The Seattle Center Monorail will soon be able to accept ORCA payments, and that means fare changes are on the way.

Seattle Center is now taking feedback on proposed rate increases, which are expected to take effect on Oct. 7.

A one-way fare for adults is proposed to go up by 50 cents to $3, but the qualifying age would also go up from 13 to 19 years old. Youth ages would change from 5-12 to 6-18, and a one-way fare is proposed to increase from $1.25 to $1.50. A reduced one-way rate of $1.25 would go up to $1.50. There are adult and reduced monthly passes offered for the monorail that would not use the ORCA card. The monthly pass is proposed to increase from $50 to $60, and the reduced monthly pass from $25 to $30.

Questions and comments will be taken during a public meeting 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11, in the Seattle Armory Loft #4. People can also send comments to Seattle Center staffer Denise Wells at or 206-615-0258 through Wednesday, Sept. 18.

Private concessionaire Seattle Monorail Services operates the service for the city.

VIA Architecture was tabbed by the company in 2017 to evaluate potential improvements to the monorail to increase capacity, improve access and better connect to regional transit, including light rail under Westlake Center.

The firm found doubling monorail capacity to 6,000 passengers in each direction per hour is feasible, noting capacity was halved when the downtown station was scrapped for one inside Westlake Center.

Automated ticketing was among the improvements cited in the June 2018 report that would increase capacity, as well as additional vertical circulation and larger and reconfigured platform and queuing spaces.

The first proposed phase of improvements in the report is estimated to cost $3.1 million, and includes “replacing 32 stationary platform edge guardrails with automatic platform edge gates” to achieve a 2.5-minute headway.

Seattle Center spokesperson Deborah Daoust said improvements moving forward are outlined in the North Downtown Mobility Action Plan (NODOMAP), which was developed as part of the public process through SDOT related to the major rebuild of the Seattle Center arena.

Part of the lease agreement with developer Oak View Group was for $40 million in transportation improvements, she said, and vertical access improvements are still planned to take place in the future.

The action plan identifies Seattle Center and Westlake Station enhancements recommended in the Monorail Feasibility Study as tier 1 projects.

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