Metro’s new Rider Dashboard, also known as “The Dash”, provides customers, communities, and partners with up-to-date answers to frequently asked questions about transit. The Dash displays data on ridership, mask use, trips that exceed passenger capacity limits and bus stop pass-ups.
The Dash is a sleek, interactive tool that shares current information on four frequently asked-about topics – ridership impact, rider mask use, buses at capacity, and missed stops. Housed in Metro’s Accountability Center, The Dash is the latest Metro tool to provide richer and more up-to-date information regarding transit service.
The Dash, powered by Microsoft’s PowerBI advanced data visualization software, will display:
Ridership Impact. Users can see which routes have the highest utilization, how many people Metro’s system is carrying, and changes in ridership year-over-year. Users can sort by route and time of day, and compare by month and by year.
Rider Mask Use. Metro requires masks and measures passenger compliance based on rotating samplings across the system. In November, roughly 88% of Metro bus and shuttle customers and 99% of water taxi customers wore masks. By Dec. 14, mask dispensers will be installed on more than 340 coaches on the highest ridership routes (RapidRide A, B, D, E, and F lines, and the 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 10, 12, 13, 14, 36, 43, 44, 49, 70, and 120).
Capacity: In order to maintain physical distancing, Metro implemented passenger limits in April 2020, reducing capacity by about 75% on each coach. Users can view capacity by route and time period to see how many trips exceeded capacity limits. Many routes often have open seats whereas a few high-demand routes regularly fill up.
Missed Stops: Users can see the number of bus stops and the percent of trips for which drivers noted they passed people waiting to board due to being at overall and/or ADA passenger limits. There is also a map function showing the location of each missed stop. Operators are instructed to pass bus stops with intending riders when the coach is already at its reduced passenger limit and no one needs to exit.
(Metro’s Rider Dashboard does not include Link light rail, first-last mile services like Via to Transit, and, with the exception of Ridership Impact, Seattle Streetcar.)
The Dash is not designed to be used as a real-time tool. Rather, it delivers increased accountability, timeliness, and transparency on four of the metrics most often asked about by passengers, partners, and stakeholders. The Dash joins a suite of products that customers already rely on such as Metro’s online Trip Planner, real-time departure predictions using Text for Departures, and a host of real-time notifications by route via text, app, email subscriptions, and social media.
The Dash is not intended to help Metro identify and rank priority issues to resolve, but rather serve as a reference point over time and transparency tool. Metro makes decisions based on its values of safety, sustainability, and equity that are supported by data but not guided by it.
“King County Metro is committed to providing mobility for all, but that does not just mean providing the mobility services themselves, but also the information that will empower the public to use them,” said Terry White, Metro’s general manager. “At Metro, we value transparency and continuous improvement, and recognized the interconnectedness between the two. We’re pleased that The Dash will help move us forward on both of those fronts, and help the public be better informed about our services.”
The Dash is currently available in English and Spanish and will launch in Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Ukrainian, Amharic, Punjabi, and Somali in coming weeks. More immediate in-language needs, plus any other questions or comments can be directed to Customer Service. Additional detail on how each metric was calculated can be found on The Dash’s Terms and Definitions page.