TransLink recently released its quarterly financial and performance results for the first half of this year. During the first quarter of this year, fare revenue was flat. With the second quarter now accounted for, fare revenue has increased by 4.4% compared to the same period in 2015.
|Transit revenue during the first six months of 2015 and 2016. Programs include U-Pass and BC Bus Pass. Select table to enlarge.|
This isn’t surprising as ridership is also 3.7% higher in the first six months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015. Though according to TransLink, this higher number is likely due to the fact that the agency is now using Compass Card usage data. They believe that ridership has actually increased about 2% year-to-date compared to 2015.
According to TransLink's numbers, ridership is up on the SkyTrain network, but slightly down on the rest of the transit network.
|Ridership and on-time performance during the first six months of 2015 and 2016. Select table to enlarge.|
While on-time performance has improved for the West Coast Express, it has decreased on other modes of transit in the first six months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.
The largest drop in on-time performance has been on the bus network. There are several reasons for this drop. As the road network becomes more congested or buses become overcrowded, the reliability of bus service decreases.
TransLink has also gone through a series of service optimizations over the last several years. This has resulted in bus recovery times being reduced. This means that a delay on one section of a route can have a cascading impact throughout the day on on-time performance.
Year-to-date, the revenue that TransLink receives from gas tax has increased by 7.6% in 2016 compared to the same period in 2015. This is likely due to the lower price of fuel causing more people to gas up in BC.
|TransLink taxation revenue during the first six months of 2015 and 2016. Select table to enlarge.|
While TransLink has seen an increase in revenue and ridership on the SkyTrain network, transit service hours have remained flat and on-time performance has decreased on the bus network. The bus network needs more service hours which is why having the mayors approve the proposed TransLink 10-Yaer Transportation Vision is critically important.