With Snohomish County approved Friday to move into Phase 2 of Washington’s Safe Start program, Community Transit said it plans to increase its bus service this summer to meet an expected increase in ridership demand.
Community Transit will implement a two-stage increase in bus service over the summer. On July 6, the agency will restore a number of trips on heavily used bus routes to accommodate demand, bringing service up to 75% of pre-pandemic levels. In September, the agency will again increase service to 85% of pre-pandemic levels and maintain that service level through spring 2021.
Details about the July service increase will be released later this month.
In the spring, Community Transit reduced its bus service to about 70% of what it was operating before the COVID-19 pandemic. The service reductions were implemented to match ridership, which dropped significantly as people traveled less.
In May, bus ridership began to increase slowly. With local counties re-opening more activities, more bus riders are expected in coming weeks and months.
Community Transit has instituted a number of changes for safe travel, including closing off seats to allow social distancing on the bus.
As riders return to using transit, they will notice other safety measures that have been implemented, including:
- Nightly disinfecting of all buses and paratransit vehicles.
- Encouraging riders to wear face coverings when using transit.
- Requiring drivers to wear face coverings while driving the bus.
- Asking riders to wash their hands often and not to travel when sick.