Performance Dashboard


Q4 2018 Picture 1.jpg


Using data from the National Transit Database (NTD), we can see regional ridership results for each year over a 15-year period.  

Annual ridership for 2018 was the lowest ridership of the 15 years shown.  The 570.8 million trips taken was 0.9% lower compared to 2004, a difference of 5.4 million trips.

Compared to 2017, ridership for 2018 was 2.5% lower, a difference of 14.7 million trips.  

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2018 Modal Ridership vs Peers

Modal Ridership vs Peers


This chart shows RTA system ridership for 2018 by mode, represented by the blue bars.  The orange dot within each bar represents the peer average ridership performance for that mode.  Our Service Boards’ performance was favorable to peer averages for three modes, and unfavorable to peers for three modes.

Compared to 2017, CTA bus ridership is down 3.8%, and CTA rail ridership is down 3.5%. 

Each bus peer agency reported ridership losses for 2018, and for the heavy rail mode, only one peer agency (NYCT) saw a slight increase.

Metra ridership was down 1.9%, about 1 percentage point lower than the peer average. 

Pace bus showed a 1.4% ridership increase compared to 2017, while each of its peers reported ridership losses averaging 4.2%.

Vanpool experienced a ridership loss of 9.6%, whereas its peer average loss was 3.7%.  

ADA Paratransit ridership increased by 0.8%, compared to a peer average decrease of 0.7%.

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2018 Peer Region Ridership

2018 Peer Region Ridership

This chart shows year-over-year regional ridership, using the same peer metropolitan areas that we use in our annual Peer Review.

Each region except Houston recorded ridership losses.

The Chicago region ranks fourth of the ten regions, with a 2.5% ridership decrease versus the average regional peer ridership loss of 3.3%.

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Annual Regional Performance

Annual Regional Performance

This chart shows a few service and financial measures. Annual performance has some favorable performance for two measures, shown by green arrows, one red arrows showing unfavorable performance, and three black arrows indicating performance roughly equal to the prior year.

Regional operating costs, after being adjusted for inflation, increased 0.3%. However, ridership was 2.5% lower compared to 2017. The resulting operating cost per passenger trip of $4.64 was 13 cents higher, an unfavorable difference of 2.8%.

Following fare increases at all three Service Boards in the first quarter, each reported improved fare revenues through year-end. Region-wide, the fare revenue per passenger trip, or average fare, was $1.77, which was 12 cents higher -- a 7.5% improvement compared to 2017.

The fare recovery ratio as shown here reflects the ratio of fare revenue to operating expense, without any credits or exclusions. A recovery ratio of 37.4% is 1.0 percentage point higher compared to 2017.

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