Dept. of Transportation
Metro Transit Division

King Street Center
201 S Jackson St
Seattle, WA 98104
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Route 48 Corridor Speed & Reliability Improvements

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Speed and Reliability Improvements are on the Way

Map with Rainier Beach, Columbia City, Greenwood, Green Lake, Central District, Montlake, University District and Loyal Heights marked on the Route 42 route.

Helping people improve the way they get around King County is what Metro works hard at every day. As a result of monitoring the bus service along the Route 48 corridor, we are evaluating a series of improvements to improve bus service in this busy corridor.

Improvements will focus on making bus service safer, faster, and more reliable along the Route 48 corridor. Metro routes 4, 42, 43 and others will also benefit from these improvements.

Since these improvements could involve changes in street use, King County Metro Transit must work closely with the City of Seattle.

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Proposed Changes to Bus Stops

Along congested, high traffic volume corridors such as 85th St., 23rd Ave., and Martin Luther King Jr. Way, we want to provide improved levels of pedestrian and traffic safety. Positioning bus stops near signalized intersections helps us achieve that. This also supports traffic signalization improvements and benefits transit operation and traffic flow.

We are proposing to consolidate a number of bus stops that are too closely spaced, not at signalized intersections, or that cause undue delays or safety hazards.

Most stops along the Route 48 are currently spaced about 600 feet apart. With the proposed stop pattern, stops will typically be spaced around 1,000 feet apart, or 4-6 stops per mile. By consolidating bus stops, we can provide smoother and more efficient service and allow greater investments into improved passenger facilities, such as shelters and improved lighting. The bus stop spacing revisions will allow us to shorten travel times on Route 48 and other affected routes.

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Watch for a bright orange bus stop Rider Alert posted at applicable bus stop(s) to see if the proposed changes will affect your boarding location. We will collect customer comments for a 2-3 week period after posting these Rider Alerts before finalizing our plan.

Check the Proposed Bus Stop Consolidation Plan.

We realize that some riders may need to walk an extra block or two, however, we feel the resulting faster ride should help compensate for the inconvenience.

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Roadway Improvements

Buses, passenger vehicles, parked vehicles, pedestrians, and bicycles are all important roadway users. Each of these user groups have specific needs and often compete with others for limited road space. In the next few years, we will be evaluating the existing roadway uses along the Route 48 corridor, and suggesting changes to improve transit service. These types of changes could include revisions in parking regulations, improving intersection channelization and lane configuration.

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Traffic Signal Upgrades and Re-timing

Many traffic signals along the corridor use outdated equipment and fixed timing plans that can't adjust to changing traffic conditions or synchronize with other signals. We will be evaluating each traffic signal along Route 48 and identifying where upgrades can be made cost effective. We will also be looking for opportunities to suggest signal timing changes to the city of Seattle for more efficient operation. These traffic signal improvements should reduce congestion and delays for all roadway users, including bus riders.

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Transit Signal Priority

Transit Signal Priority (TSP) gives transit vehicles a time advantage when approaching a signal, which can help improve transit speed and reliability along the corridor. Bus detection technology at selected signalized intersections along the corridor would be installed to inform the signal of the approaching vehicle and hold the green light to allow the bus to pass. Tools like TSP help us make the most out of our existing transportation infrastructure.

TSP may improve travel time for buses operating in the Route 48 corridor by approximately 5-10 percent.

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We Value Your Comments and Questions

We'd like to hear from you. Please call, write, or e-mail:

  • Call: 206-553-3000
  • Write: Metro Customer Service Office
    201 S. Jackson St.
    Seattle WA 98104-3586
  • E-mail:

Alternative formats available.

Call 206-684-2046, TTY users call 206-684-2029.

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Updated: Jan. 14, 2003