Valley Metro Rail has 68 percent increase in riders during special events

Valley Metro Rail transports 220,000 riders to Final Four Weekend events. (Submitted photo)

Valley Metro Rail successfully connects 220,000 riders to Final Four Weekend events with more than 350 front-line staff delivering safe and efficient service.

Getting to Final Four Phoenix weekend events was a slam dunk for locals, visitors and fans as Valley Metro Rail served an estimated 68 percent more riders that Friday through Sunday than compared to an average weekend, according to a press release.

In addition to Final Four Fan Fest and March Madness Music Festival, riders chose Valley Metro Rail to connect to the Arizona Diamondbacks home opener, Phoenix Suns game, Phoenix Pride Festival and Tempe Festival of the Arts, the release said, noting that Sunday, April 2, Valley Metro Rail served an estimated 131 percent more riders compared to an average Sunday.

“Serving more than 220,000 riders over the weekend for the Final Four events, and numerous local festivities, demonstrates the vibrancy that transit brings to our communities,” said Scott Smith, Valley Metro CEO, in a prepared statement. “The success of our system and its role in supporting the local economy is a reflection of our dedicated staff and their commitment to providing quality service every day of the year.”

Valley Metro provides safe and convenient transportation during major special events and for riders all year with the following assistance:

• 75 rail operators and supervisors to efficiently transport riders to downtown events

• 70 light rail vehicle, platform and system maintenance technicians to keep trains running safely

• 45 fare inspectors in partnership with the Transportation Security Administration and Phoenix Police Transit Enforcement Unit and K9 teams to ensure the safety and security of riders

• 40 bus operators and supervisors to provide special event transportation support

• 42 customer service representatives to answer rider questions

• 75 Valley Metro ambassadors to greet and guide visitors and riders

Valley Metro provides eco-friendly public transit options to residents of greater Phoenix and Maricopa County including the planning and operations of a regional bus system and the development and operations of 26 miles of light rail. In Fiscal Year 2016, total ridership for the system was 67 million passengers, the release noted.

Seven high capacity extensions are planned or are under construction that will create a 66-mile system by 2034. Valley Metro also offers transit options including alternative transportation programs for seniors and people with disabilities, commuter vanpools, online carpool matching, bus trip mapping, bicycle safety and telework assistance, the release added.

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Event Riders at Roosevelt-Central Station (Submitted photo)


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