Transit Ridership Dips, MTA Blames the Economy

Sunday, Feb 21, 2010  |  Updated 11:00 AM EDT
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Tough Breaks Don't Deter Burke

The MTA says it won't hike fares again, but time will tell.

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Ridership on the city's subways, buses and paratransit system declined in 2009, the first drop since 2003. But the total was still the second-highest since 1969.

New York City Transit said there were 2.31 billion rides last year, down more than 63 million rides from 2008. Officials attributed the decline to tough economic times.

Transit advocate Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers Campaign says despite the decline, there are still plenty of people using the transit system and it's no time to reduce service.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is considering service cuts.

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