Today I’m 100% back in the transit commute, so I’ll have plenty more to write these days. It is a short commute, from Ballard to downtown Seattle, but a commute none the less.
I get up pretty much the same time I used to when living at 567 John Street, but instead of walking to work I’m riding the bus.
So this is how the commute went for day number one.
I managed to get out of the door at 7:30am, and headed for the NW Market Ave and Ballard Street Transit Stop.
This stop is great, with the #17, #18
, and #81
. The #17
both have express service in the morning which rocks, pretty much the fastest way to get in and out of downtown. Matter of fact, with some of the priority lanes and such, I actually think the #17
express routes probably beat driving on many days. The #44
both travel east to the University District, which of course has a host of things that interest. The #81
provides late night service in and out of downtown (such as 3am service, ya know, for those late night outings for a rock show or such). The #75
goes around a big loop through north Seattle all the way over to the Pontiac Bay on Lake Washington, by Sand Point and Warren G. Magnuson Park, and on down into the University District.
The OneBusAway.org site of course has the arrival times for these buses going into Seattle and the University District and the same routes arriving on their way back into Ballard.
Once arriving at the stop the time for the #17 Express’s Arrival flew right by. 7:42am turned into a 7:53 arrival, which put the arrive downtown at 8:09am late, but amazingly fast. The driver pretty much made heavy use of the gas pedal and lucked out on almost every light into town.
For the departure home, I needed to get back in time for the Comcast Cable Guy’s arrival sometime between – ya know, the whole flippin’ afternoon – so I departed at 11:24am. I got down and around to University & 3rd in time for the 11:31am arrival, that ended up being the 11:35am arrival of the #18 north bound to Ballard. The bus had a handicap pickup, which tacked on another 8 minutes overall to the trip, giving me an arrival time into Ballard of 12:09pm. A little late if the Comcast Guy was arriving on time, but that never happens!
Again, I ended up taking a round trip on the #18 back into town to return the keys to the Taylor 28 Apartment Complex. So at 2:14pm I tried to make the trip back into town, but just missed the bus and caught the next one around ~2:30. This time the trip only took about 28 minutes flat. Making it a bit better than the trip out. I returned the keys and headed back to Ballard. Boarding the #18 back and getting a short 29 minute trip. Overall, not a bad day of commuting, but I sure hope that the 12+ minute late #17 Express isn’t an everyday thing.
I’m not sure if anyone from Ballard reads my blog, but it would be interesting to know of others commutes along the Ballard to Seattle Routes of the #17, #18, #28, #15, or any of the others. I’m curious, will the #18 express average better times? Is the #17 Express the best way to go? Should I just leave 10 minutes earlier and get a few more minutes of reading or coding done on the bus en route to downtown on a regular #18 or #17? Is the #17 along Westlake a bit more scenic in the mornings? All questions to be answered.
Until Day 2 or beyond, cheers!