Thursday, June 27, 2019

Can Worcester, MA, go fare-free?

Fare hikes are sometimes presented as a way to raise revenue, despite evidence that charging more to ride the bus does not necessarily improve cash flow. Instead, the 2017 fare hike preceded two straight fiscal years of declining farebox revenue. Total fixed-route fare revenue in 2018 was around $3 million, the lowest since 2010 (see Chart 1). 

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

What if car subsidy had the tight budget restrictions that buses have?

When the Worcester Regional Research Bureau dropped a report last week advocating for the Worcester Regional Transit Authority to move to a fare-free system, the idea seemed to take hold in the community.

How do you replace the revenue. Who will pay for fare-free buses? These questions are asked because the frame is wrong. We should be asking who is paying for all the car subsidies? Well, one of the hidden costs is the loss of the biosphere.