Atlanta streetcar ridership takes a plunge in 2016

The Atlanta Jornal-Constitution discusses streetcar ridership with Marc Scribner. 

But Marc Scribner, who tracks streetcar projects across the country as a research fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, called Atlanta’s drop in ridership “exceptional.” The Competitive Enterprise Institute is a non-profit libertarian think tank, and Scribner said he generally opposes streetcar projects because of their high capital costs, fixed routes and slow speeds.

“You often see ridership stagnate … and you’ll see some decline when fares come online,” Scribner said. “But that’s a pretty exceptional drop and is something that should concern them. If that’s what you get after adding a dollar [fare], it’s not good.”

The inaugural year of operations featured turnover of nearly all of the system’s top managers; confusion over whether the city or MARTA was calling the shots; scathing safety audits, and unreliable service from a host of equipment failures — all of which led to harsh criticism from federal authorities, which funded about half of the construction costs.

Read the full article at The Atlanta Jornal-Constitution