Community Transit


Future Plans

Transit Development Plan 2014 – 2019

Six-Year Plan Forecasts 20 Percent Service Growth

Community Transit's Transit Development Plan (TDP) 2014-19 (PDF) forecasts increased sales tax revenue for the service district, creating financial capacity to add new transit service. Depending on the rate of tax growth, the agency may be able to add 20 percent new service over the next six years.

However, these service increases do not keep pace with the demand for transit in Snohomish County. When combined with service increases that were made in 2013 thanks to grant funding, the service increases forecast in the draft TDP total less than half the service hours that were cut in 2010 and 2012 due to the recession. In order to return to pre-recession service levels, and to satisfy demand for transit in the future, new funding is needed.

Highlights of the TDP 2014– 2019 include:

  • Increase of 7,500 service hours in 2014.
  • Increase of 25,000 service hours in 2015.
  • Increases of 7,000 service hours each year in 2016-19.
  • Fully funds capital facilities upkeep and preservation program.
  • Identifies unfunded needs, including a return to pre-recession service levels and funding for Swift II.

Community Transit's six-year Transit Development Plan is updated annually. Updates provide a refreshed six-year forecast of agency financials, service levels and capital projects. The 2014-19 TDP wasapproved by the Community Transit Board of Directors on May 1, 2014.

Long Range Plan Looks Ahead to 2030

The 20-Year Long Range Planning Project builds on the corridor vision described in the agency's Six-Year Transit Development Plan as it was adopted by Community Transit’s Board of Directors in 2010 and updated annually since then. That plan identified a series of possible transit emphasis corridors that will serve as the backbone of Community Transit’s future route network (see map).

The Long Range Plan refines those corridors and proposes a planning framework to guide their development as we work toward implementing the corridor vision.

Plans are underway to update the Long Range Plan in 2014-15.

The Long Range Plan project kicked off in February 2009. Community Transit, working with our consultant team from Nelson\Nygaard, began by meeting with city officials from throughout Snohomish County, followed by focus groups composed of riders and community leaders. We were anxious to learn about their needs and thoughts about the future of transportation in Snohomish County. Summaries of what we heard from each group are here. The plan was adopted by the Community Transit Board on March 3, 2011.

The long range plan includes performance guidelines that set targets for each Community Transit route and help monitor the system’s performance to determine whether Community Transit is getting value for the taxpayer investment. Route design measures will also inform local jurisdictions about the population densities, development patterns and infrastructure that support effective transit service, helping us to better coordinate future transit services with planned residential and commercial growth.

A strong emphasis on partnerships and coordinated planning will help to ensure that all agencies are working efficiently toward a common transportation vision that will enable more people to "think transit first." The Long Range Transit Plan will be important in helping to define Community Transit’s leadership role in providing transportation solutions for the Puget Sound region.

Impact on Service

The Long Range Transit Plan will not have an immediate impact on service.  This plan sets a strategic direction calling for coordination between Community Transit, the State of Washington, Snohomish County, cities and other partners to focus planning, development and service implementation efforts in corridors that everyone agrees are a priority for multi-modal transportation.  The plan identifies the need for upwards of 500,000 hours of new transit service and significant new transit infrastructure in future decades.

The Long Range Transit Plan recognizes that the economic downturn which began in 2007 may extend full implementation of these new services and facilities significantly beyond the 2030 horizon of this plan.  The objective of the plan is not to propose a specific list of projects and a precise calendar for their development.  Instead, the goal of the plan is to identify future transit market potential and a framework for inter-agency cooperation in developing and serving that market.

As economic conditions improve and partnerships for corridor development emerge, specific elements of the Long Range Transit Plan will become priorities for implementation.  As this occurs, these priorities will be documented in short-term plans such as the Six Year Transit Development Plan and will become the focus of more intensive planning, funding and construction/implementation.

Projected Growth

Here are some things that we are being told will happen in Snohomish County between now and 2030:

  • The county will be home to 981,000 people, 375,000 more than in 2000. Regional plans, still being refined, call for residential growth to be focused on urban centers such as Everett, Lynnwood and Edmonds.
  • There will be 132,000 new jobs in the county but many county residents will continue commuting to King County.
  • Most of the county’s employment growth will occur in the southwest part of the county, especially Everett and Lynnwood. Other cities will also experience significant numbers of new jobs.
  • Eastern King County – Bothell, Woodinville, Redmond, and Bellevue – will attract increasing numbers of Snohomish County commuters.
  • New highway and road construction will not keep pace with population growth. Roads – both freeways and city streets – will become more congested. Throughout the county, local jurisdictions see public transportation, especially Community Transit, as an important part of their strategies for maintaining mobility as congestion increases.
  • Sound Transit’s Link Light Rail system will reach Lynnwood within the next 15 years. Community Transit will need to design its services to coordinate with that system.