Metro Transit will loosen bike rules Feb. 6

January 24, 2010

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 6 a.m. Jan. 24, 2010

King County Metro Transit riders taking a bike along to downtown Seattle will face fewer hassles next month.

Metro will allow bicyclists to load and unload bicycles at any regular bus stop in the downtown Ride Free Area at any time of the day. The yearlong demonstration project starts Feb. 6.

During the past several years, Metro has eased bike-loading limits. The restrictions during peak hours in the busy downtown core are the last in place.

After Metro lifts the rules Feb. 6, the transit agency will conduct a yearlong safety-and-operations evaluation to decide whether to make the changes permanent.

Cyclists may also continue to load and unload bicycles at any station of the Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel during the hours when the tunnel is open.

To ensure the new policy is successful, Metro asks bicyclists to always alert the bus driver prior to loading or unloading a bike, make sure the driver acknowledges the bicyclist before he or she steps in front of a bus, be aware of traffic around when loading and unloading your bike, and use caution in stepping up and down from high curbs.

Find more tips about safe bike loading here.

Metro bike racks are easy to use, and there is no additional fare for using them. By the spring, the entire Metro bus fleet will be upgraded with three-position bike racks. About 70 percent of Metro buses have the racks now.

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