Here’s part of a power point presentation that was delivered to the ST Board:
(The yellow is my editorial analysis)
The environmental benefits of building light rail, and of using mass transit, are pretty clear. But new riders don’t see the environmental bonus as something that’s changing their behavior. As much as we’d like people to clue-in to mass transit for carbon-related reasons, people have, and will, ride transit because it’s faster, cheaper, and more convenient than driving. Rather, when it’s faster and more convenient.
In another page of the power point, rider satisfaction is shown to dip slightly in 2006, just when the fuel crunch really hits, and ST buses (along with Metro buses and others) become packed with new riders. It’s the downside of transit popularity.