Transit Fares Going Up in Several Systems
Posted at 2:46 p.m. on June 30, 2014
Summer is a time for fare increases at some of the nation’s urban and suburban transit systems.
On Sunday the Washington-area Metro system increased its fares, while Boston, St. Louis, and Brevard County, Fla. are increasing their fares on Tuesday.
In the nation’s capitol, the increase which took effect Sunday increases the cost of travel an average of 3 percent, or about 10 cents per trip, according to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.
Trips of 3 miles or less on the Metro subway system increased from $1.70 to $1.75 during off-peak and from $2.10 to $2.15 during rush hour. The maximum fare during rush hours increased to $5.90, from $5.75.
On the Metrobus system, regular bus fares went to $1.75, a 15 cent increase for SmarTrip card users but a 5 cent cut for bus travelers who use cash.
- In Boston, bus fare will go to $1.60 and subway fare to $2.10, a 10-cent increase for each.
- In Saint Louis the cost of the one-ride fare on the MetroLink rail system will increase from $2.25 to $2.50.
- In Brevard County, Florida, the Space Coast Area Transit system is increasing its bus fare from $1.25 to $1.50 per ride.
Transit managers say the fare increases are necessary to keep their systems functioning.
For example in St. Louis, John Nations, the Bi-State Development Agency President & CEO, said, “The fare increase will generate approximately $2.25 million dollars in passenger revenue for Fiscal Year 2015, which is money essential to sustain current transit operations.”
Passenger revenue supports only 22 percent of the cost of the St. Louis system. The rest is paid by the taxpayer. The system pointed to higher costs for fuel, vehicle parts, and medical benefits as factors increasing the system’s operating costs.