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Old 03-07-2011, 10:36 AM
 
Location: Vancouver, WA
471 posts, read 2,531,746 times
Reputation: 625

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I'll see about one half of this question soon enough, since I'll be there in a couple weeks, but do Seattle roads/highways/freeways have a carpool lane (the major ones at least)? And if so, can motorcycles ride it, like they can in CA? I ride a motorcycle, and have no problems in the rain (with a rainsuit), to cut down on my commute time on these stupid CA freeways.

I'm trying to see what my transportation options will be like there.

How about public transportation? Is it pretty much for inner Seattle only, or does Public Trans reach the outskirts as well? Like if we end up in Issaquah or Sammamish, will there be public transport options, or would I have to travel closer to Seattle to catch a bus/train (like bike in to a station or something).

Thanks in advance for your help.
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Old 03-07-2011, 10:42 AM
 
Location: Duvall, WA
1,677 posts, read 6,288,362 times
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So, yes, there are carpool lanes. Unlike CA they have times on them, so they're not always carpool lanes. I'm pretty sure you can ride your motorcycle in them, but I'm not certain. Also, unlike CA, in WA it's illegal to ride in between lanes like you can in CA. I've heard CA is the only place that is legal.

We used to live in Issaquah, and my husband used public transportation to downtown. There are a couple of park and rides with express buses downtown from Issaquah proper and Issaquah Highlands. Public transportation is really good (especially compared to CA).

V. =)
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Old 03-07-2011, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Vancouver, WA
471 posts, read 2,531,746 times
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AWESOME!

LOL ya, I didn't expect to be able to split lanes. CA is the only place it's "legal" even though it's more of a grey area, than it is legal. There are other states looking into it, though, since statistics show it's actually safer for motorycles than being subject to rear endings in bumper to bumper traffic.

I love riding my road bike too, so I guess I'd be able to bike to these park and rides and go into downtown. That's awesome to hear.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:12 AM
 
3,698 posts, read 10,507,217 times
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Everything you want to know about HOV lanes: WSDOT - High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lanes

There are no HOV lanes through downtown Seattle on I-5. There is a reversible section called the Express Lanes that connect downtown to the north end that bypasses some of the traffic problems caused by the 520/I-5/Mercer interchange. The Express Lanes go into downtown in the mornings and out of downtown on the afternoons. Most of the ramps downtown are limited to HOVs (including motorcycles) but during the height of rush hour they can be just as congested as the main line.

You're going to look with nostalgia at the Southern California freeways after driving here. There are only a few short stretches with more than four lanes (including HOV) on a side, and there's not a whole lot of room here to build more.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:13 AM
 
151 posts, read 506,785 times
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This could be helpful for HOV related questions. There is a map link on the left side.

WSDOT - High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lanes

Looks like kids qualify too...didn't know that.
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:56 PM
 
7,696 posts, read 14,024,360 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeronikaW View Post
So, yes, there are carpool lanes. Unlike CA they have times on them, so they're not always carpool lanes. I'm pretty sure you can ride your motorcycle in them, but I'm not certain. Also, unlike CA, in WA it's illegal to ride in between lanes like you can in CA. I've heard CA is the only place that is legal.

V. =)
HOV lanes on i405, 167 and 520 has times. i5 doesn't. With a motorcycle, you can go ahead and use HOV lanes.
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Old 03-07-2011, 04:21 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
33,094 posts, read 60,101,561 times
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When I compare it to the Bay Area where I lived, it's the same backup at about the same times of day, the difference is that here it's 2-3 lanes in each direction rather than 8 like down there.

While there is bus service all over Seattle and into the nearby cities, the frequency is such that your commute can be a lot longer taking it. Where I live in Sammamish, it would take walking or driving a mile to the nearest stop, then with transfers, over two hours to get to work in Seattle. I can drive that in about 35 minutes. To cut it down to under an hour I'd have to drive 20 minutes to a park & ride, may as well drive the last 15.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:51 AM
 
Location: Issaquah, WA
127 posts, read 363,813 times
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I commute daily from the centre of Sammamish on the bus (216) to the DT Pioneer square or University stops and its 1hr door to door for me. No traffic or queues to bother me and the company pays for my Orca card too. Gas is now $3.70 a gallon and they may start tolling the I-90 one day too.

As the buses use the transit tunnels and HOV lanes they are very reliable and predictable with their timings too.

The bus (218) from Issaquah Highlands P&R is much faster and its there in about 35mins.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bisjoe View Post
W
While there is bus service all over Seattle and into the nearby cities, the frequency is such that your commute can be a lot longer taking it. Where I live in Sammamish, it would take walking or driving a mile to the nearest stop, then with transfers, over two hours to get to work in Seattle. I can drive that in about 35 minutes. To cut it down to under an hour I'd have to drive 20 minutes to a park & ride, may as well drive the last 15.
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Old 03-08-2011, 01:33 PM
 
Location: Lowlands
271 posts, read 1,142,529 times
Reputation: 168
Buses should cost $1 per mile, but they don't.
Now they want to add more fees to the car registration on top of the sales tax we already pay.

The bus system is here unfair.
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Old 03-08-2011, 01:57 PM
 
151 posts, read 506,785 times
Reputation: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by jinj View Post
Buses should cost $1 per mile, but they don't.
Now they want to add more fees to the car registration on top of the sales tax we already pay.

The bus system is here unfair.
So you want the bus fees to increase? $1 per mile seems pretty expensive.

I know I will ge flamed for this but....

The state should implement Vehicle Inspections.
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