• River LINE hits 9,750 riders a day

  • Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.
Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.

Moderators: Tadman, nick11a, Kaback9, ACeInTheHole

  by Woodcrest295
 
i just wanted to share the good news that river line ridership has gone up 21% since last year. .. from the FYI

"If you're a River LINE customer, you may have noticed seats are filling more quickly on your train. River LINE ridership surged 21.6 percent from July 1 through September 30, 2008, compared to the same period last year.

The 34-mile line provided nearly 780,000 trips, compared to more than 641,000 trips during the same period a year ago. Average daily ridership increased to more than 9,750 trips per day - an all-time high."

http://www.njtransit.com/tm/tm_servlet. ... ion=FYI4To
  by PullmanCo
 
That's very nice. What's the fare recovery ratio up to?
  by chuchubob
 
PullmanCo wrote:That's very nice. What's the fare recovery ratio up to?
It's much higher than the fare recovery on parallel Route 130.
  by Douglas John Bowen
 
Good and legitimate (if predictable) question from PullmanCo re: operating cost recovery for the River Line. We'll attempt to obtain an answer and, if we get it, will post it in this space as an addendum.
  by Tom V
 
I'm curious for comparison what the daily ridership for the HBLRT is at, if the River Line is nearing 10,000 the HBLRT has to be nearing 20,000.
  by Douglas John Bowen
 
We'll check on the official count for the latest update, but a month ago NJ-ARP was informed that HBLRT was recording 42,000-plus passenger trips per weekday, with some spikes at times to 45,000 per day. (Of course, that suggests countervailing "dips" to compensate.) A well-placed source outside NJ Transit puts the average weekday number at 45,000 proper, and suggests NJ Transit deliberately underestimates ridership count for its own reasons.

[Addendum at roughly 4:20 p.m. Dec. 12: An NJ Transit official affirms that HBLRT weekday ridership averaged 44,649 for the corporation's first quarter (July through September), thus both affirming the first source's numbers take and rebuffing at least some of the skepticism provided with it. Our thanks to NJT.]

We remember when River Line critics sneered at even a baseline of 9,000 rider trips per day, so if we can get past that oh-so-awful hurdle on a regular basis, perhaps the critics will have to retrench and formulate brand-new criticism parameters once more. Fine by us.
  by PullmanCo
 
chuchubob wrote:
PullmanCo wrote:That's very nice. What's the fare recovery ratio up to?
It's much higher than the fare recovery on parallel Route 130.
False comparison. What's the R7's fare recovery ratio?
  by Patrick Boylan
 
I don't agree that it's a false comparison, or at least it's narrow minded to compare only rail vs rail, but better to compare several, if not all, transportation modes.
Also one could argue that Riverline and R7 serve different markets, or at least Riverline and Rt 130 serve more of the same market than Riverline and R7.
Someone traveling Trenton to 8th and Market is a different critter than someone traveling Bordentown or Bristol to 17th and Arch. I also know of one person whose commute is Doylestown to Camden waterfront. What route and mode do you think he's likely to pick from all available choices, and is it good or bad for him to have several possible choices?
Before the Riverline opened he either drove all the way, usually via Burlington Bristol Bridge and Rt 130, on occasion took the R5, PATCO and walked, and complained about unreliability and trip time. He now claims he drives to Burlington South and takes the Riverline, at least sometimes.
  by PullmanCo
 
That's not what I was talking about, though.
  by Kaback9
 
Its nice to see the RiverLINE doing well. Lets hope it keeps going up!
  by Patrick Boylan
 
I'd say if one's actual statistics exceed expectations then one is doing well, even if the investment is 1 billion dollars, expectation is 10 passengers a year and actual results are 100 passengers a year.

I'm sure many would question if the 1 billion dollars was reasonable considering the original expectation, but I don't feel that has any bearing on the current situation, that billion dollars was spent already and was approved based on the low expectation.
  by PullmanCo
 
I'd say if one's actual statistics exceed expectations then one is doing well
No, that's not a definition of "doing well". That's called "doing better than projected" (and if you've been following things from the time before the line opened, the numbers were most definitely deliberately low-balled)…but unless "well" has a more concrete definition, the word's out of the picture.
I'm sure many would question if the $1 billion was reasonable considering the original expectation, but I don't feel that has any bearing on the current situation, that billion dollars was spent already and was approved based on the low expectation
No. That was not the original estimate. Back in 1998, the studies cited 9,000 riders per day—when the line opened. (Also, the projection in that study was 16,000 riders by 2020.) So we're up to 750 more riders per day than the study from 10 years ago.

Also, in 1998, the estimated cost was $450 million (pretty high, at $13.2 million per mile), and in 2001 that jumped to $800 million, which should have been $831 million in 2003 dollars ($959 million in 2008 dollars)—that works out to $28 million per mile in 2008 dollars, but the costs have jumped to $1.27 billion in 2008 dollars ($37.4 million per mile).
  by Douglas John Bowen
 
"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean--neither more nor less."

"The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean do many different things."

"The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master--that's all."

We could point out earlier studies for the River Line (uh-oh! Need they be "original" or not?) suggested more double-tracking, and more rail equipment, too, which certainly would have driven up the capital cost but might also have made whatever ridership goal we absolutely must have to justify anything at all ... a bit easier to attain.

We think, given the interest of River Line-like applications of DLRT in the United States right now (directly attributed to same, in some cases), the River Line might be "doing well," at least on this scale or that, if not on all of them or, pointedly, the ones that subjectively matter to a given party or group.

Could it do better fiscally as well ? Sure hope so, and we publicly criticized NJT when it took its "bargain-basement" approach to the River Line's fare structure, a facet of its "trash-talking" the product prior to its debut. Should it do better in terms of dollars recovered and of riders carried? Well, that's something we'll have to continue to strive for, whether it's more connections (Atlantic City Line) ... again, planned for in earlier (original?) form ... or maybe an extension of some kind north or south, or even as is.

We could dump the whole thing, we suppose, at least theoretically. That would open up some intriguing fiscal possibilities, along the same lines of "saving" money by eliminating Amtrak. That sort of thing. NJ-ARP will pass on this; too defeatist. Too negative.

A note to PullmanCo: We're still inquiring over the revenue-to-cost ratio, and repeated our query this day. Will advise if and as we get an answer.
  by JCGUY
 
So basically, you've spent billions of dollars to transport as many people as you could move using maybe 100 buses. Meanwhile, the PATH system, Route 3, and the other arteries that actually move people are clogged and money is not being applied in force to expand their capacities. This is called a misallocation of resources. They could have used that cash to build a bridge from Cap May to Lewes and southern NJ would be better off for it. What a white elephant. Clang clang goes the trolley. Can you guys send around some photos of public officials from southern NJ using the trolley as they go about their daily business? Oh I forgot, public officials don't ride mass transit.