From the horse’s mouth

Yesterday, Bob Ferguson, King County Councilmember from District 1 and Transportation Committee member, sent me some 2007 budget information that just might interest you:

The Council voted to phase out and eventually eliminate the “wrapped” busses where the windows are covered with advertising. … I received many complaints from riders who said they had a hard time seeing outside in the dark mornings and evenings. For others, the ride became disorienting without being able to see outside. … These wrapped busses will be gone by the end of next year.

Looks like Orin was right about this. No word yet on whether the wrapped buses with “clear” windows (like the 4 I rode recently) will remain. I’ll let you know as soon as I hear back from Metro.

The Council voted to increase the rate of creating bus shelters. There is a backlog of hundreds of approved bus shelter locations, and the Council is putting up funds to get these built sooner than our current, slow pace.

What can I say? “Hallelujah!” doesn’t come close to expressing my level of elation.

Remember that fancy, digital sign Bus Nerd spotted on the 48? It appears that we’ll be seeing a lot more of them very soon.

The Council voted to add reader boards. Each bus will have a scrolling, electronic sign (one on 40′ coaches, two on 60′ coaches) in place of the current “stop requested” ceiling signs. The signs will be programmed with a next stop message as well as other information such as time of day.

Here’s a thought: Now that we have the reader boards, we can keep the wrapped buses, since people won’t need to see out the window to know when to get off. :)