It’s our favorite time of year, the week we thank everyone at King County Metro who makes our agency the best in the world.

It’s Transit Appreciation Week!

Our week of celebration runs March 12-18, culminating with international Transit Operator Appreciation Day Saturday, March 18. Metro also thanks the hundreds of thousands of riders who travel on buses, boats, trains and streetcars every day.

What are the best ways to say thanks?

  • Thank your bus operator, Access driver, rail operator, streetcar operator or Water Taxi crew member. Use the hashtag #ThanksMetro and give them a shout-out on social media.
  • Download this sign and wave it at your bus stop or take a photo and tag Metro’s Twitter @KingCountyMetro.
  • Visit our Transit Appreciation Page to learn more.

We are sending our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has supported our community and our region’s economy day in and day out: transit operators who get behind the wheel of our buses seven days a week, 24 hours a day; facilities staff who keep our shelters and transit centers clean and maintained; and the mechanics who repair and maintain more than 1,500 vehicles (they literally keep the wheels on buses going ‘round and ‘round.) All of you are second to none.

This year, Transit Appreciation Week is especially meaningful as Metro celebrates its 50th anniversary! Our employees are proud to have been on the front lines to support the growth of this region for generations.

Want to learn more about how transit operators first came to be recognized? Listen to this 2017 KBCS interview with the Seattle-based founders and Carla Saulter who created and first promoted International Bus Driver Appreciation Day.

Here’s a peek behind the curtains to help you learn a bit more about the more than 5,000 hardworking, talented employees who keep Metro rolling: 

  • Transit operators – aka bus drivers – have the most visible Metro faces you see every day. We have 2,500 transit operators and growing. They get you to work. They take you to school. They connect you with medical appointments and shopping. They’re there when you stream out of a Mariners’ game, or head to hiking trails on sparkling summer mornings. (Learn more about our Operator of the Year and our Operators of the Month. Interested in joining Metro? We’re hiring!)
Terry Moon, our most recent Operator of the Year, stands next to several coaches.
King County Metro’s most recent Operator of the Year, Terry Moon, at Metro’s Central base in Seattle.
  • Our Vehicle Maintenance staff maintains our vehicles, trains and vessels. They’re responsible for the daily cleaning, disinfecting, maintenance and repair of our vehicles. And when we get snow, the Vehicle Maintenance team chains up our buses! (Learn more about our Vehicle Maintenance Employee of the Year.)
  • The employees in Facilities tirelessly work to keep bus shelters, transit bases, and transit offices safe and sanitary. Facilities staff begin their work when most of us are done for the day; our crews pressure wash bus shelters and empty trash cans throughout the region, clean offices and disinfect workstations. They keep the trolley wires in good operating order and maintain radio and electrical systems, as well as the Water Taxi dock at Pier 50. (Learn more about our Facilities Employee of the Year.)
  • Our Bus Operations staff manages the movement of our coaches across Metro’s seven bus bases and roughly 160 routes around King County.
  • The employees of the Transit Control Center provide 24/7 support to operators, monitoring and answering operator calls, and managing Metro’s response to events throughout the system.
  • Our Service Development team analyzes, plans, implements and helps prepare Metro for service adjustments, such as this month’s service change.
  • Our System Impacts members prepare for events that can affect Metro’s regularly planned service, including everything from weather to road construction to civic celebrations and demonstrations.
  • Our Marine staff keeps Metro’s water-based services afloat! The team operates Metro’s Water Taxi fleet, including the moorage and maintenance of the ships providing passenger ferry service from Pier 50 in downtown Seattle to Vashon and West Seattle. They also help stranded ferry riders!
  • The Rail team operates Link light rail, the South Lake Union and First Hill Streetcar lines. From Angle Lake to Northgate, from downtown Seattle to Capitol Hill to the shores of Lake Union, our rail staff maintains and manages miles of track along with connected facilities and grounds. (Learn more about our Rail Employees of the Year.)
  • Our Mobility and Contracted Services staff provide services that reduce cars on the road and provide mobility options for areas our buses can’t reach. They work on the Vanpool system that brings neighbors together for rides to work, our on-demand programs such as Metro Flex, the DART (Dial-A-Ride Transit) program, and Access, which provide transportation options for seniors and those with mobility challenges.
  • Our Customer Communications and Services staff are Metro’s “voice,” providing customers with critical information, including trip planning and options for paying fares.
  • Metro Transit Police through the King County Sheriff’s Office keep our passengers and operators safe. Their duties cover areas off the buses, too, from investigating crimes at transit facilities to quickly responding to incidents. They also are part of the local and regional network that helps identify and prevent potential terrorist activity.
  • Metro’s Security team members help us maintain safe spaces throughout our mobility system, including buses, trains, streetcars and Water Taxis, along with all of our transit bases and facilities.

Thanks for your support of our wonderful Metro team. See you on transit!

Several Operators of the month gather around a table.
Some of our Operators of the Month enjoying a celebration luncheon.