Recently I posted an entry about how Metro just wasn’t holding up well with costs per ride. Metro is an amazing system, considering, but Portland and many other cities are cheaper & more efficient at carrying riders to their destinations. Making those systems a much better investment of the particular cities. Hopefully Metro is getting on top of this problem to come up with some GOOD solutions, which doesn’t mean expanding expensive bus service or continuing to server long range outlying areas. The cost efficiencies are not in serving the suburbs, which Metro does a LOT of these days. Add Sound Transit, Sounder, and some of the other modes that serve the far outlying areas and you run into even HIGHER costs!
Here’s the article that recently just backed up my notion that Metro needs more light rail, more urban transit, more town center focus, and better all around town center structures that are people oriented. Vancouver BC is proof, Portland is proof, and many other cities. Seattle could easily cut their costs by a 1/5, possible even by a 1/3rd if they got after a very aggressive timeline in adding truly efficient transit options (light rail, urban walkability, and other such things are prime examples to help ridership & efficiencies).
Here’s a graph.
Wow, Light Rail is Cheap
Some key links that show Metro IS at least heading the right direction.