BART passengers break Thanksgiving weekend ridership, parking records


BART passengers break Thanksgiving weekend ridership, parking records

Holiday ridership to SFO tripled projections

BART passengers set new ridership and parking permit records during the six-day Thanksgiving holiday travel period.

"We anticipated an 8% jump in ridership to SFO this Thanksgiving holiday season" said BART Board President Lynette Sweet. "But we ended up with a whopping 24% increase from last year.

"In addition, passengers took advantage of the affordable Airport/Long Term parking that BART offered over the weekend," President Sweet added. "BART sold 4,120 days worth of Airport/Long Term parking permits this year compared with 1,932 last year, resulting in an incredible 113% increase."

From the Wednesday before Thanksgiving thru the Monday afterward, ridership to SFO soared to its highest level since the station opened in 2003. Last week, BART predicted there would be 50,000 riders using the system, instead 56,900 passengers opted to use BART this Thanksgiving weekend.

Passengers have set ridership records during the Thanksgiving holiday travel season in each year since the SFO Station opened in 2003. In 2003, approximately 36,400 passengers took BART to SFO between the Wednesday before Thanksgiving thru the Monday afterward. During the same time period the numbers increased to 41,500 passengers in 2004, 43,800 passengers in 2005 and 46,000 in 2006.

BART officials attribute the increase in ridership to BART's low cost, high-frequency service as well as its 96% passenger on-time record.

Officials believe more and more people have discovered taking BART not only helps them avoid the Bay Area's gridlocked traffic it also helps them save on the high costs of gas and long-term parking. This year BART doubled the number of Airport/Long-Term parking and offered $5/day parking spaces in East Bay stations and $6/day spaces in selected West Bay stations.