Latest Comments Tlsgwm on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansions@Mike Orr You seem to be able to keep these lettered RR routes straight in your mind, something I am frequently failing at and needing to stop for a minute to think about. So, what's your secret? Lol. Is there a handy cheat sheet available somewhere? Mike Orr on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansionsMetro is canceling the J because it has a severe revenue shortage and can only fund three lines. The J isn't weak; it's just not in the top three. The reasons for the G, H, and I are obvious. The G is far along, is the showcase for a good RapidRide line (more street priority than any other line), and has Sound Transit funding and maybe federal grants. The H and I are because of "equity": they serve lower-income, high-minority areas, and whose ridership has fallen the least among Metro routes because a lot of essential workers are on them....Lazarus on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointing@asdf, Pavement costs are not trivial. But regardless of the cost, Metro should pay for all pavement refurbishment costs that are clearly the result of their use. Doesn’t matter if they are small or large. If Metro caused the damage, than Metro should pay. Lazarus on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansionsTake it up with Metro. They are the ones who are cancelling the J. Apparently they think they have the data to justify doing so. RossB on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansions and off-board payment is not that big a deal when only 1-3 people are boarding per stop, which is 90% of the stops on these routes. That certainly isn't the case with 7, although it might be the case with the 160. But that gets to my big point -- what is the point of RapidRide? There are several parts to it: 1) Increased frequency. Sounds good. But frequency is a zero sum game. If you increase frequency of the 160 (to make it qualify for "RapidRide" status) then it means you aren't increasing frequency somewhere else. If increasing...Al S. on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingHaving Seattle buy additional service from ST in addition to Metro is a tricky question. I’ve been wondering when we would discuss it. It’s inevitably going to be a topic I think. There is a third turnback track at Rainier Beach — the last Link station to the south. Having a Northgate to Rainier Beach During the 15- minute periods appears technically possible. Still, When Line 2 opens in 2023, this won’t be a very practical operation. Additional service for those times when there is just 30- minute Link service is another extra service purchase option. I have mixed feelings...RossB on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansions It should follow the 43rd path so transfers from Link don’t have to cross 45th. What exactly are you proposing -- that the bus loop around and layover there? That might be faster. If not, then forget about it. There is no way that a bus should spend extra time trying to save some riders from crossing the street. The outbound 44, for example, is a huge mistake. Imagine you are transferring there. You get out of the station and you avoid crossing the street. Great. But then what? After boarding the bus, you wait for the bus to...Sam on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingI have an idea. Instead of a once a week podcast, how about a once a month on-location video podcast, where you go out and visit places like future Link stations. Show viewers around, explain stuff, etc. Mike Orr on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansions"Its not [worse than the status quo]. But the status quo sucks. We’ve waited for years for a decent transit network, and we keep being told 'maybe later'." I gave up on the J being a significant improvement when SDOT prioritized a cycletrack over transit priority on Eastlake and said transit priority wasn't needed north of the Ship Canal. None of the future RapidRide lines have anything that will make them significantly faster or get them out of traffic. The G is the best, but it has transit lanes only in the middle third. SDOT talked about transit lanes on...Daniel P. Thompson on Collapse is a ChoiceStates can borrow from the federal government at virtually zero interest. Plus states can borrow if they exhaust their unemployment compensation trust funds, as most have done, and take years to pay it back. The State Of Washington already has large amounts of debt. As noted above keeping a AAA bond rating is critical, and in large part reflects how well a state has reserved its future retiree costs. I guess I don't understand what this new borrowing would be dedicated to. If anyone thinks the residents of Washington think transit is a priority -- now or ever -- they...Mark Dublin on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingWould be better if Martin and Frank could get together with Dave Ross and for one day a week, turn his show into an STB podcast with performance enhancement commercials. Lord knows transit needs it. Like seems to be happening on blog-time already, for transit's own good, it should be a forum open to people who's only use for transit is as a target, so people like me can use THEM for target practice. Like accusing them of hating my car because their cars are jealous that THEY've got to be stuck-with-a-stake while my baby is resting and I'm Steel...AM on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingIs it a given that they are open thread? This one is explicitly not marked as such. I vaguely remembers others were, so perhaps it is an oversight in this case? Mike Orr on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansionsThe Seattle RapidRide lines "G" and higher were decided by SDOT and imposed on Metro. They came from Seattle's transit master plan in 2012. SDOT decided them in consultation with Metro, a public sounding board, and public feedback. Metro did not want an all-Madison route; it favored something like the existing 11 and 12 or a Broadway-Madison route (a variation of the 49), for greater ridership and usefulness. But the city wanted an all-Madison route, although budget limitations precluded going all the way to Madison Park (without RapidRide enhancements east of MLK). So the city insisted and Metro acquiesced. The...RossB on Metro budget cuts RapidRide expansionsI agree about the 26. I think it is crazy that Metro got rid of the lower 26 (the part from 45th to downtown) but kept the upper part (north of 45th, sending it to the UW instead). I think this is a big mistake. To be clear, sending a bus from upper Wallingford (Meridian on the map) to the U-District is great for the handful of riders who will ride it. It dramatically changes that trip. But there just aren't enough potential riders to justify that route. On the other hand, Stone Way has a ton of people. A...AJ on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingI like the podcasts! Different medium, not better or worse. Sam on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingI want Mark Dublin to create a podcast of him calling up transit agencies. Mike Orr on How will Stride BRT serve Bellevue Transit Center?I now go to the library stop and walk on 12th rather than transfer to the B because the transfer time has gone from a few minutes to a full 15 minutes since the 550 was ejected from the tunnel, and 12th Street is flat and has no freeway entrances. Travel time between BTC and the library stop is normal, at least on weekends, so I don't see a problem there. The 550 will vacate that layover so it makes sense for another route to replace it. And ideally a route that goes through downtown Bellevue and south Bellevue Way....AJ on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingNorthgate and SoDo only makes sense as a peak of peak overlay to alleviate capacity issue, like during a major public event or during major Sounder-Link transfers (4.40~5.20 in the afternoon). Otherwise, the high frequency of Link outside of the city core is a feature, not a bug, of the system. The point is to provide high quality frequency to build up that midday ridership, not to calibrate the system to existing ridership. This is one reason it's incredibly powerful to convert Link to driverless technology in the medium term future, as that will allow ST to flex the number...RossB on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingI'm not a fan of podcasts either. I rarely listen to them. This was an exception, but even then I only listened to the first part (the thoughts about the Northgate restructure). To me podcasts are just an easy way for the authors to voice an opinion. They can talk about anything and not worry about the quality of the writing. In other words, it is may be slower for us, but it is a lot faster for them. The main idea is it is an open thread -- you can talk about anything transit related. A handful of people...RossB on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingThe turn-backs are not in the optimal places. The big drop-offs in ridership will occur at 45th, 145th, and Northgate. That is where the turn-backs should be. I don't expect 130th (or 145th) to have the ridership of Northgate, but they should at least be in the same ballpark. Furthermore, both will be highly dependent on feeder bus service, and have good all-day demand. A drop in frequency would lead to a big drop in ridership as a result. As a result, Northgate and Lynnwood will benefit. You want high frequency to 45th, but since you can't turn-back there, you...Skylar on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingSome of the 44 improvements are already underway/complete, for instance extending the westbound bus lane on 45th/Midvale/46th all the way to Stone Way. For better or worse, there actually is enough car traffic right now for it to make a difference for the 44. Skylar on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingYou would think that, but different pots of money and different sources of money (SDOT vs Metro, levy+sales tax+property tax vs sales tax+fare). This is one of many disadvantages to not considering transportation holistically. The really infuriating thing is that I doubt Metro is completely responsible for pavement deterioration given that the 26 is not all that frequent right now on Latona. Too bad we can't charge drivers "fares" (tolls) to (ab)use our shared infrastructure, though, except in very limited places. Mark Dublin on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingMartin and Frank, do you share my sense that the reason it's so hard to get an answer from Sound Transit as an agency is how many of its political and administrative figures are occupied with planning their earliest possible retirement? A routine phone call to ST is heart-breaking. The invariably young people who answer the phone are doing the best they can, but the people who know the answers you- and they- are looking for are unavailably working from home. With all home's distractions. https://www.historylink.org/file/20923 Four years later, I spent my first few months in Seattle before moving to...asdf2 on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingYou would think that pavement maintenance would be trivial compared to the $150/hr it costs to actually operate each bus. It should not be dictating bus routes. Irving Washington on Podcast #99: Intensely disappointingSince I don't listen to podcasts I guess I'll miss this . Why not do an article on the blog? I've always thought that doing a podcast is a cheap and easy way to communicate, but it makes me use up a lot of time when I read faster than folks talk.