Year 2 Annual Report

In 2014, Seattle voters approved Proposition 1 to fund the purchase of increased Metro service and additional transit programs for Seattle residents. This voter-approved funding measure includes a $60 vehicle license fee and 0.1% sales tax increase to generate over $50 million (in 2017) to improve transit availability and access for six years (2015-2020).

In the second year of the program, we’ve increased the availability of frequent transit throughout the city, improved late night and early morning transit options, and increased access to transit for low-income students and families. See “STBD By The Numbers” below, and download a full version of the report to learn more.

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The above graphic summarizes the progress and achievements for the second year of the Seattle Transportation Benefit District’s transit service purchase and transportation equity programs. After investments in September 2017, the percent of Seattle households within a 10-minute walk of 10-minute or better transit service has reached 64%, which exceeds our 2020 goal by 11% and puts us within 8% of our 2025 goal. These frequency investments are accompanied by increases in the span of service and availability of additional transit options on nights and weekends, which all add up to an increase in service of more than 30% on the the 15 routes with the greatest amount of STBD investment. Overall these investments are being met with ridership increases, especially on the three RapidRide routes that serve the City of Seattle: Ridership on RapidRide C, D, and E Lines is up, 40%, 28%, and 13%, respectively.

As a part of STBD’s effort to improve transit options across the city, 2,680 ORCA cards were distributed to income eligible high school and middle school students (that did not already receive an ORCA card from Seattle Public Schools) during the 2016/2017 school year. These cards were used to take approximately 440,000 individual transit trips in the region, saving participating students approximately $648,000 in fares. Additionally, efforts to increase enrollment in the ORCA LIFT program – which offers subsidized transit passes to income eligible residents – are paying off: About 11,000 new Seattle residents enrolled in the program, increasing the percentage of eligible residents actually enrolled in the program from 11% to 19% over the last year. During this same time period, countywide enrollment (excluding Seattle) increased by only 6,000, from 4% to 7% of eligible residents.