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Chicago’s first protected bike lane on Kinzie St. increased ridership by 55 percent without increasing traffic congestion for cars.

Good news, bad news at CTA: Ridership hits 20 year high while system quality sinking to new lows

Despite significant service cuts in 2010, the Tribune’s John Hilkevitch reports that CTA ridership increased 3.0 percent last year, reaching a 20-year high. Rail ridership growth outpaced bus ridership growth, perhaps because bus service was cut more than rail.

/With fewer buses and trains to move more and more riders, your ride is getting more crowded — not to mention longer — because of train slow zones, less frequent service and buses mired in increasingly heavy traffic.

CTA simply doesn’t have enough money to keep up, and the multi-billion dollar backlog of maintenance needs means we can expect to see more service glitches like those described in the Tribune story.

CTA leadership wants to avoid further service cuts and/or fare increases by securing concessions from union employees, but we think this strategy is not likely to succeed; certainly, it’s not a long term strategy.

If you're tired of worse service and higher fares, demand better transit from your state legislators today. Tell them to support the Transit Fast Forward bill. Take action now.