Bikes, buses and Rainier Avenue – Seattle Transit Blog
SDOT says the first phase of this transit route could save Route 7 riders one minute per trip, but the full extension could save riders 6 minutes during peak congestion times on the route. Rainier Ave. This could translate to up to 141 cumulative hours saved per day, given the busyness of this heavily used bus line. Although the pandemic and work-from-home measures have temporarily traffic undermined over much of the bus network, ridership on Route 7 remained high due to the prevalence of transit-dependent households and essential workers along the route, Metro reports.
A comprehensive look at the state of Rainier Avenue in 2022 as part of some much needed bus priority work. Route 7 (and/or RapidRide R) is exactly the type of route that will continue to have robust traffic all day after COVID.
This is a side note, but it seems SDOT did everyone a disservice by keeping a zombie-proof bike path in the aging. bicycle master plan for MLK (south of Mount Baker) and Rainier (north of Mount Baker). Given the traffic volumes on these corridors, it’s unlikely we’ll see bike lanes on MLK or Rainier anytime soon. SDOT will not drastically reduce the capacity of cars without air cover from the town hall, and the current president of administration and transport is unlikely to provide it.
That said, there can and absolutely should be a direct, flat, safe bike path through the Rainier Valley and we shouldn’t be playing bike-bus hunger games all the time. How could we reallocate all that surface parking, for example, before new developments fill it up? The city should engage in a real study with viable options – even ones that require capital investment – add one to the next Move Seattle Levy so that we have something to get people excited about in addition to (say) replacing the bridges in Magnolia.