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Metro Defends Cutting Bus Services With Data on Decreased Ridership

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Upset that Metro has cut or reduced service on several bus routes? Well, it's our fault: We weren't riding enough. Damned recession! Metro release data this week showing a decline in ridership of nearly 3% from 2009 to 2011, according to LA Now, and Metro says that's "because of high unemployment."

Those numbers make sense if you consider that the bus is used to commute to work, and if you don't have a job, well, you aren't going to need transit as much. However, data for rail ridership shows that in that same two-year period, ridership went up the first year, and down the second, with a significant overall increase in the last decade, "with 145,575 average weekday boardings in 2000 that roughly doubled to 304,459 boardings in 2010."

Metro's blog The Source not only takes a look at ridership trends for each of the system's major subway, light rail, and dedicated busway lines, but also says that in addition to unemployment, other factors affecting ridership include "a fare increase in July 2010 that impacted about 48 percent of Metro riders, fluctuating gas prices in the past two years and bus service changes."

Metro's latest round of approved bus service cuts take effect June 26th.