The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) released its annual route performance report at the May 29 board of directors meeting. The report covers CDTA’s fiscal year 2013 and, despite no increase in resources, Capital Region transit service enhancements resulted in a 5 percent ridership increase.
“We are focused on growing ridership and revenue while we develop new business opportunities that will further cement CDTA as an economic development engine in the capital region,” CDTA Chairman David Stackrow said. “Our report clearly shows that we’re heading in the right direction and we will continue to offer innovative mobility options beginning with our plans to expand bus rapid transit service.”
BusPlus, CDTA’s limited stop bus rapid transit service, increased ridership 20 percent along the Route 5 Corridor to almost 4 million and has provided the community with enhanced amenities including large, comfortable stations, real time information and free Wi-Fi.
Route performance highlights include the restructuring of more than a dozen Albany County routes and an overhaul of the Northway Xpress (NX) Commuter service. NX ridership increased 25 percent since the restructuring in October while Route No. 12 (Washington Avenue) and Route No. 18 (Delaware Avenue) show the highest regular route increases at more than 20 percent. On average, ridership on the Phase 2 routes launched in November increased by 12 percent versus last year.
Over the last three years, contract ridership has increased by nearly 40 percent and now comprises 20 percent of CDTA’s entire ridership. This past year, contracts were established with the Albany College of Pharmacy, Branford Hall Career Institute, Siena College and ShopRite supermarkets.
CDTA is updating its transit development plan for the next five years focusing on fine-tuning the route network and planning for bus rapid transit expansion on the Washington/Western Avenue corridors and the river corridor along the Hudson River.