Study: Caltrain ridership reaches all-time high

A few years ago, it looked like Caltrain had come to the end of the line because of financial problems. Now, new studies show business is booming thanks to younger, wealthier riders.

A new report on Caltrain ridership shows the number of passengers has reached an all-time high, up 54-percent over the past four years -- with more than a third of riders using Caltrain less than a year. Ridership has increased almost 12 percent compared to last year. Many trains are full, putting a strain on capacity during the morning and evening commutes.

This growth is spread out to all but one station in the Caltrain system. All three counties, Santa Clara County, San Mateo County and San Francisco County saw increases. The latest passenger survey shows the top reasons why people hop aboard are to avoid traffic, save money and reduce stress.

The average age of the Caltrain rider is getting younger -- it has dropped since 2010 because of a 5 percent increase in riders in the 25 to 34 age bracket as well as a slight decline among riders over 45.

The survey also found that 47 percent of Caltrain riders are single and the average income for passengers has increased to $117,000 a year.
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