Tag Archives: King County Metro

Washington transit system: Our roads got a grade of D , light rail reduced and now our bridges


520bridge

Dear Washingtonians

Below is a snippet of an article and petition you should sign from the Washington Chapter of the Sierra Club. I put it in a separate post.

Senator Curtis King, Co-Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, is promoting a new transportation funding proposal that will set us back
decades. This new budget proposal fails to fund over $900 million worth of projects that are necessary to operate our transit system, provide
street improvements for bikes and pedestrians, and address polluted water runoff associated with roads.

Our bridges are literally crumbling around us. Workers can’t get to jobs because their bus service has been cut. The new road “mega-projects”
being considered in the transportation funding proposal would dramatically increase climate changing pollution and increase sprawl.
The Senate transportation funding proposal is simply unacceptable.

The reason I attached it to my old write up from 2012 is because Washingtonians need to ask … what did our savings of $2 million with the elimination of the “Free Zone” do for our transportation when our bus services are still being cut !!!

TO: Seattle City Council

I wrote about The “ride free zone” ending way before the September 29th deadline hoping they would rescind the order to end it. Today, the local media showed and interviewed the people who have suffered from the new change and not in a good way. The thing that struck me most aside from the obvious was the comment about “a one time set-aside for bus tickets,” of $250,000 in emergency money for homeless people to ride Metro.

Below is a video and article that is heartbreaking

Homeless hopes public helps with discounted Metro bus tickets … click on the link below for the video and article !

http://www.king5.com/news/cities/seattle/Homeless-council-member-ask-for–174292691.html

It was a nice surprise to hear that people are still protesting the elimination of the “Ride Free Zone”  giving full exposure to the real reasons why the Seattle King Council voted to eliminate the “Ride Free Zone.”  Yes, we all know about that 2million dollar savings but the mission to make the downtown and the transit look and smell beautiful by leaving the homeless, disabled and those needing services out in the cold, which btw are all located on or near the “Ride Free Zone.”

In 2011, king county hit its residents with a two-year vehicle license fee that was supposed to help keep metro alive. Now, Metro Bus Riders find out that a deal done with Republicans will eliminate the “Ride Free Zone,” a Merchant straight away and beautiful feature of the City of Seattle – free for over 35 years.

The facts are; that more than 10 million boarding’s are logged each year inside the Ride Free Area; another 9,000 rides are taken each day without fare. There are reports that without the compromise reductions in Metro would have affected 80% of all bus riders including the poor. Unfortunately, balancing budgets off the backs of the middle and poor has been a Republican mission since 2010. It is with great sadness to think and or believe all that King County Officials seemed to have forgotten or sacrificed for that 2 million “Ride Free Zone” cost savings per year. This includes tourists, people commuting home from across the water, downtown workers accustomed to hopping on the bus to grab a quick bite, or get some dry cleaning, pop into a store all within an hour and low-income folks who, if you ride in the zone now; know they use it to get around daily.

King County Officials say the “Ride Free Zone” will end after Sept. 29; tell them that making deals with Republicans to phase out an urban mainstay for so many, is bad for Seattle.

If, this new mega-projects monstrosity is real yet will create an environment for more pollution and increase sprawl …

We must say NO

challenge who was in charge of spending

demand accountability

                          

BIG CHANGES to bus service beginning Sept 27 ~~ King County Metro


So, Prop1 failed and now the lives of folks who depend on Metro will forever change unless or until funds are found. The question most folks are asking is what happened to the $$ its citizens invested in Metro over the last few years, least we ask about the deal struck voted and passed between Republicans and Democrats to take away the free zone and make $$ which, was said to be a savings … we all remember what happened right … bus tickets for the homeless etc were provided for about a year …

 …. Now, there are 28 routes eliminated and counting ? Nativegrl77

What grade would you give your roads?


Washington’s roads, transit rate a D+, engineers say

Posted by

 SeattleWAthumbpix
Washington state road and transit systems deserves a D+ grade, and overall infrastructure a C, says a report issued Tuesday by the Seattle chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers.The good news is that “Washington state has got a very good track record in safety, in both road and transit systems,” said Shane Binder, one of 15 co-authors. The state’s goal of zero road deaths by 2030 is attainable, he said.  Road deaths declined from 633 in 2006 to 424 in 2011, a 28 percent drop, federal statistics show.But the ASCE scored the state low because of its tenuous funding systems.  Pierce Transit and Community Transit have cut service, while King County Metro begs for new taxing authority to replace expiring sources and to grow with demand. On the other hand, Sound Transit is moving forward with most of its $18 billion expansion, including three rail lines, which voters approved in 2008.

Laura Ruppert, co-chair of the report-card committee, called the C score mediocre.

The group said Washington state highways are average, but city and rural streets are worse and drag the score down.

Meanwhile, the Legislature is considering a gas-tax hike of up to 10 cents a gallon along with other fees to fuel an $8.4 billion program — mostly highway expansions. Only $900 million is earmarked for maintenance and preservation. The plan has been blasted by retired WashDOT Secretary Doug MacDonald. Among other problems, it puts off a full redecking of Interstate 5 to some future round of tolls or taxes.

The Seattle ASCE’s report suggests gas taxes that keep pace with inflation, along with public-private partnerships that might save money. But the group wouldn’t judge OIympia’s 2013 package, when asked Tuesday. “We’d like to see a good balance between maintenance of projects, and new projects,” said Larry Costich, legislative correspondent for Seattle ASCE.

Washington’s scores by category were: aviation C, bridges C-, dams B, drinking water C-, rail C-, roads D+, schools C, hazardous waste C, and transit D+.

Seattle ACSE issued the report to mark its 100th anniversary. In March, the national ASCE declared U.S. infrastructure a D+ and in need of $3.6 trillion investment by 2020, to help the U.S. economy stay competitive.

Final Vote on Bus Cuts on Mon. 8/15


King County Metro 30' Gillig PHANTOM coach #11...
Image via Wikipedia

Your support for saving King County Metro has made a huge difference. More than 8,200 people signed our SignOn petition to save our buses, and more than 14,000 total signed letters or petitions. The testimony at the 7/26 hearing was fantastic, and we didn’t lose! But we also haven’t won yet…

We need six of nine councilmembers to vote in favor of the two-year stop-gap measure to save our buses. We have the support of 5 members, but the sixth has been elusive.

The King County Council was set to vote on the matter that day. Luckily, thanks to the thousands of people who voiced their support, the four remaining councilmembers — all Republicans — agreed to take three more weeks to seriously consider the the measure.

Now, we must double-down. This is our last chance to save our buses from devastating 17% cuts that will significantly hurt 4 out of 5 riders. Though I started this petition as an individual, I’ve learned that many professionals are working on this and related issues under the umbrella of the Transportation for Washington campaign. Here’s what they recommend:

First, please send your own personal letter to the King County Councilmembers. There are no more opportunities for public testimony, so calling or sending another letter is the best way to remind them of our arguments. Feel free to edit or add personal details.

 Click here to send your letter.   http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5127/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=7814

Next, pack the meeting on Monday, August 15.
Click here to RSVP.    http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5153/p/salsa/web/questionnaire/public/?questionnaire_KEY=608

Finally, we need volunteers to help petition, phonebank, write letters to newpaper editors, and enter data.
Email Brock Howell, field director of Transportation 4 WA, at brock@futurewise.org to volunteer.

Thanks again for your support. Your dedication to the betterment of our society and planet warms my heart.
Together we can save our buses. Stay strong & don’t give up!

Peace to all of you,

Julia Deak