Friday, June 3, 2011

Study the Alternatives, Provide Public Input

For the past six months, Community Transit service planners have had the unenviable job of coming up with three alternatives that each achieve three seemingly conflicting goals:
  • Cut service by 20 percent
  • Maintain geographic coverage throughout Snohomish County
  • Preserve ridership
They’ve worked hard and put a lot of careful consideration into the plans we put before the public this week. Now we need the public to do the same.

The alternatives have both subtle and significant differences between them. We need people to provide comments on the big picture - “Give me Sunday service” or “Use the hours on weekdays” – as well as the details – “I like the idea of a new route on 196th Street in Lynnwood, but if it could only ….”

A brochure briefly describing the alternatives is on all Community Transit buses, but to really understand the proposals, you need to dig into the details. Those are presented on our "2012 Changes" web page.

The “Overview” section includes tabs on each alternative with a high-level map and description below. This is a good place to start for the big picture.

The “Local Service” and “Commuter Service” tabs compare the alternatives and allow you to look up the changes by route. If you ride Community Transit regularly, we need you to review this information carefully and provide detailed input.

The “Maps” tab is most important for viewing the major system and routing changes involved in Alternative III. Maps are also linked from Alternative III in the route-by-route charts. Maps are also useful in understanding the limits of the Sunday service proposed in Alternative II.

A key part of the “Process” tab is our “Online Comment Form” as well as a list of public meetings and events.
We want to help you understand these alternatives, and we want your feedback.

To make it most valuable, try something like:

This: “I prefer Alternative II, but I live in Gold Bar and need to get to work in Everett on Saturdays by 9 a.m.”
Not this: “Don’t cut my bus route!”

All formal public comments will be shared with our Board of Directors, who will make the final decision.

Due to lack of funding, we have to reduce service significantly. The question is, how can we make the best of a bad situation?

Your thoughtful comments can help us find the answer.

We encourage discussion about the 2012 System Change alternatives on this blog. However, to have your views considered by the board, please submit formal comments through our online comment form accessed via the web page:


  1. Morning,

    The order of survey #7 is not right. The order shows III, I, II instead of I, II, III which may cause the error in survey.


  2. I've been looking at some of the alternatives for the 424. It references how many times per day the route would run but isn't specific as to what times those are. Having that information is pretty important as it could be the case that I could be voting for an alternative that I will later find out doesn't work with my schedule. What are the chances that this information may become available prior to the public comment timeframe?

  3. Andy, Question #7 is randomized to present each alternative in a different order each time the form is completed. This was done so as not to favor one alternative over another. Sometimes people just pick the first choice to move on in the survey and we didn't want that to skew the results.

    Anon, sorry but we cannot be that specific about each alternative at this time. These are very detailed but still high-level alternatives. The scheduling that would need to be done to create the times of each trip for each alternative is a great deal of work. That won't be done until we have a final plan selected.

    With that said, your input as to which trip of Route 424 works best for you, or a time that you would prefer to see that bus arrive is the type of feedback that will help us determine the final trip times when we have a final plan. Thanks!

  4. Update: We have turned off the Question #7 randomization on the online comment form as it was causing confusion. Thanks for the heads up, Andy! We try to be responsive...