Metro Ridership Declines

12/10/2012, 12:45 p.m.

The number of people who use Metro train for their commutes decreased nearly 5 percent below the agency's expectations in the first quarter of the fiscal year, according to reports.

Although Metro announced a fare hike in July, listed among reasons for the switch in modes of transportation were service changes and track work. A reduction in federal transit benefits has also reportedly resulted in fewer riders.

Reports state that average weekday ridership dropped 2.5 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, and that weekend ridership dipped by 6.4 percent on Saturdays and 5.7 percent on Sundays.

Meanwhile, Metro has earned high marks in a customer survey where riders on both metro buses and rails indicated they feel safe during their commutes. They also said they like Metro's public information tools for travel planning, according to Metro's new "Voice of the Customer" report.

"Hearing from our customers is one of the best and most important tools we have as we make decisions about Metrobus, Metrorail and MetroAccess service," said Tom Downs, chairman of the agency's Customer Service and Operations Committee. "Assembling feedback from a variety of sources gives us a more comprehensive view of service and helps us focus on constantly improving our customers' experience."