Southeast Seattle: Mapping destinations

The people we’ve heard from in southeast Seattle take the bus to places all over the county.

Here’s a map that shows destinations that came up over and over again in our conversations. Does this reflect your own travel patterns?

Travel trends of note… Some of the people we talked to don’t live in southeast Seattle, but travel there for culturally-relevant social or health services. They live throughout the county and rely on multiple bus routes to get to these services throughout the day. Infrequent and/or unreliable service greatly affects their ability to get to appointments on time.

Another common theme expressed is people who live in southeast Seattle making frequent trips south to places like Skyway, Renton, Tukwila, White Center, and Burien to visit family and friends.

Is the service that’s currently provided – buses, Link, or alternatives – working to get people to these places? If not, how would you structure these differently to better meet the travel patterns expressed here?

Learn more about alternative services, such as Access paratransit, Metro’s Rideshare/Vanpool program, taxi scrip, or the Hyde Shuttle>>

Learn what others have said about their experiences with ORCA>>

Where are we headed? >>

How did we get here? >>

4 thoughts on “Southeast Seattle: Mapping destinations

  1. Frankly, my main takeaway from this map is that the south part of Route 4 is completely pointless, and the service hours used to operate it could be better spent improving service on Routes 3, 8 and 48, which already provide far better connectivity from the Rainier Valley to the Central District, but suffer from inadequate frequency in the evenings and on Sundays, and horrible unreliability at other times. Metro and the city should team up to build whatever sidewalks or other pedestrian access improvements are required to give residents of Center Park the ability to use the many routes that pass close to them so they are no longer dependent on the 4 laying over at their doorstep.

    Metro may need to make some far-reaching changes to the bus network to fix the reliability of the 8 and 48. How about through-routing the north part of the 48 with the 271 and making the 48-south a standalone route (and then electrifying it)? How about splitting the 8 at its former terminus at Group Health Capitol Hill? Splitting the 8 would be quite expensive, but the dramatic improvement in reliability on the MLK segment would be the best possible compensation for 42 riders finally losing their bus. The 48-271 idea probably wouldn’t cost much at all.

    Keeping underperforming legacy routes like the 42 and 4-south is a politically easy band-aid for the inadequacies of Metro’s trunk routes in southeast Seattle, but ultimately it short changes the vast majority of riders and potential riders. Metro needs to move beyond band-aids and start fixing the chronic, underlying problems with its bus network. Deleting the 42 is a step in that direction, but Metro’s removal of the 3 and 4 changes from the Fall restructure is a terrible missed opportunity.

  2. Seems like a very poor outreach. No one from SE Seattle travels to Bellevue?! Downtown Bellevue has a lot of jobs that provide bus passes for its employees, there are also a lot of regional shopping and services. People in the upper Rainier Valley still do not have any direct bus to Downtown Bellevue but Metro wants to talk about 42 and 4. It’s just silly. The only way to connect to an Eastside bus on I-90 is via sad old slow route 7 that no one sane takes in SE. Seems like metro reached out to the same old group of bus riders that take this outdated routes for decades. Route 4 is very outdated indeed. It terminates a few blocks away from the Mt Baker station, which makes it very pointless. But the Mt Baker station transfer itself is not well integrated. Riders have to cross a lot of traffic, wait at traffic lights… The turn around under the station is not even served by any bus…
    Completely disagree with the above post about route 8! Don’t even think of terminating 8 at Group Health. We do not need another route 4 that terminates shy of important destinations. The split for 8 must be Mt Baker station so we all can transfer to many other routes. However, the bus should stop right under the station, not across Rainier ave.

    The biggest loss in all of this, is the new service, or no service, on Seward Park Ave. There is absolutely no safe way to walk to Rainier Ave to catch 7 or 9, or north to catch the new 50, which requires a transfer at Columbia City station anyway. Either route 9 must travel on Seward Park all the way to Rainier Beach or the new 50 should be extended south to RB light rail. There are so many empty buses on Henderson like 8 and 107. Use those bus hours for extending 50 south on Seward Park Ave S from Othello to Henderson and then to the RB light rail. Or just keep the 34!

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  4. Thank you for making an effort to talk to the people who actually ride these routes every day. I appreciate Metro’s interest in us riders and Metro’s willingness to go beyond what armchair critics and transit enthusiasts have to say. The online section of the survey inaccurately skews upper-class (34 used once for every 7? No way!), ruining the data for the route comparisons, but I assume Metro understands this, even as it is not mentioned in the report. The 4 needs to be expanded, not deleted. More trolley routes would be great. Thank you for the existing service that is in place, most of which is fantastic (7 being the obvious winner, with 24 hour service and a direct connection for everyone; but also the improved 8, so much better than 5 years ago, and the 106 to Georgetown. Now if we can just extend that 36 wire to Rainier Beach, and bring back service to Renton on Rainier north of Henderson…)

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