A ‘Playbook’ for Better Bus Service, From King County Metro

King County Metro operates one of the nation’s busiest transit systems—without running any trains. The agency recently released a playbook as a guide to transit service.

1 minute read

April 14, 2022, 8:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

King County Metro Transit

TS Photographer / Shutterstock

In an article published by Transportation for America, Jackson Pierce shares news and details on the “Transit Speed & Reliability Guidelines and Strategies” published by Washington State’s King County Metro in late 2021.

According to Pierce, the guide presents a “playbook” for operational tools and capital projects that can be copied by other transit agencies to save riders time and money. “At a time when building public trust in transit is essential, it’s an excellent guide to the infrastructure and services that make transit trustworthy,” write Pierce.

Kings County Metro is one of the nation’s highest performing transit agencies—"one of America’s ten most-ridden transit agencies in 2019, and the busiest not to operate any rail services,” as noted by Pierce. “They achieved this high ridership through smart comprehensive planning (and funding!) for services that run to the places where people actually go.”

As for the specific investments and strategies recommended in the guide, Pierce highlights several (with more detail to be found in the source article below), including changes to street and intersection design and bus stop planning considerations like stop consolidation and bulbouts.

An article by Jeff Switzer for King County Metro at the time of the guide’s release in November 2021 offers additional insight into the document and its recommendations.

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