Community

Transit group adds Saturday circular

Popular local demand for Snoqualmie Valley Transportation’s bus service is on the grow.

The weekday service, which began in 2002 with a single bus, now operates on Saturdays and includes seven shuttles, said SVT dispatcher Paula Edwards.

The shuttles, marked with SVT on the front and the Snoqualmie Tribe logo on the sides, run Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for a flat rate of 50 cents per person, per ride, or 25 cents for seniors. A new Saturday circular route runs from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for $1.

Snoqualmie Valley Transit, in partnership with the Mount Si Senior Center and the Snoqualmie Tribe, operates out of the senior center. Initially for Valley seniors, the shuttles now offer rides to people of all ages, Edwards said.

“Now we have a lot of organizations that use the bus for field trips,” she said. “Lots of kids use it to get to and from school, jobs and recreation areas like Rattlesnake Lake.”

Shuttles often stop at specific places throughout North Bend and Snoqualmie such as QFC, Safeway, the train depots in both Snoqualmie and North Bend, Snoqualmie Falls, and Northwest Outlet Mall, Edwards said.

Newer, extended routes cover North Bend to Monroe, “including the total upper and lower Valley.”

Two shuttles currently run on biodiesel, Edwards said, but SVT hopes to increase the number of biodiesel shuttles in the near future.

“We hope the Snoqualmie Casino will be able to furnish enough biodiesel,” she said. The casino plans to convert the oil used in its kitchen to biodiesel for use in the SVT shuttles, Edwards said.

The only constraint for adding more biodiesel shuttles to the fleet now is alternative fuel availability.

With the opening of Gateway Gas and Deli on the Ridge, a new Shell station that offers biodiesel fuel, SVT may be able to add yet another alternative fuel shuttle. For now, biodiesel shuttles fill their tanks in Carnation.

All shuttles have lifts and several are equipped with bike racks.

Riders must call to reserve a ride; however, buses may be flagged down en route on Saturdays. To reserve a ride, call (425) 888-7001 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

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