New York City subway ridership has started slipping after hitting its highest level since 1950 last year, a decline that could indicate job losses are starting to take a toll on the subway, according to Transit officials.
Just a day after announcing 2008's soaring rider total, Metropolitan Transportation Authority officials said Monday that average weekday subway ridership dropped by 2 percent last month, compared to January 2008. The weekday average was about 4.9 million trips last month.
It was the first such decline in five years that wasn't attributed to bad weather or an unusual number of weekday holidays.
Falling ridership and fare collections could add to the MTA's financial burdens. Officials say real-estate tax revenues this year so far are $75 million below already lowered projections.