rt231.As workers continue to search for any survivors in the devastating Oso mudslide, Community Transit has just started a new alternate bus route, 231, serving Darrington and nearby communities that lost service on route 230 due to the blockage of State Route 530. The route takes the long way around, via State Route 20 through Skagit County.

The schedule is available here. Community Transit is also working with affected residents to form vanpools.

Our hearts go out to those who lost loved ones in this tragedy. Our gratitude goes out to the army of rescue workers who have done everything from providing food, shelter, clothing, and transportation, to digging through the muck to find anyone who might still be alive under there.

17 Replies to “New Darrington Bus Route 231”

  1. Seriously, good for them. And good for the operators of the system, and the people of Snohomish County that, considering the deprived condition of the rest of their system, the rest of the county was willing and able to consent.

    But the best defense against both natural and human-caused disaster is a utility system, including public transit and hospitals and other medical care, who use every operating minute, and dollar, in normal times to keep themselves in shape when the times suddenly turn otherwise.

    Somehow I doubt that the people who dumped the well-known load of tea into Boston Harbor would have had any trouble at all with a government that accomplished this goal. With the tea-barrels followed closely by a length of chain with certain people who now use the name of the demonstration attached to the last link.

    Mark Dublin

    1. Huh?

      The last link goes to Community Transit’s web site, about vanpools?

  2. A bit OT here, but I’d love to see a direct Smokey Point TC-Everett Station (with a stop at the I-5/Marine Drive Flyer Stop?) route at least at peak service. It would cut the hour-long slog through Marysville on the 201 to only 25 or so minutes like with the temporary 231.

  3. I asked a few drivers about it today, they all said CT posted nothing on the board about it to the drivers, they only knew what was said on the news.

    1. I’m a little surprised they are charging fare at all, given all that Darrington and White Horse residents have had to deal with this past week.

      1. They could fix that problem by saying pay on exit for westbound trips (to smokey pt and everett)

    2. ASDF, I’m sure that if somebody tries to get on the bus and has no money, the driver will let them ride.

      The fare is there because it’d require an act of the transit board to set it aside for the route.

      As for the ride being a bargain, just remember that ORCA transfers last 2 hours, which means it’d expire before the bus even left Skagit County, let alone get to Smokey Pt or Everett.

      Also, Skagit Transit doesn’t take the ORCA card.

      1. The inverse rule of bus fares:
        The longer and more painful the bus trip, the lower the fare should be.

      2. The longer and more painful the bus trip, the lower the fare should be.

        While I agree the special circumstances surrounding this route justify low/no fare, just say no to this principle. Setting aside the ‘pain’ criteria (how defined? inefficiency relative to driving? Annoying fellow passengers? Likelihood of having to stand/be crowded?) charging less for long routes creates perverse incentives to live in such a way as to produce long commutes. Such a fare policy would be pro-sprawl and anti-environment, and lead to the kind of farebox recovery ratio/per-trip subsidy that strengthens the political hand of anti-transit forces.

  4. It may sound impossible to believe today, but before the recession, Darrington used to have hourly service all day, I think, even on Sundays (and, if not Sundays, for sure Saturdays).

    Nowadays, it feel doubtful that service there will ever get back to that level – even with the recession over, whatever new money comes in is virtually certain to get spent elsewhere. (Or at least, it would be much more effective in terms of riders carried per dollar spent if spent elsewhere).

    1. Before the big cuts they had 3-4 round trips from Smokey Pt to Darrington in the AM and same in the PM. Sat/Sun was a little less. Just before the slide, one round trip in AM, one in PM both from Arlington, nothing on Saturday.

  5. Reminds me of the long ago days when Metro had a once-a-week (I think Wednesdays) run from Seattle to Skykomish, which, by a quirk of geography, or rather a quirk of the highway route, was and is accessible only through Snohomish County.

    1. You know lightning, it would be logical, and probably cheaper for Metro to add service to Skykomish/Bearing by paying CT to extend their route from Gold Bar, rather then running additional buses on Hwy2

      1. They did. The old 730 ran between Bothell and Skykomish three days a week. Much more frequent than the old Metro Route 357, which ran on Wednesdays only.

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