Oct 24, 2022 - News

QLINE ridership rebounds

A QLINE streetcar on Woodward. Photo: Samuel Robinson/Axios

QLINE ridership increased sharply over the past year, but is still down from pre-pandemic levels, its annual report released today shows.

Why it matters: The report accumulates a year's worth of data since QLINE service resumed in September 2021 after a pandemic shutdown.

  • The numbers are a sign of a potential rebound from its break in service.

How it works: Four streetcars continuously run up and down a 3.3-mile stretch of Woodward Avenue from Congress Street up to West Grand Boulevard.

  • Rides have been free since service resumed.

By the numbers: Average daily ridership has steadily increased over the past year, from 969 between October and January to 2,285 between June and September.

  • Average ridership was 2,620 in the six months before the shutdown.

What's more: QLINE streetcars are arriving more consistently.

  • In the six months before the service interruption, 56% of cars arrived in 15 minutes or less.
  • They are now arriving every 15 minutes or less at a 67% clip, closer to QLINE's 80% goal.

What they're saying: A survey of nearly 1,000 included in the report showed support for expanded service.

  • "We take that enthusiasm as a sign of support for the larger transit system our region requires and pledge to build on the success of our first year back in service to help make that vision a reality," M-1 RAIL president Lisa Nuszkowski wrote in the report.

📬 This story is part of Axios Detroit's regular public transit feature. We want to hear about your experiences on the QLINE.

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