Happy 11th Anniversary, Swift Blue Line!

Happy 11th Anniversary, Swift Blue Line!

Eleven years ago today, Swift Blue Line marked the start of the first bus rapid transit line in the state of Washington.

Remember when: day 1

First Swift Blue from Everett Station 2009
It was Monday, Nov. 30, 2009 at 5 a.m., a crisp, cold day not unlike today. (Pictured above aSwift Blue bus leaving Everett Station on the first day of service.) About 1,500 people boarded the new bus line. We had staff street teams at our Swift stations in the early morning hours and employees riding Swift buses from 7 p.m. to midnight to help everyone learn how to use a system where you pay at the station and there's no schedule because a bus comes by so frequently.

Remember when: the five year mark

Swift 5th Scratch Ticket

In 2014, Community Transit celebrated 5 years of bus rapid transit. The Swift Blue line, carried more than 5,700 riders each weekday, 1.5 million a year, about one in six of all Community Transit customers. On Saturdays, when commuter service to Seattle did not operate, Swift riders made up one in every three Community Transit customers.

To celebrate, street teams were at stations and on buses, giving riders scratch tickets (pictured above) for a chance to win a limited edition Swift scarf. Did you win one?

Remember when: and then it was ten

Abbas - 15th Million Swift Blue Rider
Just a week after its 10th anniversary in 2019, our Swift bus rapid transit service transported its 15 millionth Swift Blue rider.

Abbas Razaghzadeh was designated the 15 millionth person to ride Swift as he rode the Swift Blue Line to Crossroads Station in Lynnwood. The calculation was made by Community Transit’s data analysts who track bus ridership numbers every month. Get to know Abbas and find out what he won.

Today: continuing Swift, safe service 11 years and counting

Swift Blue Today - Mask Worn
Pictured above: Swift Blue today - mask worn.

Blue Line is our top-performing route and it continues to be well-used even during the pandemic. According to our 2020-2025 Transit Development Plan, Swift service (Blue and Green Lines) accounts for 21% of all Community Transit passenger boardings; this proportion approximately doubled during spring 2020 due to reduced COVID-19 ridership levels on other routes.

In October 2020, there were 399,119 boardings throughout our transit system. Bus rapid transit accounted for 40.8% of the system total with 162,975 boardings.

We will continue to provide Swift service, safely, to get you to your essential jobs and services. (Check out our COVID-19 updates and commitments to safety.)

Looking forward

Swift Orange Outreach 2019
Swift Orange outreach 2019

We look forward to the day when COVID-19 is a distant memory and we are all able to gather together again. (Pictured above is an outreach event where we talked about Swift Orange Line in 2019.)

We also look forward to extending the Swift Blue Line and adding the Swift Orange Line to continue our goal of building out a Swift Network throughout Snohomish County. Those projects are still in development and in very early phases (See our latest TDP for details).

Until then, we will quietly celebrate how far Swift Blue has come in 11 years. With masks worn correctly and proper social distance.

Stay well!

Tags: anniversary, 2020, swift-blue-line, Swift

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