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Riders with Other Forms of Transport Switching to Metro


Wednesday September 13, 2006

Increasing numbers of people who have cars available are taking Metro, according to the newest Metro Customer Satisfaction Survey, which polled 15,752 riders. The percentage of Metro riders who have transportation alternatives, such as cars, but instead choose to take public transportation continued to rise, from 22 percent in fall, 2002, to 34 percent in the latest survey. If the trend continues, it could mean that mass transit in Los Angeles is luring riders off freeways and streets and onto public transportation, although further study is needed.

Despite the threat of terrorism, customers also said they are feeling more secure. Eighty-three percent surveyed -- a record high -- said they feel safe at Metro bus stops and rail stations and almost 9 of 10 customers (88 percent) said they feel safe while riding the system. Since the London bus bombings in July, 2005, Metro has invested $9 million in security upgrades, including installation of hundreds of security cameras in Metro Rail stations and in subway cars and buses.

With Metro ridership spiking to an all-time high this spring, finding bus and rail seats could have been a challenge, yet 82 percent of riders said they were able to get seats when they rode -- another all-time high since the twice-a-year survey began in 2002. On-time performance was also applauded by 74 percent of riders. Customers continue to approve of Metro courtesy and comfort. Eighty percent of those queried said they found bus operators to be courteous, a trend that has steadily increased over the past three years. The vast majority of riders -- 78 percent -- consider buses and trains clean and bus stop and train stations clean (72 percent). And 85 percent said they are satisfied with the service.

During the six months prior to the spring survey, riders said they believe Metro’s service schedule met their needs and 91 percent said bus and rail service are convenient to use.

Perhaps these are a few of the reasons why riders who begin taking Metro stick with it. Half of those polled have been riding for more than five years.

With all that going for it, is it little wonder that Metro’s image is improving? According to 86 percent of customers, or four out of five, it is.