Link Connections – Executive proposes more buses to link more riders in North and Central Seattle to light rail

Link Connections

Link is coming to Capitol Hill and Husky Stadium in early 2016. Metro and Sound Transit are working with the public to plan how bus service will connect with new light rail.

With Link light rail service reaching Capitol Hill and the University District in the first quarter of next year, King County Executive Dow Constantine today proposed new Metro bus connections from North Seattle, Capitol Hill, and the Central Area to the new, faster trains, along with more frequent service on major corridors and more east-west connections between places like Fremont, Wallingford, Green Lake and Sand Point. See the Executive’s news release, or our Link Connections website with details.

The closely-knit transit network is a result of the Executive’s direction to more fully integrate Metro and Sound Transit to create greater operating efficiencies and expand service. An estimated 80,000 daily bus riders will see more buses per hour on designated corridors, with better local service connecting neighborhoods with the new light rail stations at the University and at Capitol Hill.

The proposal sent today to the Metropolitan King County Council was drafted over the past nine months with the help of bus riders and a 21-member sounding board, who asked for better, faster service while maintaining connections they have today to destinations most important to them. As a result, changes are proposed for 33 Metro routes serving North and Central Seattle, including investments funded last year by voters in Seattle. View our public engagement report for a full summary of what we heard.

Link photo 2

Sounding Board members consider Metro proposals, offer rider perspectives at an August meeting in the U District.

Sounding board members and riders advocated for making transfers work easily for riders. To accomplish that, King County Metro, Sound Transit, the City of Seattle and the University of Washington are working together to make it as easy and convenient for riders to use the proposed improved and more frequent grid network of bus service. Riders will experience transfers that are as convenient as possible between frequent buses and light rail trains. Also, stops will be relocated at key transfer points, and transit agencies and the city are coordinating better wayfinding, signage and passenger information, and shelters and lighting at stops.

Metro Transit proposed route changes

Proposed changes are posted online, describing each route in the improved, frequent corridor network, boosts to commuter service and better connections between neighborhoods and Link light rail. Riders will see recommended network maps, summaries of changes by area and information by route.

  • Proposed changes are shown for routes 8, 10, 11, 16, 25, 26 (local and express), 28 (local and express), 30, 31, 32, 43, 44, 48, 49, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 238, 242, 316, 372 and 373.

Frequent, all-day service

  • The proposed network provides improved frequency on 14 routes: 8, 10, 11, 12, 16, 44, 48, 49, 65, 67, 70, 73, 75 and 372X

Other proposed transit improvements

  • Extension of the RapidRide C and D Lines: Funding from Prop. 1 is proposed to separate RapidRide C & D lines. C Line will instead extend to South Lake Union, and D line will extend to Pioneer Square.
  • Route 200 would be modified to respond to community feedback and better serve Issaquah riders by connecting to Swedish Medical Center Issaquah and deleting a low-ridership loop near Issaquah High School.
  • Implementation of the first phase of the Southeast King County Alternative Services project, including frequency improvements for DART Route 915.
  • More peak service is proposed on Interstate 5 in the south corridor, implementing a Washington State Department of Transportation Regional Mobility Grant on routes 179 and 190. Adding two morning and two afternoon peak trips to both routes 179 and 190 will allow Metro to serve more riders, relieve crowding on existing service and reduce single-occupancy vehicle traffic.

The King County Council will deliberate the proposals over the coming weeks.

» Read the full news release (King County Executive, Aug. 25, 2015)