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SafeTrack Over, Metro D.C.'s Ridership Continues to Decline
The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro) released new financial data this week that sheds light on the ongoing decline of ridership on the transit system's buses and trains.
Stephen Repetski reports on the latest data, finding plenty to be concerned about. The dominant narrative, however, is that riders are not returning to the system now that the SafeTrack repair program has concluded:
Through the third quarter of FY 2018 (July 2017 through March 2018), the average number of weekday trips taken on Metrorail was 598,000, according to the agency — a 0.1% increase from last year during which SafeTrack shuttered portions of the rail system, but 2.1% below what Metro budgeted. Average weekday ridership in May 2017 was 612,000 while May 2016’s numbers were 639,000.
Repetski also focuses on the ridership numbers on the system's bus routes, also in decline, neatly following a fare increase at the beginning of the 2018 fiscal year. Metro bus ridership declined in larger numbers in Virginia.