Roosevelt RapidRide

Connecting Downtown Seattle with the neighborhoods of South Lake Union, Eastlake, University District, and Roosevelt

What's happening now?

Thank you to all who shared feedback during the NEPA 40-day public scoping comment period. The scoping comment period is now closed. However, we will still take comments on the project as the design progresses and as we develop our environmental documents.

Our next step is to develop a scoping report, summarizing the public process and the comments we received during the scoping period. We expect to publish the report on the project website this spring and will use this information to inform our environmental review.

Stay tuned!
We plan to return to the community this spring to host public meetings focused on project design. Check back soon for more information or sign up for email updates.


The Roosevelt RapidRide Project will provide a high-quality service connecting Downtown Seattle with the neighborhoods of South Lake Union, Eastlake, University District, and Roosevelt. It is one of seven new corridors where we’re partnering with King County Metro (KCM) to enhance transit connections and upgrade existing bus routes to Metro RapidRide service. Upgrading service will keep people moving by:

  • Keeping buses frequent and on-time
  • Adding more buses at night and on weekends
  • Upgrading to Metro RapidRide bus stops with lighting, real-time arrival info, and more
  • Improving sidewalks and paths for people walking and people riding bikes

We’re working to balance the needs of everyone who uses the corridor, whether they’re in a bus, a car, walking or riding a bike.


Purpose and Need

The overall purpose of the Roosevelt RapidRide project is to improve transit travel times, reliability, and capacity to increase high-frequency, all-day transit service and enhance transit connections between Downtown Seattle and the Belltown, South Lake Union, Eastlake, University District, and Roosevelt neighborhoods, in order to:

  • Address current and future mobility needs for residents, workers, and students
  • Address capacity constraints in the transportation network along this north-south corridor
  • Provide equitable transportation access to major institutions, employers, and neighborhoods

An additional purpose of the project is to improve pedestrian and bicycle connections and access to RapidRide stations and improve safety along the corridor.

The Roosevelt corridor has been identified as a high-priority corridor for meeting the following transportation and community needs:

  • Provide Transit Service to Support Housing and Employment Growth. Significant growth in both housing and employment is underway for the five neighborhoods (Belltown, South Lake Union, Eastlake, University District, and Roosevelt) within the project corridor and Downtown Seattle. Based on population and employment projection data from Puget Sound Regional Council, by 2035, the area within approximately 0.5 mile of the corridor is forecasted to grow by over 22,000 residents (29 percent) and 91,000 employees (50 percent), for a total of over 98,000 residents and 274,000 jobs. There is inadequate capacity on existing bus service to support the planned development.
  • Provide Neighborhood Connections to Future Link Light Rail Stations. Connectivity and capacity within the corridor are limited due to geographic and existing infrastructure constraints. Currently there is no direct rapid transit connection between the five neighborhoods and downtown Seattle. King County Metro Routes 67 and 70 provide service, but they travel in congested traffic lanes and require a passenger to transfer to another bus line to reach downtown Seattle. These limitations result in long transit times and unreliable schedules, reducing riders' ability to make connections and discouraging ridership. To accommodate the planned growth and increase in density along the corridor, there is a need to provide better connections to existing and future Link light rail stations, existing and future RapidRide lines, and regional and local bus routes.
  • Improve Transit Travel Time and Reliability Throughout the Corridor. Congestion is causing delays in transit travel time and negatively affecting transit reliability. The existing transit travel time in the corridor during the peak periods is up to 20 to 30 percent slower than off-peak hours. The slower transit travel time during the peak periods negatively affects reliability and result in over 30 percent of transit trips in the corridor running late during morning and evening peak periods. By 2021, without improvements in the corridor, the PM peak delay in transit travel time is expected to increase by almost 14 minutes (17 percent increase) for trips along the entire corridor.
  • Reduce Overcrowding of Existing Bus Capacity. Over 20 percent of those within approximately 0.5 mile of the corridor already use transit, with even higher transit usage in Downtown Seattle and the University District neighborhood. Passenger loads currently exceed seated capacity along the corridor on 32 percent of daily trips and more than 63 percent of trips during the morning peak period. For the existing routes that provide transit service in the corridor between Downtown and the University District, average weekday ridership is expected to increase by 35 percent (i.e., from 4,770 riders per day in 2015 to 6,450 in 2035).
  • Improve Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety and Connections to Transit. With significant transit service and dense, walkable neighborhoods, there is a high level of pedestrian and bicycle activity along the corridor, yet several intersections have above-average rates of bicycle and pedestrian collisions with vehicles. From 2010 to 2014, six intersections along the corridor were reported to have three or more pedestrian injury collisions and five intersections with four or more bicycle collisions with injuries. The City of Seattle Bicycle Master Plan recommends protected bicycle lanes as one of the highest priority bicycle network investments, given the geographic constraints and limited bicycle route alternatives to the corridor. Additionally, numerous sidewalks and intersections do not meet current City of Seattle standards and do not comply with the ADA.


November 2014 Identify existing conditions in the corridor and conduct mode analysis
July 2015 Identify transit line characteristics
June 2016 Present a Recommended Corridor Concept
June 2017 Publish Locally Preferred Alternative
December 4, 2017 - January 12, 2018 Project Scoping
2017-2019 Develop design
2020-2021 Construct improvements
2021 Roosevelt Rapid Ride Line service begins


This project is partially funded by the 9-year Levy to Move Seattle, approved by voters in 2015. Additional funding is being sought through regional partnerships and grants, and a Federal Transit Administration Small Starts Grant.

Project Materials

December 2017 - Environmental Scoping

July 2017

June 2017

June 2016 Open Houses

December 2015 Open Houses

May 2015 Open Houses

Reference Documents

How can I get involved?

We're always interested in meeting with community and neighborhood groups that want to learn more about the project and make their voices heard. You can request a briefing by emailing or calling (206) 684-5189.

Updated: 12/12/2017