Seattle's Magic Carpet: Thirty-Nine Years of Fare-Free Service
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Seattle's Magic Carpet program, which began in 1973, provided fare-free bus service within downtown for thirty-nine years. This study investigates why the program came about, why it lasted for so long, and why it ended in 2012. First, the story of what happened with the Magic Carpet program throughout those thirty-nine years is presented. Then, The Great Man, idealist, and materialist theories of history are applied to the story. The resulting explanations are evaluated in light of the available data. The study finds that the most accurate explanation is a synthesis of all three theories, with ideological conditions influencing what type of changes are proposed, the intervention of key individuals initiating the changes, and material conditions determining whether the changes are implemented.
- Urban planning