|Owner||Seattle Department of Transportation|
|Transit type||Modern low-floor streetcar|
|Number of lines||2|
|Number of stations||17 stops|
|Daily ridership||4,950 (December 2016)|
|Began operation||December 12, 2007|
|Operator(s)||King County Metro|
|Number of vehicles||
|System length||3.8 mi (6.1 km)|
Both routes offer frequent service, with streetcars arriving every 10–15 minutes most of the day, except late at night.
South Lake Union Streetcar
The South Lake Union Streetcar is a 1.3-mile (2.1 km), seven-stop line serving the South Lake Union neighborhood of Seattle. Its route goes from the Westlake transit hub to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in South Lake Union. The South Lake Union Streetcar connects with Link Light Rail (at the Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel Westlake Station), the Seattle Center Monorail (at the 3rd floor of Westlake Center) and the RapidRide C Line (at several stops). The line opened to the public in 2007.
First Hill Streetcar
The First Hill Streetcar is a 2.5-mile-long (4.0 km), 10-stop line that connects Pioneer Square and Capitol Hill via Chinatown, Little Saigon, Yesler Terrace, and First Hill. The First Hill Streetcar connects with Amtrak and Sounder Trains (at King Street Station) and Link Light Rail (at both the International District/Chinatown and Capitol Hill stations). The line opened to the public in January 2016.
Center City Connector
The Center City Connector project would connect the existing South Lake Union Streetcar at Westlake to the First Hill Streetcar with new tracks along 1st Avenue and Stewart Street in Downtown Seattle. It will serve popular downtown destinations like Pike Place Market, the Seattle Art Museum, Colman Dock and Pioneer Square. The two existing lines would overlap within downtown, increasing frequencies, and the streetcars would operate in an exclusive transit lane. The project is expected to greatly increase ridership on the Seattle Streetcar Network to 20,000–24,000 riders per day (compared to about 5,000 today).
The project is scheduled to begin construction at the beginning 2018 (with utility relocation work starting in mid-2017) and be completed in 2020. In June 2017, the city accepted a $50 million federal grant for the project.
The Broadway Streetcar project is currently on an indefinite hold, although design work has been 90% completed. The project would extend the First Hill Streetcar a half-mile further north on Capitol Hill into the commercial core of Broadway with two stops near Harrison Street and Roy Street. The extension of the line will also include extending the protected bike lanes to Roy Street. The plan was put on hold in December 2016 due to a lack of support from businesses for the design (particularly a shortage of loading zones for delivery trucks) and the financial plan, which would involve taxing properties located along the alignment.
The Seattle Streetcar system uses a fleet of streetcars manufactured by Inekon Trams in the Czech Republic. The original South Lake Union fleet, consisting of three double-ended low-floor Inekon Trio-12 streetcars measuring 66 feet (20 m) in length were delivered in 2007. Six Trio Model 121 streetcars were manufactured for the First Hill line, along with an additional streetcar for additional service in South Lake Union. Three of the streetcars were assembled in the Czech Republic and four were assembled, under contract, by Pacifica Marine in Seattle. The Trio Model 121 streetcars are equipped with electric batteries, which are used for portion of the First Hill route. The delivery of the cars fell behind schedule, leading to delays in opening the First Hill Streetcar.
The original South Lake Union fleet is planned to be replaced with battery-equipped streetcars when the Center City Connector opens. The Portland Streetcar system has expressed interest in acquiring the older vehicles for use on their system.
- Seattle Street Railway – The streetcar network that operated in Seattle between 1884 and 1941
- Waterfront Streetcar – A streetcar line that operated in Seattle between 1982 and 2005
- Link Light Rail – Puget Sound's light rail network
- Sounder Commuter Rail – Puget Sound's regional commuter rail service
- Streetcars in North America
- List of streetcar systems in the United States (all-time list)
- Seattle Streetcar Map (PDF) (Map). Seattle Department of Transportation. December 2015. Retrieved 2016-02-27.
- American Public Transit Association, Public Transit Ridership Report, Fourth Quarter 2016 & End-of-Year Report 2016 (March 25th, 2017)
- "First Hill Streetcar First Anniversary". sdotblog.seattle.gov. January 24, 2017. Retrieved March 25, 2017.
- "South Lake Union Streetcar". Seattle Streetcar. Retrieved 2016-02-27.
- "First Hill StreetCar Construction - Frequently Asked Questions". Seattle Streetcar. Retrieved 2016-02-27.
- "First Hill streetcar opens". KING-TV. January 23, 2016. Retrieved 2016-01-25.
- "Morning Fizz: The Supposed Gap". Seattle Metropolitan. July 22, 2014. Retrieved 2014-07-22.
- "Center City Connector". Seattle Streetcar. Retrieved 2016-02-27.
- Lee, Jessica (March 27, 2017). "What’s with Seattle’s ‘constant’ drawbridge openings?". The Seattle Times. Retrieved March 27, 2017.
- "Center City Connector Schematic Design Update" (PDF). Seattle Department of Transportation. March 16, 2017. Retrieved March 26, 2017.
- Lindblom, Mike (June 30, 2017). "Seattle accepts $50M grant for First Avenue streetcar, while ridership lags on existing routes". The Seattle Times. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
- "Broadway Streetcar Information - Project Overview". Seattle Streetcar. Retrieved August 9, 2014.
- Osowski, Kaylee (December 13, 2016). "Seattle City Hall presses pause on Broadway streetcar extension". Capitol Hill Seattle. Retrieved March 3, 2017.
- "Street Vehicle FAQs: Inekon Trio-12 Streetcar" (PDF). Seattle Streetcar. Retrieved September 12, 2017.
- Stiles, Marc (January 28, 2015). "SDOT director heads to Prague to check on streetcar delays". Puget Sound Business Journal. Retrieved September 12, 2017.
- Njus, Elliot (November 13, 2015). "Portland wants to buy 3 used streetcars from Seattle". The Oregonian. Retrieved September 12, 2017.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Seattle Streetcar.|
Route map: Google
- Seattle Streetcar official site
- King County Metro official site
- Flickr: The Seattle Streetcar Pool
- Guide to the Seattle Municipal Street Railway Photograph Collection: 1913-1940 Special Collections, UW Libraries