TriMet is costing more and giving less

Oregon Transformation

The Biscuit Wheels are Falling off the Gravy Train

TriMet proposed big changes at the agency last week to fill a $12 to $17 million budget hole, which will mean more pain for its customers.

Longer waits, higher fares, more transfers, and no more “free rail zone” or using the same ticket for going back the same way you came.

So does the budget crunch mean TriMet has less money than it did last year? Not quite.

TriMet’s operating budget is expanding $50 million this year, or 12 percent.

In fact, since 2007 TriMet’s operating funding has increased 28 percent or $103 million. TriMet’s total resources have increased 65 percent or $392 million over the same period.

So what is TriMet giving its customers in return?

Between 2007 and 2011, total miles driven by TriMet buses has decreased almost three million miles, while being offset by an increase of only 500,000 rail miles.

In total, TriMet had a decrease in service by 2.5 million miles.

More money, less service.


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Posted by at 06:28 | Posted in TriMet | 22 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • guest

    Reining in TriMet and Metro is long overdue.  Their growth has metastasized and regional Interferon supplies alarmingly insufficient.

    Clackamas is finally awakening by referendum process, but Multnomah and Washington constituents must do their part as well.

    After all, Porkland, Melanoma county isn’t just a nickname, it’s EdP red herring halito$i$ – and, spreading out over to Clark’s Vancouver, too.   

  • 3H

    Has there been a decrease in ridership as well?   Miles covered doesn’t tell us much.  If you become more efficient, and deliver greater numbers with fewer miles covered, that would be a good thing.

    I’m not say that service has improved, but simply pointing out that miles covered has decreased is not the same thing as a decline in service.  You need better and more comprehensive statistic to make that claim.

    • guest

      Hey, take trip to TriMet’s and howl you con construe your escarpment, Mr Left-Dinger Governmentium istrumentalist among US?   Oy, what a gruel aid slaker you appear to be, you inveterate d’oh bawler. 

    • JoelinPDX

      Ummm, you kind of missed the point 3. The point is that service is decreasing while the cost of providing that decreasing service is going up…and going up rapidly. I know you’re trying to defend the buses by bringing up the subject of ridership. But ridership matters not a whit in the context of this article.

      • 3H

        Well, X, the stat provided doesn’t prove a decrease in service.  It infers it, but you can’t know unless you look at hours covered, number of riders served, etc…   Ridership matters a great deal.  Less miles driven could also be a result of better efficiency.  I’m not say it is, I’m just saying that the statistic on it’s own proves nothing without comparing it to other factors.  

        If you’re talking about service, then number of riders served, and hours of operation (as well), are very important factors to keep in mind as well.  The one statistic provided proves nothing.  “I know you’re trying to defend the buses by bringing up the subject of ridership.”LOL.. are you going to be like Rupert and pretend you can read my mind too?   You’ll be just as wrong as he is.

        • JoelinPDX

          Okay, you’re not worth arguing with. You’ll just change your position and then change the subject. You really need to write at Blue Oregon where no one will question your faulty “logic.”

          • 3H

            I haven’t changed a thing X. I started out saying that the statistic about miles driven wasn’t necessarily an indicator of declining service.  It shows less miles driven.  You need other statistics, in addition, to show a decline in service.  It is that simple.

            If you mean by “I’ll change my position” that I won’t let you put words in my mouth – well… you got me there.  I prefer to talk for myself since I don’t trust you to get it right. 

            I’m not saying that Tri-Met is right, or that they couldn’t spend their money better.  I’m simply saying that the evidence presented doesn’t measure up.  

        • valley person

           You are correct 3H. The number of riders is up. So with more riders and fewer “miles” once can presume they have increased efficiency, carrying more people with fewer miles traveled. That is probably a reflection of trains replacing buses.

          • 3H

            And that might explain why Joel was so quick to claim, ”
            But ridership matters not a whit in the context of this article.”   When obviously it could.   

        • Rupert in Springfield

          >”LOL.. are you going to be like Rupert and pretend you can read my mind too?   You’ll be just as wrong as he is.

          Well, I can read your mind about one thing – you don’t know the difference between “infer” and “imply”.

          The correct usage is – the article implies, you infer.

          Common word usage mistake, but I did get a chuckle given the context in which you made it.


          • 3H

            Wow!  You’re right I used the wrong word.  My apologies! 


          • valley person

             So you are even, because Rupert apologized for the 20 or so errors he made last week. Not!

          • 3H

            Nah, I won’t even point out when he makes grammatical or spelling errors because he gets all defensive and pissy about it.  We just have to remember – do as Rupert says, not as he does.

            Although, I ‘m still waiting for him to admit to his mistake about Wall Street supporting Democrats more than they support Republicans.

          • Rupert in Springfield

            >Nah, I won’t even point out when he makes grammatical or spelling errors because he gets all defensive and pissy about it.

            Considering last week your sole reply to a post of mine was to try and claim “barrier” and “impediment” meant the same thing your comment here is especially absurd.

            Please, if you can’t even deliver an insult without screwing up basic word usage, at least try and remember what you said from a week ago.

            Obviously trolling isn’t your strong suit.

          • 3H

            Well, my gosh, you’re right.  LOL.   I forgot about that.  My apologies!  

          • 3H

            Why thank you:  trolling isn’t my strong suit!  I take that as a compliment.  🙂

            Do you consider it your strong point?

  • You can thank  FRED HANSEN and all his developer cronies for this mess!

  • JoelinPDX

    Last I checked it was costing Tri-Meth about six times the cost of my ticket to provide the ride. Tri-Meth is becoming more and more of a joke…at least if you can laugh at smelly buses and violence associated with transit stations.

    • Anonymous

       “Tri-Meth” – love it 😉

  • Different Guest

    How much do roads earn us?  I forget.  Probably way more than Trimet.

  • Deadbeat

    If it wasn’t for Tri-Met how would I get around for free?? I am not going to ride a bike, for heaven’s sake. These public transit people are my friends. I applaud them for giving me a free ride, literally.

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