DART First State (DTC) today announced that its many transit services continue to gain ridership during this challenging economy. Comparing ridership between April 2010 and April 2011, DART fixed route bus services grew by over 7.2 percent or 550,676 passenger trips. Statewide paratransit services grew by over 2.8 percent, or 22,415 trips. DTC also reported that its popular Rt. 301 Intercounty motor coach service between Wilmington and Dover experienced a 21.7 percent increase over last April. Also DTC's Sussex West bus service ridership increased 17.9 percent from the year ago period.
DTC credits these substantial ridership increases to growing public awareness of the benefits of riding transit; especially when gas prices are high and riders save money by not driving their personal vehicles. Other factors contributing to the increase in ridership include DTC not raising its basic bus fares in New Castle County since the spring of 1989, and making it easier to paying fares with the DARTCards, a stored value pass.
Color-coded DARTCards are available in seven denominations and offer riders several discounted fare options of up to 40 percent and, most importantly, the freedom to choose the DARTCard that works best for their traveling and budget needs.
“We are pleased that more and more Delawareans are riding public transit because it is truly a smart and money saving choice.” said DTC executive director Stephen Kingsberry. “With summer nearly here and traffic volume increasing there is no better way to save gas and avoid the aggravations of driving a personal vehicle.”
Kingsberry said that “riders also know they can save money by using one of DTC’s strategically-placed free Park & Ride lots throughout the State, including DTC’s four train stations.”
DTC’s RideShare Delaware offers free ridematching services for commuters working in Delaware, as well as for parents of school students; an emergency ride home benefit for registered commuters actively ridesharing to work; vanpool services; and, transportation benefit assistance to employers in Delaware.