Posted: Feb 1, 2013 2:28 PM
Updated: Feb 1, 2013 3:34 PM
COLUMBIA - Columbia Transit offered free rides on its newest route, FastCAT Express, Jan. 22-27 and saw ridership increase by as much as 60 percent by day over the average daily ridership since the routes creation in August. The free week is one of many promotional activities the City of Columbia has implemented to increase awareness of the new route and gain more riders.
The ridership during the free week increased from the previous average daily ridership on FastCAT by 3 percent on Tuesday, 53 percent on Wednesday, 47 percent on Thursday, 60 percent on Friday, 56 percent on Saturday and 8 percent on Sunday.
"We are happy to see our efforts to market the new route are working," said John Glascock, Director of Public Works. "The more people who try out public transit and see that it can be a viable option, the better."
Along with offering free rides on FastCAT, Columbia Transit also held a contest during the free week incorporating a fact-of-the-day related to public transportation that was posted on the buses. To enter the contest, riders had to post the fact-of-the-day on Columbia Transit's Facebook page. One of the facts posted was "Riding the bus is 79 times safer than riding in your own car". The facts were gathered from reports conducted by the American Public Transportation Association.
Three lucky riders won free semester passes, giving them access to unlimited rides on FastCAT and the entire bus system through the end of May 2013.
"This (semester pass) is really great," said winner, Clayton Abner. "I can really use this."