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Transit Timetable History (8.8.14)

Three new additions on the Flickr page:

1 KINNEAR (1975)

4 MONTLAKE (1975)

13 – 19th AVE (1975)

The 1 KINNEAR and 13 – 19th AVE maps show part of the original trolley wiring plan in downtown Seattle.  Inbound from Kinnear Park, the 1 operated on First Avenue to Pike Street, then eastbound on Pike to 5th Avenue and then east on Spring Street to 9th Avenue where the 1 would then continue as either the 12 E. CHERRY/26th AVE. S. (today’s 3/4 routes) or the 13 – 19th AVE. (today’s 12).   From First Hill to Kinnear Park, the 1 ran westbound on Madison Street to 6th Avenue, then north to Union Street and west to First Avenue.

The 4 MONTLAKE  is the predecessor of today’s route 43.  By 1975, the 4 MONTLAKE had been dieselized, but it retained its trolley era routing in downtown Seattle.  The 4 usually arrived in downtown Seattle from Queen Anne Hill/Seattle Center East via 3rd Avenue.  After making a left turn off 3rd Avenue at Pike Street, the 4 MONTLAKE followed Pike all the way to Madison Street and then 23rd Avenue East to Montlake and the University District.  The 4’s University District terminal was right next to the future Link station at 45th & Brooklyn.

In 1975, the 4 MONTLAKE was the only one-seat ride between Capitol Hill/First Hill and the University of Washington.  With weekday headways  in the 20 to 30 minute range, it suggests that Capitol Hill wasn’t as popular an area for student living as it is today.  Also, the 48 – 23rd AVENUE EAST route had started service in the late 1960s to offer service between the University District/Montlake and the Central District.

North by Northwest Post 01: Intro & Island Transit Update

Hi there!

I’ve figured it’s time for Northwest Washington State to have a seat at the table.  You may know me as “AvgeekJoe from Skagit County ” from the comment threads and as a regular contributor to the Seattle Transit Blog Flickr feed as well.

You may also know I lean somewhat right in my beliefs.  You can rest assured I may be friends with Washington Policy Center staffers, but I’m not here to spew talking points or troll.  I do believe however that political biases are best served out in the open.

One of those biases is for a strong, sustainable transit system allowing people to live where they need to live.  We in Northwest Washington State currently enjoy a County Connector System between Snohomish, Skagit, Island and Whatcom Counties.  I say currently as that depends on start-up grants and on if Island Transit can survive the recent dire straights Island Transit HQ has put a legendary transit agency into.

The Whidbey Examiner has reported in part on the Island Transit fiscal crisis:

Martha Rose, director of Island Transit, said she fired Financial Manager Barbara Savary in May after she disclosed that the agency didn’t have the money to pay $135,000 in bills.

Rose said she was dumbfounded to discover that Savary hadn’t been running the monthly cash flow analysis for years. She said the simple, internal report is not only a vital part of the job, but would have alerted the agency to cash flow concerns years ago.

Island Transit is an independent agency overseen by a board of directors. It offers fare-free transit and is funded by a nine-tenths of 1 percent sales tax and grants. The operating budget for this year is $12.2 million.

Unbeknownst to her, Rose said, Savary was dipping into investments as expenses outpaced revenues for years on end. Rose said she found unpaid bills in Savary’s desk after she was gone.

YouTube video – clearly set to the soundtrack of the James Bond movie Skyfall – has been posted of the Island County Commissioners’ Monday meeting where further revelations came forward.  On that YouTube video are statements pledging new accountability, a look into the fiscal sustainability of Island Transit and finally in the last 60 seconds “financial statements” made to the board were clearly “incorrect”.

Now I’d rather write about the great transit network we have here, complete with dang “selfies” of me using transit to see the great aviation community we have in Northwest Washington State.  But I believe you should know what’s going down up here as it’s going to color debates & dialogue on transit in this state.  Already the Washington Policy Center has written up a note,  noting, “More tax money from the state is not the solution to fix the financial mess at Island Transit. Better budget management and financial practices could have reduced the pain felt by communities across Island County. … Island Transit officials should better manage public tax dollars to rebuild the public trust and restore reliable and efficient bus service.”

Ultimately I hope all of us in the transit community heed these thoughts from Whidbey Newsgroup publisher Keven R. Graves that, “citizens need to reclaim ownership of their taxpayer-funded agencies, attend meetings, ask hard questions and push for tougher open records laws that don’t allow agencies to drag their heels and play games.  Take back your voice and demand greater accountability of government employees before things start going wrong.”  I would add when there are opportunities for transit advocates to raise your voice… please use up that First Amendment to the US Constitution of free speech, freedom of the press, freedom of peaceful assembly and petition the government for a redress of grievances – key freedoms our troops and First Responders fight for every day.

Better Parking Garages

There’s a piece in The Atlantic on parking garages, covering the state of the art from compact, automated garages to garages outfitted with green roofs and wind turbines:

“The initial response is, ‘Green parking—isn’t that an oxymoron?’ ” says Paul Wessel, executive director of the New Haven-based Green Parking Council, which in June released its Green Garage Certification Standard, modeled on the LEED program for green buildings. But once we admit that parking isn’t going away, he says, we might as well figure out how to make it more efficient and less harmful.

We’d probably see more of this kind of innovation if we didn’t mandate that developers include parking in their buildings.

Transit Timetable History

I have 3 historical timetables uploaded to my flickr account:

  • 7 RAINIER (1970)
  • 42 EMPIRE WAY (1972)
  • 9 BROADWAY (1976)

The 7 RAINIER of 1970 looks very similar to Metro’s route 7 of today.  The most notable routing difference is that the Henderson loop wasn’t used in 1970–there were turnback loops at Graham Street and Rose Street.  The midday schedule offered basic 10 minute headways on most of Rainier Avenue with every other bus turning back at Rose Street  (the Prentice loop was covered every 20 minutes).  Peak hour service added express runs and more local buses that turned back at Graham Street.

The 42 EMPIRE WAY of 1972 shows what transit service along MLK looked like before light rail (and the name change).  Bus service on the old 42 corridor has been replaced by the 8, 36, 106 and 107.  The basic service pattern in 1972 was 30 minute headways along Empire Way/MLK with hourly deviations to Holly Park.  At Rainier Beach the route split and covered tails that are parts of today’s 106 and 107 routes with hourly service on each tail.  There were no extensions to Skyway and Renton (they were added a few years later).

The 9 BROADWAY of 1976 was still using its historical routing that terminated south of the University Bridge at Martin Street.  Riders from Capitol Hill would then transfer on Eastlake to get to the University District.  There were a few trips that turned back at Aloha Street during peak hours, but the basic midday service pattern was 15 minute headways along the whole route with a live-loop in downtown Seattle.  The schedule also shows a Yesler-Broadway shuttle that ran just a few times a day, but eventually grew into route 60 and the First Hill Streetcar.