Don't Catch that Bus -- It's Only a Test!

Jan 3, 2019

On Jan. 7, buses will stop at all Swift Green Line stations to test real-time technology

Snohomish County, Wash. – A new type of bus service will travel between Bothell and Boeing this spring.When the Swift Green Line begins service on March 24, buses will stop every 10 minutes at 34 stations along Bothell-Everett Highway, 128th Street SW and Airport Road.

Swift uses various technologies to move riders more quickly than local buses, including real-time information so customers do not need a schedule.

Beginning Jan.7, Community Transit will test those technologies by having buses stop at each station and let staged “riders” get on and off the bus, simulating actual service. Community Transit will use regular buses for the test, not Swift buses, to reduce confusion among customers who might think the Swift Green Line is in operation. Swift Green Line Map

The Swift Green Line will begin operation on Sunday, March 24.

Among the technologies to be tested are:

  • Automatic passenger counters – which use infrared light paths to count how many passengers get on and off the bus at each station.
  • BusFinder – which shows real-time bus information on a web application.
  • Callouts – which audibly announce the stop both inside and outside the bus as it approaches each station.
  • Callout signs – which visually display the approaching station inside the bus, and also show date and time.
  • Headsigns – which display the route and destination on the outside front and side of the bus.
  • Next bus signs – which display at the station a countdown in minutes until the next bus arrives.
  • Transit signal priority – which is installed at each traffic signal on the route and gives an approaching bus a slightly longer green light.

Testing begins midday on Monday, Jan. 7 and may continue throughout the week until results are satisfactory. Unrelated to the bus testing, staff will also be testing ticket vending machines that have been newly installed at Swift Green Line stations west of I-5.

Swift Green Line stations have been under construction for more than a year, and are fenced off until service starts in March. Test buses will display “Testing – No Service” on their headsigns to let customers know that bus is not in service. Customers using the BusFinder web application should also be aware that arrival times for the Swift Green Line are for testing only.

More information about the Swift Green Line is available at www.communitytransit.org/SwiftGreen.

Community Transit is responsible for providing bus and paratransit service, vanpool and alternative commute options in Snohomish County. The agency is building a network of Swift bus rapid transit lines with Swift Blue Line along Highway 99 and the Swift Green Line between Canyon Park/Bothell and Boeing/Paine Field starting on March 24.