NO RAPIDRIDE UNTIL NEXT YEAR: Another schedule change for Metro

April 19th, 2022 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news 2 Comments »

(Image from kingcounty.gov)

The conversion of Metro Route 120 into RapidRide H Line is being pushed back again. Metro has just announced that instead of launching this fall, the H Line won’t arrive until March 2023: “Unforeseen construction and materials delays from the regional concrete strike that began in early December 2021 have added several months to the original timeline of the RapidRide H Line project.” The announcement adds, “Under the revised implementation schedule, Metro plans to add more daily bus trips to coincide with the launch of the RapidRide service in March 2023, which will then improve frequent service to provide a bus trip in both directions every seven minutes during peak commute times.” Metro says that “approximately 40% of the overall construction work” has been completed so far. The Avalon/35th/Alaska repaving project that SDOT handled was in support of the expected launch. This is the fourth time the launch has been pushed back – the conversion of Route 120 was originally projected for 2019, then that was pushed to 2020, then to 2021, and then a year and a half ago, changed to 2022.

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TONIGHT: Questions/comments about RapidRide H Line construction? Here’s your next chance

January 27th, 2022 Tracy Posted in Metro, White Center news Comments Off on TONIGHT: Questions/comments about RapidRide H Line construction? Here’s your next chance

(Metro photo)</em>

Some of the work along the RapidRide H Line route is on hold because of the concrete-drivers strike, and some continues. The launch is currently scheduled for September of this year, converting what is currently Metro Route 120 between Burien, White Center, West Seattle, and downtown Seattle. If you have questions or comments about the project, tonight is the next “office hours” opportunity to drop in online or by phone, any time between 5 and 6 pm – here’s how:

To join online, click this link

To join by phone, call: 206-485-0017; Conference ID: 206 834 474#

To request interpretation services for these virtual events, please contact us before the meeting via phone, at 206-257-3079, or email us at rapidride@kingcounty.gov

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TRANSIT: Metro returning to regular service Sunday

January 1st, 2022 Tracy Posted in Metro, White Center news Comments Off on TRANSIT: Metro returning to regular service Sunday

(Seen in West Seattle this afternoon)

Metro has announced it’ll begin on Sunday the process of getting transit service back to normal:

Metro will deactivate the Emergency Snow Network (ESN) at 4 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 2. All Metro bus routes active on weekends will operate on their regular schedules starting Jan. 2 where road conditions allow.

Metro vehicle maintenance crews have shifted away from chaining and retrieving stuck buses and have started repairs to damaged buses that operated during the winter storm. Metro is assessing the number of available buses and whether any routes may need to remain temporarily suspended on Monday, Jan. 3, as additional repairs are completed.

“Our transit professionals kept the region moving safely during the recent snowstorms,” said King County Metro General Manager Terry White. “Now we turn our attention to repairing buses damaged over the past week and again operating the broader all-day transit network that riders rely on.”

Riders traveling on Saturday, Jan. 1, should review what routes are operating on the Emergency Snow Network before traveling. On Sunday, Jan. 2, online resources will be updated to reflect any lingering snow routes where road conditions continue to be difficult for transit service. Masks are required on all public transportation.

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ROAD-WORK ALERT: RapidRide H Line construction sites ‘paused’

December 23rd, 2021 Tracy Posted in Metro, White Center news 1 Comment »

(Metro photo: Crews digging utility trenches along 15th Avenue SW)

The ongoing concrete-drivers strike has put some RapidRide H Line-related construction work on pause in White Center, as well as West Seattle and Burien. From a Metro advisory:

Due to regional concrete supply issues, construction at the following locations have been paused temporarily:

15th Avenue SW and SW Roxbury Street
15th Avenue SW and SW 102nd Street
15th Avenue SW and SW 107th Street
26th Avenue SW and SW Roxbury Street
Ambaum Boulevard SW and SW 112th Street
Ambaum Boulevard SW, between SW 116th Street and SW 122nd Street
Ambaum Boulevard SW and SW 128th Street
Ambaum Boulevard SW and SW 136th Street
Ambaum Boulevard SW and SW 142nd Street

We are adjusting our schedule and plans to manage delays and impacts. Construction will resume once the supply issues are resolved. Once construction restarts, we expect work to last approximately 4 weeks as crews complete the remaining activities.

Metro Route 120 is scheduled to become the H Line in September 2022. See the entire advisory by going here.

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Last chance to take Metro’s safety survey

July 25th, 2021 Tracy Posted in Metro, Safety, White Center news Comments Off on Last chance to take Metro’s safety survey

(Also published on partner site West Seattle Blog)

If you ride Metro – occasionally or often – but haven’t yet answered its safety survey, today’s your last chance. The survey is part of what Metro calls its SaFE Reform Initiative – safety, security, and fare-enforcement reform. The survey is available here in 13 languages. You don’t have to answer all the questions – you’re allowed to skip any you don’t want to answer. Once Metro comes up with recommended reforms, pilot programs will launch next year.

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RapidRide H Line ‘groundbreaking’ tomorrow in White Center

May 17th, 2021 Tracy Posted in King County, Metro, White Center news Comments Off on RapidRide H Line ‘groundbreaking’ tomorrow in White Center

During his State of the County speech last week, County Executive Dow Constantine announced plans for “groundbreaking” in White Center this week as the RapidRide H Line gets closer to launching. Work to prepare for the Route 120 conversion has already been under way on much of the West Seattle section of the route for almost a year – repaving and utilities. Today, details of this week’s event have been announced – 9:30 am Tuesday at Steve Cox Memorial Park. We’ll of course be there to cover it. P.S. Launch date for the new RapidRide has been pushed back three times but is currently set for next year.

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TRAFFIC & TRANSIT ALERT: Roundabout work ahead

September 9th, 2020 Tracy Posted in Metro, Traffic, White Center news Comments Off on TRAFFIC & TRANSIT ALERT: Roundabout work ahead

From King County Roads:

Starting at 7 a.m. Friday, September 11 until 11:59 p.m. Saturday, September 12, street parking will be temporarily prohibited in the following White Center locations:

• North side of SW 100th Street between 4th Avenue SW and 8th Avenue SW

• North and south sides of SW 106th Street for 100-feet east of 8th Avenue SW and first 100 feet east of 4th Avenue SW

The parking restriction is needed to allow King County Metro to reroute buses during roundabout painting work at the intersection of 8th Avenue SW and SW 102nd Street.

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BUSES: Third round of cuts in Metro service

April 19th, 2020 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on BUSES: Third round of cuts in Metro service

A third round of cuts for Metro started taking effect this weekend and continues today. Here’s the full news release:

As the region continues to respond to COVID-19, King County Metro will reduce weekend bus service beginning Saturday April 18, and further reduce weekday bus service starting Monday, April 20. Water Taxi and First Hill Streetcar will continue to operate on previously reduced schedules.

This revised Reduced Schedule provides a core network of public transportation services to maintain access to critical supplies, services, and worksites across the region. Details about weekend changes will be posted online Thursday; canceled trip details weekday service will be revised and updated online Saturday.

Overall, Metro will operate with approximately 42% fewer buses, 36% fewer transit operators, and 27% fewer service trips than typical weekday service. Weekend trips will be reduced by 15% on Saturdays and 4% on Sundays.

“To reserve transit for those who need it most, we’re calling on riders to travel only if absolutely necessary and to wear a face covering to help limit the spread of COVID-19,” said King County Metro General Manager Rob Gannon. “Adjusting our weekend and weekday service allows us to continue to operate a reliable network of service for essential travel needs – for food, medicine, and work – while responding to decreased ridership demands and to the overall availability of Metro’s workforce. Our goal is to continue to serve the community, and we’re grateful for and commend our frontline staff.”

Read the rest of this entry »

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METRO CHANGES: More bus-service reductions start today

April 6th, 2020 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on METRO CHANGES: More bus-service reductions start today

Metro is cutting service again with ridership continuing at way-below-normal levels during the coronavirus crisis. Moe cuts take effect today. The full announcement is here; the 60, 128, and 131 are largely untouched, while the 120 will see some cuts.

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MONDAY: First commute with new downtown Seattle pathway for buses from White Center, Burien, West Seattle

February 23rd, 2020 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news 1 Comment »

Buses from White Center, Burien, and West Seattle are now on the new downtown Seattle pathway – Monday’s the first weekday since the switch. Here’s the map and route list:

Columbia Street, once best known for an onramp to the southbound Alaskan Way Viaduct, is now carrying buses to and from surface Alaskan Way, connecting to Third Avenue. This Seattle Department of Transportation post shows its configuration.

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Ride the bus home from downtown Seattle? Another reroute test planned Thursday

August 12th, 2019 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news 4 Comments »

On partner site West Seattle Blog, we’ve been covering the homeward-bound bus crunch for weeks. But it affects people traveling south of WS, too, so heads up – another reroute test is planned for southbound routes this Thursday (August 15th). Details here.

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NEW YEAR’S EVE: Ride Metro for free again this year

December 21st, 2018 Tracy Posted in Holidays, Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on NEW YEAR’S EVE: Ride Metro for free again this year

Just announced by the county:

For the second year, King County Metro will offer free rides on New Year’s Eve. Rides will be free from 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 31, to 4 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 1, including DART and Access service. In addition, Metro will add buses to its night routes. The Seattle Streetcar also will be free on New Year’s Eve, and Sound Transit will extend the operating hours of Link light rail service between Angle Lake and the University of Washington.

“As we ring in another new year together, we are glad to again offer free rides on Metro to help keep the celebration safe for everyone,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “We appreciate all our customers, and hope folks who give transit a try during the holiday season will join the half-million daily Metro riders who depend on our safe, friendly, and reliable service all year ’round.”

“Access to safe and reliable transportation is a cornerstone of Metro’s mission and New Years Eve is no exception. We hope existing and future riders will utilize Metro to help them celebrate the New Year this year,” said King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove, who proposed the idea in 2017.

King County Metro will operate reduced weekday schedules on New Year’s Eve on some routes, with extra buses on several routes serving destinations such as Seattle Center, Capitol Hill and downtown. New Year’s revelers can take advantage of Metro’s recently expanded Night Owl network, with added service on major routes between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m.

Sound Transit will operate extended Link light rail service with trains running until 2 a.m. pm New Year’s Eve. The last trains to leave Westlake Station depart at 2 a.m.

The Seattle Streetcar will operate until 1 a.m.

Metro routes with added trips as needed will include 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 14, 24, 32, 36, 40, 41, 62, 65, 70, 101, 106, 120, 124, 150, 255, RapidRide A, B, C, D and E lines, and ST 550 and ST 554. The fareboxes and ORCA card readers on Metro buses will be covered to remind customers not to pay. A regular valid fare will be required on Sound Transit Express buses.

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Reminder from Metro: Fare-structure change July 1st

May 31st, 2018 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on Reminder from Metro: Fare-structure change July 1st

From King County today, a reminder that the new fare structure is now a month away:

Metro’s new fare of $2.75 aims to help customers by making riding transit more convenient and reducing confusion over fare payment that leads to delays in boarding. A single fare for adult riders also lowers the potential for fare disputes, which will help improve safety.

Starting June 1, customers can purchase ORCA passes for July under the new fare structure. Metro’s fares for youth, seniors and disabled riders, and those enrolled in ORCA LIFT will not change. More information can be found on Metro’s fares page.

“You said you wanted simpler fares, and we made it happen. No matter where or when you ride, simpler is better,” said Executive Dow Constantine. “Whether you’re traveling between Ballard and Bellevue, White Center and Westlake, or anywhere that crosses the Seattle city limits, this new fare means money in your pocket. For riders who may end up paying a little more, we’re making sure people with low incomes, seniors, and the disabled have more access to transit than ever.”

Metro adopted a simple fare after receiving more than 11,000 responses to two public surveys, including one in which 80 percent expressed support for a flat fare. Metro previously had one of the nation’s most complex fare structures, with one zone for the City of Seattle and another for all areas outside of the city, as well as extra charges during the morning and evening commute.

About 65 percent of Metro boardings will see no change or pay 50 cents less under the new structure. Fares for off-peak travel will increase by 25 cents – affecting about 35 percent of Metro boardings.

ORCA LIFT PARTNERSHIP

Customers who qualify for reduced transit fares now have new ways to apply for a discount ORCA LIFT card. Metro and Public Health – Seattle & King County launched a new partnership with the state Department of Social and Health Services to distribute ORCA LIFT cards to clients in need of transportation assistance.

“Clients applying for Community Services Division programs at any of the 10 King County Community Service Offices, may also be eligible for the ORCA LIFT Program and may receive ORCA cards at the same office visit as their food or cash program benefits,” said Truong Hoang, Deputy Regional Administrator, Region 2. “CSD is committed to making transportation costs lower for those in need.”

The DSHS Community Service Offices with ORCA LIFT enrollment include five locations in Seattle, and others in Renton, Auburn, Federal Way and Kent. More than 4,200 have enrolled through DSHS since the partnership began.

ORCA LIFT allows riders with lower-incomes to pay a reduced $1.50 fare. More than 64,000 people have been enrolled in the program since it launched in 2015, with more than 14 million boardings on Metro.

ORCA LIFT is available at over 125 locations through Metro’s partnership with Public Health – Seattle & King County and local community-based organizations.

Metro also is working with ORCA agency partners to reduce the replacement card fee for ORCA LIFT customers from $5 to $3 and eliminate the $3 initial card fee for seniors and people with disabilities.

At the beginning of 2018, Metro increased funding for Human Service tickets for riders with lower-income or no income.

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RAPIDRIDE H LINE: ‘Online open house’ starts today

January 5th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on RAPIDRIDE H LINE: ‘Online open house’ starts today

Your next feedback opportunity for the planned conversion of Metro Route 120 into the RapidRide H Line starts now. Metro’s “online open house” is live, through January 15th. It starts here. (And remember that next Thursday brings an in-person meeting in White Center – 5-8 pm, Mount View Elementary School, 10811 12th Avenue SW.)

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Election update: Proposition 1 still losing after 2 vote counts; county leaders say ‘we will carry out the will of the voters’ and cut Metro

April 23rd, 2014 Tracy Posted in Metro, Politics, White Center news 1 Comment »

The second round of results is out for Proposition 1, the transit/roads money measure on Tuesday’s ballot, and “no” is still leading, by nine percentage points. Current tally:

No – 224,441 votes, 54.51%
Yes – 187,324 votes, 45.49%

County leaders have issued a news release saying that they’re now making plans for Metro cuts. County Executive Dow Constantine: “We gave the voters a choice, and presented a proposal for saving Metro Transit and maintaining our roads. They have chosen a reduced level of service, and we will carry out the will of the voters. Tomorrow I will transmit legislation to the King County Council to reduce service by 550,000 hours and eliminate 72 bus routes.” The County Council’s Transportation, Economy and Environment committee will have public hearings on the plan before taking final action by the end of May. Here’s the draft version of the 550,000-hour reduction:

It leaves more routes unchanged than the original proposal, and would be phased in between September 2014 and September 2015. Still on the list of routes to be eliminated: 21, 22, 37, 57. Route 113 was on the deletion list in November but is on the “would be unchanged” list now.

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Something to say about Metro money measure? Evening hearing February 4th

January 28th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on Something to say about Metro money measure? Evening hearing February 4th

If you have something to say in person about the proposed ballot measure to raise money to hold off Metro cuts and help roads, with a car-tab fee and sales-tax increase, be at Union Station (401 S. Jackson) in downtown Seattle on Tuesday, February 4th, for the only night hearing – 5:30 pm sign-in, 6 pm testimony. The County Council expects to decide February 10th whether to send a proposal to voters in April.

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Metro-cuts update, crime report @ North Highline Unincorporated Area Council’s January 2014 meeting

January 12th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Metro, North Highline UAC, White Center news Comments Off on Metro-cuts update, crime report @ North Highline Unincorporated Area Council’s January 2014 meeting

By Tracy Record and Patrick Sand
White Center Now co-publishers

With no money solution in sight yet, the first round of Metro service cuts is rolling forward, and it was the centerpiece topic at Thursday night’s meeting of the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council.

These are the changes that would take effect in June, when the county runs out of money from the state meant to mitigate effects of Highway 99 construction – even though that construction is far from over, and county leaders suggest that transportation in this area will be affected through at least 2019, between the tunnel, the Viaduct demolition, surface Alaskan Way construction, seawall work, and more.

The King County Council’s Transportation Committee will look at the proposed cuts Thursday afternoon at 1:30 pm, and will also be briefed on proposed creation of a “transportation benefit district” to raise money locally to make up for some of what is expiring.

The June service-change proposal (eliminated and reduced routes) for this area, still pending council approval, includes total elimination of Route 113, whose service area includes White Center:

As noted by Metro’s Doug Johnson and DeAnna Martin at the meeting, other effects in this area would include service reductions for routes 60, 120, 121, 122, 123, 131, and 132.

Also at the meeting, County Councilmember Joe McDermott, who said the “transportation benefit district” – authorizing a car-tab fee and sales-tax increase – could go to voters as soon as April, and isn’t just for Metro money, but would also raise $50 million for roads. There’s been no good news from Olympia regarding a transportation deal, and that’s why this all is moving forward.

In addition to the County Council committee meeting this week, there’s also a big event with the West Seattle Transportation Coalition which, as WSTC board member Amanda Kay Helmick told NHUAC on Thursday night, considers North Highline to be an integral part of the area too. At 6:30 pm Tuesday at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW), representatives from city, county, and state government will comprise a panel with Q/A about local transportation issues, and as WSTC has been noting, a big turnout will underscore local concerns.

Also during Thursday’s NHUAC meeting, the monthly crime/safety briefing with King County Sheriff’s Office Deputy BJ Myers. He mentioned an uptick in car thefts/prowls and auto-parts thefts around the Top Hat area in the past month, and said KCSO is targeting that with a special emphasis. But the heart of White Center itself does not have anything out of the ordinary going on, and December 2013 stats, Deputy Myers said, look a lot like December 2012. Several attendees asked him to check on graffiti-vandalism concerns.

For more information about NHUAC, check out its website at northhighlineuac.org.

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Metro’s potential cuts on the agenda at first 2014 meeting of North Highline Unincorporated Area Council

December 29th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Metro, North Highline UAC, White Center news Comments Off on Metro’s potential cuts on the agenda at first 2014 meeting of North Highline Unincorporated Area Council

Still no solution to the Metro money mess – with some White Center/West Seattle cuts looming even sooner than the rest of the region – so the centerpiece item on next month’s NHUAC agenda is all the more important. From president Barbara Dobkin:

Just a reminder – The North Highline Unincorporated Area Council (NHUAC) will be holding their January meeting on Thursday, January 9. We are pleased to be hosting representatives from King County Metro, who will provide information on potential service cuts. A total of 600,000 annual service hours, or 17% of the current Metro system could be eliminated. The impact from these cuts will be devastating to both drivers and Metro riders. It is important to let your voice be heard – so please join us for this important discussion.

Metro Representatives will be on hand starting at 6:30 – our regular meeting will begin at 7.

Stay tuned for more details.

NHUAC Meeting
When: Thursday, January 9, 6:30 pm
Where: North Highline Fire Station (1243 SW 112th)

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White Center Weather Watch: Friday snow updates

December 20th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Highline School District, Metro, Weather, White Center news Comments Off on White Center Weather Watch: Friday snow updates

5:13 AM: It’s snowing, as predicted, and expected to continue into the late morning. We’ll publish major updates here, including roads, transit, and schools, as we get them.

5:53 AM: Trouble on Olson Place already, per the scanner – a bus partly blocking at 3rd.

6:07 AM: Highline Public Schools has just tweeted that it’s CLOSED for the day.

7:10 AM: Metro buses are all on snow routes.

7:27 AM: Remember that King County is plowing fewer roads – although the snow is not so heavy that this is likely to be a major problem, this time. Also – an added school closure in White Center: West Seattle Montessori is closed.

3:13 PM: Metro is back to regular routes.

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Potential Metro cuts: Transit takeaways ahead, if funding’s not replaced

November 7th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Metro, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on Potential Metro cuts: Transit takeaways ahead, if funding’s not replaced


(What the bus network in this area would look like AFTER the cuts, IF they have to be made – click for full-size view)
A big media briefing earlier today followed up on the one back in April warning that big chunks of Metro funding were expiring – remember the Congestion Reduction Charge, and Viaduct mitigation money? At that time, county leaders warned that without action by the Legislature, major Metro cuts could ensue. That action hasn’t been taken yet (though a special session starting today brings some new hope) so Metro has unveiled specifics. There are many details in our as-it-happened coverage on partner site West Seattle Blog; in addition, you can go to this special Metro website to find route-by-route information and a lot more. They’re about to start a round of community meetings, and the schedule includes one in the West Seattle/White Center area: Youngstown Cultural Arts Center in North Delridge, 6 pm December 3rd.

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