Use of public transit in the United States hit a new high in 2013, marking the greatest use since 1956, according to a report by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and reported in The New York Times by Jon Hurdle (March 10). The report covers trips by buses, trains, and subways; 10.65 billion individual trips were taken on public transit during 2013, the report said. This was a slight increase over the previous recent record of 10.59 billion trips, set in 2008.
The weekend of May 19–20, boosted by several music festivals, resulted in the second-highest train ridership totals in NJ Transit’s history, according to Mike Frassinelli, reporting in the Star-Ledger (May 23). The Bamboozle music fest in Asbury Park and the Electric Daisy Carnival in East Rutherford, together with the Devils hockey playoff game on Saturday, allowed NJT to rack up 216,761 trips, second only to the 218,478 trips recorded the weekend before Christmas 2011. A high-scoring weekend in the spring is unusual, officials said; most heavy-usage weekends occur in the Christmas shopping season or at major holidays. Other traffic generators over the weekend included the Ringling Brothers circus in Trenton, Yankees games in the Bronx, and a religious rally at Citi Field in Queens. The weekend’s traffic was a whopping 38% increase over the corresponding weekend last year.