Your Feedback Could Help Drive the Project Forward
Have you ever wished you could zip down to Grand Ridge Plaza or the park-and-ride without taking your car out of the garage? Or send the kids to a movie without driving them there? Have you had a visiting grandparent without a car of their own and wished they could go shopping or visit a friend, without borrowing your family car?
Earlier this year, a group of community and city leaders met to discuss the idea of a community shuttle service for Issaquah Highlands. There are challenges in our community’s hillside topography, and distances to points of interest make it difficult for the transportation-challenged to fully participate in our community. The ideal scenario is to contract with a private, full-service shuttle company that will flex service based on rider data.
Providing your feedback via a survey will ensure we are ready to safely launch a shuttle service (post-COVID-19) that includes the routes, schedules, and amenities you prefer.
Let us know if you support the idea and how you and your family would use the amenity. Community interest will drive the scope of this project (i.e. number of shuttles, hours of operation). We will seek a variety of funding sources, including support from our commercial and multi-family landowners, grants, and other resources. The shuttle cannot be fare-based due to state regulations.
Our property values will increase with the addition of this unique amenity. The shuttle service would include an app that would indicate, in real-time, the location of the shuttle and the wait time at your closest shuttle stop. The shuttle service app would allow parents of middle school and older students to monitor the location to and from Grand Ridge Plaza, saving trips to drop off and pick up kids from after school activities, the movies, or shopping.
The shuttle also allows locals to leave the car at home for dinner and a movie. Restaurants will benefit from patrons staying for one more round during happy hour, knowing the shuttle is available to safely transport customers home. There will be a benefit to your out-of-town visitors to access entertainment, trails, the park-and-ride, and other amenities, all while you are unavailable due to work or other obligations.
Talk to your neighbors and encourage them to complete the survey, too. If there is not enough support at this time, we will not move forward. If the community indicates support of the shuttle program, we will host virtual focus groups this fall. Once we fully understand the community’s desires, we will secure funding and be ready to safely launch post-COVID-19, sometime in 2021 or early 2022.
Take the survey and feel free to reach out to me at Christy.G@IHCouncil.org; let’s discuss, and I will share your ideas and the survey results with the Highlands Council Transportation Committee. The survey closes on August 31.
Note: We understand that many of you who live here really want a community pool. We are working on that, too! Highlands Council leadership met with owners of land yet to be developed earlier this year, keeping the community’s request top of mind. COVID-19 has halted new land development at this time, but we will stay on it – no promises – but we do hear you and we are trying.
Artwork by Katie Cannon.