Southern California

Rising Car Ownership Could Explain Transit Ridership Drop: Study

People added 2.1 million more cars to the roads between 2000 and 2015, said one of the study's co-authors.

Despite billions of dollars in investment in new train lines and bus services, transit ridership in Southern California has continued to fall for about a decade.

A new study from the Institute of Transportation Studies at UCLA examined six counties from Ventura to San Bernardino and found that between 2000 and 2015, Southern Californians went on a car acquisition spree, reports NBC4 media partner KPCC.

People added 2.1 million cars to the roads in the 15-year study period, said UCLA professor and study co-author Michael Manville, adding that easier, affordable car financing during that period could have contributed to the higher rates of car ownership.

Moreover, rising car ownership was especially seen among residents who traditionally relied on transit, like those from low-income and immigrant households. Manville said that rather than trying to regain those former transit users, public officials should focus on attracting more occasional riders of trains and buses.

Read more at KPCC.

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