxi, For-Hire, and Limousine Regulations will hold its penultimate meeting tomorrow to discuss draft regulations to legalize and regulate new Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) such as Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar. In addition to adding 50 new taxi licenses, the draft legislation would regulate TNCs by imposing annual licensing fees, requiring vehicle inspections, specifying insurance standards, requiring state approval of GPS-based fare calculation, and imposing stricter driver requirements. Many of these regulations are welcome developments, especially clarification of the currently-murky insurance standards. But the core of the legislation — limiting each TNC to 100 drivers unless they hire currently licensed for-hire drivers — is terrible policy.

Image from Sightline
lyft full
Real-Time Supply Management

This is an issue very important to STB because TNCs reduce the need for car ownership, which builds the market for transit and restrains the cry for parking that threatens to strangle our city’s growth.

A healthy transportation system is redundant. Walking, bikes, transit, Car2Go, TNCs, and taxis provide a robust set of options that have different strengths and weaknesses, and cover for each other when one fails. For example, TNCs are at their best when transit is at its worst, supplying extra capacity on nights, weekends, and in between urban villages (such as Queen Anne to Fremont, or Wallingford to Capitol Hill).

Seattle has an exceedingly low number of taxis, with no new licenses being issued since the early 1990s.  What taxis we do have are not popular with the public, with only 10% of those surveyed for the City’s own study ranking taxi service as very good (compared to over 70% ranking TNCs in that catagory). We don’t care, in principle, if the market fills the demand for taxi-like services with TNCs or conventional taxis, as long as regulations allow one or both to satisfy demand. In practice, however, TNCs are bringing innovation to a stagnant sector, 21st century prerequisites like GPS tracking, smartphone dispatching, estimated arrival times, dynamic management of the supply of cars, and cashless payment.

The unfairness of the current taxi regime should not be a reason to effectively shut TNCs down. Instead, Seattle should relax or eliminate taxi limits, along with the Rube Goldberg system of leasing agents, separate dispatchers, and artificial scarcity that only raises the costs of market entry. Taxis should be freer to innovate and compete, and already we are seeing attempts to bring taxis and for-hire vehicles into the 21st century through apps like Flywheel.

We urge the Council to let innovators innovate, and to produce regulations that answer safety concerns while letting TNCs thrive.

The committee meeting is Thursday (1/30) at 2:00pm in Council Chambers. A vote is expected on February 14th. The STB Editorial Board is Martin H. Duke and Matthew Johnson.

Testify About Plan B Next Week

Feb. 4th is the King County Council’s last special public hearing before the Feb. 10th meeting on whether to create a Transportation Benefit District, funded with an April ballot measure, targeted at road maintenance and preserving Metro Service levels. Signup is at 5:30 with testimony beginning at 6pm at Union Station, 401 S. Jackson St.

The goal here for transit advocates should be to pack the room – showing up to this is one of the key ways we demand a ballot measure to save Metro!

You can RSVP at the TCC website, or at the Facebook event.

Tunnel Operations, One Year On


In October 2012 Metro implemented a number of techniques to speed up fare payment in the tunnel, as the Ride Free Area expired. I asked Metro how things are going, one year plus later:

Q: When exactly (and at what stations) are the loaders deployed? Has their deployment evolved in any way since the beginning?

A: Three ORCA Boarding Assistants are deployed at Westlake Station, two northbound and one south bound, from 3:30 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. on weekdays. There is one boarding assistant southbound at IDS but all boarding assistants can be reassigned as needed. When boarding assistants were first introduced in the tunnel, they were deployed at all the stations except Pioneer Square Station. Once we had some experience with boarding assistants, we adjusted their deployment to maximize their benefit, which is to reduce dwell time for buses in the tunnel. This was one of a number of measures we took to minimize the added tunnel travel time required with pay-on-entry. A comparison of PM peak travel times before and after the service change showed that by January, northbound travel times were about one minute longer than before the service change, while southbound travel times were nearly the same as before the service change. Boarding assistants were not expected to be a permanent cost of operation once the system settled down after the end of the RFA. We have adjusted the use of boarding assistants and will continue to evaluate where and how to most cost-effectively deploy them in the tunnel.

Q: Is there any firm plan to do something about cash payment in the tunnel?

A: Metro transit has no firm plan to do something about cash payment in the tunnel. Having said that however, Metro continues to take actions to expand ORCA use throughout the system and reduce cash payments. These include recent changes to allow retailers to sell ORCA cards, adding ORCA Vending Machines at additional locations, continued outreach with our ORCA To Go van to help customers get ORCA cards and learn how to use them, continuing to expand our employer partnerships to provide employees with passes on ORCA cards, and working with our regional transit partners to implement a regional ORCA day-pass demonstration beginning in April [more to come on this — Ed.]. We are also exploring fare structure options such as a low-income fare implemented through ORCA and ORCA fare incentives that would increase ORCA market share. Finally, we are also exploring other options such as new ticket vending machines and mobile apps that would allow customers to pay their fare with their smart phones. About the time Link service is extended to Northgate (2021) and operated at a much higher frequency, buses are unlikely to still be operating in the tunnel, hence major investments to make the platforms paid zones would not be cost effective. Given the volume of bus service, a universal proof of payment system is cost prohibitive.

Q: As a stopgap, why not have someone sell transfers in the tunnel stations during peak hours? Existing media presumably wouldn’t require much in the way of study.

A: Selling transfers or tickets and not allowing cash on the buses would require that we have a secure customer service location at each station, conveniently placed. We would need a secure facility to store cash, and we would need to have a point-of-sale system that provided an audit trail of sales and revenue. We currently don’t have budget or staff to provide this service. We are exploring concepts for a ticket vending machine and have federal funds to initiate a project. We are currently focused on deploying machines on Third Ave to help reduce dwell times on the surface.

Q: Is there any special way that Metro handles bus exits from the CPS bays into the tunnel? For example, are certain bays supposed to yield to other bays? 

A: Buses exiting from CPS bays into the tunnel during peak hour are supposed to exit going into the tunnel in a manner that maximizes the number of buses that can service the station platform. Ideally, a platoon of five buses would leave CPS such that 2 south end buses exit CPS first (rts 101, 102, 106, 150), followed by 1 bus that is dropping off customers only ( rt. 41, 316, 71,72, 73, 74, 76, 77, followed by 2 eastside coaches (rts. 216,218,550, 255). Service supervisors when available oversee the platooning of coaches at CPS. Otherwise, the drivers take it upon themselves to determine who should go first when exiting from the bays at CPS. Except for brand new tunnel drivers, drivers know what order they should leave in so as to expedite loading in the stations. Metro operations is aware that scheduled coaches can be late and the ideal platoon might not materialize, but more often than not, buses in the tunnel leave in the correct order and operations run fairly smoothly.

Seattle 2035


Futurama citySeattle is in the midst of its update to the city’s comprehensive plan, dubbed “Seattle 2035“. Washington State’s Growth Management Act requires that cities and counties across the state update their comprehensive plans every 10 years to adequately plan for a 20-year horizon. The current update cycle has many other cities and counties working to complete their updates by the state-required June 30, 2015 deadline.* Prior to the update process, a lot of behind the scenes work is done: buildable land and capacity analyses, reviews of effectiveness metrics from past plans, demographic and job projections, analysis of current levels of service, and much more.

With the launch of Seattle 2035, two years of public engagement begins, led by the Department of Planning and Development (DPD). The public can review the background profile of the comprehensive plan and comment about where future planning policy should go. Whatever ultimately comes out of the comprehensive plan update, these policies will guide implementing regulations over the next decade and more.

If you would like to get involved, be sure to check out the website, comment, and attend future meetings. A great upcoming kick-off is the Seattle Pecha Kucha and open house Thursday:

Pecha Kucha Seattle, the City of Seattle and the Seattle Art Museum are collaborating on Big Ideas – Imagining Seattle’s Future, 2035 & Beyond, an evening of presentations by leaders from across Seattle’s innovation / creation community. The theme will be exploring grand visions of Seattle’s future. These discussion will hopefully inspire great conversations and ideas as we begin the process of updating Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan.

The event will be held Thursday, January 30th, 5:30 – 8:30 pm at the PACCAR Pavilion at the Olympic Sculpture Park.   There will be an Open House ahead of the event featuring information about the Comprehensive Plan and Seattle’s growth over the past twenty years. (4:30 – 5:30 pm)

*I probably should plug Snohomish County’s 2015 Update.

Stephen Fesler is a land use planner working for Snohomish County’s planning department. He is passionate about urbanist land use practices like urban design, heritage preservation, transport, and rural and environmental conservation. He moved from Kent to Seattle in Spring 2012 and now resides in the University District. He commutes via the 512 and regularly can be seen on the 44, 49, and 70s.

Waiting for the Bus

People really hate waiting. Research suggests that many people misjudge the amount of time they spend waiting for the bus, overestimating by anywhere from 50-100%. This is a problem for transit ridership, since you don’t have to wait to drive your car.

The Atlantic Cities recently suggested that real-time arrival information might be the answer; a University of Washington study found that people who used OneBusAway (a real-time bus information service) were able to accurately measure the amount of time they spent waiting.

However, let’s say we assume that waiting is truly the root of all evil. Could we revamp an existing transit system to avoid waiting, or at least make it as pleasant as possible? What would it look like? Here are a few suggestions.

Note that I don’t think all of these suggestions should be implemented as is. Rather, they’re meant to provoke discussion about the goals of our current transit system, and whether those goals are the right ones.

Maximize frequency. If one bus runs every 30 minutes, and another bus runs every 15 minutes, the average wait time for the second bus will be half as long. Double frequency again, and wait time again goes down by half. The gold standard is a line like the NYC Lexington Ave subway, which comes so frequently that you’re liable to watch two trains go by as you make your way from the fare gates to the platform. More realistically, a bus that comes every 10 minutes or less has an average wait time of 5 minutes or less, which is a huge improvement over the status quo. But there’s no such thing as too much frequency.

Choose frequency over span and coverage. If a bus only runs once every hour, then for the amount people will have to wait, it might as well not be running at all. Better to use those service hours on improving frequency during a shorter window of service, or to improve frequency on a different bus that follows a similar route.

Choose frequency over speed. If a bus only runs once every 30 minutes, but it has a long non-stop segment, then it would be better to reroute it so that it has a timed connection to a nearby train or frequent bus. The resulting trip will be slower, but less time will be spent waiting.

Prefer bus routes along neighborhood-commercial streets. Don’t force people to walk from a vibrant commercial street to a quiet residential road, or a loud car-centered arterial or freeway. Use the streets that provide a better waiting experience, even if they’ll make the bus slower. As a litmus test, if a street is a great place to walk, it’s probably a great place to wait for the bus; if no one is out walking, then no one will want to wait there, either.

Prefer bus stops in front of good waiting places. If you’re at a coffee shop or restaurant that’s adjacent to your bus stop, then you almost don’t have to wait outside at all; you can stay inside until you know the bus is about to arrive. A bus stop in front of a bank or a parking lot offers no such advantage. Worst of all are freeway stops, where you’re exposed to both weather and noise, with nothing to distract you.

Prefer connections at great waiting places. The wait for the second bus is even worse than the wait for the first bus. You can’t avoid the wait by running out the door at the last minute. The best connection points are blocks with tons of interesting retail establishments and street life. The worst connection points are freeway exits or interchanges.

Don’t have too many stops. Sitting on a stopped bus isn’t as bad as waiting for the bus to come, but it’s not nearly as good as sitting on a bus that’s moving. A carefully chosen set of stops, where each stop provides a relatively pleasant waiting experience, will minimize the amount of time that riders spend waiting for the bus to resume moving.

Prefer stop amenities to on-vehicle amenities. For example, heated bus shelters would dramatically improve the waiting experience on cold winter days, while Wi-Fi would give people something to do. This is especially important for stops that must be placed in terrible locations, such as major freeway stations.

To reiterate, I don’t think that all of these changes are appropriate all the time. But I do think it’s interesting to think about the kind of transit network we’d have if we truly wanted to eliminate the unpleasantness of waiting. It might be better, and it might be worse, but it would undoubtedly be quite different from what we have today.

What If Metro Were to Have a Low-Income Access ORCA?


As part of the fare increases being considered by the King County Council to take effect March 2015, Metro is planning to raise Access fares by $0.50 per ride, to $1.75. That’s a big “ouch” for some of the poorest paratransit users in King County, an extra $216 a year for monthly pass buyers.

Assuredly, Metro must have pondered applying the low-income fare category to Access fares during the deliberations of the Low Income Fare Options Advisory Committee. The lawyers might have been squeamish about the idea of asking paratransit riders to provide proof of income, since federal law prohibits income-based requirements in determining who is eligible to ride paratransit. Of course, offering a discounted fare to those who can prove they are at or below 200% of the poverty level is a separate issue, and one that has not hamstrung the other U.S. transit agencies that offer a low-income paratransit fare.

Indeed, the low-income paratransit fare has gone hand-in-hand with low-income fixed route fares at Lincoln, Nebraska’s StarTrans, Tucson, Arizona’s SunTrans, and San Mateo County, California’s SamTrans.

The industry standard for paratransit fares is drifting toward charging the federal legal limit: twice the regular fare for a fixed-route trip of similar length. (See question 12 on the linked page.) However, some have interpreted Fell v. Spokane Transit as limiting paratransit fares in Washington State to merely equal to the regular fare for a fixed-route trip of similar length. Metro has stated its intent to move Access fares toward that level.

SamTrans has collected a lot of useful demographic data that may or may not translate well to King County. In particular, 15% of SamTrans paratransit registrants qualify for a low-income fare, but these riders account for 50% of all trips taken.

Extrapolating from this data, Metro would likely have to raise the non-low-income Access fare at least as much as it lowers the new low-income Access fare from the proposed $1.75 in order to make the roll-out of a low-income Access ORCA revenue-neutral. Metro could freeze the low-income Access fare at $1.25, while introducing a 25-cent surcharge for paying at the time of the ride instead of pre-paying through the rider’s ORCA account. That 25-cent deterrent would hopefully reduce cash handling to nearly zero, and pretty much eliminate Access fare evasion.

To offset this fare freeze, the non-low-income Access fare could go all the way up to $2.50 (plus a 25-cent cash payment surcharge), which is in line with the ratio used by the other agencies. If San Mateo County’s demographics can be translated to King County, this alternative to the $1.75 proposal should end up yielding more revenue. At the same time, cash-strapped riders who depend on Access to get around would not be nickeled and dimed into being housebound. Those who don’t qualify for the discount would still be getting an incredible bargain at $2.50 for curb-to-curb service, and could obviously afford to pay the higher fare.

Instead of inching toward one fare policy goal, Metro could reach that goal in one jump and simultaneously hold to King County’s commitment to social equity.

TCC is Hiring

Transportation Choices Coalition is hiring a new Policy Director:

The Policy Director is a senior member of the staff leadership team and will lead our policy strategies at the regional, state, and (limited) federal level work. The Policy Director is responsible for developing and implementing Transportation Choices Coalition’s (TCC) policy programs including legislative session in partnership with our contract lobbyist in Olympia, working with statewide agencies and stakeholder groups, working with staff members of Washington’s federal delegation, building political support for our agenda; developing messages; running the policy component of legislative, issue-based, and ballot measure campaigns; organizing legislative coalition partners around our priorities; directing policy interns; increasing accountability with elected officials around transit issues; and interacting with the media. We seek a dynamic individual with 7+ years of transportation, public policy, government relations, or experience in a related field to lead our policy programs. Some direct lobbying and/or legislative experience is also a must.

For many of this blog’s issues, TCC is the strongest advocate we have at the state level. For more information and to apply, click here.

News Roundup: Not Really News

This seems like cause for concern. (Joseph Heck/twitter)

This is an open thread.

Tacoma Amtrak Station Design Meeting Tomorrow

Tacoma Link tracks and Freighthouse Square from Tacoma Dome Station (Flickr User Aleferrari)
Tacoma Link tracks and Freighthouse Square from Tacoma Dome Station (Flickr User Aleferrari)

Following the negative reaction elicited by the state’s first conceptual designs for Tacoma’s Freighthouse Square — which would have demolished the westernmost half of the structure, WSDOT is starting over. In addition to the city trying to hire their own architect for the project, tomorrow and again next Thursday WSDOT will hold two public meetings to hear your ideas for station design.  More details and commentary below the fold. Continue reading “Tacoma Amtrak Station Design Meeting Tomorrow”

Traffic Forecast v Reality

Upton Sinclair said “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” Here are official USDOT vehicle forecasts compared to actual traffic data.


Note that only March 2001 to November 2001 and Dec 2007 to June 2009 were recessions. More over at Sightline, who provided the graph.

This is actually important, because we wouldn’t think we need huge highway mega-projects if it weren’t for these forecasts.

What is Community Input For?

Seattle DPD

Reading about last week’s low-rise zoning public meeting is enough to lose your faith in humanity, but it’s worth thinking about what the purpose of community input is. As usual, Matt Yglesias has some interesting thoughts on this subject:

Q: What do you think are the best practices for urban planning and community input and cooperation? So often, great plans are defeated or watered down [because] of a very vocal minority.

I think it’s important for people to think harder about what the point of community input is. Presumably the idea is that you don’t want outsiders who may not understand the situation to run roughshod over existing residents like in some of these urban renewal nightmare stories. But that means you actually want to get a valid sample of the population, not just whichever subset of the population happens to have the time and inclination to come to meetings. And you also have to listen to what people are specifically sayingare they bringing new information to light, or are they simply advancing very narrow interests… It’s good to listen to everyone, but that doesn’t mean you have to do what they want.

Although I agree with everything above, the case for public meetings deserves a more thorough interrogation than to wave generically at 1960s urban renewal. Whether it’s a transportation project or a development, the greatest value of public meetings is facts, not opinions. How do people use the space? What trips do they make? What little-understood but much-loved institution will the project destroy that a simple change in the plan could save?

If the intention of a project is to benefit the current residents of a particular neighborhood, then it’s important that someone there actually values the improvement. However, many city projects ought not to be specifically intended to benefit the current residents of a particular neighborhood.

Take the example of bringing low-income housing to a relatively wealthy area. There are concrete reasons to oppose low-income housing, beyond prejudice and aesthetics. Living in a neighborhood with  variety of incomes and cultures isn’t for everyone. Moreover, low incomes often bring social problems and lower property values.

I think most readers won’t be particularly moved by those points. Building low-income housing is is about accommodating future residents, meeting the city’s broader social justice goals, and maintaining the city’s diversity, not protecting home values. There’s nothing magical about the neighborhood as a unit of decision, in particular when its intent is measured with deeply flawed public meeting tools, when the city’s robust democratic institutions have decided on a different course.

Which it makes it all the more astounding that when the issue isn’t low-income housing, for many people the much lower-stakes concerns about “scale” and “character” overwhelm the enormous objective advantages of denser housing.

Financially Sustainable Transit

King County Metro has a revenue crisis. They are currently facing a $75 million annual shortfall, and without a new source of revenue, they will be forced to institute a 17% cut in service hours.

Most of Metro’s money comes from taxes and fares. So if Metro needs new revenue, then it’s only logical to look to these sources. King County is actively working on a plan to raise the sales tax and the vehicle license fee (paid annually on vehicle registration renewal) to address this shortfall, as well as providing some additional money for local road maintenance. I strongly support their efforts, and will enthusiastically vote for the measure when it hits my ballot.

However, there’s something that’s always bugged me about Metro’s fare structure. If Alice rides the bus for two stops, and Bob rides for 15 miles, they both pay the same $2.25 fare. (And if Bob has a monthly pass, he may end up paying less than Alice on a per-trip basis.) No other transportation service works like this. Taxi fares are based on distance and time. Toll roads cost more the further you drive. Airlines set fares based on costs and demand. Long-distance trains and buses, commuter rail… the list goes on. Only local transit networks have flat fares. Continue reading “Financially Sustainable Transit”

SR 99 Tunnel Toll Update


The “Advisory Committee on Tolling and Traffic Management” met Tuesday and the notes are up online now. A draft recommendation for the tolls was presented and there are a few interesting bits of information in the recommendation:

  • The tunnels would be $1 for off-peak and $1.25 for preak, because anything higher would be an extreme deterrent to using the tunnel.
  • About a third of the tolling money would be eaten up with collection cost.
  • Over 30 years, $150 million would go to transit, or $5 million per year.
  • $200 million would go to construction costs for the tunnel, which is supposed to cost $3.1 billion

In order to raise $1.1 billion off a $1 toll, you need a billion trips, which over 30 years works out to 91,300 a day or so. That seems a little high to me, but we’ll see. If their estimates are anything like the SR-520 numbers, it’s going to be tough to get all that money. If the toll revenue comes up short, I would hope that the transit funding is preserved, but I guess will have to see about that, too.

November 2013 Sound Transit Ridership Report

Nov13MvgAvgAnother month, another double digit weekday ridership gain for Link.

November’s Central Link Weekday/Saturday/Sunday boardings were 29,289/26,073/15,508, growth of 11.8%, 32.3%, and -7.6% respectively over November 2012. Sounder’s weekday boardings were up 8.8% (up 8% on the South Line, 1% North Line).  Total Tacoma Link ridership was down 6.4% with weekday ridership declining 4.6%. Weekday ST Express ridership was up 7.7%, with most growth occurring on East King, South King and Pierce routes. Complete November Ridership Summary here.

Link has seen double digit weekday ridership growth fourteen out of the past seventeen months.

My Link charts below the fold. Continue reading “November 2013 Sound Transit Ridership Report”

CORRECTION: It Was Supposed to Fall Over

This was not supposed to fall over this way. Photo courtesy WSDOT
Moving pontoons through Lake Washington

In my post Saturday on project management challenges at WSDOT, I included a photo with a caption suggesting the coffer cell was not supposed to fall over as depicted. Although it was an attempt at levity, the coffer cell was indeed intended to fall over. You can find more information on the coffer cell here.

I have corrected the original post and regret the error.

While we’re on the topic of WSDOT’s photos, I recommend their flickr sets. In particular, this one on the SR-99 tunnel has some really impressive shots.