‘Doom spiral’ a risk for public transit in post-pandemic era

  • Date: 06/13/2024

A new study from McGill University warns that cutting public transit service could lead to a "doom spiral" resulting in a collapse of the system.

The researchers describe a vicious circle in which service cuts brought on by budget deficits drive transit users away; this drop in ridership triggers additional service cuts, which lead to further declines in usage.

“Riders are more sensitive to service cuts now than they were pre-pandemic,” explains co-author Ahmed El-Geneidy, a Professor in McGill’s School of Urban Planning. “Our findings emphasize the need for transit agencies to maintain strong service levels to prevent further declines.”

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