The phrase,'Unsound Transit', was coined by the Wall Street Journal to describe Seattle where,"Light Rail Madness eats billions that could otherwise be devoted to truly efficient transportation technologies." The Puget Sound's traffic congestion is a growing cancer on the region's prosperity. This website, captures news and expert opinion about ways to address the crisis. This is not a blog, but a knowledge base, which collects the best articles and presents them in a searchable format. My goal is to arm residents with knowledge so they can champion fact-based, rather than emotional, solutions.


Monday, March 10, 2008

Snohomish County - About Community Transit

12/31/07Community Transit is the main public transit authority of Snohomish County, Washington. It operates buses within Snohomish County and to downtown Seattle, the University of Washington, and Seattle's Eastside suburbs in King County.

Community Transit service began October 4, 1976. The original member cities were Lynnwood, Edmonds, Mountlake Terrace, Brier, Woodway, Marysville, and Snohomish. Monroe and Lake Stevens joined the system in 1977, and two years later they were joined by Stanwood, Granite Falls, Mukilteo, and Sultan. Arlington joined in 1980, and was followed by Gold Bar, Index, and Startup in 1981. Oso and Darrington joined in 1982, Mill Creek joined in 1983. The most recent to join was Bothell, in 1992. The only city in the county that maintains its own transit system is Everett, the county seat (Everett Transit), though Community Transit does run some buses there. Transit Services A Community Transit bus located in Lynnwood, WA Community Transit currently operates local bus service, commuter bus service, vanpools, and paratransit services. Local Bus Service Community Transit currently operates 33 (as of 2007) routes in Snohomish County[1]. These routes, covering a service area of 3,367 square kilometers (1,300 square miles)[1] serve most communities within the county, with the exception of certain smaller communities on U.S. Highway 2 east of Gold Bar.

The vast majority of routes operate from the early morning hours until the evening, with reduced schedules on weekends and holidays. Certain routes, such as routes that travel to Boeing's Everett facility, operate only in a peak direction and/or only at certain times (to Boeing in the morning, away from Boeing in the afternoon), while other routes can have variations depending on the time of day. Usually, but not always, these 'alternate' routes have a distinct route number to help commuters differentiate (e.g., the 200/201/202 route, which takes one of three paths at different times of day). However, some routes, like the 280 route which serves Granite Falls, simply add on extra sections at various times of day without changing the route number. This is usually the case when the additional routing would not otherwise interfere with the normal route.

Commuter Bus Service

In addition to local service, Community Transit also operates 31 commuter routes in conjunction with Sound Transit[1]. Most of these routes operate in a peak-flow capacity, taking passengers from various communities to Seattle, Bellevue, Redmond, or the University District in the morning hours and bringing them back in the afternoon and evening. A few routes, under the direction of Sound Transit, provide round trip service throughout the day to major destinations in the county, such as Everett or Lynnwood. Most commuter buses serve one of the 20 park and ride lots within the county as well as limited stops within the communities they originate from.

Vanpool Services

Community Transit also provides vanpool service. These allow for more flexibility than traditional fixed-bus routes in that the riders--who also take turns driving the van--decide their own routing, thus allowing non-traditional commuters, including those without access to fixed routes or those whose transport needs are not met by fixed routes, to still utilize transit services. In exchange for a monthly fee that varies depending on mileage and size of van, Community Transit provides the vehicle, maintenance, fuel, insurance, and other miscellaneous needs. With 333 vans as of August 2007, the vanpool service is the third largest in the United States.

Paratransit Services

Community Transit also provides paratransit services for those who live within a three-quarters of a mile of a local fixed-bus route. This service, called DART or Dial-A-Ride Transit, provides those with conditions that prevent normal bus usage to reach their destinations


Main article: SWIFT Bus Rapid Transit Community Transit is currently planning a Bus Rapid Transit line along Highway 99 between Aurora Village Transit Center and Everett. It is currently scheduled to open in 2008. The "Double Tall" Community Transit Alexander Dennis Enviro 500 Community Transit put a double-decker bus into service on August 1, 2007. An Enviro 500 manufactured by Alexander Dennis Limited, it will be used on commuter routes between Seattle and various points in Snohomish County during its first year in operation. Citizens Area Transit is one of three transit agencies that operate double-decker buses in the United States for non-sightseeing purposes, the others being Unitrans of Davis, California and Citizens Area Transit of Las Vegas, Nevada (which operates the "Deuce") [9]

Public Schools

Community Transit and Edmonds Woodway High School of Edmonds

have an arrangement for all students to take the public buses instead of the traditional school buses. Students receive free bus passes at the beginning of the year, and schools buses are only used for athletes and other extracurricular activities.

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