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Metro Reports Year of Steady Ridership Growth Amid Pandemic Recovery

Published on Wednesday, December 20, 2023 | 3:55 pm
 

Metro, or the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, has reported a year of continual ridership growth, with November 2023 marking a significant milestone. In its most recent ridership report, Metro had 24.2 million boardings on its bus and rail services, reaching 82 percent of its pre-pandemic level in 2019.

The average weekday ridership was 907,343 boardings, the third consecutive month that weekday Metro ridership surpassed 900,000 boardings. Weekend ridership also saw a boost, with Saturday boardings averaging 635,228, and Sunday boardings averaging 524,632, almost reaching pre-pandemic levels, the report showed.

The A and E Lines, which have been operational for five months, contributed significantly to the numbers. The A Line, serving customers from Azusa to Long Beach, saw 1.63 million boardings, while the E Line, serving customers from East L.A. to Santa Monica, had 1.13 million boardings. The subway, including the B/D lines, recorded the highest number of rail boardings with 1.7 million trips taken.

A 13 percent year-over-year increase was observed in Metro bus ridership in November, with more than 19 million rides taken. This brought total bus ridership to 88 percent of its pre-pandemic level.

An unexpected boost in ridership came from the closure of the I-10 Freeway due to a fire in early November, the report showed. The closure prompted drivers to opt for public transportation, leading to a seven percent increase in ridership on the E Line, which runs parallel to the freeway.

Metro’s focus on safety, improved reliability, frequency of service, and the presence of Metro Ambassadors have all contributed to the increased ridership and improved customer experience.

Metro’s reduced-price transit pass programs, such as the student GoPass pilot program and the Low-Income Fare is Easy (LIFE) program, have also made public transportation more accessible and affordable. The GoPass program saw a 28 percent year-over-year increase in November, with nearly 1.8 million student boardings.

The LIFE program, which helps qualifying Los Angeles County residents save money, saw 1.4 million boardings during November 2023 from nearly 300,000 enrollees.

Information on all Metro’s reduced fare programs, including discounts for seniors, persons with disabilities and college students can be found at www.metro.net/riding/fares/.

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