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Friday, October 15, 2010

HART's Annual Ridership Best in Agency's History

More people in Hillsborough County boarded
HART buses in FY 2010 than ever before.
Happy New Year!

Make that Happy (Fiscal) New Year!

HART's fiscal year runs from October 1 through September 30 - which means fiscal year 2010 is now but a memory, and the year-end ridership reports are in.

For the year ending September 30, 2010, HART's total ridership exceeded 12.8 million for the first time in the agency's 30-year history.

The final numbers were announced Friday morning at a ceremony honoring HART as the American Public Transportation Association's Outstanding System of the Year.

Local Bus Leads the Way
The backbone of HART's service are the 30 local routes that serve passengers across Hillsborough County every day. In FY2010, local routes made up the bulk of the system's growth.

An exceptionally strong September, with an increase of almost 12%, bolstered the year-end local bus ridership numbers.

Local Bus Ridership Comparison
Sept. 2009: 984,565
Sept. 2010: 1,101,466
Percent Change: +11.9%

FY 2009: 11,361,362
FY 2010: 12,004,775
Percent Change: +5.7%

Adding Commuter Express service, the totals look like this:

Total Ridership - Local and Express Bus Service
Sept. 2009: 1,008,005
Sept. 2010: 1,122,969
Percent Change: +11.4%

FY 2009: 11,638,548
FY 2010: 12,264,357
Percent Change: +5.4%

Factor in 407,000 rides on the TECO Line Streetcar System, another 104,000 on HART Plus paratransit service for people with disabilities, nearly 3,000 on the new HART Flex, and about 66,000 in vanpool vehicles furnished by HART, and the total for all public transportation modes in fiscal 2010 is more than 12.8 million rides.

An interesting trend behind the numbers is the fact that FY 2010 ended with seven straight months of 1-million-plus rides each, indicating that a million rides is now the agency's monthly norm.

At the ceremony on Friday, HART CEO David Armijo announced the news to the staff, guests, media and members of the community.

"Today as I thank our passengers for their patronage and our community for their support, I also want to honor all HART staff for exceeding expectations, time and time again, as they helped drive HART through some pretty gray days. HART staff truly motivate me by their ability to achieve goals and surmount all challenges thrust upon them," Mr. Armijo said.

The APTA award was presented by the organization's president, William Millar. It recognizes HART as the best in North America among mid-size transit agencies, which includes those carrying between 4 million and 20 million annual passenger trips.

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