Trolley Motorization

About Trolley Motorization

Metro operates electric trolley buses on these routes: Route 1, Route 2, Route 3, Route 4, Route 7, Route 10, Route 12, Route 13, Route 14, Route 36, Route 43, Route 44, Route 49 or Route 70.

Trolley Motorization usually occurs on weekends and is usually due to safety or routing issues related to:

  • Construction projects near the overhead wires
  • Events, such as parades or marathons, or
  • Maintenance on the trolley overhead wire network

When trolleys are motorized, parts of some routes may also be rerouted. In many cases, however, the motorized buses follow their usual routing and serve their normal stops, and are not rerouted. They simply cannot operate as trolleys due to safety reasons related to construction or maintenance.

While every effort is made to operate trolley routes with electric trolley vehicles as much as possible, Metro's first priority must be the safe and reliable operation of all service. Metro appreciates the understanding and patience of everyone when it is necessary to operate motorized vehicles on trolley routes.

The King County Department of Transportation is providing this information as a service to the general public. While every attempt is made to provide accurate and timely information, estimates of the nature and duration of any particular route change or other event are subject to conditions beyond the control of King County and are difficult to predict. Those relying on this information should do so at their own risk, and neither King County nor any of its employees or agents shall be liable for either the accuracy of this information nor any actions taken as a result.


Sign up for Trolley Motorization Alerts and we'll send you an e-mail or text message if trolley routes are motorized.

If you also want to receive messages about service revisions—such as reroutes—you can sign up to receive service alerts by route.

Trolley Bus System Evaluation

Metro is studying possible alternatives for aging electric trolley buses. more »

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