There are certain corridors in Seattle that deserve service, but the roads are not suitable for buses. There are also other routes in Seattle with very low ridership, but the demand is high enough to keep a route there. I have come up with a few corridors where van routes would be nice. If needed, some of these routes can become DART routes.
32nd Ave NW
32nd Ave NW is suitable for buses, but midday and weekend ridership was rather low. For a long time, this corridor was served by the all-day Route 17, which was replaced by Route 61 in 2012. Due to low ridership, Route 61 was discontinued in 2014. Right now there is only the peak-only Route 17 serving this corridor. I would restore Route 61 as a van route, but terminate it at 15th/Market instead of doing the weird loop in South Ballard. Route 61 will run at 30-minute frequency during the day, all 7 days a week.
NW 65th St
Currently, the only East-West corridors in Ballard are Market and NW 85th St. I think there should be something in between. A NW 65th St bus would be good for connecting Ballard residents to Ballard High School, the Phinney Ridge shopping district, and Green Lake. An extension to Golden Gardens via Seaview would be nice too. I would put a van route on NW 65th St between 36th Ave NW and Aurora, and I would number it as Route 68. Route 68 will run at 30-minute frequency during off-peak, and 15-minute frequency during peak in both directions to serve students of Ballard High School.
NE 55th St and Laurelhurst
NE 55th St is suitable for buses, but the streets in Laurelhurst are very narrow. Before 2014, NE 55th St had bus service all 7 days a week, and before 2016, Laurelhurst had weekday bus service. Now NE 55th St only has the peak only Route 74, and Laurelhurst has nothing in its south part. I think both of these corridors deserve all-day service. I would put a van on this route, and I would number it 79. To free up service hours and to reduce duplication, I would delete Route 78. Route 79 will run at 30-minute frequency during off-peak, and 15-minute frequency during peak.
S McClellan St
Who remembers Route 38? Not the one on MLK, but the one on McClellan. Many people used it to travel between Beacon Hill and Mt Baker before Link opened, but then people moved to Link. I think Route 38 would be good for Beacon Hill residents living on the hill on McClellan. I would restore Route 38 as a van route, but I would also extend it to Columbia City Station via McClellan, Mt Rainier Dr, Hunter Blvd, 38th Ave S, and S Alaska St to replace the Route 14 tail to Hanford St. Route 38 will run at 30-minute frequency during the day, and at 60-minute frequency at night to serve people who would usually take Link between Beacon Hill and Mt Baker. If needed, night trips can also go to International District.
SW California Ave (Route 22)
Route 22 has had rather low ridership for a long time. I think it would be a good van route. I think Route 22 could also be extended to Seacrest Park to replace Route 128 in North Admiral so that there would be a bus going on the whole length of California. Route 22 will run at 30-minute frequency during off-peak, and 15-minute frequency during peak in both directions to serve students at Chief Sealth High School and West Seattle High School. All peak trips should be operated using regular buses, maybe even articulated buses if needed.
Mercer St and Aloha St
Mercer St and Aloha St have never had true bus service. I think there should be a van route serving Mercer and Aloha. This route would have two disadvantages: traffic on Mercer and not serving Capitol Hill Station. But I think such a route could possibly relieve some congestion on Route 8. I would number the Mercer/Aloha route as Route 42 (sounds rather familiar, but it’s been gone for some time now, so it’s fine)
Map of van route system: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1EnAFcULlO8Sou0cz0t9o2d8UhEE&usp=sharing