King County Metro Transit offers tickets to homeless riders

October 23, 2012

King County Metro Transit is poised to offer more than 41,000 additional subsidized bus tickets to community service groups.

Officials said the human services bus ticket program offers critical support for homeless people by providing a means to get to jobs, medical appointments, shelters and other services.

Funding for the program came in a mass transit package approved last year by the King County Council. The package imposed a $20 vehicle-tab fee to forestall a 17-percent reduction to mass transit countywide.

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King County Metro Transit addresses crowding on Issaquah-bound route

October 16, 2012

King County Metro Transit is attempting to ease afternoon crowding on buses from downtown Seattle to the Issaquah Highlands by eliminating a Bellevue stop.

Starting Oct. 15, the transit agency cut a stop at the Eastgate Freeway Station to reduce crowding on the Issaquah-bound Route 218 buses. Metro Transit provides 15 trips on the route during the weekday afternoon commute.

Riders heading to the Eastgate Park & Ride in Bellevue can instead use alternate service on Second Avenue in downtown Seattle.

Metro Transit plans for weekday morning Route 218 buses to Seattle to continue to serve the westbound Eastgate Freeway Station.

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King County Metro Transit addresses crowding on Issaquah-bound route

October 8, 2012

NEW — 6 p.m. Oct. 8, 2012

King County Metro Transit is attempting to ease afternoon crowding on buses from downtown Seattle to the Issaquah Highlands by eliminating a Bellevue stop, starting Oct. 15.

The transit agency is cutting a stop at the Eastgate Freeway Station to reduce crowding on the Issaquah-bound Route 218 buses. Metro Transit provides 15 trips on the route during the weekday afternoon commute.

Riders heading to the Eastgate Park & Ride in Bellevue can instead use alternate service on Second Avenue in downtown Seattle.

Metro Transit plans for weekday morning Route 218 buses to Seattle to continue to serve the westbound Eastgate Freeway Station.

Meanwhile, afternoon riders headed to the Highlands from Eastgate can ride Metro Transit Route 211 or Sound Transit Express routes 554 and 556.

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King County Metro Transit offers discounted tickets to homeless people

September 24, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Sept. 24, 2012

King County Metro Transit is poised to offer more than 41,000 additional subsidized bus tickets to community service groups.

Officials said the human services bus ticket program offers critical support for homeless people by providing a means to get to jobs, medical appointments, shelters and other services.

Funding for the program came in a mass transit package approved last year by the King County Council. The funding for subsidized tickets augments the $1.8 million Metro Transit already contributes each year for discounted tickets.

The package approved by the council imposed a $20 vehicle-tab fee to forestall a 17-percent reduction to mass transit countywide.

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King County Metro Transit route changes impact Issaquah riders

September 11, 2012

King County Metro Transit riders should prepare for major changes in the weeks ahead, as the agency launches a pay-on-entry system and updates several routes.

Transit planners advised thousands of riders to expect changes on bus routes starting Sept. 29, as the agency changes bus stops on dozens of routes, shifts buses to different streets and alters schedules.

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King County Metro Transit riders should prepare for changes

September 6, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. Sept. 6, 2012

King County Metro Transit riders should prepare for major changes in the weeks ahead, as the agency launches a pay-on-entry system and updates several routes.

Transit planners advised thousands of riders to expect changes on bus routes starting Sept. 29, as the agency changes bus stops on dozens of routes, shifts buses to different streets and alters schedules.

The changes affect the routes 217 and 218. Both routes run through Issaquah.

On Route 217, planners also intend to eliminate one morning eastbound trip and one afternoon westbound trip.

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Labor Day means limited Metro Transit, Sound Transit service

September 1, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Sept. 1, 2012

Sound Transit and most King County Metro Transit buses operate on a Sunday schedule Monday for Labor Day.

If a route does not usually run on Sunday, then the route does not operate on the holiday, Monday. Riders should expect to pay holiday and Sunday fares on Metro bus routes on Labor Day.

Metro offices remain closed on the holiday, including the Customer Information Center phone lines. Customers should turn to Metro Online for updates about transit service.

Riders headed to Seattle should prepare for Bumbershoot at the Seattle Center. Use the Trip Planner to determine the best route.

Sound Transit also operates on a Sunday schedule for Labor Day. On holidays with a Sunday schedule, only certain bus routes operate, including Route 554 between Issaquah and Seattle.

State seeks input on transportation needs

August 21, 2012

Citizens can comment on the state transportation system through a public engagement program launched by the Washington State Transportation Commission.

The commission created the Voice of Washington State effort to offer a forum for residents to share opinions, post ideas and interact.

Learn more about the program and share thoughts at www.voiceofwashingtonstate.org. The program is open to any Washington resident. Registration is limited to one email address per person.

The goal is to gather public input on state transportation policy and funding, and to inform the statewide discussion and decision-making process on highways, mass transit, freight and high-speed rail, ferries, barges and aviation.

King County promotes human trafficking awareness

August 7, 2012

King County plans to embark on a campaign to call awareness to human trafficking, after a July 9 decision to use ads on public buses.

The campaign is meant to inform the public about human trafficking crimes and let victims learn about available resources. Issaquah-area King County Councilman Reagan Dunn introduced the measure in May, and a council committee endorsed the proposal June 27.

“As a former federal prosecutor and member of the County Council I have seen this crisis continue to grow,” Dunn said in a statement. “Educating the public on what human trafficking is and providing information to trafficking victims on where to turn for assistance will help to combat these crimes. This motion is an important step in protecting our children and using Metro resources in a positive way.”

Under federal law, human trafficking includes children involved in the commercial sex trade, adults 18 and older coerced or deceived into commercial sex acts, and anyone forced into different forms of “labor or services” — such as domestic workers held in a home or farmworkers forced into work.

Sound Transit earns highest possible bond ratings

July 3, 2012

Sound Transit received the highest possible ratings from major bond credit rating agencies June 27, despite a challenging economic environment.

Officials said the ratings mean savings for taxpayers in Issaquah and other communities served by the agency. Sound Transit is preparing to save at least $12 million by taking advantage of lower interest rates to refinance about $350 million of outstanding bonds.

In a June 28 decision, Sound Transit board members unanimously approved motions to set parameters to proceed with the transactions. Issaquah City Councilman Fred Butler serves on the board.

Moody’s Investor Service continued the Aa1 rating for Sound Transit’s senior bonds and the Aa2 rating for the agency’s junior “parity bond” obligations. The action maintains Sound Transit as one of the highest-rated transit agencies in the nation.

Sound Transit also carries the highest possible rating on both bond obligations, AAA, from Standard & Poor’s.

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