Monday, July 28, 2008

21 Million More MBTA Riders in FY 2008 vs. FY 2007

The MBTA released ridership numbers for its Fiscal Year 2008. It was a good year, ridership wise, for the T. Nearly 375 million people used the T, the highest ridership number in the MBTA's 44 year history. There were 21 million more riders in this fiscal year compared to last year, a 6% increase.

You can read all about it in an articles from today The Boston Globe. The article mention that the T is just only starting to look at ways to accommodate more riders. The Chicago Transit Authority is considering removing seats from their train cars to fit more people. The MBTA's own SUV-riding GM Dan Grabauskas made the following statement:
It is too early to say, Grabauskas cautioned, whether the MBTA would consider a similar move. "Literally," he said, "I only learned of it in the past week."

But at a time when people are forced to squeeze into rush-hour trains in Boston, the agency is willing, Grabauskas said, to consider just about anything, including, possibly, seatless cars. "It certainly is an idea with some merit."

Dan - way to be thinking ahead. I won't get into a bashing session, but boy do you open yourself up to criticism.

The Massachusetts Public Interest Group noted the following:

"This is an opportunity where people are experimenting with public transportation," Bourassa said. "And if the T does a good job and provides good service, more people are going to use it and we're going to keep those riders. But if the T has to raise fares because of high debt costs and high fuel costs, or if they have to cut service because of that, then we will have missed that opportunity."

The Boston Metro reported that 67.8% of the T's subway riders are using the CharlieCard to pay for their trips in June 2008. Overall, 90% of riders either use a CharlieCard or a discounted monthly pass. Next year, the T will be rolling out a pilot program where commuter rail riders can pay for their parking using the automated cards. By 2011, CharlieCards are expected to be used across the entire T system - subway, bus, commuter rail, and commuter boat.

Finally, a typical Boston Herald article about T salaries. Unreal!


Anonymous said...

The coverage of this story on WBZ radio had Danny G. claiming ridership was up due in part to amenities that have been rolled out, including 1) real-time T alerts and 2) wireless access.

To which I say:
1) Not (real time my a**)
2) Not (not on the Worcester line, at least 8/10 times a car is marked as having wireless, it does not work. Support staff are NO HELP at all)

Anonymous said...

I agree with the previous poster. People are using public transportation more because of the price of gas, not because of the so called "amenities" that the MBTA is offering up.

But, Danny G. is a spinmeister at heart, so of course he's going to purport that the increases are due to the stellar (cough, cough) service that the MBTA provides.