Test-driving the B Line

With the launch of B Line service in Bellevue and Redmond less than two weeks away, Metro is getting ready to test-drive the new buses along the route. All 12 B Line buses will be out on the road for up to 20 hours a day on Thursday and Friday (Sept. 22-23), passing through every stop and station on the line but accepting no passengers.

The test drives will allow Metro to check the unique RapidRide systems (automated onboard announcements, transit signal priority for traffic lights, real-time information signs at bus stops, and the Wi-Fi system on each bus) and help bus drivers become more familiar with the B Line equipment and routing.

Metro also wants to check the B Line schedules against real-world traffic conditions before service begins.

So if you see a red-and-yellow bus on the road in Bellevue or Redmond this week, give it a wave and plan to try out the new service in a few weeks. Rides will be free for both days of the first weekend (Oct. 1 and 2)!

» Learn more about the B Line

10 thoughts on “Test-driving the B Line

  1. These bays are actually outside the Overlake Transit Center on 156th Avenue NE. Bay 7 is to the north of the driveway (southbound on 156th Avenue NE) and Bay 8 is opposite the driveway (northbound on 156th Avenue NE).

  2. I do not yet see a Rapid Ride bus station/stop for the 148th Avenue NE and Redmond Way intersection on the way to Redmond Transit Center. Is that still under construction? I also did not see the trial run buses stop there. Was that intentional?

  3. I was really happy about the B line until they told me bus 233 departing from Bear Creek p&r would be canceled, that bus is the one I use to go to work and school, you cannot imagine how upset I am, B line will not take me anywhere near where I need to go. And the 269 doesn’t run during the times I need it. The saddest part is I’ve been asking my drivers for over a month whether my route would be canceled and nobody knew about it. Today a driver from the 248 told me they are indeed canceling my ride. So, I have exactly 6 days to find out how I’ll get to work and school. Thank you SO MUCH.

  4. Hi Anna,

    What are your trip start and end points, and what time of day do you travel? If you can provide this info, our planners can suggest some options.

  5. The RapidRide stop at northbound 148th Avenue NE near Redmond Way is under construction and expected to be ready before the B Line launch on Oct. 1. It will be a standard stop, with a RapidRide blade marker and bench (see previous post about the difference between stations and stops). The new RapidRide stop sign should be installed by Monday (Sept. 26). The test buses are not making every stop, so the one(s) you’ve seen may have simply skipped this stop.

  6. In theory it sounds great that there are is no need for a timetable. But who wants to have to potentially stand around for 15 minutes!?Do the buses even leave the transit centers at a set time? Please tell me how I will be able to know at approximately what time a bus is going to arrive at my stop so that I can plan to leave the house/work accordingly.

  7. Real time information at the bus stop is a useless feature. We already know that the bus is going to arrive within in the next 10-15 minutes. I want to know BEFORE I leave the house at what time the bus is expected to arrive. Is there at least going to be an online tracking system?

  8. They said the same thing to me. It has increased my commute time from Bellevue to Seattle – and back – by 30 minutes. I am going to move to Seattle.

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