For immediate release
April 13, 2009
METRO ridership in March tops previous months
PHOENIX â€” For March 2009, METRO ridership totals 972,962 boardings â€“ the highest monthly total since the systemâ€™s opening. The average weekday ridership is 34,376, average Saturday ridership is 28,537 and average Sunday and holiday ridership is 20,508.
In February, METRO ridership totaled 908,052 boardings, resulting in an average weekday ridership of 35,277, average Saturday ridership of 31,417 and average Sunday and holiday ridership of 19,212.
METRO will continue to monitor ridership and report new totals on a monthly basis; numbers will be available by the middle of the subsequent month. Detailed reports of boardings by station will be available by mid-April for the first quarter 2009 and on a quarterly basis thereafter.
I love a good “spin” but, anyway you slice those numbers, ridership is [i]down[/i] in March, not up.
(Except on Sundays)
Silly Metro, how in the world could they say that 972,962 is more than 908,052?
I do agree there is more than one way to slice it. Point well taken on the weekday and Saturday numbers though. All of the numbers are pretty interesting; I’m sure many will gladly point out any drop in numbers going forward.
Thanks for stopping by, Gridman!
An Bui, DocuSign Social Media says
Thanks for sharing these numbers. Public transportation is highly important to increase access to community resources like parks, neighborhoods for those without private transportation. The more we can show that demand and use exist, the stronger case we can make for increasing investment into it.
At the risk of belaboring the point, what bothers me is that the actual drop in (weekday) daily ridership is about 2.5% which is likely within the range of the margin of error and normal daily fluctuations.
In other words, it’s probably a meaningless difference in numbers.
[i]Total Monthly Ridership[/i] is a poor measure and because every month is different – not just variable number of days, but because distribution of weekends to weekdays varies over a cycle of several years.
My concern is that there are a lot of people who dislike the Light Rail and are constantly trying to find any flaw or problem – real or imagined – they can. They love it when they can say things like, “Look Light Rail is trying to say ridership is up when less people rode it everyday. They’re just trying to cover up this boondogle, blah blah blah”
And, well, this one is a pretty obvious opportunity for them to take cheap shots.
Personally, I’d like to see day by day trending graphs (that is, comparing Mondays to Mondays, etc over the term of the Light Rail’s operation).
I wonder if that info is readily available in that form from Valley Metro?
I believe there will be more detailed analysis available in the newar future from Metro.
I agree with your points. Ridership numbers will probably be up and down over time. If next month doesn’t beat the previous month, the naysayers will pounce. I doubt that will bother many people, hopefully it makes them feel great if/when the chance comes.