A New Mexico bus nerd visits Seattle

“Busboy” from Albuquerque hipped me to this blog–and to its author’s recent series about traveling through the Pacific Northwest without a car. I haven’t read the posts about Portland [ahem] or Vancouver yet, but his impressions of the Seattle transit/transportation landscape are pretty spot on. Check it:

Seattle’s new star for public transit is the recently opened Central Link, a light rail line which operates in a subway through downtown before emerging south of the stadiums and running out to the airport. And to be honest, as a visitor the only real use I got out of it was to go the airport (and the neighborhoods along the way didn’t seem that dense, so I can’t say how many commuters it serves). But it’s just one line; when other lines are built (and my understanding is that they’re already under way), it will be a very valuable addition to Seattle’s transit system.

But for now, the real movers and shakers of Seattle’s transit system are its buses. Its insane number of buses – an incredibly complex network of routes that provide very thorough coverage of the city. And the buses are actually quite nice – fairly comfortable, pretty clean, with many running on electricity. But here’s the thing I found difficult about Seattle’s bus network – it’s not very intuitive to people who don’t know it. [Hello!] As I said, the network is very complex, and no route really stands above the others to tell you “Take this one!”

But here’s the real question, Mr. Carfree in ‘Burque: Which city in the PNW did you love best? No pressure, of course.

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