Thursday, May 26, 2016

"I'm Tony. And I Maintain It."

Did you know our buses drive approximately 1,000 miles per week? That's like driving from Seattle to Los Angeles! To keep our buses in tip-top shape, we utilize a team of service workers to thoroughly inspect each bus. One of our rock star employees that helps "Maintain It"? Veteran Community Transit employee, Tony S.

Tony has been with Community Transit since the early years, when our first maintenance shop was just a small space at Kasch Park. Back then our fleet consisted of antique and refurbished buses. Buses have certainly changed in the 25 years since then. Now our fleet includes a wide range of cutting-edge technologies, such as CAD/AVL technology (computer aided dispatch and automatic vehicle location), safety technology (such as collision avoidance), and maintenance technology (including vehicle diagnostics). "It's been exciting to grow with the company," says Tony.

Our bus maintenance program ensures each bus is inspected every six weeks. A mile indicator notifies us when a bus hits 6,000 miles so that it can rotate through the shop. A team of seven service workers make sure that anything that can easily down a coach, such as brakes and power steering, are meticulously inspected. The maintenance team always has one goal in mind: making sure our coaches are safe. Tony says, "Everyone wants to do their job well. It's an expectation we put on ourselves, not that the company puts on us. Every day is better than the last. You are better because each day is a different challenge. It makes coming to work so easy."

A personal commitment to excellence, combined with a collaborative spirit, lets our service workers "Maintain It" with a smile. "This shop is like a Mecca. We all do different things to reach a common goal. These guys work well together which you don't often see in bigger shops. If anyone has a question, we all communicate to come up with the answer. It's a good group of people which makes working here a piece of cake."

Without the talent and dedication of our maintenance team, we wouldn't be able to provide the excellent service that our customers have come to expect of us. After 25 years, Tony has helped our buses drive millions of miles. Next time you ride a Community Transit bus, you can be sure that at some point Tony has maintained it. "It's hard to believe it's been 25 years. It's been a really good ride."

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Plan Your Bike Route With Our Snohomish County Bike Map

Whether you want to commute to work or ride for fun on the weekends, Snohomish County has a bike route for you! 

From recreational paved trails to city roadways, our Snohomish County Bike Map will help get you to work or play. We've noted which roadways have a dedicated shoulder or bike lane and where to connect to Park & Rides and Transit Centers for easy connections to transit.

There are also two main recreational trails that bisect the area for safe, scenic adventures perfect for the whole family: 
  • The Centennial Trail is 29 miles of paved trails that run along abandoned rail lines from Snohomish to the Skagit County line, connecting communities to parks and shopping districts. 
  • The Interurban Trail runs from Seattle to Everett, with over 15 miles of paved trails in Snohomish County. While most of the path travels through parks and greenbelts, the trail does parallel Interstate 5 with easy access to several Park & Rides, making it a great choice for commuters, too!
  • The North Creek Trail links the communities of Bothell, Mill Creek, and Everett. The trail also provides access to the Sammamish River Trail and the Burke-Gilman Trail.

Before you get rolling, know the Rules of the Road for a safe ride:

Where is cycling prohibited? is not allowed on I-5 from Marysville south to Pierce County. Everett doesn't allow cyclists on the sidewalks in its downtown business district. In Snohomish County, sidewalk riding in residential and other areas is typically legal, but not recommended for adults traveling faster than 10 mph.

Is there a helmet law?
Cyclists of all ages are required to wear a helmet when riding in the city of Lynwood and if you cross over into King County. Children under 18 are required to wear helmets in Lake Stevens. Cyclists in other parts of Snohomish County wear helmets because they save lives.

How do I get the light to turn green?
Traffic signals detect vehicles with either a magnetic loop under the pavement or an optical detector. In both cases, positioning your bicycle is important. Look for a white pavement marking or cuts in the pavement to mark the placement of loop detectors, and position your pedals over these marks. For optical detectors position yourself in the front center of the line.

What equipment is required at night?
A white front headlight (not a reflector) visible for 500 feet and a red rear reflector are required. A flashing red rear light is also recommended, along with bright, reflective clothing.

Download a copy of Community Transit's Snohomish County Bike Map and plan your next urban adventure! 

For more great resources on biking, check out:

Community Transit's Bike Web Page
Community Transit's Centennial Trail Map
Community Transit's Interurban Trail Map
B.I.K.E.S. Club of Snohomish County
Cascade Bicycle Club
Google Maps - Bikes

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Keep Your Bike Safe and Dry With a Bike Locker

Did you know that Community Transit offers bike lockers at many Park & Ride and Transit Centers throughout Snohomish County? A bike locker is a secure, weatherproof way to store your bike while you complete your trip on a bus, carpool, or vanpool. It's a convenient way to combine biking and busing, making incorporating biking into your commute easier than ever.

Bike locker rental is available to the public on a first-come, first-served basis, at a rental rate of $60 per year plus a conditionally refundable deposit of $50. Community Transit operates 122 bike lockers across the region, though availability varies throughout the year. For more information on Community Transit's bike locker program, contact the Bike Locker Coordinator at or (425) 348-2332.

Bikes with child carriers, long wheelbases (such as recumbents), or wide handlebars might not fit into bike lockers.

Community Transit Bike Locker Locations

Ash Way P&R
Canyon Park P&R
Edmonds P&R
Lake Stevens Transit Center
Lynnwood Transit Center
Mariner P&R
Marysville Ash Ave P&R
Marysville Cedar and Grove P&R
McCollum Park P&R
Monroe P&R
Mountlake Terrace Transit Center
Smokey Point Transit Center
Snohomish P&R
Stanwood I P&R
Swamp Creek P&R

Bike Lockers at Other Snohomish County Locations (Operated by Other Agencies)

Aurora Village Transit Center (King County Metro)
Everett Station (Everett Transit)
Edmonds Station (Sound Transit)
South Everett Freeway Station (Sound Transit)
Snohomish County Campus (For Snohomish County Employees)
Everett Community College (college)
Edmonds Community College (college)
University of Washington Bothell (college)

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Community Transit is Turning 40!

Can you believe it? For 40 years we have been privileged to provide safe, reliable, and friendly service to Snohomish County. We've come a long way in four decades! From our early years as a small local bus service (we didn't even have specific stops on routes back then), we have grown into a transportation leader for the Puget Sound region, with nearly 10 million passenger boardings per year. And our service area continues to expand!

Each weekday up to 40,000 passengers rely on us to bring them home. It takes a dedicated team of employees who are passionate about the passenger to make this happen. To celebrate our 40 years of service, we are launching an engagement campaign that honors the people who have brought us this far. "Bringing You Home" profiles 10 employees who represent departments across our agency, showcasing their commitment to service. This milestone birthday is a wonderful opportunity to pay tribute to our riders, too. We thank you for the responsibility you have entrusted in us to serve you and our community. We look forward to continuing to earn your respect for another 40 years.

Community Transit's 40th Anniversary from Community Transit on Vimeo.

We also used this special anniversary to create a new 40th Anniversary mark for the "Bringing You Home" campaign. You may recognize the original CT logo from our antique bus. The new 40th Anniversary mark pays tribute to this original logo and will only be used for campaign materials. Look for it on print and social media in upcoming months.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

May 20th is Bike Everywhere Day!

The big day is almost here! If you've been wanting to incorporate biking into your commute, Bike Everywhere Day is a great day to start. Thousands of people on two wheels will be participating across the region, so even if you're a first time rider you'll feel the energy and support of more experienced riders. Even better? There will be celebration stations throughout your community to make the day feel like one big party!

Community Transit is proud to partner with Cascade Bicycle Club to bring 2016 Bike Everywhere Month festivities to Snohomish County and the City of Bothell. You'll find us at the following celebration stations on Friday, May 20th, to distribute food, prizes, and more! If you're lucky, you may even meet our favorite superhero, Oxy Gene. He'll be stopping by the South Everett and Lynwood Transit Center stations to say hello!

South Everett, 6:00 - 9:00 a.m.
Station Hosts: Community Transit, Korry Esterline, Bicycle Centres
Beverly Park Road & Commando Road
Everett, WA 98204

Lynwood Transit Center, 6:00 - 9:00 a.m.
Station Hosts: Community Transit, Harvy's Bike Shop
202nd St SW & 46th Avenue W
Lynwood, WA  98036

Everett Boeing, 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.
Station Hosts: Boeing, Community Transit, Gregg's Cycle
75th Street & Seaway Blvd.
Everett, WA 98203

For a full list of celebration stations in your neighborhood, please visit:

So hop on your bike, join the fun, and be the change you want to see in the world. By participating in Bike Everywhere Day, you also help generate awareness for safe and bike-able streets. Each year when more cyclists participate in Bike Everywhere Month, it shows transportation planners and politicians that we need a network of bicycle trails, lanes, boulevards, signage, and new innovative facilities. By cycling together, we can make a difference!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Biking and Busing: It's Easy!

Thinking about biking to work, school, or play but it's just too long of a commute? Consider combining biking and busing! Many of us, especially in more urban areas, live only a short bike ride from a bus route. In five, ten, fifteen minutes, you and your bike could be whizzing to your destination on a Community Transit bus. It's easy, convenient, and feels great! Plus you know you're doing your part to help our environment by reducing car emissions.

Every bus in our fleet is equipped with a bike rack to hold at least two bikes. You've probably seen them on the front of most buses and wondered how they worked, or if they'd be intimidating to use. They're really as easy as 1-2-3!

  1. When the bus comes to a complete stop, make sure the driver sees you before stepping in front of the bus.
  2. Unlatch the bike rack at the center handle and fold it down toward you.
  3. Load your bike into the labeled slots and raise the spring-loaded support arm over the front tire to secure the bike.

Our Swift buses hold three bikes, and are even easier to use. Just enter through the rear door and simply push your bike onto the rack in front of you. Ensure the front wheel is centered and secure under the roller. And you're off!

For more information on using bike racks on buses, check out our video, or visit our website.

How to use Bike Racks from Community Transit on Vimeo.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Meet Sara Leekley: Community Transit Coach Operator

You never know when a random conversation with someone will change your life. Sara Leekley was attending her high school reunion when a chance encounter with Chris Beck, our HR Program Manager, changed everything. After working as an Administrative Assistant for 25 years, Sara was looking to find a new career that would leave her feeling inspired. Chris enthusiastically suggested she drive for us!

Sara admitted to feeling pretty intimidated at the start of training. "I was terrified at first. You have to have a healthy respect for such a humongous vehicle." But the small, three person class and the encouragement of the trainers had her feeling more and more confident each day. "I loved the training department. They were incredibly thorough, and knew just how to push you a little out of your comfort zone. You learn and grow so much."

 This love of learning has continued in the last year since Sara got behind the wheel. "I learn something new every day. About people. About Snohomish County. I'm even more aware of what's going on in nature. I never noticed the change of seasons before. Now, when I watch the sun come up and it's just gorgeous outside, I think to myself, 'I get paid to drive around all day. This is awesome!'"

Sara spent five years working for the Coast Guard after high school. She spent most of her teen years growing up on a sailboat, making the two hour commute each way from the family sailboat in Port Orchard to Junior High and High School in Seattle (of course utilizing public transit to get there!). "I've been looking for my last job for a long time. One that I'll enjoy until I'm done working. The funny thing is, when I got my uniform for this job, it looked the same as my uniform for my first job."

We are excited to have you on board, Sara! Your love for being on the road is inspirational. We hope this is the "last job" you've been looking for.

What inspires you at your job? Is it learning? Connecting with people? Let us know in the comments!