So that’s why she doesn’t ride the bus anymore!

David Brewster writes about transit, and in typical Brewster fashion, he backs into his argument like a garbage truck underneath your window.

The case for transit is not an easy one to make for the voters. Costs are very high, and only a few of the voters live near enough to the lines to get much direct benefit. The trickle-down case is difficult to make, especially since expensive transit systems usually force cutbacks in bus service to pay for the rails. So it’s not surprising that the case is invariably oversold. One of the worst ways it is oversold is to urge people to imagine that these first baby steps, or “starter lines,” will someday grow into a full system, as in larger, older cities.

And think, Brewster is for light rail. While the essay is mostly Brewster ceding ground to the enemy, do read the accompanying piece by Richard Morrill. After reading both pieces, I’m convinced one thing is true: Brewster and Morrill don’t ride the bus often.

Which, it can be said, is a big problem with public transit in Seattle. It has been designed by people who never ride it. Whenever I hear some douchebag on the radio talk about how we should just “put more money into buses” instead of rail, I want to fucking puke.

Buses are slow, slow, slooooooooow. The don’t appeal to new riders in the way rail does. Buses cannot handle large crowds, people with wheelchairs, or tourists asking the driver, “where’d Tom Hanks have lunch?” Whenever something bad happens on a Metro bus, the whole operation grinds to a halt. A fucking halt.

Recently, an attractive brunette got on the bus with her friends. One of her pals asked the brunette, “why don’t you ride the bus more often?” The brunette answered, “because the last time I rode the bus, some guy pooped on the seat.”

So, “the case for rail transit is hard to make”? Whatever. It isn’t for everyday bus riders like me!

Comments

  1. 1

    spews:

    Oh, and BTW: people do “poop on the seats” on light rail trains, but on light rail, I can move to another car. Also, on light rail trains, I won’t be trapped with Mr. Poopy Pants for long, unlike buses, where the stink gets worse through downtown when you’re doing about 2 mph while it’s 90 degrees.

  2. 2

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “Buses are slow, slow, slooooooooow. The don’t appeal to new riders in the way rail does. Buses cannot handle large crowds, people with wheelchairs, or tourists asking the driver, ‘where’d Tom Hanks have lunch?’ Whenever something bad happens on a Metro bus, the whole operation grinds to a halt. A fucking halt.”

    Buses aren’t faultless, but you’re overstating their defects, Will. For years, I commuted to downtown Seattle by bus. Why? Because driving was expensive, and parking a hassle (and even more expensive).

    Apparently you’ve never heard of express buses. But thousands of commuters have, and regularly ride them. They get you from the outlying suburbs to downtown in about 15 or 20 minutes — often faster than you can drive, because they can use bus lanes whereas as a single occupancy driver you’d be stuck in stop-and-go traffic.

    Sure buses can handle people in wheelchairs. That’s what the wheelchair lifts are for. If you haven’t noticed the wheelchair seating in front of all our buses, you haven’t been on a bus for, oh, about 15 years at least.

    Passengers frequently ask drivers about where to make a connection or where to get off for a particular destination, but I’ve never heard anyone ask a driver where Tom Hanks had lunch.

    It’s not true that “the whole fucking operation grinds to a halt” when something bad happens on a bus. Most of the time, when something bad happens on a bus, nobody does anything about it. In extreme cases, the driver may kick the offending party(ies) off the bus. In very extreme cases, the police may remove someone from a bus, but that usually doesn’t delay the bus for more than 10 minutes or so. If the bus gets in an accident, they send another bus to pick up the passengers, which takes somewhat longer. The only case I know of when the whole fucking operation ground to a halt was when a nut grabbed the steering wheel and ran the bus off the Aurora Bridge onto the roof of an apartment building below. That time, they sent ambulances to pick up the passengers. So how often has THAT happened? Once. One fucking time.

    Tens of thousands of commuters ride buses in Seattle every day. If you haven’t been on a commuter bus lately, you probably don’t know that many of them are standing-room-only. Buses have a huge advantage that rail doesn’t: You can change the route. Cities evolve and change over time, and having the flexibility to change routes to follow the population growth is a big deal. With rail, you’re locked into where the rails were laid for the next 75 or 100 years, no matter what happens to the city’s demographics.

  3. 3

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Are buses perfect? Hell no. Some of the annoyances:

    1) Except on express routes during peak times, you typically have to wait 30 minutes or more between buses;
    2) The milk runs that make numerous stops do take a long time to get anywhere;
    3) Express buses run only during peak commuter hours, and only in one direction;
    4) Particularly on certain notorious routes, you get a yahoo element in the ridership that can make for an interesting and possibly even hazardous ride;
    5) There is not nearly enough security or policing to get the yahoos from menacing respectable riders;
    6) On a bus, you may have to put up with uncouth strangers’ loud talk, loud music, and boorish behavior.

    Do you solve these problems by running mass transit on rails instead of rubber tires? I don’t see how. Chicago’s El and New York’s subway have all the ills of Seattle’s buses, and then some. Management would seem to have more to do with the quality of the transit experience than the physical characteristics of the mode of transit.

  4. 4

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I forgot to mention:

    7) Seattle’s bus system is a hub that converges on downtown, with poor or nonexistent cross-town connections, so getting where you need to go is generally hopeless by bus unless your destination is downtown.

  5. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Of course, problem #7 is even greater with light rail, because light rail is a linear system that goes in only one direction.

  6. 6

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    And because of reason #7, no matter what else you do, transit will never replace cars or roads. Are there still a lot of single-occupancy commuters who potentially could be lure onto public transit? Yes; but there’s also a tremendous number of people who will continue to drive vehicles — because they have to. Public transit simply isn’t practical if you have to transport tools, equipment, groceries, a large number of shopping parcels, or if your trip either originates or ends at a location not conveniently accessible by public transit. For example, if you live in Ballard and go to Northgate to buy school clothes for the kids, you’re not going to ride a bus. You’re going to load the kids into the family van, and use the cargo space in back to haul all the packages home. If you’re a remodeler working at job sites scattered around the city, you’re going to drive to work in a pickup with a toolbox and air compressor in the bed. And so on. Public transit simply isn’t feasible for much of the travel that Seattle-area residents do. It’s a gap filler. It helps, more than anything, to alleviate the need for more parking garages downtown. It makes the commute a little cheaper and more convenient for the working class. (You do not, however, see businessmen or executives on buses; and you won’t see them on light rail, either. They’ll continue to drive their Porsches, Lexuses, and BMWs, with briefcase on the seat and cellphone to the ear.)

  7. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Keeping all of this in mind, it would be folly to eliminate a limited-access through highway that carries a third of the north-south traffic passing through Seattle.

  8. 9

    Puddybud Who Left the Reservation spews:

    All those post from one who shits at his burrow doing nothing.

    I like taking buses to downtown Seattle. Beats having to pay exorbitant parking fees to line Greg I Don’t Give A Nickels sorry administration!

  9. 10

    Puddybud Who Left the Reservation spews:

    I bet the person who pooped on the bus was a Moonbat! They think everywhere is their personal toilet.

  10. 11

    YOS LIB BRO spews:

    I bet the person who pooped on the bus

    WAS PUDDYBUD. CRAPPING EVERYWHERE IS HIS REASON FOR BEING.

  11. 12

    Ken In Seattle spews:

    The key phrase here is “to downtown”.

    Those of us who live in the city limits know the choice of bus or car means driving 15 to 20 min or spending 4 hours on the bus or waiting for transfers.

    The difference between Seattle and real major cities I have lived in, is indeed that it seems the people who design the bus routes must live in the suburbs or snohomish county.

    To get from First Hill to Belltown takes an hour and a half and yet I used to walk it in about 20 min.

    West Seattle to Ballard can take two hours one way by bus.

    If or when 99 is shut down, even the drive will bump from 20 min to at least an hour.

  12. 13

    Keep It Simple - The Screw Job, That Is spews:

    So the “clean”, “modern”, “stylish”, “cool”, “metronatural”, 19th century technology of steel wheels on fixed rails appeals to Will, and will serve him better than buses (less poop = more better Will).

    Hey Will. I live in Magnolia and I get to pay for your “lovely”, “clean”, “futuristic”, “poop-free” choo choo, but I’ll NEVER get to ride it. Should the 30,000 of us over here just move over to Greenlake? Would you prefer that? Better yet, why don’t we just all move out to Granite Fucking Falls since that’s the kind of sprawl LINK light rail aims to encourage.

    The sell job at this point hardly needs to be concerned with voters like Will and his concerns about dirty old poopy buses. The sell job needs to be concerned with voters in Crown Hill, Ballard, Magnolia, Queen Anne, and West Seattle who will probably never be able to ride LINK. If their bus service is cut, if their streets begin to crumble, if their traffic lights never get synchronized, they’re going to feel more than a little resentful of the thousands of dollars they’ll have paid to make Will’s commute poop free.

  13. 14

    headless lucy spews:

    I still have yet to see George W. Bush’s and Dick Cheney’s Viet Nam War medical records!

    Hmmmmmmmmnnnnn!!!!

    Wonder why?

  14. 15

    headless lucy spews:

    If AM/PM and 7-11 would let people use their restrooms, there’d be less poop on bus seats.

    Those corporate bastards!

  15. 16

    RightEqualsStupid spews:

    There’s one simple reason the right wingers don’t like public transit. Racism. The Publicans know that poor people rely on public transit. The Publicans know that poor people are primarily minorities. The Publicans are racists who hate minorities. So, the Publicans hate public transit.

  16. 17

    spews:

    Roger, it doesn’t really matter whether rail is actually superior to buses, or why people riders find it preferable. The fact is, riders DO find it preferable. Rail attracts many, many more riders than buses. That’s a fact, everywhere it is built. It may be because it offers better service, or because of some complex human psychology, but riders prefer rail.

    In fact, I’m told the South Lake Union trolley may actually be a touch slower than the bus route it replaces. But ridership projections are considerably higher, because people prefer trolleys.

    Simple @13…

    My hope is that the folks in West Seattle and Ballard will vote to pay for light rail the way I voted to pay for their monorail that I would never use.

    And the fact is, we all benefit from rail, even if we don’t use it, because the rail lines will attract much of the density that is going to be built over the next half-century, and accommodate much of the traffic that would have come with it. All those housing units going up along MLK will house people who might have had to buy out in Auburn or further, and then drive in.

    Will rail alleviate our current traffic congestion? No. What it will do is help prevent traffic from getting as bad as it might otherwise have.

    We don’t build rail for now. We build it for thirty years from now. It’s called planning.

  17. 18

    spews:

    Well, we’re going to be a larger, older, city one day. And the amount of rail transit we have we’ll be a big factor for whether it’ll still be an ideal place to live.

  18. 19

    Willis spews:

    Didn’t catch the by-line, so assumed it was written by Goldy, until I saw the word “douchebag”, I knew it had to be Will.

    Good stuff. Will and I will be lucky to see a real transit system (beyond the first ST line from Lynnwood to Tacoma) before we retire. Kinda sad.

  19. 20

    spews:

    @ 12

    Thank you, my sentiment exactly.

    Going from Belltown to Capitol Hill is way more trouble than it oughta be, whereas going from the hinterlands to downtown is easy.

  20. 21

    David spews:

    One minor ‘nit’ that always bothers me in these conversations about transit is how there is an idea that just building more ‘roads’ will fix congestion. Well, maybe in Carnation or North Bend it will for a few years, and that’s lovely, but what about the major problem…the north south hour glass that is downtown Seattle (where the density/problems exists)?

    There just isn’t land to physically do it. It’s a moot point. In 12 years of living here, I have never once heard where we’ll put this magic ‘road’ that will fix downtown. I don’t care about more roads in North Bend or Carnation, that’s not what we’re talking about, that’s not the major traffic jam. Not that they don’t have traffic issues in Bothell, but it’s I-5 under the convention center. It’s downtown when there’s a Mariners game, football game, Bumbershoot, car accident, road construction, etc. Before anyone says just build more roads, please tell me WHERE. I’m looking at a map of Seattle right now. Where between Lake Washington Blvd and Elliot Bay will this magic road be? Given every 1000 square foot condo on Capital Hill goes for half a million now, I can just imagine the expense of building a new I-5 through there. And we sure won’t tear out a 4 block wide strip of skyscrapers to build a new highway, so it has to be Cap Hill by process of elimination. Sure east-west has it’s own issues (I-90 and 520), but what about the MAJOR problem, north-south through the hour-glass that is downtown Seattle? Draw a new road on the map and post it…love to see it!

  21. 22

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    @20 What are talking about? The #9 runs from Key Arena to 14&John. Any southbound bus on 3rd takes you to 3rd and Union. They run every 7 to ten minutes. They are free from Bell Street south. The #2 runs up the Hill about every 12 minutes during the day. The #43 run up Pike and across North Capitol Hill.The #10 as well. The #14 serves Capitol Hill as well from Jackson. There are several others from that spot as well. I’ve worked in Bell Town and Capitol Hill as well as First Hill, and had to shutte between them. No Problemo.

  22. 23

    Keebler spews:

    The important reason to vote YES in November is not the trains, it is the sales taxes. There is no better way to spread the taxing burden around than SALES TAXES. EVERYBODY will pay those! You who won’t have occassion to ride the trains must learn to think about the commuters who will. It will greatly increase the price developers in downtown will get for building new offices and units, and there is NOTHING wrong with trickle-down from that.

    Remember, the high sales taxes also will be a disincentive for the REPUKELICANS to donate to anti-abortion and anti-gay groups.

  23. 24

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    22 Continued. Slow is only an issue very occasionally. Planning solves slow, car or bus, Seattle, San Francisco, or LA.
    I ride a morning commuter early in the AM. It takes 45 minutes. It is time I read, sleep, or daydream in. If I elect to go later, I take the express, which is driven by Mario Andreotti, it takes about twenty minutes. Since it goes up the Bus Corridor, it is never delayed. This is a commute of approximately 12 miles.
    The PM commute is a little more tense. Fortunately I get on early in the milk run so I have a seat. Takes about 1 hour. Naptime.
    If I drive, at about 500% higher cost, I can save ten minutes AM, and using back streets, about 14 minutes going home.

  24. 25

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    I-5 through downtown was a bastard compromise. The traffic engineers screamed about it then, and those still living, are screaming about it as they go to their graves. A lot of blood got left on the backroom floor ‘planning’ this mess.
    The topology of the ‘limited sight’ boondoggle approaching from the south is incredibly poor planning and parsimonious engineering. People will slow down for this even in light traffic conditions. The gold plated ‘mugging center’ (Freeway Park), achieves the same effect southbound. Who wants to slam into dark shadows at 60 mph? More Freeway built by ‘the Seattle Process’ is NOT the answer.

  25. 26

    jl spews:

    When I used to work downtown (office near the Market) a number of years ago, my morning (7am) commute via bus from NE Seattle would take about 15min. However, coming home in the evening (5pm) would take about 50+min due to all the street traffic at that time.

    After a while, I bailed on the eve bus ride and would pack running clothes/shoes in a backpack and just run home from work, which would take about 50min. And I was/am a very slow runner.

    Basing a majority of pub transport on busses intermixed with regular car/truck traffic never has been nor ever will be an effective, long-term, solution in the Seattle area.

  26. 27

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    @26 The draconian measure of kicking cars off Third Ave in response to the tunel closure cuts about 15 minutes time of travel through the Third Ave. corridor during Rush Hour for transit. The Tunnel does better, but ‘The Seattle Process’ of planning denied us the opportunity of building the tunnel originally for both Light Rail and transit, so now we wait for completion,again.
    The Reality is that cars do not belong in Downtown. Portland saw this. Bloomberg sees it for Manhattan as well, with his proposal to charge access fees to motorists in Manhattan.

  27. 28

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    20

    And the #8 runs from north Capitol Hill (Broadway & John) to north Belltown (5th & Denny).

    As you say planning is the key. I have Metro’s Trip Planner bookmarked and consult it often when I want to go somewhere. That said, however, I did have to turn down jobs back when I was a full-time agency temp because I couldn’t get from my home in north Seattle to the job site without transferring busses twice. (That’s one of those things you just have to plan around. The people who booked me for jobs at the agency knew I was busbound and would ask me to check to make sure I could get to the site before they gave me the assignment.)

  28. 29

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    2

    I go shopping and haul packages and the like on public transportation all the time, Roger. This particular mode of public transportation is a bit expensive, because you are paying for point-to-point service, but it’s still cheaper than owning a car.

    I am, of course, talking about taxicabs. (What? You thought public transportation was just buses and trains? Ha!) There are other alternatives like Flexcar if you just want to use a car for a couple of hours and don’t want to pay a cab to wait.

  29. 30

    michael spews:

    A few thoughts.

    Express buses rock, except when I-5 or Hwy 16 backs up and you’re stopped just like everyone else. Or, when you drive to the local park and ride to catch the bus and every parking place has been taken. Maybe carpool lanes should be bus only lanes during rush (sit in your car and go nowhere) hour.

    Tacoma’s “starter” line is in the process of being expanded. People tried it, liked it and want more.

    Just because you never get to ride light-rail or buses doesn’t mean you don’t benefit from them. More people on transit means fewer less congested roads and less pollution for all of us to breath.

    You Seattle folks might claim to care about the environment, but you should leave the city sometime and look back at the huge smog stain that hovers over it most days. If that’s caring about the planet I’d hate to see what not caring about it looks like.

    Ultimately we need to forget about the bus/rail argument and work more on getting people to live near where they work. I live out in the ‘burbs because I work out in the ‘burbs.

  30. 31

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @9 “All those post from one who shits at his burrow doing nothing.”

    Isn’t that the goal of capitalism? Is this not why we have capitalism in the first place? What’s the fucking point of capitalism, except to get rich enough to do nothing all day except eat and shit?

  31. 32

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    So why should Republicans shit at their burrows doing nothing, but I can’t? Why can’t the working class shit and do nothing, too? Republicans want a monopoly on every shitting thing!

  32. 33

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Of course, the answer to that is Roger Rabbit’s approach to economics is a threat to the very foundations of the Republican leisure class! Which is, of course, the fact that the labor of others makes their leisure possible; and if the working class refuses to work, the leisure class will have to do their own work! God forbid they should work!!! Fuck ‘em. I’m a capitalist bunny, and I don’t have to work, so I’M NOT GOING TO DO THEIR FUCKING WORK ANYMORE!!! As the old time Roosevelt Democrats like to say, “I’m a Democrat so I can live like a Republican someday!” Well, that day has arrived for Roger Rabbit!!! They can do their own work … I’m done working for them, and I’m not gonna work no more.

  33. 34

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    All is right in the world when Roger Rabbit shits at his burrow doing nothing while Puffybutt stands 30 minutes at a bus stop waiting for the standing-room-only #42 to show up.

  34. 35

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Hey Puffybutt!! It’s YOUR turn to be a bus commuter and cubicle slave!

    HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR HAR

  35. 36

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @10 “I bet the person who pooped on the bus was a Moonbat! They think everywhere is their personal toilet.”

    Far more likely it was a 4-legged Tim Eyman voter.

  36. 37

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @21 What Kemper Freeman really wants is an expanded 520 bridge — at our expense — to bring more shoppers to his Bellevue malls.

  37. 38

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @23 Yeah, higher sales taxes are an efficient way to take food and medical care away from senior citizens on fixed incomes.

  38. 39

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @26 “Basing a majority of pub transport on busses intermixed with regular car/truck traffic never has been nor ever will be an effective, long-term, solution in the Seattle area.”

    We have something that works to move buses through downtown Seattle — a tunnel we paid a lot of money for. It works because cars can’t use the tunnel. But how well will it work when you intermingle rail and buses in the tunnel? Or kick the buses out of the tunnel to use the tunnel for rail only?

  39. 40

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @29 How well does a taxi work to take a load of yard waste to the transfer station? Of course, this isn’t a problem if you live in a high-rise condo and don’t have a yard.

  40. 41

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    There are damned few people who can get along without a car — mostly downtown condo-dwelling singles and seniors — and once you own a car, most of your car ownership costs (buying the car, insurance, etc.) are fixed and your only additional cost of actually driving the car is gas. And most people, once they’ve incurred the costs of car ownership, are going to enjoy the convenience and relative privacy that car travel offers. Asking car owners to pay for public transit is asking them to pay for a duplicate transportation system that most of them prefer not to use. That’s why you have to roll taxes for public transportation into roads-and-bridges tax packages — because voters would never pass them as stand-alone taxes.

  41. 42

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @30 “Ultimately we need to forget about the bus/rail argument and work more on getting people to live near where they work. I live out in the ‘burbs because I work out in the ‘burbs.”

    Exactly! Our extremely wasteful lifestyle of burning fossil fuels to move millions of people long distances every day to their jobs simply isn’t sustainable. The planet doesn’t have enough fossil fuels to sustain it. What will happen to all this infrastructure when the oil is gone?

  42. 43

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    @40 As I have noted before, FlexCar has pickups. . .nice shiny new three quarter ton long beds. . .for less than maintaining yer old garbage hauler.

  43. 44

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    43

    They do? I didn’t know that. I was getting ready to suggest U-Haul or Handy Andy’s, depending on the size of your load.

    At any rate I didn’t say taxis were the be-all and end-all. I just said they were an alternative for when you have something you just plain can’t do on the bus. But not the only alternative.

  44. 45

    michael spews:

    @42

    “What will happen to all this infrastructure when the oil is gone?”

    We’ll have the worlds most rockin’ bike lanes!

  45. 46

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    41

    I live in a house in a neighborhood within sight of your burrow (I can easily walk to Green Lake, although I’ve looked and I haven’t seen your burrow yet). I get along without a car mainly because I did two things:

    1. Twenty-mumble years ago, I decided I wasn’t going to own a car any more. Period.

    2. I structured my life so that I wouldn’t need to own a car. If this meant finding someplace in the big city next to our kids’ schools and within sight of a grocery store, well that’s what I would do.

    The problem is too many people want the world to come to their door. They don’t want to have to adopt their lifestyle to the changes that have to be made.

    I figure it’s like any other lifestyle change. You decide what you’re going to do, and then you make the changes you need to do it. Anything else is excuses.

  46. 47

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    30

    I live in the city but work out in the burbs. That means taking the bus across the pond every day . . . except when I telecommute. If I could do it every day I would, but my employer likes to see my smiling face once in a while.

  47. 48

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    @44 Yup. They also have at least one MiniCooper™(Beemer), for those wild and crazy types. . .in addition to the Prius’ and vans.

  48. 49

    palamedes spews:

    My personal story about roads and congestion….

    About five years ago, after some classes in downtown San Francisco, I drove out of the city and headed to Sacramento to visit friends.

    After a couple of minutes I looked to my left.

    Parallel highway, as busy as mine. (And mine was busy.)

    Then I looked to my right.

    Parallel highway, as busy as mine.

    Blindly building more roads doesn’t work.

  49. 50

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @46 “I’ve looked and I haven’t seen your burrow yet”

    It’s 7 paces to the left of the big tree. (Of course, I’m not going to say which tree, because I don’t want any of our friends on the Right throwing jellied gasoline into my hole, leastways not while I’m in it.)

  50. 51

    busdrivermike spews:

    Will,

    You can take the #8 from 1st/Denny to Broadway/John in 13 minutes.

    Rabid Roger,

    The #75 goes from Ballard/Market to Northgate via 24th NW and holman/northgate way.

    Goldy,

    “A touch slower” LMAO, one roundtrip is projected at 52 minutes. You could walk from Westlake center to Lake Union BACKWARDS in that amount of time. The #17 does it in 8 minutes. Nobody rides the bus from Lake Union to Westlake Center. It is a dead spot for ridership. But thanks for the laugh.

    Even in all those lovely East Coast cities, they still have buses. The only question is whether we are putting rail in where it is needed most. What is the criteria for knowing where we need it most? People seem to love the express 194 to the airport. Was it smart to put light rail in the Rainier Valley, which is just going to suck up the schedule by making it compete with surface transportation. It would have been much smarter to make it elevated in the Rainier Valley. Also, Rail of any kind is going to demand subsidies of 4-10 dollars per rider.

    There will never be any rail serving Belltown Queen Anne Hill or Ballard. Sorry Will.

    A streetcar system is a foolish waste of money other than the tourist money it can provide.

    The next logical rail move is across Lake Washington. Kemper Freeman will fight that because the only reason people shop at Bellevue Square is it is closer. Downtown Seattle is an experience. Bellevue is something you suffer through. Same with Lynnwood and Southcenter.

    But, on the bright side, while all the genius transit planners and their political enablers screw everything up, I get to make mucho Overtime.

    …….UMMMMMM….Overtime.

  51. 53

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    52

    Good thing I don’t drive then, I’d be running off the road looking for hot rabbit-on-rabbit-on-rabbit action.

  52. 56

    Puddybud Who Left The Reservation spews:

    No Car Guy@46: Yeah, many a “person” are looking for that shithole! Did you try Enumclaw? Look for a horse with human excrement on it!

  53. 57

    Puddybud Who Left The Reservation spews:

    #52 Pelletman is the last Rabbit standing up. He can’t tell which hole is correct!

  54. 58

    James spews:

    Look at urbanrail.net

    click on hundreds of cities with rail systems.

    few if any regret their rail systems.

    when we go to these cities, we ride the systems & we like it.

    rail systems work.

    Fact. On. The. Ground.
    Not. Silly. Speculative. Seattlish. Debate.

    BUT the rail has to go everywhere to be useful to all, for all and be supported by all. That way you in neighborhood X get a benefit by the extension of the system to other neihborhoods….it gives you the ability to go pretty much to all parts of the region, all major destinations. So when you want to go somewhere new, for a new job, with out of town guests, whatever, you can go.

  55. 59

    The Guy With No Car spews:

    56

    Roger has said numerous times he lives down around Green Lake. I’d have that memory problem looked into

  56. 60

    ArtFart spews:

    I’ve been working on the eastside for the last year and a half. After trying time and time again to get the Metro trip planner to cough up a commute combination that didn’t involve transferring two or three times each way (and typically being left for an hour or so in the middle of nowhere if I missed a connection), one day I researched the routes the hard way and realized I can take the 242 between 148th and the Ravenna Park & Ride, connecting with the 64 or the 76 (or with a few blocks’ walk) the 71 to get me across 65th. It still takes longer than driving, but at least I don’t have to stay awake to remember to pull ahead three feet every 45 seconds on 520.

    We’ve spent the last few days in Los Angeles, and the problems here make Seattle’s piddly-ass transportation issues seem pretty laughable by comparison.

  57. 61

    George Deeming spews:

    Hey People,
    Don’t build your rail system and turn into ‘Atlanta’ in 20 years, i.e, where driving 20 miles to work on a weekday takes 4 hours on 2 principle North-South or East-West Freeways. NO rail service at all because the city fathers didn’t want a certain element to move into the ‘burbs. Philadelphia has a vibrant rail-bus system where an express bus ride from the ‘burbs (30 miles out) takes less than an hour to center city and rail that goes to 100 miles out in all directions with bus connection to almost anywhere in the area. Yes, the buses don’t come by every three minutes but the bus and rail systems provide these things called ‘schedules’ that tell you the time the buses and rail service leaves and arrives at a certain location. Plus, you can sleep, read or just zone out on a bus or train.