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195. Eliminating the Ride Free Area will disproportionally affect people who are already strained for resources, many of whom do not have access to bus passes. When the most vulnerable members of our community can easily access services, it benefits the entire community. When people cannot access the services they need - medical services, mental health services, basic food and shelter needs the consequences fall on all of us. The Ride Free Area enhances downtown mobility, reducing dependence on automobiles and enhancing accessibility to downtown business for everyone. We must work together to create a free and frequent option in the downtown core that everyone can access. Any solutions we create should not place additional burden on already overstretched human service providers. Increasing access to subsidized bus tickets is an important tool, but needs to be one part of a larger solution. Eliminating the free ride zone is a bad idea. 196. Please do not eliminate the ride free area. It is used by people representing all backgrounds in Seattle. Having the opportunity to quickly and easily use transit to get from one end of downtown to the other is critical to a vibrant downtown, access to services, and to helping the environment. My parents who are in their 70s/80s use the ride free area when they visit Seattle from the east coast. Like many tourists who both want to see Pike Market and Pioneer Square, but may not be physically able to walk the whole way, they jump on the bus and take transit. They count on having the opportunity to do so as I imagine many visitors to downtown. They help the environment by not driving, and support the economy by having access to more shops and sites. Clients of social services rely on the ability to get to a health clinic, from shelter to a day center, or from child care to a social worker. These folks may not have the means to pay for the bus, the physical ability or time to walk between services, and should have transit available for a short ride without having to use money they may not have. Driving is probably not an option for them and it shouldn't be encouraged if it doesn't need to be. Elderly people, whether visitors to downtown or those going to services need access to the services they depend on - health care, social services or meals. Many depend on the ride free area to get to services, when a physical condition or safety concerns mean that walking a few blocks is out of the question. The options being discussed are not viable. Increasing free bus tickets will not get access equitably to those who need it. The "circulator" van or shuttle puts a stigma on those who can't pay and won't be as quick or convenient as the regular bus routes through downtown are. I understand the total cost is just over $2M - this is small change even in times of difficult budget cuts. Thank you for your consideration. 197. As a long time, daliy weekday transit user in King County I applaud the steps being taken to eliminate the Free Ride area. While I appreciate the ongoing need of low and no income residents to access transit I see no fairness in cutting service to parts of the county while still giving free rides to anyone. This is a program that’s time has come and gone. 198. I am wondering how this policy will support other goals of the city, like encouraging the use of public transportation over cars. How this supports density downtown, the use of the museums and other public amenities that are placed downtowns as well as tourism. It seems to punish those of us that take the light rail downtown and then wish to move around the downtown core without using more money. It seems antithetical to enlivening and enriching our downtown. Can we not re-consider a state income tax, a tax on the wealthiest in our state and more progressive ways to fund our services? 199. Hello, My name is Ebony and I am a social service provider. I work with homeless, at-risk and low income young parents. Eliminating the Ride Free Area will drastically impact clients' ability to access

Ride Free Area - Public Engagement Report  

King County Metro Transit Implementation plan for Ride Free Area elimination and transition to pay-on-entry