Sound Transit just released its Q4 2011 Ridership Report, an encouraging trinity of big ridership gains, increased punctuality, and reduced (though still high) costs.
ST Express: Ridership is up 13% on weekdays and 10% overall, with average weekday boardings of 48,094. Strong growth on Snohomish County routes is likely due both to ST absorbing riders affected by cuts at Community Transit and the completion of Mountlake Terrace Transit center in March 2011. Ridership is up 20% on #510, 28% on #511, 44% on #513, 20% on #532, and 7% on #535. Other routes saw healthy increases of 4-15%, the only exceptions being ridership losses on #560 (-10%) and #566 (-11%). Cost per boarding declined from $7.48 to $7.04. On-time performance increased from 87% to 88%.
Sounder: South Sounder ridership is up an impressive 22%, and North Sounder is up 15% (though it must be noted that 22% of total North Sounder boardings were on Special Event service). Overall weekday ridership is up 27%, with average weekday boardings again exceeding 10,000. Cost per boarding declined from $13.74 to $12.71, with an on-time performance of 97%.
Central Link: Ridership is up by 12%, with average weekday boardings of 24,070, though ridership is still 24% below budgeted estimates. Cost per boarding declined from $6.78 to $6.29, and on-time performance improved dramatically, from 81% to 87%.
Tacoma Link: Ridership is up by 20%, on-time performance is 99.9%, and cost per boarding declined from $3.93 to $3.59.