Management & Operations

Public transportation ridership climbs

Posted on January 4, 2007

Public transportation ridership increased by nearly 3% in the first nine months of 2006, with Americans taking 7.8 billion trips on public transit, according to the American Public Transportation Association. Light rail had the highest percentage of growth (5.4%) with five cities boasting double digit increases in ridership, including Salt Lake City (23.3%), Minneapolis (22.6%) and Philadelphia (11.9%). Commuter rail, which grew by 3.2% in the first nine months of 2006, showed the largest increases in Harrisburg, Pa. (12.1%), Chesterton, Ind. (12%) and Miami (11.7%). Meanwhile, heavy rail showed in increase of 2.8% with Boston (12.9%) and Los Angeles (12.2%) leading the way. Bus ridership in small, medium and large communities all showed increases as well. Nationally bus ridership increased by nearly 3% between January and September 2006, led by 11.7% increases in Seattle and San Antonio. In addition, demand response ridership increased 3.3%, trolleybus ridership decreased 1.9% and all other modes of public transportation increased by 2.6%. To view the full report, visit www.apta.com/research/stats/ridership.

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