July: An entranceway with sharply angled architectural lines marks Spring Hill Station in Tysons Corner, one of five new stations in Phase 1 of Metrorail's Silver Line. (Photo by Brian Trompeter)

Passenger counts were up (slightly) for Metrorail but down on all other forms of mass transit across Northern Virginia in the last three months of 2018, according to new year-over-year data.

A total of 32.48 million trips were taken on bus and rail service for the fourth quarter of 2018, down 1.7 percent from same period in 2017, according to figures slated for presentation to the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission.

The federal-government shutdown, which began on Dec. 22, may have had a modest impact on total figures, officials said in releasing the data.

Metrorail service at Northern Virginia stations accounted for 22.3 million trips in the October-to-December time frame, up 0.3 percent from a year before. The other rail service in the region – Virginia Railway Express – was down 5.6 percent to 1.05 million passengers for the quarter.

Metrobus service posted a 5.2-percent decline to 4.28 million passengers for the quarter, while among local bus systems, figures were down to varying degrees:

• Arlington’s ART bus service saw a passenger decline of 9.6 percent to 671,357.

• Alexandria’s DASH service saw a decline of 6.6 percent to 872,209.

• Fairfax County Connector service declined 7.4 percent to 1.91 million trips.

• The city of Fairfax’s CUE service posted a decline of 1.9 percent to 156,377 passengers.

Commuter services connecting Loudoun and Prince William counties to the District of Columbia also saw declines.

Some good news for the quarter: Passenger counts at Silver Line Metro stations are growing, particularly at the McLean and Greensboro stations, which saw passenger totals up 18.6 percent and 10.8 percent, respectively, for the quarter. The total passenger count for the five existing Silver Line stations was up 5.6 percent to 2.72 million for the final quarter of the year.


(1) comment


What could you expect? Every year the elected officials of the various jurisdictions approve another transportton / transit modality that directly competes with Metrorail and Metrobus for riders, everything from Express Lane enhancement to electric bicycles.

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