Despite rail station closures for North Red Line renovations, and some bus eliminations very late in December, the CTA ridership ledger showed black ink again for 2012.
Overall ridership increased by 2.4 percent in 2012 over 2011, according to stats from the December 2012 ridership report. Ridership on the rails accounted for most of the increase - 4.2 percent more in 2012. The CTA ridership on the eight rail lines increased by almost 9.3 million in 2012. Last year there were two new stations opened -- Oakton on the Yellow Line and Morgan on the Green/Pink/Blue lines.
Bus ridership grew just 1.1 percent last year -- about 3.5 million more rides than in 2011.
Overall, there were 545 million rides taken in 2012, vs. 532 in 2011, or about 12.8 million more in 2012. The 545 million rides is the most rides for the CTA in more than 20 years.
In 2011, ridership increased about 3 percent over 2010. So while the 2012 percentage increase was smaller than that of 2011, the ridership total was greater.
Some other interesting tidbits from the report:
- Ridership on the United Center Express bus increased by almost 30 percent in 2012 over 2011. Wassup with that?
- The No. 11 Lincoln had 1.5 percent fewer riders in 2012 - 1.65 million in 2011 vs. 1.63 in 2012 - but it was eliminated Dec. 16. Might have broken even had it not been cut.
- The South Side has the bus routes with the most riders. the No. 9 Ashland had 10.26 million riders in 2012, and the No. 79 79th Street bus had 10.2 million.
- Of course, the Red Line is the rail work horse, with 75.8 million riders in 2012, almost a 2 percent increase over 2011.
- Ridership on the Blue Line, the CTA's next busiest, increased almost 7 percent in 2012 - from 40.3 million rides to 43.1 million.