RapidRide B and transfers – A one way ticket
I’ve been using RapidRide B, in conjunction with the 249, to travel to several locations I would normally drive to. Each time I travel, I plan my trip using various transit planning services including Google maps, Bing, and Metro’s trip planner. So far, all services have worked well with each giving a simple trip recommendation involving a single transfer. My 249 shows up at Bellevue Transit Center where I walk over to a waiting RapidRide B coach which usually leaves within a few minutes. Total travel time from my front door to my favorite food court at Crossroads Shopping Center is usually about 30 minutes.
Getting home, however, has been more difficult to plan. When using Google or Bing maps, I cannot get a trip recommendation that involves RapidRide. All recommendations involve long walks or transfers to other numbered routes with fixed schedules and typically travel a much longer, and sometimes more complicated route. On some trips Metro’s trip planner gives the same results but on others I can get a route recommendation with RapidRide, if I tweak the travel times a bit.
An example will illustrate. Use your favorite transit planning service to get a trip recommendation for the following locations and times:
Start point: 2000 104th Ave SE (Add Bellevue, WA if you need to – Trip planner doesn’t need / want this)
End point: 15600 NE 8th
The result should be a trip on the 249 transferring to RapidRide B. However, if you plan the reverse trip you’ll get many different route recommendations, most of which do not include RapidRide B. On Metro’s trip planner I get a trip on the 245 transferring to the 249 in Overlake. However, if I switch the departure time to 5:20pm I get trip on RapidRide B transferring to the same 249 recommended above but closer to my destination.
I’ve also seen this problem occur with other trips that involve a transfer at Bellevue Transit Center so I’m guessing there is something wrong with the GTFS data for RapidRide B at that point. I’m going to stop digging here, lest I “go down the rabbit hole” as my wife likes to say. Besides, it’s time for bed – I’ve got to get up tomorrow to actually drive RapidRide.
If you are in the know, feel free to add comments or contact me on Twitter and I can work with you to investigate further.