by Carl, 12/13/2012, 8:01 AM

I’m glad that this story about bus bulbs was written. I’m not sure that OMG drivers Are UPSET!!!!!!!! is the best was to write it. I don’t particularly like being stuck behind a bus when I’m driving, so fine. But maybe this paragraph:

Metro says bus bulbs save five to 10 seconds per stop, and more than 20 seconds in peak traffic. Seconds add up on a bus route, and affect the overall schedule. Next year, a few bulbs will be added on Greenwood Avenue North, but Metro doesn’t plan them on Aurora Avenue North, for the new E Line. Instead, buses will stop in the far right lane, as the Swift buses do on Highway 99 in Snohomish County.

Could be put before what I assume are personal stories about being stuck behind a bus told in the third person about “some motorists.” And I don’t want to be too critical, there is some good information.

10 Responses to “Bus Bulbs”

1. Pete spews:

They save 20 seconds per stop in peak traffic. That’s cool. Except on arterials like Greenwood Ave. N. south of 87th, which are heavily trafficked in rush hour and where adding 20-second stops every couple blocks with no ability to pass slower-moving buses will create a lot of idling traffic and multiple-cycle-light waits. Because, you know, the environment.

2. Roger Rabbit spews:

Making car drivers’ live even more miserable won’t a happy populace make. And most people still use cars to get to jobs, take kids to school, etc. I know all about bus commuting, did it for years, but that works only for people with downtown office jobs and nobody else. Cars aren’t going away and the city seems determined to drive those who depend on them out of the city to the suburbs.

3. ArtFart spews:

Bah. If you don’t like driving behind a bus, get ON the bus and leave your goddamn car at home.

4. Zuper smert leftty spews:

Yu tells um # 3! Peeple hu tink roods is four kars…are teh dum!

5. Czechsaaz spews:

The Seattle Times is just pointing out what everybody knows. There’s a war on Poverty Christmas CARS!

6. EvergreenRailfan spews:

5)Was that the same article that said we were way behind in waging it, too? In Toronto, the Mayor that is being forced out over a conflict of interest over a vote he took on the city council(it involved a football charity he supported), said he would end Toronto’s War on Cars. His City Council allies ended the surface LRT expansion of the predecessor, and he wanted to convert the legacy streetcars to buses, even though the contract for the new streetcars had already been signed, the cancelation fees would have ate up the bus buying budget, so they stayed. His allies deserted him, and re-instated the previous surface LRT plan as best as possible(the private financing for subway expansion that Mayor Ford wanted collapsed). As I said, one article said Seattle was way behind in the war on cars.

As for the Bus Bulbs, what a difference 20 years makes. It used to be, turnouts were provided at major stops so the buses could get off the roadways. There used to be one at the Northbound stop for the 7 at Ranier and McClellan(when it was next to the hardware store that used to be Sick’s Stadium). Now, they are working on ways to make the buses faster. The 7, despite LINK LRT, still sees good ridership(although some runs have gone from Standing Room Only to at least every seat full). BAT Lanes(the term for Business-Access Transit lanes going in on Aurora and already on parts of Elliot and 15th AVE NW) are not a good idea for Rainier, as portions south of McClellan Street were originally wagon roads, a little narrow.

7. Brenda Helverson spews:

Oops – Wrong thread!

8. Chris Stefan spews:

@1 & @2:
I actually think the bus bulbs on University Way work reasonably well and don’t make traffic noticeably slower than it was before the bus bulbs.

Given all the other reasons traffic comes to a dead halt on busy arterials like University Way, Greenwood, or 45th the delay caused by not forcing buses to pull out of the travel lanes entirely is minor.

As someone who is a regular bus rider the bus bulbs make a huge difference in travel time and reliability for transit. Without bulbs a bus can spend as much as 2 minutes trying to pull back on to a busy street after a stop.

9. Chris Stefan spews:

@6
If we were serious about a “War on Cars” we’d charge a $30 daily fee for every private vehicle entering the city.

10. EvergreenRailfan spews:

9( Good point.