American Public Transportation Association
 
American Public Transportation Association
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 Transit News

 11/9/2010

Contact:

Mantill Williams
(202) 496-4869
mwilliams@apta.com

 Fiscal Concerns Eased by Riding Public Transportation

 Riding Public Transportation Can Save Individuals up to $9,515 Annually

Washington, DC- Last week’s historic elections made one thing clear, Americans are more concerned about the current economic conditions than any other issue.  Switching from driving to riding public transportation is a proven way for individuals to cut monthly and yearly transportation costs now, while also reducing their carbon footprint.  In fact, according to a recent Washington Post-ABC News poll nearly 40 percent of registered voters named fiscal concerns as their top issue.

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) released the November 2010 Transit Savings Report noting that riding public transportation  on the average saves individuals $9,515 annually, and up to $793 per month based on the November 8, 2010 average national gas price ($2.85  per gallon-reported by AAA) and the national unreserved monthly parking rate.  This monthly savings is up 3.5 percent compared to last year. 

APTA releases this monthly “Transit Savings Report" to examine how an individual in a two-person household can save money by taking public transportation and living with one less car.  

The national average for a monthly unreserved parking space in a downtown business district is $161.56, according to the 2010 Colliers International Parking Rate Study.  Over the course of a year, parking costs for a vehicle can amount to an average of $1,939.

The top 20 cities with the highest transit ridership are ranked in order of their transit savings based on the purchase of a monthly public transit pass and factoring in local gas prices for November 8, 2010 and the local monthly unreserved parking rate.*

Top Twenty Cities - Transit Savings Report
 

City

Monthly Savings

Annual Savings

 1

New York

$1,164

$13,962

 2

Boston

$1,069

$12,826

 3

 San Franciso

$1,053

$12,641

 4

 Chicago

$961

$11,533

 5

 Seattle

$946

$11,350

 6

 Philadelphia

$928

$11,136

 7

 Honolulu

$913

$10,957

 8

 Los Angeles

$855

$10,261

 9

 Minneapolis

$840

$10,083

 10

 San Diego

$827

$9,924

 11

 Portland

$817

$9,807

 12

 Denver

$813

$9,752

 13

 Cleveland

$805

$9,659

 14

 Washington, DC

$797

$9,569

 15

 Baltimore

$796

$9,549

 16

 Miami

$780

$9,356

 17

 Pittsburgh

$750

$8,995

 18

 Dallas

$739

$8,867

 19

 Atlanta

$737

$8,842

 20

 Las Vegas

$729

$8,748

*Based on gasoline prices as reported by AAA on 11/08/10.


Methodology

APTA calculates the average cost of taking public transit by determining the average monthly transit pass of local public transit agencies across the country.  This information is based on the annual APTA fare collection survey and is weighted based on ridership (unlinked passenger trips).  The assumption is that a person making a switch to public transportation would likely purchase an unlimited pass on the local transit agency, typically available on a monthly basis.

APTA then compares the average monthly transit fare to the average cost of driving.  The cost of driving is calculated using the 2010 AAA average cost of driving formula.  AAA cost of driving formula is based on variable costs and fixed costs.  The variable costs include the cost of gas, maintenance and tires.  The fixed costs include insurance, license registration, depreciation and finance charges.  The comparison also uses the average mileage of a mid-size auto at 23.4 miles per gallon and the price for self-serve regular unleaded gasoline as recorded by AAA on November 8, 2010 at $2.85 per gallon.  The analysis also assumes that a person will drive an average of 15,000 miles per year.  The savings assume a person in two-person household lives with one less car.

In determining the cost of parking, APTA uses the data from the 2010 Colliers International Parking Rate Study for monthly unreserved parking rates for the United States.

To calculate your individual savings with or without car ownership, go to www.publictransportation.org.  

 

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 The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) is a nonprofit international association of 1,500 public and private sector organizations, engaged in the areas of bus, paratransit, light rail, commuter rail, subways, waterborne services, and intercity and high-speed passenger rail. This includes: transit systems; planning, design, construction, and finance firms; product and service providers; academic institutions; transit associations and state departments of transportation. APTA is the only association in North America that represents all modes of public transportation. APTA members serve the public interest by providing safe, efficient and economical transit services and products.  More than 90 percent of the people using public transportation in the United States and Canada ride APTA member systems.

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