Sound Transit Express
Sound Transit New Flyer hybrid bus 9601 in Seattle, operated by King County Metro
|Slogan||Ride the wave.|
|Locale||Puget Sound region|
|Service area||King, Pierce, and Snohomish|
|Service type||Public Transit|
|Daily ridership||66,360 (May 2016, weekdays)|
|Annual ridership||18,468,373 (2016)|
|Fuel type||CNG, Diesel, and Diesel-electric hybrid|
|Operator||Community Transit, King County Metro, and Pierce Transit|
Sound Transit Express (ST Express) is a network of regional express buses, operated by the multi-county transit agency, Sound Transit. The routes connect major regional hubs throughout 53 cities in three counties (King, Pierce, and Snohomish) in the Puget Sound region. Sound Transit Express ranks first in the nation in the number of commuter bus passengers carried and in vehicle miles driven. The first nine routes began operating in September 1999.
Unlike a typical transit bus, Sound Transit Express routes typically make limited stops as they travel longer distances on the freeways. Most routes operate seven days a week, with runs throughout the day. Where available, buses use transit-only lanes, high-occupancy vehicle lanes, high-occupancy toll lanes, express lanes and direct access ramps to speed travel times.
While Sound Transit oversees, plans, and funds the service, operation and maintenance of the buses is contracted out to Community Transit (who subcontracts with First Transit), King County Metro and Pierce Transit.
ST Express uses a fare zone system, which comprises 3 regions:
- King County
- Pierce County
- Snohomish County
The fares are as follows:
|Senior (65+) / Disabled / Medicare
(Regional Reduced Fare Permit required)
(ORCA LIFT card required)
(0–5 years, with fare paying passenger)
Paper transfers are not accepted or issued on Sound Transit routes. Passengers who use ORCA may transfer between ST routes or routes operated by most other agencies within two hours of initial payment. If the fare for the second route is higher, the difference will be charged.
27 Sound Transit Express bus routes are overseen by the agency. Buses are operated under contract by King County Metro, Pierce Transit and Community Transit (who subcontracts with First Transit). When Sound Transit implements a new bus route, changes are frequently made to existing routes that serve the area to avoid overlapping.
The ST Express routes and operators are as follows:
|Route||Off-Peak Service||Weekend Service||Start||Via||End||Operator|
(use route 512)
(use route 512)
|Downtown Seattle||I-5, South Everett Freeway Station||Everett Station
Downtown Everett (select trips only)
(use route 512)
(use route 512)
|Downtown Seattle||I-5, Mountlake Terrace Freeway Station, Lynnwood Transit Center||Ash Way Park & Ride||Community Transit|
|512||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||I-5 & NE 45th, I-5 & NE 145th, Mountlake Terrace Freeway Station, Lynnwood Transit Center, Ash Way Park & Ride, South Everett Freeway Station||Everett Station
Downtown Everett (select trips only)
|513||No||No||Downtown Seattle||Mountlake Terrace Freeway Station, Eastmont Park & Ride||Everett (Evergreen Way & 79th Pl SE)J||Community Transit|
|522||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||Lake City Way, Bothell Way NE, Ballinger Way, Kenmore Park & Ride, University of Washington, Bothell/Cascadia College||Woodinville Park & Ride||King County Metro|
(use routes 535 & 512)
|No||Downtown Bellevue||Bellevue Transit Center, Totem Lake Freeway Station, Brickyard Freeway Station, I-405 & NE 195th, Canyon Park Park & Ride, Ash Way Park & Ride, South Everett Freeway Station||Everett Station||Community Transit|
|535||Yes||Saturday only||Downtown Bellevue||Bellevue Transit Center, Totem Lake Freeway Station, Brickyard Freeway Station, Bothell Park & Ride, University of Washington, Bothell/Cascadia College, Canyon Park Park & Ride, Alderwood Mall||Lynnwood Transit Center||Community Transit|
|540||No||No||University District (Seattle)||University of Washington, University of Washington station, Evergreen Point Freeway Station, Yarrow Point Freeway Station, South Kirkland Park & Ride||Kirkland Transit Center||King County Metro|
(use route 542)
|No||University District (Seattle)||University of Washington, University of Washington station, Evergreen Point Freeway Station, Yarrow Point Freeway Station, Overlake Transit Center||Overlake Park & Ride||King County Metro|
|542||Yes||No||Green Lake P&R (peak)
University District (Seattle) (off-peak)
|University of Washington, University of Washington station, Evergreen Point Freeway Station, Yarrow Point Freeway Station, Overlake Transit Center, SR-520 & NE 51st Freeway Station, Downtown Redmond||Redmond Transit Center||King County Metro|
|545||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||Capitol Hill (select trips), Montlake Freeway Station, Evergreen Point Freeway Station, Yarrow Point Freeway Station, Overlake Transit Center, SR-520 & NE 51st Freeway Station, Downtown Redmond, Redmond Transit Center||Bear Creek Park & Ride||King County Metro|
|550||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle (Transit Tunnel)||I-90 & Rainier Ave Freeway Station, Mercer Island Park & Ride, South Bellevue Park & Ride, Bellevue, Bellevue Transit Center||Bellevue (Library)||King County Metro|
|554||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||I-90 & Rainier Ave Freeway Station, Mercer Island Park & Ride, Eastgate Freeway Station, Issaquah Transit Center, Issaquah Highlands Park & Ride||Issaquah Highlands Park & Ride
Redmond (185th Avenue NE & Redmond/Fall City Road, select weekday trips only)
|King County Metro|
|555||No||No||Northgate Transit Center||Montlake Freeway Station, Evergreen Point Freeway Station, Yarrow Point Freeway Station, Bellevue Transit Center, South Bellevue Park & Ride, Eastgate Park & Ride, Bellevue College, Issaquah Transit Center||Issaquah Highlands Park & Ride||King County Metro|
|556||No||No||Northgate Transit Center||University District (Seattle), University of Washington, University of Washington station, Evergreen Point Freeway Station, Yarrow Point Freeway Station, Bellevue Transit Center, South Bellevue Park & Ride, Eastgate Freeway Station, Issaquah Transit Center||Issaquah Highlands Park & Ride||King County Metro|
|560||Yes||Yes||Bellevue (105th Ave NE & NE 2nd St)||Bellevue Transit Center, South Bellevue Park & Ride, Newport Hills Park & Ride, Kennydale Freeway Station, Renton, Renton Transit Center, Sea-Tac Airport, SeaTac/Airport Station, Burien Transit Center||Westwood Village||Pierce Transit (operates within King County)|
|566||Yes||No||Overlake Transit Center||Bellevue Transit Center, Renton, Renton Transit Center, Kent Station, Auburn Park & Ride||Auburn Station||Pierce Transit|
(use route 566)
|No||Overlake Transit Center||Bellevue Transit Center||Kent Station||Pierce Transit|
|574||Yes||Yes||Sea-Tac Airport||SeaTac/Airport Station, Kent/Des Moines Freeway Station, Star Lake Freeway Station, Federal Way Transit Center, Tacoma Dome Station, SR-512 Park & Ride||Lakewood Transit Center||Pierce Transit|
|577||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||I-5||Federal Way Transit Center||Pierce Transit|
|578||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||Federal Way Transit Center, Auburn Station, Sumner Station||Puyallup Station||Pierce Transit|
|580||No||No||Puyallup Station||Fairground Red Lot, South Hill Park & Ride, SR 512, I-5/SR 512 Park & Ride||Lakewood Station||Pierce Transit|
|586||No||No||University District (Seattle)||University of Washington Medical Center, SR-520, I-5||Tacoma Dome Station||Pierce Transit|
(use route 594)
(use route 594)
|Downtown Seattle||SODO Busway||Tacoma Dome Station||Pierce Transit|
|592||No||No||Downtown Seattle||SODO Busway, SR-512 Park & Ride, Lakewood Station, Hawks Prairie Park & Ride (select trips only)||DuPont Station
Olympia Transit Center (select trips only)
|594||Yes||Yes||Downtown Seattle||SODO Busway, Tacoma Dome Station, University of Washington Tacoma, Downtown Tacoma, SR-512 Park & Ride||Lakewood Station||Pierce Transit|
|595||No||No||Downtown Seattle||SODO Busway, Tacoma Community College Transit Center, Narrows Park & Ride, Kimball Drive Park & Ride||Gig Harbor (Purdy Park & Ride)||Pierce Transit|
|596||No||No||Sumner Station||SR-410||Bonney Lake Park & Ride||Pierce Transit|
Sound Transit owns a fleet of 280 buses operated by three different local transit agencies. Sound Transit buses are painted white with aqua, turquoise, and blue waves along the sides, representing the Puget Sound region ST Express serves, and most feature a freely-adapted representation of the Sound Transit bus and train system map on the seating fabric.
Occasionally, vehicles that are not in Sound Transit livery are used on Sound Transit routes by the operating agencies. Also, Sound Transit vehicles may also be used by the local agencies for other commuter routes. This is due to vehicles having mechanical problems, vehicle allocation issues, and assignment errors.
|Manufacturer and model||Image||Motor||Length||Passengers||Purchased||Qty||Fleet Numbers||Operator|
|Gillig Phantom||Cummins ISM||40'||42 (seated)||2001||20||9070-9089||King County Metro|
|New Flyer D60LF||Caterpillar C9||60'||60 (seated)||2004||16||9537-9552||King County Metro|
|New Flyer DE40LF||Cummins ISL||40'||37 (seated)||2003||1||9200||King County Metro|
|New Flyer DE60LF||Caterpillar C9 / GM-Allison EP50 ||60'||57 (seated)||2004||22||9600-9621||King County Metro|
|Cummins ISL / GM-Allison EP50||2008||2||9622-9623|
|Motor Coach Industries D4500||Detroit Diesel Series 60 EGR||45'||57 (seated)||2005||13||9700-9712||Pierce Transit|
|Motor Coach Industries D4500CT||Cummins ISM||45'||57 (seated)||2008||7||9713-9719||Pierce Transit|
|New Flyer D60LFR||Cummins ISL9||60'||56 (seated)||2010||13||9553-9565||Community Transit|
|Cummins ISL9||60'||56 (seated)||2011||3||9584-9586||King County Metro|
|2012||14||9800-9813||King County Metro|
|New Flyer DE60LFR||Cummins ISL9 / Allison H 50 EP||60'||56 (seated)||2010||15||9637-9647||King County Metro|
|Gillig Low Floor BRT Hybrid||Cummins ISL9 / Allison H 40 EP||40'||37 (seated)||2012||22||9201-9222||Pierce Transit|
|Gillig Low Floor BRT||Cummins ISL9||40'||37 (seated)||2012||2||9122-9123|
|2015||3||9124-9126||King County Metro|
|New Flyer Xcelsior XDE60||Cummins ISL9 / Allison H 50 EP||60'||56 (seated)||2014||8||9652-9659||King County Metro|
|New Flyer Xcelsior XD60||Cummins ISL9||60'||56 (seated)||2014||4||9814-9817||King County Metro|
|Alexander Dennis Enviro500 MMC||Cummins ISL9||42'||82 (seated)||2015||5||91501-91505||Community Transit|
|Gillig Low Floor BRTPlus CNG||Cummins Westport ISL G||40'||37 (seated)||2015||17||41501-41517||Pierce Transit|
|Motor Coach Industries D4500CT CNG||Cummins Westport ISX12 G||45'||57 (seated)||2016||12||9301-9312||Pierce Transit|
- "May 2016 Service Performance Report" (PDF). Sound Transit. July 7, 2016. Retrieved July 16, 2016.
- "Service Delivery: Quarterly Performance Report - Fourth Quarter, 2016" (PDF). Sound Transit. March 2, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
- Rogoff, Peter (January 29, 2016). "CEO Report for January 29, 2016". Sound Transit. Retrieved February 1, 2016.
- "Regional transit history 1997 - 2003". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "Sound Transit: ST Express Regional Bus Service". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2009-11-10.
- "Sound Transit: Lost & Found". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2009-11-10.
- "Lost & Found". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2009-05-24.
- "Draft 2015 Service Implementation Plan - Appendix B: Fleet Plans" (PDF). Sound Transit. p. 111. Retrieved 8 November 2014.
- "ST Express 40-foot Diesel Bus Specifications (Gillig)". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "ST Express 60-foot Diesel Low Floor Bus Specifications (New Flyer)". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "MOTION NO. M2009-15: Contract with New Flyer Corporation" (PDF). Sound Transit. 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
- "ST Express 40-foot Diesel-Electric Hybrid Bus Specifications (New Flyer)". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "Hybrid Vehicle Specifications". New Flyer Industries, Inc. Archived from the original on 2007-04-16. Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "New Flyer Articulated Hybrid Diesel-Electric Bus". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "ST Express 45-foot Long-Haul Bus Specifications (MCI)". Sound Transit. Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "MOTION NO. M2009-09: Contract with Motor Coach Industries" (PDF). Sound Transit. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
- "Sound Transit: Sound Transit board approves purchase of clean diesel and hybrid buses". Sound Transit. 2011-02-24. Retrieved 2011-02-24.
- "MOTION NO. M2010-01: ST Express Bus Procurement – ST2 Expansion Service" (PDF). Sound Transit. 2010-01-14. Retrieved 2010-01-18.
- "MOTION NO. M2011-04 Purchase 24 Forty-Foot Replacement Buses" (PDF). Sound Transit. 2011-02-24. Retrieved 2011-02-25.
- "MOTION NO. M2014-06" (PDF). March 27, 2014. Retrieved December 31, 2015.
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