This afternoon the King County Council Transportation, Economy, and Environment (TrEE) Committee sent the ULink restructure to the full council without recommendation. The restructure ordinance will now be discussed by the full council, with a probable vote, on Monday, October 19.
Chair Dembowski and Councilmember Phillips introduced an amendment that responds to the bulk of the criticism received from the public, particularly on Routes 43 and 71. The amendment passed unanimously by a 7-0 vote.
The amendment significantly changes the restructure proposal:
- Retains Route 43, running its full route in both directions during weekday peak periods. So during peak periods, there will be up to 16 buses per hour running between 19th/Thomas and Capitol Hill Station via Routes 8, 11, and 43.
- Retains Route 71 on weekdays and Saturday, running every 30 minutes between View Ridge, Wedgwood, Ravenna, Roosevelt, the UDistrict, and UW Station via NE 65th St and 15th Ave NE. As a result, proposed Route 78 will not serve View Ridge, but will begin in Laurelhurst instead.
- Converts Route 373 into a local peak-only route instead of an express route. When Route 373 is running, Route 73 will only run reverse-peak, northbound in the morning and southbound in the afternoon.
- Moves Route 67 and 73 back to their current routing in the University District, with Route 67 on Roosevelt/11th and Route 73 moving back to The Ave.
There were additional items in the amendment related to continued public outreach and transfer improvement studies. There may be further changes behind the scenes prior to full council consideration on Monday, so stay tuned.