Low Gas Prices Drove Down Transit Use, So Why Can’t You Find a Seat on the Train?

Transit ridership declined for the first time in five years during 2015, likely due to low gasoline prices, but subways and commuter trains were as crowded as ever.

How can this be? There are more free seats on the bus.

Americans took about 150 million fewer bus rides last year, but boarded trains in slightly higher numbers than in 2014.

Ridership of all modes of public transportation declined 1.3% last year from 2014, when transit use reached the highest level since 1958, according to new data from theAmerican Public Transportation Association. The average price of a gallon of gasoline fell 27% in 2015 from a year earlier.

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