Vashon’s Community Van service ready to connect island’s residents to the places they need to reach

Community Transportation Coordinator Megan Lockhart

Vashon Island residents: Do you need a simple, convenient way to get to where you need to go? If so, consider making the Vashon-Maury Community Van part of your daily routine.

The Vashon Community Van gives residents a way to reach any part of the island without taking their cars. The reservation-based rideshare program – which has been available on the island nearly four years – was developed to provide alternative travel options and help fill transportation gaps.

When bus service on Vashon was suspended at the start of the pandemic, the Community Van served as a vital connection for many on the island. Metro routes 118 and 119 have since resumed service, but islanders can still utilize the rideshare program.

“People here on Vashon Island still need to get places, and the Community Van is one of the best ways to get around,” Community Transportation Coordinator Megan Lockhart said. “Now that people are getting back into a regular routine, there Community Van can be a big help.”

How it works

The Vashon-Maury Island Community Van is a reservation-based rideshare service, available 24 hours a day, seven days per week. Riders with off-island trip needs and those requiring an accessible vehicle are invited to request additional accommodation at the time of their reservation request.

  • Community members travel together to local destinations during the day, evening, or weekend.
  • Group trips and stops are preplanned (at least two weeks in advance) by a Community Transportation Coordinator.
  • Riders contact their Community Transportation Coordinator to join pre-scheduled Community Van trips.
  • Each trip must have at least two passengers in addition to the volunteer driver.
  • Each rider pays a one-zone Metro fare. The driver doesn’t pay a fare.
  • Riders can request a new trip by submitting an online form or contacting the Community Transportation Coordinator.
  • Riders can also suggest a trip they know will be popular with their friends and neighbors.
  • Accessible Community Vans are available on request. Tell the Community Transportation Coordinator about your needs before your trip.

Each rider pays a standard Metro fare. That’s $2.75 for a regular adult.

  • Use the Transit Go Ticket app on your phone
  • Use your ORCA Card
  • Use King County Metro Paper Tickets

To find out how to schedule a trip, contact Megan Lockhart by phone at 206-773-7003 or by email at VashonVan@kingcounty.gov. You may also visit the Vashon Community Van website at kingcounty.gov/VashonVan for a current trip schedule or submit a trip request form. Calls, emails and trip requests will be responded to within 24-48 hours, or next business day if received on weekends or holidays.

Safety

  • All drivers and passengers are required to wear face masks when riding in Community Vans as required by federal law. Should a passenger arrive without a mask, one will be provided.
  • Each van provides hand sanitizer, Lysol spray and disinfectant wipes. All vans have vinyl safety screens between the driver and passengers.
  • Vans are deep-cleaned after every use.

Volunteer drivers wanted

The Vashon Community Van needs volunteer drivers! You can support your neighbors and your community and help the environment by becoming one. You can choose which trips you drive and how many times you drive each week.

  1. Download, complete, sign, and email your Community Van Driver Application.
  2. Complete Driver Orientation
  3. Start Driving! Once you become an approved driver, you will be able to use the van.

For more information, contact Megan Lockhart by phone at 206-773-7003 or by email at VashonVan@kingcounty.gov.

Community project organizers in unincorporated King County can now apply for 2022 “Alan M. Painter Grant Program”

Attn: Groups in unincorporated King County that are trying to bring together the community.

You can apply for grant money to help your event become reality, via the Alan M. Painter Grant Program.

The grants—formerly known as Community Service Area grants—fund community projects that allow residents of the unincorporated areas to participate in, and be more connected to, their communities.

Continue reading Community project organizers in unincorporated King County can now apply for 2022 “Alan M. Painter Grant Program”

Community Service Area Grant Program now honors Alan Painter, former program manager and community proponent

The grant program for which Alan Painter championed during his time at King County will now bear his name.

It’s fitting that the grant program Alan Painter was so passionate about now bears his name.

Earlier this year, the King County Council approved renaming the Community Service Area Grant Program officially to the “Alan M. Painter Grant Program” as a tribute to his passion for the community.

Continue reading Community Service Area Grant Program now honors Alan Painter, former program manager and community proponent

Thank you to our fantastic group of King County Road Services Summer 2021 Interns

Photo: Interns Isabel and Olivia Yamashita with Henry Jin, King County Bridge Engineer,  looking at the Upper Tokul Creek Bridge scheduled for replacement this fall.

By Jamie Holter

One of the highlights of summer 2021 was the restart of the King County Road Services Summer Internship Program that was put on hold in 2012 due to the economic downturn. This year, we welcomed six local undergraduate and graduate students pursuing careers in Engineering and Public Administration into our paid internship program.

Continue reading Thank you to our fantastic group of King County Road Services Summer 2021 Interns

Community Van Program now in Skyway!

Skyway Community Van Coordinator Kahdijah Jackson says she knows how much this program could benefit the residents of the area.

The Community Van Program is in your neighborhood, Skyway.

Metro and Local Services are introducing the program that will provide residents with 24/7, reservation-based transportation for group trips. Metro provides the vans, and volunteer drivers are managed by a local Community Van Coordinator.

Continue reading Community Van Program now in Skyway!

Vashon Island road will honor Mukai family

A half-mile section of 107th Avenue SW will display the honorary road name designation of “Mukai Way.” It pays tribute to the Mukai Family and the Japanese American immigrant community’s contributions to the island in the 20th century.

On Aug. 17, the King County Council unanimously approved the designation. It also directed the Road Services Division to place signage recognizing the section of road, which is located off SW Bank Road. It’s also where the historic Mukai Farm & Garden property is located.

Local Services is planning a public ceremony to celebrate the designation.

Continue reading Vashon Island road will honor Mukai family

Update: King County Behavioral Health Rural Needs Survey

Thank you! Over 700 people completed the survey between March and April 2021! 

King County is acting on your input to develop new programs to increase access to mental health and substance use services in rural communities. We will convene community sessions this fall to share what we learned. New services and programs will launch in 2022. Stay tuned to the Department of Local Services newsletter for updates.

When we asked for your feedback, we promised to share a summary of what we heard. Here’s what you, your neighbors and your community had to say about wellness in your area.

Continue reading Update: King County Behavioral Health Rural Needs Survey

Subarea planning is underway for the Snoqualmie Valley/Northeast King County Community Service Area

Local Services is now gathering data and creating a work plan that will help King County implement a 20-year Subarea Plan for the Snoqualmie Valley/Northeast King County Community Service Area.

The community and county staffers will work together to develop the subarea plan and refine the Community Needs List. These documents will reflect the community’s vision and priorities. This collaboration will take place through both in-person and virtual community meetings, online surveys, and topic-specific focus groups.

Local Services will host an official Subarea Plan Kickoff Meeting this fall.

Continue reading Subarea planning is underway for the Snoqualmie Valley/Northeast King County Community Service Area

Partnership helps deliver community kiosks to Skyway

The Skyway community celebrated the installation of a pair of deep-blue, public kiosks in July.

One is located on Renton Avenue S near Nevzat’s Espresso, and the other is just down the street from Campbell Hill Elementary School. These kiosks serve multiple functions. Residents can pin fliers and announcements to a roof-covered bulletin board. The kiosks also serve as neighborhood entry signs, complete with side panels designed to resemble maps of the neighborhood.

Continue reading Partnership helps deliver community kiosks to Skyway

“Revive and thrive”: Small businesses in unincorporated King County hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic can now apply for grants of up to $25,000

As part of King County’s initiative to help our region recover from the pandemic, the King County Council has dedicated $4.5 million to help small business owners in unincorporated areas.

King County Executive Dow Constantine launched the “Revive and Thrive” Business Grants July 7, from Aroma Coffee in Fall City, Washington. The grants offer up to $25000 to small businesses in unincorporated areas.

Apply at kingcounty.gov/localbusinesshelp

The application period opens Wednesday, July 7 and closes Wednesday, Aug. 4. Small business owners can apply online at https://kingcounty.gov/localbusinesshelp or by calling 206-477-3800 beginning today.

King County Local Services will administer this new grant program, which is open to businesses with 30 or fewer employees and $3 million or less in annual gross income.

Continue reading “Revive and thrive”: Small businesses in unincorporated King County hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic can now apply for grants of up to $25,000