NEWS: Transit Showed Strong Ridership During Harborfest

SOURCE: Hampton Roads Transit, June 2022

The Elizabeth River Ferry reported strong ridership during Harborfest with 12,955 people climbing on board during the holiday weekend.

That’s 3,057 more than in 2019 the last year when Harborfest was held and before COVID forced a temporary suspension of the annual celebration of the region’s nautical heritage.

The Tide light rail also showed improved performance this year with 9,105 boardings over the three-day weekend when visitors skipped driving and took transit to avoid parking and congestion.

Bus ridership continued its steady climb out of the doldrums imposed by COVID with 40,276 boardings during the weekend. By comparison, the same period in 2019, saw 67,728 on regional buses.

The agency also is continuing its hiring blitz to secure new bus operators and mechanics in order to implement improved service throughout the region with improved pay, expanded benefits and hiring bonuses. With 15-minute service frequency during peak hours, HRT hopes to give commuters a real choice in their transportation choices and make transit a viable option as gas prices continue to rise.

“We are making an investment in the region’s future by developing service that will meet the needs of commuters across Hampton Roads,” said William Harrell, President and CEO of Hampton Roads Transit. “We encourage everyone to consider transit as an option for their commuting needs.”