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Light rail ridership soars, surpassing regional express bus use for first time in Sound Transit history

Publish Date

Link light rail third-quarter weekday ridership up 71 percent, commuter rail up 5 percent

Strong, continuing growth in people choosing Link light rail sent weekday ridership soaring 71 percent for the third quarter of 2016, with the number of Link riders surpassing regional express bus users for the first time in Sound Transit’s history.

Boardings on Sound Transit trains and buses grew 27 percent for the quarter compared to the same period last year. Following the 2016 openings of the University Link and Angle Lake light rail extensions, Link ridership jumped 69.3 percent. Sounder increased by 5.7 percent, and ST Express grew 2.7 percent. More than 5.6 million people rode Link, compared to 4.8 million who rode ST Express.

Link averaged 67,893 riders each weekday from July – September, up from 63,577 weekday riders for April – June. On Sept. 30, Mariners and Husky football games helped generate an estimated 101,000 Link boardings.

The full quarterly ridership report can be found here: