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A pilot program in Seattle cut Metro fares for youth fares over the summer and the transit system saw big ridership gains. "Riders from ages 6 to 18 could hop on Metro for 50 cents and light rail for $1 rather than the usual $1.50 youth fare," Josh Cohen reports for Next City. Compared to the previous summer, the system saw significant ridership increases across all its transit modes, "Metro bus youth ridership jumped 35 percent over the previous summer for a total of 376,000 boardings. Light-rail ridership increased 42 percent," Cohen reports.
Council members who supported this program hope its success in generating additional ridership will mean that the pilot becomes permanent. The increased youth ridership has been part of a wider growth story for Seattle public transit over the past year.