Ben Franklin Transit revamps bus service throughout Tri-Cities

RICHLAND, Wash. — As the Tri-Cities return to a new normal, Ben Franklin Transit (BFT) is introducing an improved bus service aimed to improve the frequency of bus services while reducing wait times and overall travel time for commuters.

According to a press release issued Tuesday, Frequent Service Corridor bus routes are being introduced on June 21. This is just one of the many shifts being made to fulfill the needs of Tri-Cities commuters. To accommodate BFT’s five new bus routes, the following routes are being absorbed into new routes: Routes 120, 126, 150 and 160.

Not only will all current routes be accounted for, but the frequency of busses available on Saturdays is set to increase as well. BFT General Manager Gloria Boyce expects these changes to accommodate the needs of the community.

“We have been planning these significant enhancements to our bus system for quite some time to better align with rider demand and offer the kind of transit service and frequency one would find in larger markets,” Boyce said. “Our community is rapidly growing, and we’re excited to be continuously improving our local public transportation system to keep pace with the area’s evolving needs. The introduction of our frequent service routes is one way we’re doing both.”

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The two new routes, Metro Route 1 and Metro Route 3, will consolidate the aforementioned routes and provide more frequent service in these areas. Below are descriptions of expected changes beginning June 21 directly from the BFT:

  • Metro Route 1: This route replaces portions of Routes 120, 126, 150, and 160, creating a Frequent Service Corridor with service every 15 minutes between 22nd Avenue Transit Center in Pasco, Three Rivers Transit Center in Kennewick, and Knight Street Transit Center in Richland.
  • Metro Route 3: This route replaces portions of Routes 150 and 160 not being incorporated into Metro Route 1, creating a Frequent Service Corridor with direct service every 15 minutes between Dayton Transfer Point in Kennewick and 22nd Avenue Transit Center in Pasco.

Furthermore, he is information regarding other route changes and service shifts that will take place in the near future.

  • Route 20: This route replaces portions of Route 120 between West Richland and Knight Street Transit Center in Richland with service every 30 minutes.
  • Route 26: This shorter route follows existing Route 126 between Knight Street Transit Center and North Richland via George Washington Way with service every 20 minutes during peak hours and every 30 minutes during non-peak hours.
  • Route 40: This route replaces portions of Route 160 with service every 30 minutes between Three Rivers Transit Center and Dayton Transfer Point via Clearwater Avenue in Kennewick and includes new service along Olympia Street in Kennewick.
  • Routes 42 and 47: These routes will increase service frequency on Saturdays from every 60 minutes to every 30 minutes between Three Rivers Transit Center and Dayton Transfer Point in Kennewick.
  • Route 110: This route schedule will adjust to coordinate transfers at West Richland Transit Center allowing timed transfers between Routes 110 and 20 for improved service to the Queensgate/Duportail retail area.

For more information on public transportation and service updates in the Tri-Cities, click here.

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