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King County Metro named top public transportation agency

King County Metro was named the best largest transit system in North America due to their achievements in ridership, safety, and sustainability.
A King County Metro bus. Photo: KING

A leading public transit trade organization has named King County Metro was the top large public transportation agency in North America over the last year.

The American Public Transportation Association picked Metro for the honor based on 12 criteria, including safety, efficiency, maintenance and financial management.

The association cited Metro's three straight years of record ridership, a program that provides discounted fares to low income riders, and another program in which area businesses pay for free or reduced-price ORCA cards for their employees.

Also see: Downtown transit use up, driving down, new study finds

“This is an honor we share with the community we serve and an outstanding example of the progress we are making to create the nation’s best-run government for the people of King County," said King County Executive Dow Constantine.

People boarded Metro buses about 400,000 times every weekday in 2017, a figure that has increased every year since at least 2011.

Also see: ORCA cards now free for some residents

Seattle has been virtually the only city in the country to see continual growth in transit ridership over the last several years.

“This award goes to each one of the 4,700 employees at King County Metro, in honor of the hard work and amazing customer service they provide every day," said King County Metro General Manager Rob Gannon.

The associated also named King County Metro the best large transit agency in 1983 and 1992.

Also see: Community Transit driver reaches three million miles of safe driving

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