2017 Ridership Backgrounder

Transit Ridership in Context

The 2017 ridership numbers come on the heels of Census statistics released last November showing that in the 20-year period 1996 to 2016, the percentage of people choosing transit to commute had increased from 14 to 20 per cent in Metro Vancouver.

This was the largest increase of any Census Metropolitan Area in Canada.

Percentage of commuters using transit (1996,2016)

City

1996

2016

Toronto

22.0

24.3

Montreal

19.8

22.3

Vancouver

14.3

20.4

Ottawa-Gatineau

17.0

18.3

Calgary

12.6

14.4

Winnipeg

14.3

13.6

Edmonton

9.0

11.3

Quebec

9.2

11.1

And according to figures from the Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA), transit ridership per capita has grown 59 per cent in Metro Vancouver over the 14 years from 2002 to 2016 - also outstripping any comparable major urban centre in Canada.

Growth in transit ridership per capita (2002-2016)

Census Metropolitan Area

Change +(-)

Vancouver

59%

Kitchener-Waterloo

56%

Edmonton

39%

Toronto

11%

Winnipeg

11%

Quebec City

4%

Montreal

1%

Ottawa-Gatineau

(5%)

Calgary

(6%)

Hamilton

(6%)

Ottawa-Gatineau

(7%)

Canada’s top 10 Census Metropolitan Areas by population

The North American Context

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) snapshot of ridership in the third quarter of 2017 shows that TransLink is bucking a North America-wide trend of sluggish or declining transit ridership.

Ridership trend in Canada and U.S., YTD, 3rd quarter 2017

City (Transit Agency)

Change +(-)

Vancouver (TransLink)

6.1%

Montreal (STM)

1.91%

Toronto (TTC)

-0.62%

New York City (MTA)

-2.73%

Boston (MBTA)

-3.17%

Washington, DC (WMATA)

-3.59%

Chicago (CTA)

-3.81%

Los Angeles (MTA)

-5.24%

Philadelphia (SEPTA)

-5.30%

Agencies with over 1 million Average Weekday Boardings, reported by APTA, Third Quarter, 2017

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