Page Two articles are from our reader community.

The Metro Link Connections changes proposed in March 2015, modified in May 2015, and not finalized yet, have provoked significant discussion and disagreements. While the goal of adjusting Metro routes to better connect with new light rail stations and to reduce duplication is laudable and necessary, the changes proposed for March 2016 are premature and deserve more data and more discussion.

Some of the proposals ask people to give up one seat rides in favor of two or more seat rides and service gaps which will result in more people using their cars. These are the same transit users who are getting improved service from Prop One funding only to be lost in March 2016.

Next year our decision-making will be informed with more data:

  • The Prop One changes in June and September 2015 changes and the impact on the Metro System.
  • The Move Seattle ballot initiative vote in November 2015.
  • Light rail expansion and its impact on the Metro System.

Let’s postpone the Metro link connection modifications until the second half of 2016.

43 Replies to “Why Metro March 2016 Changes Should Be Postponed”

  1. The changes made with central link, while controversial, have improved transportation in the area significantly. Miss the 194 anyone?

  2. It’s really three groups of changes in different geographical areas, and one group is pretty good while another group is questionable. The north Seattle changes are almost universally praised as creating a more rational frequent grid, improving crosstown service, and improving access to UW Station until North Link opens. The biggest flaws in alternative 1 condemned by public input were mitigated in alternative 3. The 520 changes were mostly withdrawn, so whatever merit they might have had will be lost.

    The Capitol Hill changes were mostly redistributing the pie: they made some things better but other things worse, so it’s hard to say they’d be any improvement, and alternative 3 created a couple transit holes that were a step backward. I told Metro to give Capitol Hill enough time to ensure it’s an improvement, even if it goes past Link’s opening. The problems are geographical and possibly intractable: any straight route across Capitol Hill is a short distance, broken further by road barriers, with no village-center endpoint in many directions, and diminished further by low-density pockets in the middle. Routes have to turn to serve the residents, but every turn benefits some locations and hurts others, so there are many tradeoffs, and it’s hard to say one route is definitively better than another. I live in the middle of the conglomoration so the impact on me is the proposal’s average impact, while Reg N lives somewhere on the 11 with no other direct route, so the impact on him and his neighbors depends on what happens to that route. I will just grumble and take a different pair of routes each direction and walk further to a Madison bus stop, while Reg N may find his access to downtown moved to a different part of downtown, and his access to central Broadway deleted. These are the kinds of tradeoffs occurring on Capitol Hill, and why there are so many opinions and no consensus.

    The fourth proposal should be presented to the County Council this month, and its Capitol Hill routes may be different yet again. Maybe Reg N has seen it but I haven’t. So I wouldn’t say postpone yet, but let’s see what the proposal says. Overall for the Hill, it’s not a big deal if any of the proposals are chosen or not, because none of them are wonderful but none of them are horrible either, just like the status quo. But certain areas like 19th Ave E and eastern Madison would be more impacted by whatever happens to their only route.

    1. Mike,

      Thank you for your comments, my statements “Some of the proposals ask people to give up one seat rides in favor of two or more seat rides and service gaps which will result in more people using their cars” states the problem for a proposed 11 E Madison as i understand it today.

      1. Mike,

        I must need to make one big point that yes, I have concerns for the 11, but that is not my only concern. In addition the 11 is used by more that just the people on the East Madison corridor, but from people who transfer to the 11 from the 8 and 48 and that includes an area between East Union and the shop Canal.

        Recently I have had more comments about the changes from people who do not live on the Madison corridor!

    2. Mike,

      I didn’t see your question, yes I have seen the latest Metro proposal and that is what caused me to write this blog post! Look below and you will see more about my position.

  3. The Capitol Hill restructure seems to be revolving around the question of how to serve 2 endpoints: Madison Park and Interlaken Park/19th East and which endpoint gets a connection to Madison and which endpoint gets a connection to Capitol Hill Station. One endpoint will get a ride to CHS and the other will get a trip to Madison Street/First Hill. And there doesn’t seem to be an evolving consensus about which path is preferred by each endpoint neighborhood.

    For Metro planners, the problem is that the opening of north Link is going to profoundly change transit ridership patterns and neighborhood activity patterns on Capitol Hill. If Metro assigns the 11 to Madison Street (because that’s the consensus of the neighborhood) and then, 5 years in the future, Broadway & John becomes an important transportation hub and the surrounding neighborhood becomes a huge center-of-gravity shopping and social nexus (which is predictable, according to the Urbanist Manifest); will the Madison Park residents start complaining about the difficulty of getting to Capitol Hill Station? Are the residents of Madison Park and Interlaken Park looking into the future or are they just looking at the present?

    1. “will the Madison Park residents start complaining about the difficulty of getting to Capitol Hill Station?”

      That would be a good thing for the Madison-John advocates. In past route reorgs people have said, “Go downtown, nowhere else, no exceptions.” In this round there was a preference for downtown but not the apocolyptic wrath if it didn’t. If Madison Park starts talking more about a Madison-John route over time, it may start talking less about a one-seat ride to downtown. Eventually the neighborhood feedback may reach 50/50 or surpass it, and then Metro would really have an incentive to do it.

    2. Are the residents of Madison Park and Interlaken Park looking into the future or are they just looking at the present?

      And you’ve quite accurately summarized the “problem,” as it is, with these words. There’s nobody looking out for the middle of Seattle as a whole. Metro is responding to isolated neighborhood pressure for those spots to get what they want. Yet there’s rampant disagreement even in those neighborhoods. To be clear, I’m not bagging on anybody advocating for what they want and need; I’m saying that Metro doesn’t look, from the view of someone who lives in an “unorganized” area, to be respecting the service needs of all of us.

      Mike Orr writes just above me that once a Madison/John route reaches majority popularity in Madison Park, Metro may see fit to do it. What about the rest of us in “the box” (5, 520, the lake, 90) who use the 11 to get to destinations not served by an all-Madison route? Why do we have to detour via downtown? After this next restructure, SoMaSt (South Of Madison Street) will get to experience the unbridled joy of crossing IH-5 for most of our connections and that’s not good.

  4. There are several fundamental problems plaguing any restructure of Capitol Hill/First Hill/CD service:

    -matching demand on various corridor segments. In general demand drops the further you move from Downtown. For E/W corridors west of Broadway, Broadway to 23rd, and east of 23rd all have distinct demand patterns.
    -many corridors are fairly short due to terrain, I-5, and the street grid.
    -severe reliability problems for any route being fed by service coming from Denny west of I-5
    -lack of suitable layover space at the points most ideal for terminals or splitting routes.
    -lack of OCS for restructuring ETB routes. There is a fairly limited set of restructures possible if we want to keep ETBs in certain corridors.

    This is all without considering what a city funded Madison BRT route does to any plans metro has or might develop,

  5. Hopefully the following will answer the questions of the central area need a bus on Madison despite the desire to move the 11 over to John so it can go to CHS:

    1) John/Thomas already has access via the 8 and adding the 11 is duplicating existing service. Yes, this requires a transfer, but the users fot he 8 transfer to the 11 today!
    2) Access to the 8 can be done at MLK or 23rd and it’s seamless.
    3) Light Rail access is already available for 11 users via the Nordstrom station that gives access to all light rail stations today and in the future including CHS.
    4) Moving the 11 off of Madison, yes helps replace the 43, but at what cost to the users of the current 11.
    5) Replacing the 43 with the 11 puts a diesel bus in place of an electric bus and we are getting new electric trolleys. Is this the direction we really want to go?
    6) The Proposed 11 on John would be a longer run and more likely to be less reliable than our current unreliable 11.
    7) The tradeoffs don’t justify the transferring and walking that having no bus on Madison will cause.
    8) Telling 11 users who go to Safeway that they can use the one on 15th is fine, but Group Health is not an alternative for the Medical facilities on Pill Hill! BTW, Group Health uses Swedish for its hospital.
    9) Madison Street west of 23rd is growing with new businesses and housing being added. Taking the bus off of Madison will retard that growth.
    10) Madison Street has been chosen for a BRT route and redevelopment by its implementation.
    11) If Metro wants to promote the use of cars instead of buses, then take the 11 off of Madison.

    The following is a partial list of places that people frequent on the Madison corridor today and this includes transfer from the 8 at MLK form the 8 and at 23rd from the 43 and 48. This is NOT just a Madison Park bus that is just the final eastbound destination.

    To be told that Dick’s Drive in is a great alternative for Traders Joes is a joke. Yes, I like their burgers, but I’m into healthy food now. To be told that you now one seat access to Group Health, instead of Pill is a step too far. To tell seniors, the ill or the disabled to walk and transfer is outright mean. To tell them to use Access doesn’t work for all, since not everyone qualifies!

    • Gyms and Health Clubs on or near Madison
    • Seattle Arts Academy that meets at TDHS School Facility
    • The Bullitt Center
    • Planned Parenthood
    • Seattle Hearing & Balance Center
    • Three Black Churches including Madison Temple Church of God, Mount Zion Baptist and A.M.E. Church
    • Jewish Family Child Service
    • Retirement homes such as Aegis Living and The Council House
    • Countless residential buildings along East Madison above Safeway, The Coop, Trader Joes, and numerous other older facilities
    • The Community College
    • Bailey Boushay House
    • Deaf-Blind Services Center 1620 18th Ave, #200
    • LVW at 18th

    Bottom line, to given the 11 Madison bus 15 minute service in September and then to tell riders sorry, but you going to have to transfer or to walk to get your destinations is very mean spirited. This is why I say Metro needs to slow this process down and give its latest proposal the light of day by giving it to the community before giving it to the County Council.

    BTW, I am running a non scientific poll among the 4,000 people that I can reach on Nextdoor with proposes 5 options for the 11 and this is not just a poll of Madison Park residents either. The poll currently has an all Madison bus with a seamless transfer at Broadway to Pike/Pine in first and the current 11 as is in second with 3 a John/CHS bus in third. I will release the results sometime next week.

    1. One problem that is undermining the pleas for better transit service for neighborhoods like Madison Park and Interlaken Park is that those neighborhoods aren’t accepting the greater density that is required to sustain better transit service. As other nearby neighborhoods add the population density that can sustain better public transit service, the neighborhoods that resist adding density will have to realize that Metro won’t be able to provide frequent service where there aren’t enough riders to justify the cost of providing the service.

      1. The issue is NOT Madison Park transit service, but keeping and improving transit service on the Madison Corridor. Again Madison Park is just a layover/turnaround point for the bus!

        Removing bus service from a major portion of the east side of Madison is not acceptable as I’ve stated above!

    2. Reg N, so you favor keeping the Madison-Pine routing? You keep saying “take the 11 off Madison” but the 11 is not on western Madison. Metro’s proposal is to put it on western Madison. (As of alternative 3; I still haven’t seen alternative 4.) Nobody is talking about eliminating bus service on the east end of Madison. It will remain, although with the number 11 or 8. If the 11 becomes Madison-John, it becomes the 8. Then the 12 will have to remain on Madison, and there will be no more number 11. That in turn might cause Madison BRT to be numbered 12 rather than 11, although I think it should be “11” or “M”.

      “Group Health uses Swedish for its hospital.”

      Is the Group Health hospital closed? I’ve heard it’s turned more into a regular insurance company rather than having its own set of providers and not allowing people to use other providers. But if the hospital is closed then what’s in the building? Offices?

      1. Mike, there is a new Alt 4 putting the 11 for it to leave E Madison at E John going up E John on the current 43 route to CHS and Pike/Pine. Group Health is open, but they use Swedish for their hospitalized patients.

        This leave E Madison with NO bus other than the 12 from 19th Ave E to 16th Ave E. This leave East Madison with almost no service between 24th ave E and 16th Ave E as well as E Pine from 16th to Broadway.

        Hopefully this clears up the confusion.

      2. It was presented and it appears to be the Metro favorite rite now based on a meeting last week. I thought ti best that ti see the light of day given the IMPACT that it has. Sorry to have been so coy up to know, but I think you and others will understand. This plan was also presented to the sounding board and I could only live with it if there was a second Madison Madison bus which Metro says they can’t get the hours for.

        Amazing but true, Metro is giving us 15 minute service in September only to give parts of Madison NO service next March. There is justification for two buses, Madrona has the 2 and 3, they can split the hours from Prop 1 and based on my feedback on Nextdoor there is support for an all Madison run along the Madison corridor.

      3. I hope Metro’s going to put that plan online soon; we’ll probably be all over it when they do.

        What’re they doing with the 8 there? I’d suggest running it down Madison to Pike and then jogging over north somewhere (Broadway? 12th?) to Denny and CHS. That way, all of Madison would get service somehow, and only a few blocks would be left with the unreliable 8 as their only bus. It does violate the perfect grid, but this might actually be the best compromise – everyone would only have one transfer to get anywhere.

      4. The 8 stays as in Alt 3 and the plan will not be made public until it goes to Council and that is why I speaking up! BTW, that is a reasonable idea and why I wanted this plan to see the light of day. Metro may never talk to me again, but I can’t afford the loss of service that they are proposing and described above.

      5. Well, it’s not final until it’s published and it may change by then. Metro may have convinced you that it’s final but I didn’t hear it so I’m not convinced. In any case, the most important thing to do is make a decision and move on. Let people know where the routes will be so they can make decisions where to live, what to be happy about or get resigned to, and how to vote the next time around. As I said, every alternative is a tradeoff with winners and losers: there’s no perfect alternative given our geographical, land use, and service hour limitations.

        Any change won’t be forever. Metro used to round-robin through the subareas every few years and reorganize. That broke down in 2000 with the tax-cap initiatives and worse in 2008 with the recession because they gutted Metro’s planning resources. Metro sacrificed everything else to keep the buses running, and improvements stagnated. But now Metro is working on a long-term plan, and it still has to respond to the city’s Transit Master Plan, and that plan may change with a new mayor and council districts, but I expect Metro will get back into revising each subarea every few years. It has to because of population changes and trip-pattern changes anyway.

        It’s hard to cry over three blocks losing service, because you can easily walk it and it’s about the distance of one bus stop. The new service would break up Madison, but the current service already does. That makes me start to think maybe I should have supported the all-Madison route, although that has problems of isolating Madison from Capitol Hill.

      6. Mike,

        It’s easy for you to say not to cry for the loss of service on three blocks, but it’s actually from 24 th Ave E to Broadway that there will be no service on Madison/Pine. I’m not going to repeat the list that is above of affected places on Madison again.

        I gave Metro a list of place people frequent via the 11 and they didn’t respond, so would you like to respond to my list above and provide alternatives for each please?

      7. I thought you said the 10 and 12 would remain on their current routings? If that’s the case, there’ll be service on Madison from 19th west. Users of the 11 can transfer to the 12 at 19th and Thomas to continue on Madison, or to the 10 at 15th and Thomas to get to Pine. There’re definitely downsides to this plan, but let’s not exaggerate the loss of service.

      8. William, I not trying to make the problem bigger, but asking people to walk and/or transfer on the 11 where they can get to via one seat rides doesn’t work for me. Asking a parent of a child that goes to the Seattle Art Academy at TDS at 16the Ave E and E Pine to take two buses will result in the child being driven to school Do I need to elaborate further?

        To give the 11 15 minute service in September from money that Seattle voted for Metro and then to have Metro divert the funds to other run so 11 users can only get to Nordstrom with a one seat ride is absurd! Why give the 11 riders the 15 minutes service in the first place?

  6. I have been doing an unscientific survey for several days on Nextdoor neighborhoods that use the 11 and here are the results as of 10 PM Friday June 26th.

    Which of the following routes would you prefer for the 11 E Madison
    • A bus that would service Madison shore to shore with a seamless transfer to Pike/Pine buses 31%
    • Keep the bus as is on its current routing .27%
    • Have the bus turn on to E John at 24th Ave E to Light Rail then to Pike/Pine 18%
    • A two bus solution with a Madison to Madison run with one running up John to Light Rail then to Pike/Pine 15%
    • A bus that would service Madison from shore to shore 9%
    VOTED 98

  7. A 43 to Madison Park with number 11; that is surprising. But if follows the pattern of Metro trying to switch the heads of the 10, 11, or 12 until it can find something the least objectionable. My initial impression is that it preserves most levels of service west of 23rd and north of Madison, and that may be a good thing with so many uncertainties about what people will want to do after Link opens. Somebody transferring from the 48 would have double frequency to Capitol Hill Station and Broadway and Summit, and that would mitigate the blow of deleting the 43 if it turns out that Metro underestimated the impact. The 12-John was questionable because it turns short of 23rd and overserves 19th Ave E, which could then be interpreted as an implicit promise to keep that level of service on 19th forever.

    It’s still not clear to me which routes would be full-time frequent, and that makes a difference in evaluating this. But it sounds like as you said, part of John Street and Madison Valley would have more service, while mid Madison would have less service. Another tradeoff.

    “I gave Metro a list of place people frequent via the 11 and they didn’t respond, so would you like to respond to my list above and provide alternatives for each please?”

    It’s not my responsibility, I can’t control what Metro does, and I don’t know where some of those places are. I’m also going by an incomplete description of a proposal that hasn’t been finalized. When Metro publishes it we can ask them their reasoning and what feedback was the basis for each change. I also don’t know which routes would be frequent, which makes a difference. You talk a lot about how people on the 11 can get to places, but what about people in other parts of east Seattle going to other places? Regarding your list, I’d like to help, but I probably can’t come up with anything better than you can, and you have more experience with coming from the east part of Madison than I do.

    1. Mike, thank you for an honest answer and hope you understand I’ve been there when I’ve seen a Metro Planner struggle to come up with answer when ask by an audience member how do I get from point A to B. Metro did not respond to my latest questions on how to get there. I was told to look at all the advantages of John like Group Health instead of Swedish, Virginia Mason and the like or Disk’s instead of Trader Joes. What do I tell my neighbor who will have to drive her child to school because Metro wants to eliminate bus service? Is anyone willing to tell the people in retirement homes on Madison or places of worship that they have no bus or that they will have to transfer/walk or worse take Access?

      This Metro plan will push people to drive/rent a car if they drive, but like in my case I can’t drive and I’m not the only one. Taking a cab or Uber is expensive when compared to a bus that I can use today! Please give me one reason why we should not have bus service on Madison, why it should take longer to get to your destination next March or why we should have to walk/transfer to get to places on Madison? Yes, Metro’s proposal gets people to Nordstrom, but a lot of us don’t need/want to go thee!

      Yes, I am familiar with some of the places on the list, but not all since people gave been contribution to the list I’ve compiles. I will repeat this again, Metro should NOT give the 11 bus 15 min service in September 2105 if they plan to remove the service west of 24th ave East all together in March 2016.

      I do have a map showing the pans for March 2016 and I know this may not be final, but according to them the comment period is over we’re doing what we want, going to the County Council and that will be your only time to comment. Too bad, but that is way too late in my opinion!

      1. That’s the same argument that everybody who’s losing a one-seat ride makes: “But it will harm these five people, and they’ll switch to driving, and disabled people can’t walk three blocks.” It happened when the 55 was restructured (north California – WS Junction – downtown). It happened when a veteran in West Seattle complained about losing the VA loop on the 60 and he can’t get from the bus stop to the entrance in his wheelchair so he can’t get his treatments and now he’s gonna die. I told him that the detour was slowing many people down and making people not take transit, and he said “Can’t this country recognize the need of veterans and gladly spend a few minutes more so that they can get to the hospital?” I said that some veterans don’t have a one-seat ride now and maybe they would with a reorg. My mom keeps complaining about losing the 230/321 (through-routed; replaced by RapidRide B and the 235, thus requiring a transfer which difficult for people with walkers) and 272 (NE 8th to UW express). She says Metro keeps taking away all the routes and bus stops that people use. But the flip side of that is, how many people have worse service because of the old routing, and how many people aren’t taking transit because of it? Does the change help more people than it hurts? Because we can’t give one-seat rides to everywhere, and lots of people now don’t have one-seat rides to where they want to go.

        So is this 11 change better for east Seattle as a whole? Are the benefits so large as to justify reducing service in mid Madison? I don’t know. But preserving the “43” to 23rd is a big deal, both for western Capitol Hill service and because it crosses the 48 where the existing service is, so it might.

        And I do think we should have better alternative service for the disabled and those who find it a little hard to get around. A fixed-route service combined with neighborhood taxis (must be much less expensive than private taxis, and subsidized if necessary) could do it. That would fill in the holes in Metro’s network, including those created by reorgs. But it requires funding, and so does everything else that transit should do and isn’t doing.

  8. You didn’t answer the question, why is Metro giving the 11 bus 15 minute service in September only to remove the service all together in March 2016? You also appear to be okay with Metro promoting the use of cars since it doesn’t want to provide bus service to those who need it?

    You make great arguments for a BIG no vote on the Mayor’s Move Seattle ballot measure this November!

    1. That’s also happening on other routes such as the 12, 25, and 30. It’s because there are several different clocks running simultaneously. First the cut rounds, then Prop 1, then University Link. Prop 1 had to be implemented very quickly because letting pass-ups and unreliability go on any longer was intolerable, and to show people that they’re getting something for their tax dollars. They couldn’t base it on the University Link network because those decisions hadn’t been made yet. It was negotiated with the city in, what, January? and went to the Council in March? So was based on the existing routes and performance metrics, which said that parts of those routes were underserved so the whole routes were boosted. For the12 the underservice was probably on First Hill, not 19th, but there are a limited number of layout locations that are possible or cost-effective, so 19th got the benefit too even though it’s long-term due for a reduction. I don’t know whether the 11’s underservice was in Madison Park or elsewhere. If Metro is increasing then reverting, it must mean that either the underservice wasn’t in Madison Park or that Metro doesn’t have enough service hours to keep it and address all its other responsibilities. Did you ask Metro that question, why it’s raising Madison Park service and then reverting it?

      “Metro should NOT give the 11 bus 15 min service in September 2105 if they plan to remove the service west of 24th ave East all together in March 2016.”

      That would require asking the Council to amend the resolution it already passed, outside of and before the University Link restructure.

      “You also appear to be okay with Metro promoting the use of cars since it doesn’t want to provide bus service to those who need it?”

      Again, that’s what everybody who loses a one-seat ride or faces a service reduction says. When people have asked Metro about these cases, Metro has said, “You’ll have to drive.” or “You’ll have to get a car and drive to a P&R.” People respond in disbelief about that, and vow to oppose future transit measures. But you can’t reduce everybody’s vehicle-miles travelled. Whether the proposal is good or not depends on whether it decreases more people’s VMT than it increases. I don’t know the totality; that will come out in the wider debate; but my hunch is it must be good or at least neutral or Metro wouldn’t have proposed it. Capitol Hill was always going to be difficult, with some people losing service and having to start driving. The issue is whether it’s people on one street or another street, going one direction or another direction.

      1. Mike,

        This discussion would be a lot better if referred to the East Madison corridor instead of Madison Park. Their self appointed leaders have spoken to metro and the said all they need is a one seat ride to Nordstrom and that is what Metro is going to provide! I am not associated with them in any way at all!!! Please strop referring to Madison Park…

        Given the proposals Metro has put out I no longer have confidence it their route planning and ability to listen to their riders. I predict a backlash for Move Seattle when their plans are made public and not just given to a few! I’m asking for a full airing of the plan that Metro wants to go to Council with and YES,, I still believe this who process should be slowed down or postponed after LR goes in!

      2. Sorry, the naming is difficult. I said “western Capitol Hill” meaning west of 23rd, as if there’s an equally-large east half, but most of the east part is not Capitol Hill. I’ve been saying “western Madison” for west of Broadway, “mid Madison” for Broadway to 23rd (or 28th), and “eastern Madison” for 23rd (or 28th) to the water.

        Thanks for telling us of the possible never-suggested-before routes, because it gives us time to form our opinions and prepare a reaction. But the final proposal will be published and there will be a full amount of both official and non-official feedback, this time to the Council. The Council will hopefully be mindful of the fact that the other restructure areas have already had their routes vetted in earlier rounds, while brand-new routes in Capitol Hill have not had public feedback yet, so the Council should give them extra attention and not take Metro’s word on them as much as the other areas.

        If you do oppose it (and I don’t know what I’ll do), the most effective way is what you’ve outlined: ask for the entire Capitol Hill restructure to go through another round or two, for the sake of people all over the hill and not just for those on one or two streets. Ask for Capitol Hill to be separated from the resolution for refinement. That may affect the 48 split because it needs the 43’s service hours. If it can be split without increasing the south’s frequency, that may be enough to keep the current 43 running, but maybe not. That would anger those south of John who were expecting an increase. Another way would be to reduce the 43 to half-hourly as in alternative 2. But that makes it less effective, and raises questions about whether it’s effective at half-hourly (because it’s a suburban level of service in an inner-city neighborhood).

      3. Mike,

        Thank you for the thoughtful response and I hope you know that Metro may never talk to me again, but given the new proposal that should see the light of day I don’t care at this point. It might be good if we could talk offline?

        I like others on this blog am a bus rider, but in my case I can’t drive due to vision limitations. Everywhere I go is by bus and this newest alternative hits me personally especially when Metro suggests which medical facilities we should use and denies people easy access to places of worship that they have today! In others a plan is as good as the amount of explaining Metro will have to do telling people how to get from point A to B.

        Yes, you are right about the BRT, but it is dependent on the Move Seattle and Congress, good luck with that! I honestly think Metro is hurting the chances of the BRT by not keeping the bus on Madison or using a two bus solution, one on Madison all the way and one the CHS. But, pleas don’t suggest that we accept CHS and wait for BRT!

      4. You can write to STB and ask for my email citing this message as consent, or come to a meetup.

        Metro or at least parts of Metro are not thrilled about Madison BRT, the First Hill streetcar, or the SLU Streetcar. They don’t think they’re the best frequent transit corridors but the city (or ST for the FHS) is basically forcing Metro to accept them as faits accomplis.

        An all-Madison route contradicts the strong ridership patterns between east Madison and central Capitol Hill and Midtown, and takes riders instead to the important but probably less widely used medical district, office buildings, and ferry terminal. The FH streetcar is too short to replace the 49, 9, or 14 so they have to run parallel. The SLU streetcar runs right next to the 40 and 70 which actually go somewhere and surely have enough capacity.

        If Metro doesn’t go through with the all-Madison route in alternative 3, it’s a clear rebuke to the city that ridership factors are too much against it. That doesn’t mean an all-Madison route is a bad idea, but it alone is not sufficient to completely replace the service currently provided by the 11. Maybe it plus something else could. Or maybe after all those Madison apartments are built and some cultural/nightlife stuff gets there and downtown becomes more mixed-use, it will be the place everyone wants to be and the Madison-Capitol Hill connection will fade in importance. But that’s a long way off and speculative.

      5. This is why I opined earlier that Metro is making better routing decisions than the city, and the city should coordinate its HCT corridors with Metro before pursuing them further. Martin toned down my wording considerably in the editing, and I didn’t object because I didn’t want to start a battle against city in that context, so I just let it say the city’s actions are substandard. The TMP seems to be based mostly on input from nonprofessionals before SDOT got a dedicated transit director. The problem is that Metro doesn’t have a long-term plan to counter it with, because it lost its planning capacity in the 2000 tax-cap initiatives and hasn’t been able to plan beyond RapidRide and short-term necessities ever since. But now it’s starting a plan, and we’ll see how good it is when it’s finished. I’ve been seeing good ideas come out of Metro the past three years so I’m optimistic. The city would do well to listen to Metro more and coordinate its TMP with Metro’s goals.

        Of course, that doesn’t mean that Metro doesn’t make tradeoffs and mistakes, and the 11 could be one of them.

  9. As others have pointed out there are 4 options to pair with service between the Lake and John & Madison:

    -Current 11 routing via Madison and Pike.
    -paired with current 8 via John, Olive, and Denny
    -43 routing to 23rd & John via Pike, Bellevue, Olive, and John
    -all-Madison routing.

    Also remember the city will be doing Madison BRT in the near future between the Ferry terminal and at least 23rd.

    My personal druthers would be to force a grid as much as possible. So I like all-Madison or making the route a tail of the 8. Of course as the 8 has a number of problems on the Denny portion west of I-5 the option to continue on the current 43 route is attractive too.

  10. Chris,

    Here is a unscientific poll that I’ve been running for a few days on Nextdoor and It reaches areas north and south on Madison where that may catch the 11. You will note that I have 5 options that have been in play for months.

    Which of the following routes would you prefer for the 11 E Madison

    • A bus that would service Madison shore to shore with a seamless transfer to Pike/Pine buses 30%
    • Keep the bus as is on its current routing .26%
    • Have the bus turn on to E John at 24th Ave E to Light Rail then to Pike/Pine 19%
    • A two bus solution with a Madison to Madison run with one running up John to Light Rail then to Pike/Pine 15%
    • A bus that would service Madison from shore to shore 9%
    VOTED 99

    1. I don’t understand the difference between your option 1 and 5. They seem to be mostly the same thing to me.

      Also there will be a strong bias in surveys like this toward keeping things as they are. Even then Madison shore to shore seems to have strong support.

      Better questions are what are regular destinations (including trip frequency) for all trips and transit trips.

      Your two bus solution has the problem that it would either over-serve east Madison or under-serve John and Madison further west.

      1. Chris,

        Thank you for your questions an the first choice is the 11 as it is to Broadway and Pine, thus allowing an easy seamless transfer there to the 10 so passengers can get to the Pike/Pine downtown corridor; The bus then goes South out Broadway to Madison to the Coleman dock. I introduced this plan, my Alternative 3, to Metro in March of this year.

        The fifth option is the May Metro Option. BTW, this option was a take off on mine, but Metro couldn’t figure out how to solve the Broadway congestion option. I still think there are ways to make it work and apparently so do the people on Nextdoor who use the 11 E Madison.

        Hopefully this clears up the difference. Yes, there is a way to have your cake and eat it too, but Metro dropped the ball here in my view.

        The two bus solution is in effect in Madrona where Metro urns the 2 and 3, check the their common exit out of Madtrona. Metro is adding 15 min service to the 11 in September 2015 due to Prop One funding. Metro has not shown that there aren’t enough hours to split the the 11 as of September into two runs, one for Madison Shore to Shore and the other up John to CHS and Pike/Pine. Yes, another missed opportunity by Metro!

        Another big advantage of this it will show that the Madison to Madison bus is actually the BRT route and we proposed it as an express with fewer stops. Based on the comments I’ve seen on Nextdoor the Madison currently serves two constituencies downtown and that is business and shopping. The two bus solution prevents the loss of service on Madison from 24th Ave East to Broadway and this loss affects a lot people and business in that area. Please see the list above!

  11. @RegN –

    First off, the wording of the survey is very biased. Why does option 1) have a “seamless transfer”, but not option 3). The transfer at option 3) to the 8, 49, or Link, looks just as seamless to me.

    And, option 1 vs. option 5 – identical route, but 1) has “with a seamless transfer to Pike/Pine buses”, while 5) does not. Of course 1) is going to look better to survey takers.

    Your objections to alternatives 1 and 3 made some amount of sense. Alternative 1 subjected everyone going to Madison Park to a bus at the Mercy of Denny traffic, even those not traveling anywhere near the Denny corridor. Fine. Alternative 3 forced a longer walk or transfer to get to the Capitol Hill business district, and took away the option to switch over to Link to avoid the long crawl down Madison to downtown (and then end up at the wrong part of downtown). Fine.

    But alternative 4 seems to everything you’ve been asking for for months. One seat ride to the retail corridor downtown. Check. One seat ride to the Pike/Pine corridor between the top of Capitol Hill and downtown. Check. One seat ride to the Capitol Hill business district. Check. Direct ride to the Link station. Check.

    About the only thing missing from alternative 4 is a one-seat ride to the middle of Pill Hill. But it does serve the stops at Bellevue and Pine/Pike, which is as close to Pill Hill as today’s #11 goes. While the new #11 wouldn’t be quite as good for Madison Park->Hospital commuters as alternative 3, it’s still no worse than the do-nothing option.

    As to the complaint about no bus service on Madison between 19th and 23rd. Instead of making dramatic outbursts about a “gap” on Madison with no bus service, let’s calm down and look at the map. Today’s #11 bus has two stops between 19th and 23rd, and 20th and 22nd St. respectively. The stop at 20th Ave. is 488 feet from the stop west of 19th, which has 15-minute service on the 12. The stop on 22nd and Madison is 701 feet from the stop 22nd and John, which would be served by the new 11 bus. Nobody along Madison is losing service.

    1. Sorry to say have looked at the map and the gap is a BIG thing, just check the list of places impacted! Once again, this is not a Madison Park issue but an issue for the riders of the 11 on the Madison corridor.

      It’s really easy to be cavalier about Metro’s latest alternative when you’re not the one impacted and I am personally impacted daily by these changes!

      1. In case you missed it the newest proposal is for the 11 to go to John to CHS, then to Pike Pine. There will be NO 11 on Madison Past 24th Ave East and East Madison.

  12. Here are the final results of an unscientificPoll that I rand on Nextdoor for the users of the 11 E Madison. I think that the result speak for themselves and the have been passed on Metro as well as SDOT.

    We are conducting another poll to determine the the east destination of the proposed Madison BRT and I will post the results next week.

    Which of the following routes would you prefer for the 11 E Madison

    · A bus that would service Madison shore to shore with a seamless transfer to Pike/Pine buses 31%

    · Keep the bus as is on its current routing 27%

    · Have the bus turn on to E John at 24th Ave E to Light Rail then to Pike/Pine 19%

    · A two bus solution with a Madison to Madison run with one running up John to Light Rail then to Pike/Pine 13%

    · A bus that would service Madison from shore to shore 10%


    This poll has been closed.132 votes

  13. Reading through the comments, I don’t really understand the post. You appear to have a problem with one very specific part of the re-structure. If you’re correct that the restructure will be very bad for a particular neighborhood, I don’t see why it would be any better if it happens in 15 months or 9. Why focus on the timing, when your real complaint is the content?

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