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Old 03-15-2012, 08:16 AM
 
1,749 posts, read 1,640,595 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MDAllstar View Post
I have always wondered why Chicago has such low train ridership. Chicago has had a system for over a century and you would think the culture there would be the same as NYC. With the density in Chicago and the extensiveness of their train network, I wonder why they don't have high train ridership in relation to their population? They should easily have close to 3-4 million riders between commuter rail and the L'. It's definitely puzzling. They must not like riding the train as much.

Maybe to somebody who doesn't live in Chicago, but I don't see how it is puzzling at all. The bus network in Chicago is far more extensive than the EL; The Blue, Red and Brown lines which go through the most densely populated neighborhoods are literally packed to the point that one can not enter the train, but still, far more people use the bus. The bus doesn't have the same negative perception it does in other cities.

Also, compared to DC (where I currently live), Chicago is far more Blue Collar, while most office workers commute downtown in Chicago, many many more people have jobs that require travel to work sites and other factors that prevent them from using Public Transportation.

I have no data to back up this claim, but I would wager Chicago and DC have about the same number of total office (white collar) workers, even though Chicago MSA is ~4million more people.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:24 AM
 
Location: The City
19,030 posts, read 15,782,616 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91 View Post
I am on a 4 hour flight and had some time on my hands.....

I looked up the ridership for Heavy Rail, Light Rail, Buses, Commuter Rail. The numbers are pretty interesting:

All numbers are for daily ridership:

New York City:

Subway: 8,360,000
Subway (PATH): 259,1000
Bus: 2,623,100
Commuter (LIRR): 352,000
Commuter (Metro North): 298,500
Total Daily Ridership: 11,892,100


Chicago:

Subway (EL): 713,500
Bus: 998,600
Commuter: 316,800
Total Daily Ridership: 2,028,900


Los Angeles:

Subway: 142,600
Light Rail: 152,400
Bus: 1,125,200
Commuter: 39,600
Total Daily Ridership: 1,459,800


Washington DC:

Subway (Metro): 961,500
Bus: 440,000
Commuter Rail (MARC): 33,700
Commuter Rail (VRE): 19,200
Total Daily Ridership: 1,454,400


Boston:
Subway: 525,600
Light Rail: 233,300
Bus: 397,900
Commuter Rail: 130,600
Total Daily Ridership: 1,287,400


Philadelphia:
Subway: 342,800
Light Rail: 110,600
Bus: 597,300
Commuter Rail: 127,200
Total Daily Ridership: 1,177,900


San Fran:
Subway: 379,300
Light Rail: 162,500
Bus: 492,700
Commuter Rail: 41,400
Total Daily Ridership: 1,075,900


Interesting to see, outside of NYC which is on another level completely, most pretty close together, with Chicago having a about 500,000 more than LA and DC.

I left out suburban bus systems as there were too many to list and none of them had huge numbers.

Also, I didn't know what to do with New Jersey Transit as it is split between Philly and NYC. My guess would be a 2:1 ratio to NYC but that is nothing but a guess.

*Ridership numbers are from Wikipedia, and I am not sure if they are the most up to date.

On NJT it is more than 2 to 1 to NYC

PATCO is all Philly on Heavy Rail, and the light rail Camden line

Based on some prior estimates there are abount an additional 160-180K additional NJ riders in the Philly metro (NJT RR, PATCO, River Line, AC Line, and Buses)

Philly Heavy rail should be 380K with PATCO added which is basically another Philly subway line with stops in Philly, Camden then above groud for a few stops into the Jersey burbs (much like PATH in NYC)

So the Average ridership for Philly would be in the 1.34 to 1.36 with all added in
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:29 AM
 
248 posts, read 124,048 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grapico;[color=violet
23409137[/color] (tel:23409137 - broken link)]NYC is insane.
It's simply the most advanced US city with stats similar to other big global cities worldwide.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland
24,923 posts, read 31,755,507 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91 View Post


San Fran:
Subway: 379,300
Light Rail: 162,500
Bus: 492,700
Commuter Rail: 41,400
Total Daily Ridership: 1,075,900
You forgot Trolley Bus stats which are significant for SF as well as Philadelphia and Boston.

Trolley Bus ridership, APTA Q4 2011
San Francisco 208,600
Philadelphia 10,900
Boston 10,900
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:38 AM
 
248 posts, read 124,048 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2Easy;[color=violet
23411056[/color] (tel:23411056 - broken link)]It depends. The London Underground is one of the biggest and busiest metro systems in the world and carries over 3 million riders each day, but London's buses average twice that number.

I don't prefer buses to trains, but they do serve a purpose. You can't build train lines within walking distance of everywhere like you can do with buses.
However, you have to notice that buses add to traffic congestion and for the same reason are prone to delays much more than trains.

IMHO the best system is hybrid i.e. trains carry passenger traffic long range and then the specifically designed bus system delivers them from trains stations to locations further away. New York even allows three transfers from the train to the bus and vice versa acknwoledging that a lot of people uses both systems to get to their destination.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:43 AM
 
248 posts, read 124,048 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91;[color=violet
23415788[/color] (tel:23415788 - broken link)]Maybe to somebody who doesn't live in Chicago, but I don't see how it is puzzling at all. The bus network in Chicago is far more extensive than the EL; The Blue, Red and Brown lines which go through the most densely populated neighborhoods are literally packed to the point that one can not enter the train, but still, far more people use the bus. .
Chicago's EL was designed to bring people in and out of downtown hence the hub and spoke system where ALL lines meet/terminate in Downtown Chicago. Because of this design the EL is very inefficient in carrying people from one part of the city to another beside of downtown.
That means that while a lot of people uses the EL to get to work unlike in New York people don't use the train system for anything else that much. You'll notice that NYC subway system is busy even outside of commuter rush hours. People use the trains for reason other than commute to work.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:44 AM
 
1,749 posts, read 1,640,595 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Montclair View Post
You forgot Trolley Bus stats which are significant for SF as well as Philadelphia and Boston.

Trolley Bus ridership, APTA Q4 2011
San Francisco 208,600
Philadelphia 10,900
Boston 10,900
Thanks for pointing that out, for some reason I thought that was considered light rail.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:47 AM
 
1,749 posts, read 1,640,595 times
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Originally Posted by tristann View Post
Chicago's EL was designed to bring people in and out of downtown hence the hub and spoke system where ALL lines meet/terminate in Downtown Chicago. Because of this design the EL is very inefficient in carrying people from one part of the city to another beside of downtown.
That means that while a lot of people uses the EL to get to work unlike in New York people don't use the train system for anything else that much. You'll notice that NYC subway system is busy even outside of commuter rush hours. People use the trains for reason other than commute to work.
Agreed, and I wold argue NYC is the only system truly built in this fashion. In Chicago, generally speaking, the bus (except express buses along Lake Shore Drive) is better used to move people East-West while the EL moves them North-South. Huge Generalization, but still some truth in it.
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Old 03-15-2012, 09:39 AM
 
7,558 posts, read 4,837,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kidphilly View Post
Saw the 4Q APTA data, looks like Chicago ridership is up and METRO was down
Yeah, Metro ridership will probably be down until this insane rehabbing of the system is done. They definitely need to do it since the system is at the end of it's life cycle and signals and escalators are failing but the amount of delays and station closures being done makes it almost pointless to use Metro outside of rush hour these days. They even close entire sets of station's on Metro lines replacing those stretches with buses so they can do 24 hr round the clock work on those stations. It's definitely an aggressive plan but it's annoying.
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Old 03-15-2012, 09:42 AM
 
7,558 posts, read 4,837,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91 View Post
Maybe to somebody who doesn't live in Chicago, but I don't see how it is puzzling at all. The bus network in Chicago is far more extensive than the EL; The Blue, Red and Brown lines which go through the most densely populated neighborhoods are literally packed to the point that one can not enter the train, but still, far more people use the bus. The bus doesn't have the same negative perception it does in other cities.

Also, compared to DC (where I currently live), Chicago is far more Blue Collar, while most office workers commute downtown in Chicago, many many more people have jobs that require travel to work sites and other factors that prevent them from using Public Transportation.

I have no data to back up this claim, but I would wager Chicago and DC have about the same number of total office (white collar) workers, even though Chicago MSA is ~4million more people.
Probably true about the white collar numbers. D.C. is truly a white collar professional city. As for the bus numbers, even those are low in relation to the rail ridership. If people aren't taking the train in large numbers, shouldn't the bus have close to 2 million riders? NYC has 8 million taking the train and only 2 million+ taking the bus. The reason the bus ridership is so low is because people mostly take the train. Shouldn't it be the opposite in Chicago?

Last edited by MDAllstar; 03-15-2012 at 09:54 AM..
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