Seattle Police report that two men were stabbed on Sunday night as they attempted to exit the Route 36 bus at Beacon Avenue South and South Graham Street, with one victim receiving life-threatening injuries.
According to police, the bus was stopped at Beacon and Graham at about 8:20 p.m. Two male victims walked down the aisle of the bus past the suspect, who then stood up and stabbed both men with a folding knife. One victim was stabbed in the back of the head and neck, and is being treated at Harborview for life-threatening injuries. The other was stabbed in the shoulder, and his injuries are non-life-threatening.
Officers arrested the suspect on the bus and recovered the weapon. It is not yet clear whether the suspect and the victims knew each other. Homicide detectives continue to investigate.
Seattle Transit Blog currently has a post up analyzing patterns of transit ridership on Beacon Hill’s Route 36. The post includes a chart that shows the average daily number of boardings and deboardings by stop. As one might expect, the stops at each end of the route are heavily used, as are the stops at Beacon Hill Station and the VA hospital. Stops in the International District along S. Jackson see a huge amount of traffic.
The author, Bruce Nourish asks that Beacon Hill neighbors comment on the STB post: “please let us know in the comments what else you see in this data that I’ve missed.”
The reduced weekday schedule will also be in effect on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), Christmas Eve, and from December 28 through 31; buses will run on a Sunday schedule on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day.
Seattle Transit Blog mentions a Metro novelty running today on the 36 route: a bus with half a row of seats removed, allowing for easier circulation of passengers on routes with lots of people getting on and off. If you’re hopping a bus this evening, keep an eye out for bus number 4186 “leaving 3rd and Union Southbound at 4:45 and returning Northbound to 3rd and Pike at 6:15.”
If you live along the northern part of the 36 bus route, you probably know that many of the buses on that route are electric trolley buses. The trolley buses are good neighbors to have around; they are quiet and don’t spew exhaust or contribute to global warming. Currently, Metro is facing a big budget gap, and there have been rumors that this may mean cutting back on electric trolleys or removing them entirely.
In an interview with Seattle Transit Blog, short-term County Executive Kurt Triplett said they have “3 years to make that decision” because the existing trolleys have that much service life remaining. Commenter “serial catowner” posted a skeptical reply:
Having seen some of this stuff go down in my previous life, I can tell you right now you’re in extreme danger of losing the electric trolleys–and getting them back wouldn’t be easy.
The process is disarmingly simple- first, when you ask, they tell you “Nobody’s thinking of that”. And then, suddenly, it’s all “Well, that decision was made long ago, there’s nothing to be done about it now”…
…If they weren’t quietly preparing to jettison the ETBs, Triplett’s answer would have been “No, of course not, we’re not going to lose the only buses we have that can keep running when oil prices go up”.
A follow-up comment from an anonymous “transit voter” struck home:
We don’t claim to have any inside knowledge on what Metro’s plans are for the trolleys, and anonymous commenters on a blog are not necessarily reliable, but it seems to us that if you like the electric trolleys that run on Beacon Hill and elsewhere in the city, it would certainly be a very good time to let someone know how you feel. You can email County Exec Triplett at firstname.lastname@example.org or use the mailing address and phone number on his website. You can also contact King County Council members Larry Gossett and Dow Constantine, who each serve part of Beacon Hill. Constantine is running for King County Executive, so contacting him with your concerns on this issue may be particularly important.
Metro has released their proposed service revisions. These changes will be discussed at the special joint meeting of the King County Council’s Physical Environment Committee and the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee meeting April 28th.
The latest version of Metro Transit’s proposed service changes (discussed earlier here) will be announced this Friday. You may want to mark your calendar for Tuesday, April 28, when the public will have a chance to comment on the proposed changes at a special joint meeting of two committees of the Metropolitan King County Council: the Council’s Physical Environment Committee and the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee.
As posted in the Council’s press release on Tuesday:
The council is scheduled to vote within the next six weeks on proposed Metro bus service changes for the southeast Seattle area and southwest King County that could occur next September or February.
Metro is proposing to change bus service once Sound Transit’s Link light rail service begins. The purpose of these changes is to connect neighborhoods to Link stations, avoid duplication of transit services, and make bus service more efficient.
These changes could affect Metro routes: 7, 7 Express, 8, 9 Express, 14, 32, 34 Express, 36, 38, 39, 42, 42 Express, 48, 60, 106, 107, 126, 128, 140, 154, 170, 174, 179, 180, 191, and 194.
Though the official version of the service changes will be posted on Friday, rumor has it the changes will include:
36: will run every 10 minutes on Saturday. Route will operate to Othello station.
38: service 8:00 am – 4:30 pm Mon-Sat with no Sunday service. The route will run between Beacon Hill and Mt. Baker stations only. No SODO service.
39: will continue to operate, but off-peak service (mid-day, nights and weekends) will go to every 45 minutes. Peak service to remain every 30 minutes.
60: Peak directional service (AM Northbound and PM Southbound) will go to every 15 minutes.
The public may comment before the council vote by testifying at the April 28 public hearing. You can also e-mail comments to email@example.com, call (206) 296-1683 (TTY Relay 711), or mail a letter to: King County Council Physical Environment Committee, King County Courthouse, 516 Third Avenue, Room 1200, Seattle, WA 98104.
The April 28 meeting will be carried live on King County TV on Comcast and Broadstripe cable Channel 22.
If you thought the latest batch of bus route changes were a done deal, you might want to think again. The proposed changes include elimination of the 39 (which serves the Veterans Hospital here on the Hill) and removal of part of the 14 route in Mount Baker, both of which are controversial.
Another commenter has pointed out that the 38 serves a useful purpose for people who live on the unusually steep east slope of the Hill near McClellan, particularly the elderly and disabled, even if the 38 does follow the same route as the light rail from McClellan up to the Beacon Hill station.
The question is, then, should Metro nuke the 38 in favor of the 14 loop, thus requiring people who need to get from Rainier to the top of the hill to walk to the Mount Baker rail station near Rainier Avenue? Or should Metro stick with the current plan? (If you feel strongly either way, you might want to email your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or call Metro’s message line at 206-684-1146 now. Comments are due today.)