For the sixth year in a row, the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) saw a jump in its ridership numbers.
Leading the way was ridership on the HealthLine. Ridership was up 46 percent over a year ago, when it was known as the #6 bus.
RTA has only achieved five consecutive years of ridership growth two other times in its 32-year history -- 1976-1980 and 2003-2008.
"We had not predicted any ridership growth this year," said Joe Calabrese, RTA's CEO/GM. "Our riders saw a 5 percent service cut in December 2007, and a 25-cent fare increase in January. Then, because of budget shortfalls, we were forced to add another service cut and fuel surcharge in the fall. Conventional transit wisdom says we should have had fewer riders, but that did not happen."