Talkin' Transit

Talkin’ Transit: Flat Fare

Photo courtesy of
‘Hole to the Sky’
courtesy of ‘Samer Farha’

There’s a giant hole in the Metro budget, and there is a plan for plugging it. Of course, it’s going to require fare raises and service cuts, and it’s not likely to be fun. Metro’s choice of a complicated set of charges based on distance and time of day (and peak-of-the-peak!) leaves my head aching for something less complex.

New York’s Subway has often been held up as the simplest way to do fare collection: each and every trip is the same price ($2.25). Sounds good to me, but would it work here, and what would it cost?

Let’s do some math, based on Metro’s proposed 2011 budget numbers (PDF – Table 3.8).
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The Daily Feed

Metro Now Costs 10 Cents More

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘Joe Tresh’

If you use a SmarTrip card, you probably didn’t even notice it on your commute this morning, but your trip was just a bit more expensive than it was last week.  As of yesterday, fares on Metrorail and Metrobus jumped 10 cents to help cover a huge budget gap.  Just a friendly reminder to bring along some extra change for your commute starting this week, and if you get transit benefits through your employer it might be time to increase your monthly benefits.