New light rail system in metro Phoenix attracts riders new to transit

Posted By Mike Padgett


Sept. 3, 2009

PHOENIX – Thirty-five percent of METRO riders in Arizona’s largest urban region are new to mass transit, according to a survey.

This figure and others came out of a survey in April of more than 3,100 passengers ranging from regular commuters, students, seniors and recreational users.

The survey showed that 40 percent use light rail to travel between home and a destination other than work, such as attending special events, enjoying a night out with friends or running errands.

The data will be used to help METRO in its future planning efforts. The 20-mile system began operating in late December 2008.

The survey’s other key findings show that:

• Nearly 30 percent of respondents use METRO to commute between home and work exclusively.

• About 20 percent of respondents use METRO for trips where neither end of the trip is home (such as going to or from lunch during the workday, meeting friends after work or going to school from the workplace).

• Forty-five percent of respondents walk, bike or skate to a METRO station to connect with light rail; the other half either drive to a METRO station, usually using a park-and-ride facility (29 percent) or connect from a bus (26 percent).

• Sixty-eight percent of respondents have at least one car available for the trip they were making on light rail.

For more METRO intercept survey detail, visit

A more comprehensive on-board survey will be conducted on regional bus and light rail in fall 2010.

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Sep 4th, 2009

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