By Madeleine Brand: kcrw – excerpt
Many Angelenos aren’t driving or taking public transportation as much anymore during the coronavirus pandemic. Ridership on LA trains and buses has dropped about 65%. LA has reduced service, closed entrances to stations, and started sanitizing vehicles and public spaces a lot more.
But once this is all over, will riders come back? What will public transportation look like then?
KCRW speaks with James Moore, engineering and public policy professor at USC who studies public transportation.
He says transit revenue will drop due to lower tax and sales revenue, which heavily fund public transit in LA.
But he says LA’s drop in ridership is lower than in New York and the Bay Area. Ridership has dropped some 85% there.
“It’s a testament to the fact of how important transit is to the low-income households. … That number says to me that transit in Los Angeles really is a very essential service.”…
What should LA build less of?
Moore suggests LA should stop building more trains, and that’s key to a successful public transit agency here. He says LA County has spent $26 billion on new construction, but total ridership has dropped since 1985.…(more)
Looks like Mr. Moore is suggesting the cheapest most flexible system. I agree and would limit the number and types of buses to cut maintenance costs. Paving the streets solves a lot of problems for everyone under all conditions and is a lot cheaper than working on rails and complicated digital controls for trains. Once the buses are working, and the economy improves, consider investing in more expensive transpiration systems. how many buses and drivers could be on the road now if the Central Subway funds had gone into improving the bus system?