Quarterly Ridership Report
Fourth Quarter 2012 - October 1 - December 31
Sound Transit passenger boardings increased by 12 percent during the Fourth Quarter of 2012. Boardings increased significantly on ST Express bus, Sounder commuter rail and Central Link light rail, but decreased slightly on Tacoma Link. Paratransit ridership was down due to a change in the way Sound Transit boardings were allocated. Total Sound Transit boardings for the year increased by 12 percent, from 25.1 million to just over 28 million. The combined year-end totals easily exceeded the budget and Service Implementation Plan ridership targets for 2012. Apart from mudslide-related train cancellations on the Sounder North Line in December, there were no major service disruptions during the quarter.
ST Express buses experienced the largest ridership increase, with boardings up 15 percent for the quarter. Total 2012 ridership reached 15.4 million boardings.
Sounder commuter rail boardings were up 11 percent for the quarter, despite service disruptions on the North Line during December. Total 2012 Sounder ridership reached 2.8 million boardings, an 11 percent increase over 2011.
Tacoma Link light rail boardings declined by 3 percent, the first quarterly decline since Second Quarter 2010. However, total 2012 ridership increased by 5 percent, to over 1 million boardings. The Fourth Quarter decline is attributable to several factors which are discussed on page 2.
Central Link light rail boardings increased by 11 percent during the Fourth Quarter, continuing the strong upward trend on this line since service began in 2009. Total ridership for 2012 was also up 11 percent, from 7.8 million to 8.7 million boardings.
Paratransit boardings declined 25 percent. The decline is largely attributable to a change in way paratransit ridership is allocated between King County Metro and Sound Transit in the Central Link corridor. The allocation change was implemented at the beginning of 2012, so January 2013 boardings should show less variance with the same month a year earlier.
Ridership summaries by month