Vanpools rising with bus fares

Thumbs up to the people who are choosing Metro’s vanpools as a way to make their daily commutes, making life on the highways a little easier and the environment a little healthier for everybody else.

  • BY Wire Service
  • Friday, July 18, 2008 12:34pm
  • Opinion

Thumbs up to the people who are choosing Metro’s vanpools as a way to make their daily commutes, making life on the highways a little easier and the environment a little healthier for everybody else.

According to Metro, its vanpool program – reputedly the oldest and largest of its kind in the United States – removes about 5,000 cars from the roads each day and eliminates approximately 16,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year. That’s something to think about the next time you’re plowing through heavy traffic: It could be worse without vanpools, not to mention all the other mass-transit options available through Metro and its big regional sister, Sound Transit.

Some of the heaviest ridership in vanpools hails from the southeast portion of King County. One of the happy riders is Lin Chen, who commutes with six co-workers to their jobs in Enumclaw. Why does she do it? Well, she said in last Wednesday’s Reporter, there’s the socialization and less–tense motoring that comes with sharing rides instead of driving alone. Financially, the payoff is the roughly $125 she saves each month that otherwise would go toward gas for her own car. That makes her $27-a-month fee for vanpooling seem like a pittance – a happy one, at that.

The news isn’t all rosy from Metro. The agency hopes the County Council will approve a 25-cents fare increase for bus riders, effective Oct. 1. The additional take from riders, though relatively bite-sized, is an attempt to help offset a projected deficit of $14 million in Metro’s budget for fuel purchases this year. Higher fares won’t cover all of the difference, though – an unpleasant but necessary price for making the best out of traffic-laden highways and roads and the fiscal pain at the gas pump that citizens and transit operators are sharing.

Editor Pat Jenkins




Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@covingtonreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.covingtonreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Opinion

Don C. Brunell is a business analyst, writer and columnist. He is a former president of the Association of Washington Business, the state’s oldest and largest business organization, and lives in Vancouver. Contact thebrunells@msn.com.
Tell these politicians about the value of hydropower | Brunell

Gov. Jay Inslee and Sen. Patty Murray, both Democrats, issued a draft… Continue reading

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
Closer look at South King County legislative candidates | Roegner

There is plenty of excitement ahead in South King County legislative races… Continue reading

Robert Whale can be reached at rwhale@soundpublishing.com.
Seems we didn’t see what we saw, or so say the gaslighters | Whale

Like others lately, I have been avidly following the Jan. 6 Committee’s… Continue reading

Robert Whale can be reached at rwhale@soundpublishing.com.
So much in me, good and bad, I trace back to my old man | Whale’s Tales

This Sunday, like many folks across this nation will do and each… Continue reading

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
The importance of independence in police investigations | Roegner

There have been many people of color harmed by police officers. While… Continue reading

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
Behind the appointment of King County’s new sheriff | Roegner

King County Executive Dow Constantine had three finalists to choose from when… Continue reading

Robert Whale can be reached at rwhale@soundpublishing.com.
Roe v. Wade and the road we have been down before | Whale’s Tales

I have been thinking a lot lately about the Prohibition Era in… Continue reading

Robert Whale can be reached at rwhale@soundpublishing.com.
Here’s a theory on why people embrace all those crazy theories | Whale’s Tales

Not so long ago, one could have called me a dyed-in-the-wool, hard-core… Continue reading