In a study released earlier this week, the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) predicted that public transportation ridership would grow to record numbers as gasoline prices continue to spike.
The analysis revealed that if regular gas prices reach $4 a gallon across the nation, many experts forecast an additional 670 million passenger trips could be expected, resulting in more than 10.8 billion trips per year, with the report predicting an additional 1.5 billion passenger trips or, an estimated 11.6 billion trips per year, if gas prices rise to $5 a gallon.
It's hard to argue with the report, since public transportation ridership hit record numbers in 2008 when fuel prices escalated. It is also easy to see what a public transportation's impact can be in the communities they serve, whether it's moving more folks because of escalating gas prices or helping to take more vehicles off the road.
What is not so clear from APTA's report, however, is the impact growing ridership would have on public transportation agencies. With budgets continuing to suffer from shortfalls due to a decrease in gas tax revenues and decreased support from state, local and federal governments, would a sudden surge in ridership boost agencies or cause them more hardship?
In case you missed it...
Read our METRO blog, "The end of the old oil order" here.
Usually by early January, I will hopefully have taken down the last of our holiday decorations and eaten or given away the remaining sweets that have become a part of my regular diet during the month of December. Then, of course like most people, I’ll think about ways I want to improve myself for the coming year. Whether it be exercising more (walking from the parking lot to my office doesn’t count), eating less ice cream or managing my email better. The latter practice alone would help improve my efficiency at work immensely. I’m sure you probably feel the same way.
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Earlier this week, Metro Atlanta voters in 10 counties shot down the “Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax,” or T-SPLOST, by an overwhelming a majority, 63% to 37%.
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