Saturday, January 26, 2008From an article by Steven Elbow in The Capital Times:
Madison Metro announced Friday that a 5.3 percent increase in ridership last year has put the bus service just 700,000 rides short of its all-time high, which was set 25 years ago.
Metro posted a fixed-route ridership in 2007 of 12.7 million. If growth continues at its current rate it could hit its record, set in 1982, of 13.4 million in less than two years.
The growth in Metro ridership has been steady since 1989, when the number of riders had dropped to about 9 million. Since 2000, when ridership was at 10 million, the number of fixed-route riders has climbed by 26 percent.
During the same period paratransit ridership has grown by 12 percent.
Metro officials credited the increase to higher gas prices, commitment by Metro employees to provide good service and successful unlimited ride agreements with several campuses and employers.