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The Upper Deck of one Sounder North Car Nearing Everett...
Author photo inside a Sounder North from last autumn

Just an acute head’s up January 22, 2015 [Thursday], 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm, Union Station, Ruth Fisher Boardroom, 401 S. Jackson St., Seattle will have as a report to the board, “Sounder North Service Protocols” right before public comment.  Hoping there will be dialogue about preemptive cancellations of Sounder North when there’s high slide risk and also the history of how Sounder North hasn’t exactly panned out as promised (such as STB noted back in 2012 and I’ve said there’s a license to kill Sounder North).

Have a last-minute schedule conflict (SIGH) so I won’t be able to attend in person (as probably 99% of Seattle Transit Blog readership due to work issues).  Hopefully before the end of business Friday, Sound Transit will please have the video on their website.

As I’ve said before: If you want to make your views known to the Sound Transit B0ard – EmailTheBoard-AT-soundtransit-DOT-orgNow is the time…

3 Replies to “North by Northwest 43: Sounder North on the Thursday Sound Transit Board Agenda”

  1. Joe,

    I was gone when your original post was made, but I would say that your overall concern for danger is “more exciteder” and the “most overheatedest” [sic] thing I’ve heard about Sounder North. Yes, it’s a pig in a poke and a massive waste of public resources. But NO bus is a “thousand times safer” than ANY train. Intercity passenger fatalities per billion passenger miles for rail and bus are in a ratio of about 4 to 1 in favor of the buses: 0.11 versus 0.43.

    So cool the hyperbole and focus on the lousy ROI of Sounder North. But do bear in mind that that $250 million for the “slots” is a sunk cost — a permanent loss; Warren Buffet, nice guy though he doubtless is, is not going to return it.

    And agitate for Snohomish County to create bus lanes where it hurts as well as where it’s easy.

    1. Anandakos;

      Sorry for the late reply – long hours recently.

      1) The slide risk is what makes intercity rail general statistics irrelevant. One slide knocks a train on its side or into the Puget Sound, we got people possibly dead. Not to mention at the least a mass casualty incident and a PR disasster that could undo support for Sound Transit – neither of which I want to happen.

      IF that means yours truly has to rearrange my commute for the good of the whole – okay, that’s called being a team player. Heck knows I’ve ripped into DeePee and Aaaawwww moments ago for not being team players like us.

      2) I agree the ROI on Sounder North is theatre of the absurd. It is underperforming and it is beyond time to put Sounder North on a seasonal basis if not terminate it. We need to protect scarce transit resources – and this is coming from the guy who wants light rail to reach Paine Field.

      3) Furthermore we need bus lanes in Snohomish County. We need bus lanes for Swift I and hopefully soon Swift II. We need bus lanes to be a priority statewide. Great thinking.

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