King County

Department of Transportation

Metro Transit

Transit Speed & Reliability Program


201 South Jackson Street

M.S. KSC-TR-0411

Seattle, WA 98104-3856



November 1, 2001




Thank you for responding to our request for comments on our proposed bus stop consolidation project for 15th Ave NW. Bus stop consolidation is one element of the Elliot Avenue/15th Ave NW Multi-modal project partnership with the City of Seattle. The multi-modal project includes transit signal priority, signal synchronization, street lighting and street trees, pedestrian improvements, and street paving and curb ramps. The bus stop consolidation project is one of the first transit elements to be implemented this year. This proposal has support from the Elliott/15th NW Project Advisory Committee, the neighborhood-based 15th Ave NW Improvement Committee, and the Ballard District Council.


Fifteen to twenty years ago a bus stop every two blocks, or in some cases every block, was not uncommon. Today, bus stops along a brand new route would typically be placed about 1/4 of a mile apart. In an urban environment with relatively flat terrain, good sidewalks and frequent service, 4-5 bus stops per mile is generally a good compromise between convenient customer access to the bus stop and efficient operation for passengers on the bus.


Bus stop consolidations can result in a smoother ride, improved schedule adherence, and higher travel speeds as well as lessening interruption to general traffic. Additionally, with more riders using fewer stops, we will also be able to better focus our route facility improvements, such as benches, shelters and better lighting. Finally, fewer stops will help concentrate pedestrian crossings and may allow funds for crossing improvements to be targeted to these areas.


Bus stop consolidations on two segments of the Route 15 have already been completed. First Ave between S Jackson and Mercer Street was completed in 1999, as was 15th Ave W between Garfield and the Ballard Bridge. The current project extends improvements to the two mile segment between NW 85th and Leary Way.


Consistent with our earlier posting, we had proposed to retain 10 bus stops in each direction on 15th Avenue NW. About 2,000 riders board the Route 15 everyday in both directions between
N 85th St and Leary Way. Since posting information about the proposed zone consolidation plan, we have received 28 calls and comments, some for and some against the consolidation.




After further evaluation, we have modified our initial proposal in response to the input we received. We will proceed with the stop removals in mid-November with these changes as noted below:


        The southbound bus stop at NW 83rd St will remain until a shelter can be installed at
NW 80th St.

        The south bound bus stop at NW 53rd St will remain for now. We will investigate the feasibility of a new bus stop that would consolidate the stop at NW 53rd and NW 51st into a new stop somewhere between these two existing stops. You will be notified of any new proposal that impacts these two stops.


Additionally, there were complaints about the length of time southbound buses spent waiting to go through the traffic signal at Market Street. We will look into the possibility of relocating the southbound stop and shelters to the south of this intersection, adjacent to Walgreen's.


We have attempted to minimize the negative impacts of our initial plan to the degree that we can. However, even with these adjustments, we understand that the additional minute or two walk that this revised plan will require for some riders will still be an inconvenience.


We value your input as a concerned transit rider and want to revisit the impact of these changes. In February of 2002 we will be contacting you and all the other Route 15 riders for comments about the effects of these changes.


For more information, please contact Irin Limargo at irin.limargo AT metrokc D0T gov. Again, on behalf of the City of Seattle and King County Metro we want to thank you for your comments and suggestions.







Irin Limargo

Project Manager

King County Metro Transit


George Frost

Project Manager

City of Seattle Transportation Department



Cc: 15th Ave NW Project Advisory Committee

East Ballard Community Council

Central Ballard Community Council

Loyal Heights Community Center

Olympic Manor Community

Whittier Heights Community Council