Obstructed view of route 880, which will see all trips extended to the Mukilteo ferry terminal beginning next March. (photo by author)

The official results of the November 3, 2015 election have been certified, with Community Transit victorious in their campaign to fund additional transit service with a 0.3% sales tax increase. Just over 100,000 residents in the taxing district cast their ballots, approving Proposition 1 by 51%.

Although the new sales tax will not be collected until April 2016, and not received until June, Community Transit will be using some of its reserve funds to add 3,300 hours of new service beginning March 13, 2016. The agency is planning a major service expansion in September 2016, which will require months of public input as well as time to prepare more buses and drivers.

The March 2016 change will add 15 new bus trips, extend 6 existing trips, and increase the span of service on some routes:

New trips

Route 413 (Swamp Creek-Seattle) – One weekday southbound trip will be added at 5:48 a.m.

Route 415 (Seattle-North Lynnwood) – One weekday northbound trip will be added at 3:15 p.m.

Route 421 (Marysville-Seattle) – One weekday southbound trip will be added at 5:15 a.m.

Route 435 (Seattle-Mill Creek) – One weekday northbound trip will be added at 3:55 p.m.

Extended span of service

Swift (Everett Station-Aurora Village)– Two early morning trips are being added to the Swift bus rapid transit line along Highway 99. One new trip will run in each direction starting at 4:40 a.m.

Route 240 (Stanwood-Smokey Point) – One weeknight eastbound trip will be added, leaving Stanwood at 8:25 p.m.

Route 271(Gold Bar-Everett) – One weeknight westbound trip will be added, leaving Gold Bar at 8:55 p.m.

Improved midday service

Route 112 (Mountlake Terrace-Ash Way) – Seven weekday trips will be added between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. to provide 30-minute frequencies throughout the day until 7 p.m.

Extended trips

Route 880 (Mukilteo-University District) – All trips will terminate at Mukilteo Ferry Terminal, extending six truncated trips north from Lynnwood.

82 Replies to “Community Transit Announces New Service Scheduled for March 2016”

  1. Great news coming out.

    Let’s remember this is only the beginning of new Community Transit service won from a hard-fought election against the most negative, destructive, pessimistic campaign I’ve seen south of the BCNDP.

    Round II and Round III of Service Upgrades to come.

    1. OK, Joe. You’ve reamed the BC Liberals and now the BC New Democrats. IS there a real BC Conservative Party? If so I’ve never heard of it except as a footnote with 5% of the vote. And I find it very hard to believe that “Conservatives” would be the band leaders for transit in BC. Very hard.

      Do you hate the NDP because they have “Democratic” in their name?

      1. Anandakos;

        There was a feeble attempt to have a real BC Conservative Party, but fear of the socialist BCNDP (who are mostly far to the left of US Democrats) killed the BC Cons for good during the last few weeks of the 2013 election campaign. I can assure you, the BC Cons had nothing good in store for Translink.

        I hate the BCNDP as a party because there is so much socialism in them. I get why some small businesspeople who want to be MLAs join the BCNDP – the corporatism of the BC Liberals is quite strong.

      2. What you say is essentially how I understood BC politics, too. I didn’t know, however, that the NDP was against the TransLink plan. If so they must have been wanting to spend the money for other things like some Seattle pro-low income-housing folks.

  2. We have at least 30 excess drivers now, why the hold up on adding new service? Just got 15 new 40 ft.New flyers, and have reserve of 15+ 40’s . CT is paying all these drivers to sit at base because they hired in anticipation of this passing and they still won’t be working until maybe september. Come on CT, put the buses on the road, 3,300 hours increase is not even 2 full time drivers.

  3. Oh, and Joe, as a driver, very few people ask about the museum of flight. Those that do take a very easy walk from the 526& 84th up the hill and i never hear complaints about it exept from you.

    1. Jim, you mean the Future of Flight and I can assure you the Future of Flight has gotten a very, very different story. You can thank the Future of Flight needing service for most of my tenacity & aggression in my efforts to help Prop 1 pass.

      1. Just giving you the observations of a driver that is on that route daily. Anyway, it is a pretty short walk for Future of flight for the few people that do ask about it.

      2. I can’t imagine more than a few people per day wanting to go to the Future Museum of Flight. Definitely not worth diverting anything for.

        The walk up the hill isn’t bad either although if it were flat it would be better.

      3. Grant;

        Don’t worry, we in the STB comments have had this discussion many times so I’ll go easy on you.

        The better, smarter plan is instead of screwing with Route 113 – the CT route for Mukilteo – to have a new route from the under construction Mukilteo Multimodal Terminal to Seaway Station that’ll stop at the Future of Flight to help feed Swift 2. Considering the demand for a Seattle to Seaway Station route, an Everett Station to Seaway Station route, and a Mukilteo waterfront to Seaway Station – the ability for Future of Flight to recruit CT users will be… stratospheric. Think transit first, right?

        After all, the Future of Flight got 777.8 visitors mean average on the 363 days it was open in 2014 – almost 300,000 in one year. Pro-Tip Grant: You just don’t say no to a key magnet business, #1 Snohomish County tourist attraction with many requests for transit service, & involuntary contributor to transit with a Dreamlifter Ops Centre & hotel for next door neighbors as per my aerial picture. After all, in 2010 Community Transit knew there was a problem when they held a public meeting there.

        All that said Grant: I’m stoked in the 2016-2018 timeframe, it’ll get fixed as more time and more money are coming together for a true win-win solution. No kidding!

      4. A more direct way to get to the Seattle Premium Outet mall in Tulalip should be a high priority then, with 6.5 million visitor a year. far more people are trying to get their by bus than boeing tour. It takes 3 buses, one of them very infrequent (222), and a long walk to get to it. but way more ask how to get there,

      5. OK, great point. I’d like to see that too.

        But Future of Flight first. Here’s why:

        1) Future of Flight has actively campaigned and actively fought for CT Prop 1 passage
        2) Outlet Mall, where where they?
        3) Future of Flight is now a stop on a route that will be necessary to feed the Swift 2 northern terminus

        That said, I would like Swift 3 to go from Everett Station to Smokey Point/Arlington or the Outlet Mall – whichever is more to the north. Really would help Skagit Transit out if the 90X could stop in northern Snohomish County instead of Everett Station. Also would help Camano Island out.

      6. Swift 3 must be Edmonds-Lynnwood to feed Link. There’s really no argument, since that corridor is begging for it. How better to connect Swift (on 99) to Link than another Swift line?

        Swift 4 should be the 201 replacement to Smokey Point, with a service boost for the 222 (connecting Swift to the outlet mall) and some other north county routes that feed into it at Smokey Point Transit Center (which would itself need some renovations to support Swift artics on layover).

        Skagit Transit should really partner up with Community Transit and add a 90X stop at Smokey Point Transit Center (already a local hub for northern Snohomish County). CT could kick in some extra funding and maybe even run a few artics on busier runs in the near future. The 90X will still have to terminate at Everett Station, since there’s no point in adding an extra hour (15-minute wait, 45-minute ride) to the commute from the north.

      7. Great comment Bruce. I have came around to agree with you.

        I had just thought by ending at Smokey Point, a Swift would be able to complete the route with only a small time penalty & dramatic cost savings on Skagit Transit’s most popular county connector. Guess I was wrong.

        All the more reason for STB to please champion a Dedicated State Source of Operating Funding for Regional Service Provided by Rural and Small Urban Transit Districts, as “Many of the Rural and Small Urban Transit systems around the State provide regional service outside of their own boundaries that provides benefits to the state highway system at a modest cost. In many cases, this regional service provides the only public transportation connection between communities. Dedicated state support of these regional services would provide reliable access to jobs, education and medical services for citizens across the State.”

        Joe

    2. As a downtown hotel worker, we’re often asked about public transportation to the Future Museum of Flight during the summer. For those who can afford it, they opt for tour shuttles from downtown. For budget travelers, they endure the lengthy trip on the 113. I’ve personally run into a few of them while commuting on the 512.

      CT should seriously consider serving the museum. May be every other trip? Or serving it during the summer time only?

      1. Tour shuttles tend to be very overpriced – as in so overpriced that, even a rental car would be cheaper. At least with the current network, one reasonable balance between time and money, at least for someone staying in a hotel downtown, might be to take the 512 to Lynnwood TC, but to switch over to Uber between there and the museum. I think the price would be cheaper than a rental car, and the time just a few minutes more than driving nonstop. Depending on how much process is involved with picking up and returning the rental car, the bus->Uber option may actually end up being faster.

      2. It’s really not that hard to take the 512 to Lynnwood TC and then the 113 to the base of the hill. I’ve ran into people from other countries wanting to do this and I just gave them directions and off they went.

  4. Are there really more people traveling the Swift corridor at 4:40 AM that 11:00 PM (according to the schedule, Swift shuts down at 10). I would think that if you’re going to extend the span of service, the evening hours would pick up more riders.

    1. The 5am trip has good ridership, and the 440 departure is cheaper to operate since the base is open already, if they added a later swift departure say 10:20pm, it would require more personnel (supervisor, dispatch, mechanic wait at base if something should happen. I know the last swift trips are now occupied by street people and drug addicts and other non-paying people.

    2. I’ve been up that way only a few times, but when I did it seemed like it would be the type of neighborhood that would need early morning service due to the working class nature of things.

      TriMet’s first red line train leaves Beaverton at 3:30 am, but the last train to the airport goes through downtown Portland at 10:30 pm.

      Not everyone works banker’s hours, and some neighborhoods and industries require service early in the morning rather than late at night.

    3. I attend events at Edmonds Community College, and the last bus being at 10:20 means I have to leave in the middle or walk to Aurora Village (which takes an hour). Both Swift and ST Express end at 10pm so you can’t take the other one either. So yes, later runs would be used by paying riders.

      1. last 101 leaves aurora at 10:40, last 120 leaves edmonds cc at 10:10 to ltc. Much faster if you want to catch the 512 to walk to lynnwood tc from the college . only about a mile…Having driven the last swifts now and before when we did have later service, very few paying riders. Glen is right on, about the early morning need. Maybe one later 101 from mariner p&r would be worthwhile for now.

      2. I joke that I have a “transit curfew” set at 9 p.m.

        If I leave Seattle at any time later than that, I will not make the last northbound 201 to get me home, and that’s with an assumption that the driver will hold for an incoming 512 (which they usually do).

      3. And a woman I know was living in Mt Vernon for a while and couldn’t find work up there so she went back to her old clients in Seattle. I asked, is there a bus to there? She said there’s a bus from Everett but the last one leaves at 7pm so she has to leave Seattle by 6.

      4. There will be in September. These first changes are very small (except for the 112) and I personally know people who couldn’t get to work on time using the Swift and needed an earlier run. Later would be nice too. It used to be that I could fly into Seatac as late as 10:15 pm and still get all the way home. Now it’s more like 7 pm.

    4. Those were my initial thoughts too, asdf2. But during CT’s major service change back in 2003, they implemented a peak-only route that ran north in the morning and south in the evening between AVTC and Everett Station. I asked the planners why they did this and they responded that there were workers needing to start early in Everett. Where? I’m not sure.

      Perhaps the same reasoning is being applied in today’s service expansion.

  5. I’m scratching my head why CT would do something worthwhile, like extending half the 880 trips to leave Mulilteo in the morning commute
    then, scheduling all the trips to leave a couple of minutes BEFORE the ferry gets in. At least Sounder North leaves 6 minutes after the ferry trips arrive.
    Maybe it’s part of a secret ‘No Compete’ clause in the Orca software, or buried deeper that that. I know they can read schedules, just like average riders have to do.
    Of course, you could always hop the 880 bus for a 1:20 min ride to UW for a quick trip into the CBD.

    1. It’s probably done that way so that the bus doesn’t get stuck in ferry traffic getting out of the gate, which would cause delays for all the riders that would be picked up down the line.

      One U-link opens, simply hopping on Sounder, then backtracking north on Link to the UW will probably be about as fast as the 880, anyway.

      1. 48 min to KSS, 10 to walk to IDS platform, 3 for a Link car and 14 to the U makes 1:15, so sure, save 5 min over the 880, plus it’s a better view going down the coast.

    2. mic, they did that once before with the 113 when the routing was changed to ash way, it left a few minutes before the ferry arrived, and if the driver waited then everyone else would be late for connecting buses at ash way. After many, many complaints scheduling changed the timing. What we heard was they basically just forgot about the ferry! at least the corrected it.

      1. The 113 is a local route and when I have taken it, it certainly seemed to provide a complete tour of housing developments in several areas.

        Whatever is timed for the ferry doesn’t need to do that, but instead needs to be a regional connector that hits as many other bus routes as practical.

        I just don’t see anyone commuting from Whidby Island to residential areas around Ash Way.

      2. Maybe. Maybe not.

        It seems to methe islanders have to pay sales tax once they are in the county. Wherever they work or visit has to pay sales tax too.

        When they drive through they they clog up Snohomish county roads too.

    3. This is CT we’re talking about, I’m not sure they know ferries or the sounder exist. It’s been nearly impossible to use CT to catch either and it probably won’t change in the future.

  6. What’s the likelihood of CT eventually restructuring its routes into more of an urban grid of straighter routes (as much as the street network will allow) with more high frequency lines? Seems sooner or later, though maybe decades out, CT will transition away from infrequent circuitous routes between transit centers with somewhat timed transfers.

    1. Just my own observation is that, at least in South County where I live, the CT routes are fairly straight, considering the topography. With all of the hills, and the limited places to cross I-5, and the routes that mostly are half-hourly or less during the day; it actually seems faster and more efficient to head up to LTC and meet a reasonably timed bus to wherever else I want to go.

      One issue is that Hwy 99 is not a straight line. So any line on a N-S grid is not necessarily aligned to the businesses that line that route.

      Another issue is that, apparently for safety reasons, the buses that cross 99 don’t seem to stop anywhere near the cross street, and thus nowhere near either a Swift or Rt 101 stop. Even at other potential transfer points, the routes may cross, but the bus stops are several hundred feet (or more commonly, a couple of blocks walk) apart. If a grid were to be designed, there would need to be some attention paid to where these connecting bus stops are placed.

      I believe that CT would benefit somewhat from more frequent service. But the actual grid service will be a long time coming. Perhaps it will happen when South Snohomish County becomes as dense as the City of Seattle. Which, while I hope won’t happen during my lifetime, probably will. (Yes, increased density is starting even in my Edmonds neighborhood.) For the foreseeable future, though, the hub & spoke system will be the way. Perhaps with an increasing number of hubs.

      1. Cascadia, your definitely spot-on about lack of density. When Snohomish County becomes like Seattle, then 15 min or less service will be needed. However, I must point out that most of the routes that cross Hwy 99 stop within a block of it. The 115 at 238th, the 115/116 at 200th St (EB), the 196 at 196th St, the 113 & 119 at 148th . . .

      2. The decision to have the southbound swift stop at 196th when most of the connecting buses are at 200th and then rectify the situation by also adding an additional station (only southbound) at 204th which is just as far away probably doesn’t help.

        The only northbound station is at 200th st which allows connections but it’s not near anything else.

      3. The station at 204th is for Edmonds Communtiy College. Because it’s a longish walk out from the college and then further to 196th. I thought they were going to put the station at 200th like the northbound one is, but they may have decided on 204th for some reason.

      4. It’s probably tough in some of those cases to get approval from the cities (recalling CT’s difficulty getting approval for a stop along 196th at 48th a couple years ago), and tough in some cases to site stops around driveways. Yet another example of the importance of support from cities (and other entities that control streets). If there are intractable problems with the current design it probably won’t be fixed with future work unless transit is part of every construction conversation around 99.

      5. Al is right,They could not get land use to make a station at 200th SB, or 196th NB, thus the stations are offset. Unfortunately CT just can’t put stops where you and I would like.

    2. The CT routes are straighter than the used to be. and a lot of them go from one transit center to another, and are pretty fast. In the 90s a family I used to visit in Mountlake Terrace, the woman said she could walk her dog to Edmonds Community College as fast as the bus that snaked its way there. And when I used to go to a place on 176th Street, there was a faster bus on 99 but the closest bus zigzaged back and forth across 99 without using it and took twice as long to get to Aurora Village. So things have gotten significantly better. The buses are pretty fast when they come; the problem is it can be a long time between them and they have a limited span.

      1. During the recession in addition to cutting huge swaths of service they also reorganized service to make it more efficient. Most of those changes will be maintained. Only the Monroe -gold bar service was reinstated to the pre recession format. Other trips will simply see more service and it’s likely new routes will be created. So the restructure will be a success.

    3. Though more frequent service would be nice, I think in many part of Snohomish County it would be a luxury rather than a necessity. With few exceptions, most of the areas that CT serves only needs 30 minute service. As Cascadia Bryan points out, when Snohomish County becomes as dense as Seattle, then a grid system would make more sense. Until then, few corridors requires 15 mi or less service.

      CT replied to a Facebook comment I made on their page that they WILL take a look at restructuring some routes. Which ones? I guess we’ll find out in the coming months.

      1. I don’t know about that. The Swift is by far the most used bus it comes every 12 minutes most of the day. Not every bus needs 12 minute headways but a lot of us don’t ride CT because the transfer times are far too long. I can get off the swift and walk almost a mile home faster than it takes to wait for my connecting bus. I don’t even bother looking at when the bus is coming anymore. If headways were 20 minutes it would probably be 50/50 whether waiting would be better or not.

    4. Grids work well when there are a lot of destinations along the grid street. In San Francisco you can take a bus a mile or two down a street to a supermarket or specialty store or club or apartment complex, and pass a hundred others that other people are going to, and you can transfer to a perpendicular route and go to hundreds more destinations all without going near downtown. But when the environment is all low density residential with a few scattered commercial areas, people are going to the commercial areas, not to a house that just happens to be straight north or west of where they are. The reason there’s no route on 15th from the U-District to Mountlake Terrace is that it’s so near-and-yet-too-far from the destinations most people are going to (Roosevelt, Northgate, Crest Cinema, the Shoreline Library, etc) Snohomish County is all like that if you try to install buses straight north-south/east-west outside of where the highways go that way or it’s a straight shot to the next transit center. In an ideal world, the destinations would be lined up on 15th and you’d just put BRT there and that would be the end of it. But the area was so fundamentally developed and redeveloped around the car, that these linear urban areas were either squashed or never developed.

    5. “Shockwave Flash crashed.” I’m so sad. “Reload?” No, I didn’t want a Flash ad in the first place.

  7. Well done to the people that put this on the ballot and (it appears) pulled it off. In “stealth” elections like this it’s typically the senior vote that weighs in strong. I’m curious if the supporters of the measure won the senior vote, which typically is anti-tax. Could be seniors in the CT taxing district use transit or could be they just thought it was a good idea for some other reason. The alternative is the supporters of the measure were able to turn out a demographic that doesn’t usually vote in off elections. Props either way but I’m curious to know the demographics behind the vote. Past history suggests that in a low turnout election a pro-transit measure would get slaughtered in Snohomish County.

    1. Attitudes may be changing in Snohomish County like they are in Seattle. People put up with traffic and commuting for so long that they get fed up. Plus they see the population rising and people living in Snohomish County involuntarily because they can’t afford Seattle or Shoreline, and they realize they can’t just do nothing and more highways aren’t going to happen, so they gotta do something else. Plus the people moving here are coming from somewhere, and maybe a significant number are coming from places where more extensive transit is normal and expected.

    2. It may also be a successful campaign. I don’t know what the Snohomish campaign was like, but in Seattle the Seattle Subway model basically turned things around the past few years. Before that rapid transit and significant bus expansions kept failing because people believed not enough people would be willing to pay the required taxes or wanted it that much anyway. The “no” voice had the default and the “yes” voice was fragmented. But when Seattle Subway and friends were able to organize the “yes” voice enough to show it to be a significant voting bloc, a lot of people on the margins thought maybe it is possible now and that was enough to bring the majority to yes. This has now been repeated a couple times so it’s clear that Seattle voters want significantly better transit even if it means higher taxes. Maybe something similar is happening in Snohomoish.

      1. There are two areas of public support that I can see for Community Transit.

        One is most certainly the commuter routes going into Seattle. Those routes are a bug chunk of CT’s riders, and there are a lot of people supporting the ability to commute to Seattle in fast, direct buses with really comfy seating. (Yes, my couple of CT416 trips every month are the comfiest rides I ever take!)

        The other is the fact that most of South Snohomish County is every bit as urban as, say, Shoreline or other similar areas of King County. These areas are part of the city now, and require city-level transit service. People realize that we are better off with city services, and also support other city services..

      2. Bryan,

        You are correct although to be more precise, SW SnoCo is as dense as Shoreline. I pulled up a bunch of numbers and the big surprise is that… it’s a damn good thing Everett is not in the CT voting block. Unlike Seattle which is a real city and pretty much has it’s way with County wide propositions Everett is a wasteland. A giant in a land of pigmies. It’s density is less than Auburn and population not that much larger.

        Density/sqmi City Population (% of county)

        4700 Shoreline 55,000
        4899 Montlake Terrance 21,000
        4500 Lynnwood 36,500
        3200 Mukelteo 21,000
        3900 Mill Creek 19,000
        3800 Bellevue 134,000
        3300 Redmond 60,000
        4500 Kirkland 85,000

        364 Snohomish County 746,000
        983 King County +2 million

        Those three eastside cities account for 279,000 (13.4%). All the above SnoCo cities total less than 100k (13.4%).

        800# Seattle 662,000 (33%)
        2100 Everett 107,000 (14%)
        2400 Auburn 76,000 (4%)

    3. Thank you Bernie. Between phone banking, a successful air war against Them Trolls I helped lead and some financial aid to do some mailings Prop 1 squeaked out with a win.

      I do have my criticisms of the campaign such as I wish we had more vigorous air war (e.g. letters to the editor, counter-trolling efforts), more nonprofits that needed service having volunteers advocate for service, and some swag. But Jennifer Gregerson and her people pulled it off.

      Now the question becomes: Can Community Transit deliver on its public promises (Swift 2, Future of Flight service, more schedule reliability, new routes) and likely when Community Transit delivers; will the mainstream media report and report with fair enthusiasm on the successes as much as the problems? Especially as every time transit needs more money they have to seek voter approval…

      1. Joe,
        That sounds like pretty standard campaign stuff. That it worked in Snohomish County is still a bit of a mystery. Maybe since it was such a non-election it snuck under the radar of the typical groups that would organize to oppose it. It would be interesting to examine the results by precinct. I don’t know the names well enough or the demographic to work from Current Precinct Results. I can see that Arlington voted overwhelmingly NO which I’d have guessed would be a somewhat representative vote of the county at large. It looks like most of Bothell voted yes, some precincts strongly yes. I keep forgetting that a swath of Bothell is through annexation part of Snohomish County. Clearview was a big yes please! which surprises me. Darrington 226 to 90 in favor is a real shock. Then I look at Edmonds which I’d have thought would be a big transit support block and it largely voted no; some precincts strongly NO. Everett was a mixed bag. I didn’t look at the spread sheet version (no Excel) but from eyeballing it looks like it carried in Everett. I don’t know how much Everett can swing a county wide vote the way Seattle can in King County. It would be great if someone that has the tech savvy could post a map like we’ve seen for most of the big King County votes.

      2. Bernie, thanks for the link – I just got the Excel version.

        I do believe very strongly that mainstream media stories that were true and helpful to the public debate like in the Everett Herald (sorta paywall), “Bus riders who don’t pay cost the system, taxpayers more than $1 million last year” need to be balanced out with Community Transit’s successes. It’s also worth noting that folks who don’t pay their fare deny transit agencies vital ridership stats.

      3. Bernie, it appears that you’re looking at the precinct results for Initiative 1366, at least for your comments about Darrington, Edmonds, and Everett. The results for the Community Transit measure are at the bottom of the PDF.

      4. sdk,
        You’re right! I was looking at the 1 on the first page and thought it was Prop 1. That’s why someone that knows what they’re doing should write a post about the precinct breakdown. We can’t know the demographic directly; like how many seniors voted yea/nay but the census does give a breakdown by precinct… I think. And anyone that really knows the area would have a pretty good feel for it.

        So, looking at the right page it seems Arlington was pretty evenly split albeit with some precincts voting in large numbers one way or the other. Bothell it seems was overall pretty supportive which isn’t a surprise. Clearview it seems didn’t get to vote? Darrington voted no but not by as wide a margin as I would have thought. Edmonds, as I would have expected was very supportive although some precincts were the polar opposite. Lynnwood it looks like was generally in the yes camp as I’d expect. Marysville was split but overall looks to have tipped to the no side. Monroe was mostly no to hell no. Montlake Terrace looks to be one of the strongest yes votes with Mukilteo also a big time supporter.

        I guess I knew Everett had it’s own transit district which seems strange. But doesn’t CT serve Everett Transit Center or is that just ST?

      5. It really seems strange that Everett has it’s own transit. I know there’s lot’s of problems with King Co. Metro vs a back from the dead Seattle Transit but 1) I’m amazed that Everett could maintain a financially viable transit system on it’s own; it’s not large, dense or wealthy 2) It doesn’t seem “self contained” and I’d think want to pull people into Everett jobs from outside the city. I guess with regard to #2 it does that with cost sharing?

      6. They’re not successful at it. They provide poor service in routes that make little sense but for some reason want to continue doing so. I see it as another example Everett trying to be a big city when they’re not. They have their own library system, housing authority and transit agency.

      7. Well Everett’s Everett and I would think if I were in Everett City Government seeing how Seattle’s transit needs have been provided by King County Metro yes but also at the whims of the King County Council (Exhibit A, Exhibit B, with many more upon request) I’d not want the same fate. Then there’s Skagit Transit where the board doesn’t ride the bus, the meetings are held in conjunction with another organization and don’t delve into details. Again, I think – and I admire some in Community Transit greatly – Everett is doing the right thing by not linking with them.

        Let me also say the previous Community Transit CEO really left a mess for my friend Emmett Heath to clean up. Since we’re discussing the Future of Flight… Did you know in 2010 Community Transit held actual public meetings at the Future of Flight to discuss Community Transit issues but rebuffed the Future of Flight in their service requests? Certain people in these comment threads who shall remain nameless should bow down and be grateful I have decided in all my wisdom as the greatest of the great OLFers in the game* not to go negative to help my Future of Flight buddies like I would against COER*.

        So let me just say I hope Everett Transit stays… Everett. The folks there have looked at the region and made the proper assessment to remain independent.

        Oh and not to give too much away, but if I were the Mount Vernon mayor I’d consider doing the same thing after some of the boom I’m going to bring in 2016…

        –FOOTNOTE–
        *OLF = OLF Coupeville; COER = Citizens Of Ebey’s Reserve, an anti-Navy group

      8. Everett Transit probably predated CT and it was left out of the transit benefit district. The CT services in Everett are Swift and a couple express stops on the 201/202 as they pass thorough between Marysville and Lynnwood. I understand ET pays CT for these services. ET’s routes seem to be more limited frequency and span, so I’d rather be in CT-land.

      9. Copy all Mike and agree in all but one respect.

        I’m not so sure if I were sitting in Everett City Hall at the prospect of my routes & budget being drawn up by this board which is only in composition – not personalities – a slight improvement on the King County Clowncil.

        Let’s also remember during the Great Recession Everett Transit continued to serve during Sundays. CT did not.

      10. Copy all Mike and agree in all but one respect.

        I’m not so sure if I were sitting in Everett City Hall at the prospect of my transit routes & budget being drawn up by this board which is only in composition – not personalities – a slight improvement on the King County Clowncil. The idea of some guy from a small town or a coalition of small towns having sway over Everett transit dollars will never appeal to those folks.

        Let’s also remember during the Great Recession Everett Transit continued to serve during Sundays. CT did not for a multitude of reasons.

      11. ET was established in 1969 as a city department, while CT didn’t come around until 1976. When CT was attempting to get voter approval, they kept failing at the last hurdle because of Everett residents voting no in an effort to keep their system with lower fares. A few attempts by the state legislature to make the two agencies merge have failed and it doesn’t look likely now that they’re on good terms.

        I like the system as it works now, within Everett. CT routes skip all but a handful of stops on the way to Everett Station and it works wonderfully. I can’t imagine how bad the 201/202 would be if it was forced to replace the 7 (including a long detour into the college transit center, for instance).

      12. ET was established in 1969 as a city department, while CT didn’t come around until 1976. When CT was attempting to get voter approval, they kept failing at the last hurdle because of Everett residents voting no in an effort to keep their system with lower fares.

        King County Metro started in 1958, the year I was born. And living at the time (as in being born) at Fort Belvoir hospital in Arlington (VA, not WA) I have little recollection of the event. It was created to clean up Lake Washington but through some strange machination of law ended up exhuming transit service. According to Wikipedia, “Seattle Transit, founded in 1939” but again I wasn’t there to vouch for the exact date. As a transit agency King County Metro, or Metro for short, (the public transit authority of King County) began operations on January 1, 1973. So Everett transit watched Seattle go through it’s death spiral and subsequent jerking around by the tax base it fell back on to keep it’s pension plan from going bankrupt (or, presumably the City of Seattle taking responsibility for payouts but not continuing transit). Even not bitten I can see why they’d be twice shy of throwing their lot in with CT. That said, it likely revolves more around petty politics and elected officials being able to control purse strings. So the bizarre ST board gets a council member from Everett but Everett has no say/control over CT which is, except for Everett, Snohomish County transit. Is that about right?

      13. And we wonder why the fare structure is so bizarre… Everett, as I understand it, pays into the ST slush fund with a % of sales tax. So they get a voice on the ST board guaranteed because they are the largest city in the county; Seattle and Tacoma also get said bye. But my observation is that Everett is now a shadow of it’s former self since the logging industry has mostly gone away. They do I think have the Home Port but nothing bought on base (base, yes AF brat) pays sales tax. All of the retail base is outside the City of Everett. Is it not?

      14. Actually there’s quite a bit inside Everett city limits – a mall, a good chunk of Boeing widebody plant & subcontractors, a good chunk of Paine Field and a downtown core. Plus a port.

        Only right Everett gets a vote on the ST Board.

        [SIDEBAR: Now as to the Navy commissary issue, I’m going to be straight up Bernie as a Navy supporter: I would like things to simmer down on Whidbey so I can propose cutting those back… a lot. They’re divisive when many local communities around military bases are reliant on sales tax & property tax to provide basic services like transit and schools and First Responders. That said, the federal government tries to mitigate by making tardy In Lieu of Taxes & “Impact Aid” payments… ]

      15. Understood that Everett has the Boeing plant but aren’t they largely excluded almost like the military when it comes to sales tax? I’m much more familiar with Fort Lewis and McChord. The sales tax revenue those facilities generate pretty much drive Pierce County but it’s based on what the solders and retires spend in the local economy.. Everett it seems has wiggled it’s way into an advantageous position. Whether that’s for citizens of politicians benefit I don’t know. But it’s a strange piece of what makes the entire ST and beyond transit area an enigma.

  8. In other news, the Everett Herald kindly published my letter:

    After a negatively toned campaign waged in Washington by opponents of Community Transit Proposition 1, as a transit advocate I am chest-pounding proud fellow transit advocates like Mukilteo Mayor Jennifer Gregerson and I “beat them trolls” for those who could not speak. But what should Prop. 1 winning translate into?

    In a few years, the Future of Flight — Snohomish County’s No. 1 tourist attraction and involuntary contributor to both Community Transit and Sound Transit — will finally receive its just share of direct transit service. But a Prop. 1 victory should also mean more nonprofits are publicly invited to request transit service. I’m also cautiously optimistic Community Transit can improve integration with Island Transit and Skagit Transit; especially if the Legislature passes the transit community’s request for direct state funding of county connector routes throughout our state.

    As you may have noticed, all of those objectives cost taxpayers. That said, to those whom have continuing concerns: If you have positive ideas to improve transit service and reduce congestion in this state, please feel publicly invited to put your ideas forth to improve public transportation instead of wallowing in negativity like a troll.

    Enjoy. Comment here since the Everett Herald doesn’t have comments on letters to the editor. Cheers and job well done as we Beat Them Trolls.

    1. A more direct way to get to the Seattle Premium Outet mall in Tulalip should be a high priority then, with 6.5 million visitor a year. far more people are trying to get their by bus than other attractions. It takes 3 buses, one of them very infrequent (222), and a long walk to get to it. but way more ask how to get there,

    2. OK, great point. I’d like to see that too. But Future of Flight first. Here’s why:

      1) Future of Flight has actively campaigned and actively fought for CT Prop 1 passage
      2) Outlet Mall, where where they during the campaign?!? Or in the recent past requesting transit service?
      3) Future of Flight is now a stop on a route that will be necessary to feed the Swift 2 northern terminus

      That said, I would like Swift 3 to go from Everett Station to Smokey Point/Arlington or the Outlet Mall – whichever is more to the north. Really would help Skagit Transit out if the 90X could stop in northern Snohomish County instead of Everett Station. Also would help Camano Island out.

  9. Congratulations to Joe – for I’ve never seen the Future of Flight “campaign” for bus service – who waged a successful one-person campaign so that he, who is a frequent visitor to the FoF, can get a Snohomish County taxpayer-subsidized bus ride there; note that he lives in Skagit County and therefore pays most of his sales tax dollars there, e.g. for anything delivered to his home and most of his other purchases.

    I’m shocked that the CEO would meet with a citizen who doesn’t even reside within his taxing district! Obviously, it sounds like the CEO has his priorities wrong, for there are true needs out there in his own transit benefit area that far exceed serving the FoF. For instance, Sunday/holiday service has not been fully restored, it was only partially restored just this past June. By contrast, Mr. Kunzler is obviously someone who gets to the FoF now without such service, so his “needs” aren’t the same as someone who doesn’t own a car or have access to one (due to another family member using it for their work). As I’ve written elsewhere, the “transit dependent” (not by choice) should be the first focus of transit, while “choice riders” should be second (the latter includes those who choose not to own a car, but could afford one). Mr. Kunzler obviously fits in the latter category.

    Unfortunately, the logic Joe uses is faulty: the number of visitors does not translate into the number of bus riders. If that were the case, Boeing-Everett would be blanketed with bus service. Instead, they have three CT bus routes, each reduced a few years ago to 1-2 trips in each direction: to/from Arlington, Sultan, and Stanwood, with their service never restored to the levels they were at. Meanwhile, for the rest of the county: zero service from that agency; their service was eliminated around 2003 due to lack of ridership, and there still isn’t the demand. The reason is simple: Boeing employees prefer to drive, it’s why Boeing leases lots off-site for them to park in. Of course, we know that Everett Transit has local routes #3 and #8 that serve Boeing from within the city and #70 that brings folks up from the Mukilteo ferry and Metro operates at least one custom route that serves the plant as well. But, by and large, people drive.

    Many of you made good, valid points re: that (able-bodied) people can presently walk up the hill from an existing bus route. If door-to-door service is a prerequisite of any sales tax generator in the county, than by Mr. Kunzler’s logic the bus routes that drive by below the new Costco in Lynnwood, where the sales tax volume no doubt dwarfs that of FoF, should be diverted to Costco’s doors, yet I have yet to heard such a proposal.

    1. Hey transitrider, you could be grateful that you got Prop 1. Lots more destinations! Lots more service hours! I appreciate your congratulations on a job well done.

      Most transit users can’t use Costco – they have to actually carry what they buy home and Costco sells in bulk. Unlike with grocery stores and big box stores and museums with gift shops like the Future of Flight.

      But Community Transit Routes 115 and 116 already serve Costco at
      18109 33rd Ave W, Lynnwood only a 5 minute walk away on level ground. The Future of Flight is on a steep incline over a half mile away from the nearest bus stop.

      I don’t think you meant to say that marketing transit to folks is a bad idea. I “get it” there are some serious problems with getting Boeing factory employees to use transit. But the Future of Flight is a different deal entirely.

      I am not asking for “door-to-door service” but a bus stop within close vicinity of the Future of Flight. It turns out there is a very part-time one used by Everett Transit Route 70 at 84th Street SW & 44th Ave W. The bus pullouts are there. It would only be a 5 minute, 0.2 mile walk with minimal incline. Just like with the new Lynnwood Costco.

      One last thing: I’m on board with and helping champion a plan of least resistance and costs that would not take away from Mukilteo, that would not take away from addressing other CT needs but rather staple together in one route a very real Mukilteo community need to link up the under construction multimodal ferry terminal with the northern terminus of Swift 2 on the Boeing campus. A terminus that will be fed by other routes – including from Everett Station. Simply have the buses linking the ferry terminal to the northern Swift 2 terminus stop at 84th Street SW & 44th Ave on the way. Problem solved.

      I think we have a plan. What do you think or are you still mad, bro?

Comments are closed.