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Document Code No.: ACO-9-1 (AEO)
Department/Issuing Agency: Department of Transportation
Effective Date: June 22, 2014
Approved: /s/ Dow Constantine
Type of Action: New

Signed document (PDF, 1MB)

    This order directs the King County Department of Transportation to develop an integrated transit service plan in coordination with Sound Transit and partner agencies to ensure that service is delivered as efficiently and effectively as possible.

    WHEREAS, King County Metro (Metro) and Sound Transit already collaborate to deliver
the regional ORCA fare system with over 400,000 daily transactions, conduct community outreach in concert with system planning, jointly operate rail and bus services in the downtown Seattle transit tunnel, and successfully built new transit ridership through the integration of Metro buses, RapidRide and Sound Transit's Link Light Rail and Sounder service. The agencies also jointly manage and operate Sound Transit's Link Light Rail and Regional Express Bus services; and jointly and individually manage the region's over 25,000 park-and-ride spaces and transit center and rail
facilities throughout King County.

    WHEREAS, the Puget Sound Region's transportation system is in crisis. The economic downturn that started in 2008 and resultant decline in sales tax revenues caused a projected shortfall in Metro's operating funds of about $1.2 billion for the years 2009-2015. In 2012, Pierce Transit also reduced a significant amount of service and faced the defeat of a critical funding measure, and Community Transit implemented major service cuts in 2011 and 2012. Sound Transit's forecasted revenue is down $4 billion due to the recession, which required cuts to projects and services.

    WHEREAS, despite undertaking a series of actions to address the revenue shortfall, Metro faces an annual shortfall equaling approximately 550,000 annual hours of transit service. The proposed reductions to Metro's fixed route transit network include bus service changes that affect all communities throughout King County.

    WHEREAS, the 2013 update to the Strategic Plan for Public Transportation 2011-2021 requires that Metro establish and maintain a long range transit service and capital plan developed in collaboration with local comprehensive and regional long range planning. The Sound Transit Board directed Sound Transit staff to proceed with the development of an updated Long-Range Plan necessary to permit the creation of the next phase of high capacity transit system. These efforts provide an opportunity for integrating the planning of the high-capacity transit network.

    WHEREAS, an integrated service delivery plan could mitigate some rider impacts related to King County Metro's expected service reductions by leveraging sixty miles of existing RapidRide service and thirty-four miles of light rail Sound Transit will deliver by 2023 as well as providing combined operating efficiencies to both Sound Transit and King County Metro.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Dow Constantine, King County Executive, do hereby order that:

1. The King County Department of Transportation to coordinate with Sound Transit to:

a. Develop plans and proposals to integrate bus and rail service over time to fully utilize the significantly greater operating speeds, reliability and capacity of RapidRide and Link light rail investments.

b. Optimize efficiency by increasing and improving coordinated operations, maintenance, administration, transparency and accountability measures that King County Metro and Sound Transit currently take.

c. Deploy savings gained through efficiencies to improve bus service in markets not served by rail.

d. Integrate bus and rail service to fully utilize the significantly greater operating speeds, reliability and capacity of RapidRide and Link light rail investments.

e. Jointly plan high-capacity transit facilities to best integrate access for all transportation modes.

f. Build upon current regionally managed services like ORCA and Trip Planner to work toward unified rider information, tools, and technologies.

g: Maintain a focus on equity, sustainability, and serving transit-dependent populations

h. Recognize the role of private and non-profit transit providers in planning transit services.

i. Explore opportunities to further integrate planning with state highways, ferries, and other modes.

2. King County and Sound Transit to coordinate the implementation of Metro service reductions and restructures for the fall of 2014 and 2015, as well as the start-up of University Link service from downtown Seattle to Capitol Hill and Husky Stadium in 2016.

Dated this 12th day of June, 2014.

/s/ Dow Constantine, King County Executive


/s/ Norm Alberg, Director
Records and Licensing Services Division