Wednesday, March 29, 2017

TransLink Ridership: SkyTrain Up, West Coast Express and SeaBus Down

The American Public Transit Association (APTA) releases transit ridership statistics quarterly for its participating members. TransLink is part of the APTA, and its ridership statistics are included in these quarterly reports.

The APTA has now released fourth-quarter and year-end ridership statistics, including the results for TransLink’s non-bus transit services. In 2016, a new ridership estimation methodology was introduced by TransLink which is likely why bus information is not available.

2016* 2015* % Change
SkyTrain 137,376.0 118,565.0 15.87%
SeaBus 5,442.5 6,091.8 -10.66%
West Coast Express
2,459.0 2,630.9 -6.52%
* x 1,000

The launch of the Evergreen Extension to the Millennium Line is certainly a major reason for the massive increase in SkyTrain ridership. More accurate counting of people due to the Compass Card is also a factor in the ridership number increase.

It is likely that the one-zone bus fare introduced in the fall of 2015 has caused some people to switch from using the two-zone fare SeaBus to bus when commuting across the Burrard Inlet.

With the introduction of the Evergreen Line Extension, 555 Port Mann Express, and other services, it is likely that some people have also switched away from the premium priced West Coast Express service.

These results are consistent with the trends noted in TransLink’s third quarter report. It will be interesting to see the changes in ridership for bus service which should be included in TransLink’s yet-to-be release 2016 fourth quarter results.

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