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List of United States Light Rail systems by ridership

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The following is a list of all light rail systems in the United States, ranked by ridership. All figures are average weekday unlinked passenger trips, unless otherwise noted, and come from the American Public Transit Association's Ridership Reports Statistics[1], unless otherwise noted. Dates are given for all figures; the most recent available are used. Those systems marked with an asterisk (*) are integrated with a heavy rail rapid transit system.

Rank System Largest city served Ridership Date Miles of track
1 MBTA T Green line* Boston 192,400 Third quarter of 2006 25[2]
2 Muni Metro, cable car, and F Market* San Francisco 163,900 Third quarter of 2006
3 Los Angeles County Metro Rail Blue, Green, and Gold lines* Los Angeles 129,200 Third quarter of 2006 73[3]
4 San Diego Trolley San Diego 107,300 Third quarter of 2006 51[4]
5 Metropolitan Area Express and Portland Streetcar Portland 104,000 Third quarter of 2006 44+6[5] [6]
6 DART Light Rail, MATA streetcar Dallas 64,300 Third quarter of 2006 45+2.8[7] [8]
7 SEPTA Subway-Surface Lines, Suburban Trolley Lines, and Girard Avenue Trolley* Philadelphia 64,000 Third quarter of 2006
8 Metrolink St. Louis 63,800 Third quarter of 2006 46[9]
9 Sacramento Regional Transit District Light Rail Sacramento 54,400 Third quarter of 2006 36.9[10]
10 UTA TRAX Salt Lake City 47,900 Third quarter of 2006 19[11]
11 METRORail Houston 40,000 Third quarter of 2006 7.5[12]
12 RTD Light Rail Denver 37,400 Third quarter of 2006 32.1[13]
13 Hiawatha Line Minneapolis 34,000 Third quarter of 2006 12[14]
14 Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority Light Rail San Jose 30,500 Second quarter of 2006 42.2
15 Hudson-Bergen Light Rail* Jersey City 27,000 March 2006[15][16]
16 The T Pittsburgh 26,000 Second quarter of 2006 25[17]
17 Buffalo Metro Rail Buffalo 19,200 Third quarter of 2006 6.6
18 Newark Light Rail* Newark 18,450 August 2006[18][16] 5.3[19]
19 Baltimore Light Rail* Baltimore 18,000 First quarter of 2005[20] 30[21]
20 The Rapid Blue and Green Lines* Cleveland 10,800 Third quarter of 2006
21 River Line Trenton 6,900 [16]
22 Tacoma Link Tacoma 3,000 2006 1.6[22]
23 Memphis RTA Main Street Trolley Memphis 3,000 Third quarter of 2006
24 Streetcars in New Orleans New Orleans 2,100 Third quarter of 2006 21.5[23][24]
25 Kenosha Transit Kenosha 300 Third quarter of 2006 1.7[25]
26 Island Transit trolley Galveston 200 Third quarter of 2006 6[26]
N/A River Rail Streetcar Little Rock N/A N/A 2.5[27]
N/A TECO Line Streetcar System Tampa N/A N/A 2.4[28]

The following is a list of light rail systems in the United States, ranked by ridership per mile of track. Figures are computed using the 'ridership' and 'miles of track' numbers above. San Francisco, Philadelphia, New Orleans, Hudson, and Cleveland are left out here since the miles of track figures were not available.

Rank Community served Ridership per mile
1 Boston 8,016
2 Houston 5,040*
3 Newark 3,481
4 Salt Lake City 2,810
5 Buffalo 2,727
6 Minneapolis 2,400
7 Portland 2,086
8 San Diego 1,978
9 Denver 1,949
10 Los Angeles 1,886
11 Tacoma 1,875
12 Dallas 1,386
13 Sacramento 1,384
14 St. Louis 1,276
15 Pittsburgh 1,040
16 San Jose 722
17 Baltimore 600
18 Galveston 33

*Recent data suggests 7,000 riders per day per mile.[29]

NotesEdit

  1. APTA Ridership Reports Statistics: http://www.apta.com/research/stats/ridership/riderep/indexus.cfm
  2. TBF.org
  3. [1] Lightrail now.org
  4. [2] Metropolitan Transit System Fact Sheet
  5. [3] Tri-Met Web Site
  6. http://www.portlandstreetcar.org/history.php
  7. [4] DART Web Site
  8. http://ktransit.com/transit/uscentral/dfw/dallas_vt.htm
  9. [5] Metrolink Web Site
  10. [6]RTA website
  11. [7]Salt Lake Tribune
  12. [8] Metro Safety Web Site
  13. http://ktransit.com/transit/uscentral/denver/denver_lr.htm
  14. http://www.metrotransit.org/rail/facts.asp
  15. Hudson-Bergen, NJ: Light Rail Ridership's "Booming", New Transit-Oriented Development is "Sprouting", Light Rail Now May 2006: http://www.lightrailnow.org/news/n_hb_2006-05a.htm
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 The APTA combines statistics for all New Jersey Transit light rail operations, which includes the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail, the Newark Light Rail, and the River Line. The APTA reports a combined ridership for the three systems for the second quarter of 2006 of 14,880 per day (both weekdays and weekends).
  17. [9] Pittsburgh's T quick facts
  18. Newark: "Back to the Future" With Newark City Light Rail's New Broad St. Extension!, Light Rail Now August 2006: http://www.lightrailnow.org/news/n_nwk_2006-08a.htm
  19. http://www.lightrailnow.org/news/n_nwk_2006-08a.htm
  20. These figures, the most recently available for the Baltimore Light Rail, represent a time period when much of the system was shut down for renovations. The most recent figures for a period when the entire system was open are 25,600 daily trips, for the fourth quarter of 2003.
  21. Roads to the Future: Baltimore Central Light Rail Line
  22. Sound Transit Quarterly Performance Report
  23. [10] Saint Charles Line
  24. [11]Canal and Riverfront line
  25. http://web.presby.edu/~jtbell/transit/Kenosha/
  26. [12] Galveston Island Transit website
  27. http://www.cat.org/rrail/streetcar.html
  28. http://www.tecolinestreetcar.org/about/history/index.htm
  29. Planning debate with Councilman Peter Brown plus Metro stats. Presentation by METRO Chairman David S. Wolff. 2007-02-08.

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