Whatcom Transportation Authority operates Fixed Routes, Specialized Transportation, and rural Dial-a-Ride service throughout Whatcom County. In 2005, WTA introduced a network of high frequency lines, called the “GO Lines,” providing 15-minute frequencies along Bellingham’s five most transit-productive corridors. In addition to the GO Lines and other urban service, WTA offers service to Ferndale, Lynden, Blaine and Birch Bay, Lummi Nation, Sudden Valley and the East County communities of Kendall, Everson, Nooksack and Sumas. The County Connector, in partnership with Skagit Transit, provides service to Mt. Vernon.
WTA’s fleet includes 59 full-size buses, 39 Specialized Transportation mini-buses, and 39 vanpool vehicles. WTA employs 210 people, including operators, mechanics, customer service representatives, route maintenance workers and administrative personnel. Nearly two-thirds of those 210 employees are bus operators. WTA properties include agency headquarters in north Bellingham, Downtown’s Bellingham Station, Cordata Station, Ferndale Station and Lynden Station, approximately 1,000 bus stops and 140 bus shelters.
Approximately 20,000 times per weekday someone boards a WTA Fixed Route or Specialized Transportation bus. That’s nearly 5 million trips per year—trips to work, school, shopping, medical appointments, and other destinations. Although 2011 ridership has decreased slightly (due to service reductions in 2010), WTA has experienced incredible ridership growth in the past several years. In 2008, WTA was recognized as the agency with the highest ridership increase in the nation.