Community Transit seeks public comment on new six-year plan

Community Transit has released its draft 2019-2024 Transit Development Plan and is seeking public comment through Oct. 31.

Priorities of the plan include access and connectivity to Sound Transit’s Link light rail, with a focus on expanded service.

The six-year plan also calls for hiring about 160 new employees by 2024 to help provide 37 percent more transit service for Snohomish County residents. While most of those jobs will be bus drivers, there is a need for mechanics and other support staff that will increase the number of agency employees to more than 1,000 in the next six years.

The employment forecast is one aspect of the new draft plan. Each year, the transit agency looks ahead six years to forecast sales tax revenue, and to match proposed future service expansions with the labor and fleet needed to provide that service. This plan covers the years 2019 through 2024, and includes accomplishments from 2018.

Part of Community Transit’s service expansion is to build out Swift, the agency’s bus rapid transit network. Swift Orange Line, the third line in the network, will launch in 2024. With terminals in Mill Creek and Edmonds, Orange Line will connect Swift riders to Sound Transit’s Link light rail station at Lynnwood City Center station.

The draft plan also includes a Swift Blue Line extension; the line will extend 1.8 miles south along Highway 99/Aurora Avenue to a new Sound Transit Link light rail station at North 185th Street in Shoreline.

Swift Blue Line, which has run from Everett to Shoreline since 2009, provides about 5,500 rides each weekday, and served more than 1.75 million passengers in 2018. Swift Green Line, serving the Canyon Park/Bothell-Boeing/Paine Field communities, became operational in March 2019.

Other highlights of the draft plan:

  • By 2024, Community Transit plans to increase its fleet to 338 buses, 509 vanpool vans, and 52 DART paratransit buses.
  • Bus service levels are continuing to grow in 2019 and are forecast to reach more than 565,000 annual service hours by 2024.
  • Total system wide ridership is expected to reach 14.4 million boardings by 2024.
  • The agency will order 585 new vehicles over the life of this plan to replace or expand the bus fleet, vanpool fleet and paratransit fleet.
  • Expenditures over these six years total $1.5 billion in transit service and capital investment.

The Draft TDP was presented to the Community Transit Board of Directors Oct. 3 and is available for public comment through Oct. 31. The report can be found online at www.communitytransit.org/TDP.

Public comment may be made in several ways:

People can offer their comments before the Board of Directors at a public hearing at 3 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 7 in theCommunity Transit Board Room, 7100 Hardeson Road, Everett, accessible by Everett Transit Route 8.

 

 

 

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