New Phoenix Light Rail System Exceeding Ridership Projections
I’m so old I can remember when the Phoenix light rail system was held up by anti-rail zealots as a prime example of how light rail in a city designed for cars would be a massive, monumental and cataclysmic failure.
So much for the notion of light rail’s novelty wearing off.
The average passenger count for weekdays in February, the second month of the cross-Valley line’s revenue operations, jumped 15 percent from January and was well over projections for the first year.
Almost 35,300 people rode trains on the average weekday, Metro announced Thursday. That figure exceeded Metro’s target of 26,000 by more than one-third. – MSNBC
Not only is their new light rail system – which I should point out, is located in an area that’s hardly considered “liberal” – meeting expectations, it’s exceeding them.
I also recall reading a lot about how anti-rail conservatives in Arizona were predicting nothing but doom and gloom for their “choo-choo train” and that no one would ride it even if it was ever completed. They were wrong again.
It’s the same thing we’ve been hearing from the same types of people here in Milwaukee. I believe that like Phoenix, a new commuter rail or streetcar option in Milwaukee will be met with much the same success as Phoenix.
And everywhere else it’s been deployed for that matter.
I’ve been pointing out the success stories of commuter and light rail in city after city for almost a year now and not once during that time have I heard of, nor has anyone sent me (which believe me, they would) the counters to those stories during that time. Just lots of, “Well it sure has heck won’t work here!” speculation and scare tactics.
Good job Phoenix, and congratulations on your success.