Increased Ridership Doesn't Mean Increased Transit for MTA
Remember last year, when American public transit usage hit a five-decade high? Well, apparently massive increases in ridership across the board can still leave some cities in public transit peril. New York's Metropolitan Transit Authority-which provides an average of 8.7 million rides a week-is reporting an unexpected tax revenue and financing shortfall of $383 million. That spells inconvenience for just about anyone who uses mass transit. From City Room:
Starting mid-year, fewer subway trains would run in the middle of the day, late at night and on weekends. Two lines, the W and Z, would stop running altogether, and service on the M and G lines would be reduced. Several stations in Lower Manhattan would be closed overnight, and dozens of bus lines throughout the boroughs would see a reduction or elimination in service.Student riders will see some of their discounts diminish (or just disappear), and handicapped riders will lose some services. It's not an absolute disaster-and the shortfall is apparently less bad than expected-but you really have to shake your head when these sorts of services fall apart amid such high demand. I wonder whether this development would strengthen or weaken the argument for free (and subsidized) mass transit systems?Photo (cc) by Flickr user Rober-.