Tag Archives: Orca Cards

Metro Wants to Get Rid of Cash Fares. Will Vulnerable Riders Be Left Behind?

by Erica C. Barnett

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted with permission.)

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Sometime in the not-too-distant future, King County Metro plans to rip out its existing fare boxes, which accept cash, tickets, and ORCA transit passes, and replace them with a cash-free payment system — part of a long-term plan to expedite boarding, integrate the County’s bus system with Sound Transit, and reduce conflicts between riders and drivers. “Every second you save at the curb is money you can reinvest at keeping service operating,” said Carol Cooper, Metro’s Market Innovation Section manager.

Continue reading Metro Wants to Get Rid of Cash Fares. Will Vulnerable Riders Be Left Behind?

NEWS GLEAMS: COVID-19 Vaccine for Children, County Eviction Protection, & More

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle!


✨Gleaming This Week✨


Photo depicting a father holding his daughter while a medical professional administers a COVID-19 vaccination shot. Purple UW Medicine banners hang in the background.
Jose Rodriguez holds his daughter, Kaeley, 7, one of the first children to receive a COVID-19 vaccination for children ages 5–11 at the UW Medicine North King County Vaccination Clinic in Shoreline. Photo courtesy of UW Medicine.

CDC Approves Lower-Dose COVID-19 Vaccine for Children Ages 5–11

On Nov. 2, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved emergency authorization for children ages 5–11 to receive a Pfizer vaccine against COVID-19 in a two-shot series.

The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) estimates there are 680,000 children in Washington eligible in that age group, and about 183,000 of them live in King County. State officials have said they expect about 30% of parents to seek the vaccines immediately and others to wait longer.

The University of Washington (UW) expected to begin vaccinations for children over the next few days and invited the public to phone 844-520-8700 to get on a call-back list to make an appointment. Harborview Medical Center is among the locations that will vaccinate children this week. 

Pharmacies and pediatrician’s offices and other clinics in the community were expected to begin administering the shots to children soon.

Continue reading NEWS GLEAMS: COVID-19 Vaccine for Children, County Eviction Protection, & More

OPINION: Make Public Transit Accessible for All!

by Anna A, Geyciel Ceja, Sarah Perez, Olivia Hicks, Evalynn Romano, Katherine Hoerster


There’s a charge in the air these days as people return to old rituals and routines. For us, we’re celebrating something simple but essential as Seattle reopens: free ORCA cards. They are our bridge to school, work, health, and freedom. But Seattle’s public transit isn’t accessible for everyone. And it should be. 

We’re youth and adult members of the Participatory Active Transportation for Health in South Seattle (PATHSS) study. Centering often marginalized voices, dozens of youth and adult Beacon Hill community members told us what they need to get around Beacon Hill and beyond. Community wisdom yielded solutions ranging from calming traffic to increasing affordable housing. But one message came through loud and clear: Seattle needs fair, just transit access now. And that means making it free.

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NEWS GLEAMS: Ezell’s Black-Owned Businesses Grants, Earthquake Prep Drills, More!

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle!


Ezell’s Accepting Grant Applications From Black-Owned Businesses in New Initiative

Ezell’s Famous Chicken announced on Monday, Aug. 30, that, in partnership with on-demand food-delivery company DoorDash, they will be offering “no-strings-attached business grants” to 20 Black-owned businesses and organizations in the Pacific Northwest under their new Rudd’s Raising Up Black Businesses (R.U.B.B.) Initiative. The grants will help fund sustainability, operations, growth, and success for the grantees.

Ezell’s will also be offering eight additional grants (in addition to the 20 under the R.U.B.B. Initiative) under their President’s Choice Awards program.

Applications opened on Monday, Aug. 30, and can be submitted through Monday, Sept. 20. Grants will be awarded based on a combination of the application process, direct recommendations, and working with Black business-serving organizations.

For more information, including eligibility requirements, and to apply for Rudd’s R.U.B.B. Initiative grant program, visit the “Ezell’s Famous Chicken Presents: The Rudd’s R.U.B.B. Initiative — Business Grants for Raising Up Black Businesses” grant application webpage.

From Ezell’s: “‘The Rudd’s R.U.B.B. Initiative will have a very positive impact on small Black-owned businesses that will lead to positive change within the community,’ Lewis Rudd [co-founder of Ezell’s] said. ‘As co-founders, we believe that supporting and promoting entrepreneurship will help in closing the wealth gap for African Americans and lead to other benefits such as better medical and education and less violence. The initial response and support has been great and we anticipate it will continue to grow.’ 

“This initiative was created by Lewis Rudd, co-founder and CEO of Ezell’s Famous Chicken, which has been in business for 37 years and operates 17 locations throughout Washington and Oregon. Rudd approached DoorDash with his idea and forged a partnership that led to the company joining the endeavor as a Charter Partner, donating $40,000 to start the fund. The Rudd Family contributed $10,000 to the Fund.    

“In addition to DoorDash, Rudd’s R.U.B.B. is reaching out to a select group of corporate entities to join the initiative as Partners in Prosperity, which will create an opportunity to grow the fund and increase the program’s reach with a goal of doubling the number of businesses this project can help.”

Continue reading NEWS GLEAMS: Ezell’s Black-Owned Businesses Grants, Earthquake Prep Drills, More!

Young Artists Will Design Limited-Edition ORCA Cards as RapidRide Expands

by Mark Van Streefkerk


Three young Seattle-area artists are designing limited-edition ORCA cards in anticipation of King County Metro Transit’s RapidRide expansion. Cultural funding agency 4Culture and partners King County Metro Transit and RapidRide have developed an art plan in conjunction with three new RapidRide lines that will be introduced over the next few years. One of the opportunities of the art plan was for three young artists to design an ORCA card corresponding to the upcoming H, G, and I lines. 4Culture recently announced the selected artists: Jovita Mercado, Yasiman Ahsani, and Rey Daoed.

“We wanted to do one special-edition card for each of those lines as they start service,” said Laura Becker, the senior public art project manager at 4Culture. “We have very few opportunities for young and emerging artists in public art. That’s something that we are committed to focusing on.” 

Continue reading Young Artists Will Design Limited-Edition ORCA Cards as RapidRide Expands

Tax Measure to Fund Buses and Transit Could Have Significant Impacts in the South End

by Chetanya Robinson


A new transit measure on the ballot before voters this year could have significant impacts for communities in the South End, including new bus service connecting Seattle to south King County, free Orca cards for high school students, and traffic and pollution in the Duwamish Valley.

Continue reading Tax Measure to Fund Buses and Transit Could Have Significant Impacts in the South End