Photo by Ty Swenson
Michael Taylor-Judd (center), Delridge resident and transportation/transit advocate for the neighborhood, explains his concerns over SDOT's rechannelization plans for Delridge Way S.W. at an April 24th meeting.

UPDATE: April 27 is the final day of public comment for Metro's changes to Route 120

Update for April 27
April 27 is the final day of public comming on King County Metro's Route 120 bus line changes.

According to the current plan, 21 stops will be eliminated altogether, nine stops will be moved and two new stops along Delridge Way S.W. will be added.

A full list of these stops can be found at the Metro Transit Route 120 Stop Spacing webpage.

To contact Metro you can either fill out a survey at www.kingcountymetro.gov/metro/haveasay, email haveasay@kingcounty.gov or contact DeAnna Martin, community relations planner, at 206-263-9768.

Seattle Department of Transportation is working through rechannelization plans for Delridge Way S.W. along the 120 route as well, although they will continue to take comments on that process (including a northbound bus only lane and a southbound bike lane) over the next month or so.

In a public meeting on April 24, Metro and SDOT representatives met with Delridge residents to explain their plans and listen to feedback.

Concerns ranged from the loss of nearby bus stops that could negatively impact proximity to local businesses and access for elderly or handicapped residents, to worries that congestion at Andover and Delridge will be further exacerbated by queued up buses in the bus-only lane.

An excellent summary of resident concerns was put together by North Delridge Neighborhood Council co-chair Amanda Leonard, found on their blog.

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Original post on April 17
King County Metro recently released their plan to revamp Route 120 by closing or moving a number of stops in order to speed the line up.

The 120 runs north and south from the Burien Transit Center to downtown Seattle with several stops in White Center and along Delridge Way S.W.

According to the current plan, 21 stops will be eliminated altogether, nine stops will be moved and two new stops along Delridge Way S.W. will be added.

A full list of these stops can be found at the Metro Transit Route 120 Stop Spacing webpage.

In addition, Metro plans to add a northbound bus lane and bike lanes on Delridge Way, install a “bus bulb” at 26th Ave S.W. and S.W. Barton (where the sidewalk extends out, allowing buses to stay in their traffic lane when passengers get on and off), and install transit signal priority at certain key traffic lights along the way.

Metro writes, “Reducing the number of stops that Route 120 makes will help reduce overall transit travel times along the corridor. The signal priority, bus bulb, and bus lane will help reduce transit delays at traffic signals, at bus stops, and approaching the West Seattle Bridge, where traffic congestion spills back on to Delridge Way.”

On the potential downside for commuters, business owners and residents on Delridge Way S.W., Metro said vehicles traveling southbound on the road during the evening commute may experience more delays “due to the added southbound bike lane and the elimination of on-street parking.” That loss of on-street parking during commuter hours (they plan to allow parking during the off hours) also means less parking on the street for residents and customers of businesses.

Metro is holding an open house on the changes on April 24:
Tuesday, April 24 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Youngstown Cultural Arts Center
4408 Delridge Way SW, Seattle

The process is moving along rather quickly, with Metro posting signage at stops proposed for closure during April (there will be three weeks of public comment after each sign goes up) UPDATE: Friday, April 27 is the final day for public comment on bus stop changes, and unless public comment sways their decision, the stop closures will happen in late May. The entire process is expected to be finished by spring 2013.

According to King County Metro, Route 120 is one of the county’s top ten routes in terms of ridership and productivity. It was originally considered for conversion to a RapidRide line and although it was not chosen, Metro said the changes made now will make a conversion to the high-efficiency line possible in the future.

General information on Route 120 changes can be found here.

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