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What is this?

With two out of three trips on transit served by buses in Miami, the continued dismantling of the bus system is alarming and misguided.

Our 5-part series takes a deep dive into the state of our bus system.

Supported by:

  1. Ridership
  2. Service Cuts
  3. Reliability
  4. Route Network
  5. Solutions

Bus ridership is falling —

Where did everybody go?

Source: Miami-Dade Transit Ridership Technical Reports

Miami is facing a new era of mobility, and our bus system has failed to keep up. Instead of improving service, our County is progressively dismantling the system.

Riders are facing longer wait times, unreliable service, and a poorly designed route network facing haphazard cuts – sending the system into a death spiral of plunging ridership.

There's another bus in town —

Trolley ridership is growing.

Source: Citizens Independent Transportation Trust

On average, trolley ridership has grown 10% each year, demonstrating a clear desire (and unmet demand) for transit.

Paradoxically, free municipal trolleys compete against (and sometimes replace) county bus services — but almost never cross municipal lines, fragmenting the overall system.

Where's everybody else?

Back in their cars.

Source: Census Bureau; Vehicles Calculation based on ACS Estimates

From 2013 to 2016 — household vehicles increased by over 250,000 — far outpacing population growth. This matches similar findings in California.

Increased car ownership is not something to be celebrated. More cars make for longer commute times, less livable neighborhoods, and more fatal crashes.

Sounds like a problem?

Ridesharing won't fix it.

One bus = 30 rideshare vehicles

Assumes 40' bus at 70% capacity and 2 paying occupants per rideshare vehicle.
One Bus
= Cars
gArtboard 1 copy 2audit

A transportation plan that relies entirely on cars — shared, or private — isn't a transportation plan — it's a congestion plan. Pervasive ridesharing slows down our cities while failing to significantly reduce car ownership.

Buses make far more efficient use of scarce urban space, and cities that are investing to improve their bus systems are winning back riders.

But wait, won't autnomous vehicles fix... everything? No.

Disclaimer: Although the analysis presented by Transit Alliance has been produced from sources believed to be reliable, Transit Alliance makes no warranty or claims as to the accuracy of said data or the resulting analysis. It is often necessary to manually compile and reformat the data for presentation, and determine guidelines and assumptions to appropriately represent trends. We welcome corrections, please e-mail us at help (at)