(Kansas City, Mo. – Feb. 15, 2012) The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA) has announced that 2011 Metro ridership exceed 15.6 million trips, the second highest annual ridership in nearly two decades. Ridership last year was up 5.7% over 2010 figures.
“Kansas City experienced another great year of transit use,” said Mark Huffer, KCATA general manager. “As gas prices climbed in the spring and early summer, more people sought relief for their wallet by riding The Metro.”
Another factor raising ridership levels was the start of the University of Missouri-Kansas City pass program. Beginning in August 2011, students could use their valid UMKC student ID to ride Metro and MAX service. UMKC students were making more than 1,000 trips every weekday. The majority of these were on the Troost MAX Green Line and the Main St. MAX Orange Line.
KCATA introduced a new bus rapid transit line last year: the Troost MAX Green Line. This brought faster, more frequent service to Kansas City’s busiest transit corridor.
The Metro hosted several How-To-Ride Clinics during the summer to educate new riders. Prospective customers learned how to plan a trip, how to pay a fare or use a pass, and how to get on and off a bus. People also learned about online tools, such as Google Trip Planner and WebWatch, a real-time bus tracker.
People who want to join the growing ranks of Metro riders can visit http://www.kcata.org, or call the Regional Call Center at (816) 221-0660. The center’s hours are 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays.