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5th February
2009
written by Sean Noble

Waiting at the light at 19th Ave and Camelback in Phoenix on Wednesday evening, I watched a northbound 3-car train go past with 18 passengers.  I then watched a southbound 3-car train go by with exactly 4 passengers.

Then I read the lede to today’s Arizona Republic story: Just as ridership is growing to record levels on the Valley’s public transit, authorities are edging closer to enacting big fare hikes.

Let me get this straight.  Ridership is at record levels, and there were 4 people on a train at 6:45 p.m. on a weeknight?  It only took one person to gain 50% in ridership?  I guess that makes it pretty easy to attain “record levels.” And now we’re worried that we’re going to reduce ridership because fares will go up?

Less than 30 days ago, light rail officials were reporting that they were “on track to meet or beat its ridership projections for the year.”  This was after exactly one week of operating with paying riders.

It’s not like there weren’t a lot of people telling us this wasn’t going to work.   We’ll just have to continue to pay for it for years and years to come.

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