Southern California's Metrolink Defies Declining Ridership Trends

Primarily serving commuters in the Greater Los Angeles metro area, Metrolink just attained the highest annual ridership in its 27-year existence. Officials chalk up the increase to a significant investment in marketing.

1 minute read

August 22, 2019, 11:00 AM PDT

By Philip Rojc @PhilipRojc


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"One Southern California transit agency seems to be bucking the trend of nationwide ridership declines," writes Steven Sharp. That agency is Metrolink, which recently announced that its ridership stands at a historic high: nearly 12 million boardings in the 2018-2019 fiscal year. 

"Metrolink officials attributed the [...] increase from 2017-2018 - the fifth straight year of ridership increases - to increased marketing, an improved economy, and discounted fares on some lines, and free trials for Earth Day and Bike Month," Sharp writes.

To further the upward trend, Metrolink has proposed major improvements to its system, including "partial electrification and the addition of new stations, grade separations, and segments of double- and triple-track." The system's goal is to double its current ridership of 40,000 weekday boardings by 2023.

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