LTD Ridership Up

EUGENE, Ore. — Gas prices are up 30 cents in a month. At what point do drivers look for alternative transportation?

According to Lane Transit District’s annual report, ridership is up.¬†Any time of the day, the Downtown Transit Center is bustling with activity, even more so during commuting hours.

Another new trend–LTD says it’s noticed more passengers on rural routes.¬†According to LTD’s annual report released in July, ridership is up by 2 percent from last year. That’s translates to about 250,000 additional boardings.

While each month varied, July saw an increase of 6 percent.

“It saves on gas a lot and the bus system is so handy. It goes to so many really good places,” said JoAnn and Harry Reed of Eugene.

Several factors may have impacted July’s increase. The number of weekdays in the month as well as the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials. Plus, gas prices, especially for anyone with a long commute, and that’s what LTD is noticing.

“It makes sense on those rural routes–a $25 trip one way– those people are price sensitive, and so I think the bus option becomes much more viable,” said Andy Vobora, LTD Director of Service Planning.

LTD says it has seen double-digit increase on the route from Cottage Grove and Creswell. Other routes posting gains are Junction City and Veneta.

The question still remains: Did the sudden spike at the pump this past month encourage more drivers to take the bus? LTD will release August numbers next week.

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