More folks are taking the light rail and city buses

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX – More folks are riding the light rail and city buses than ever before.

Valley Metro says passenger boardings are up 10 percent from a year ago.

In fact, in October, more than seven million people took advantage of mass transit. That surpasses the record ridership back in April of just over six and a half million riders. 

"Significant ridership increases are an indicator that passengers are finding greater value and convenience by using public transit to reach their local destinations," said Steve Banta, Valley Metro CEO.

High ridership days on light rail are driven significantly by special events, such as the ASU vs. Oregon football game on October 18.  That proved to b the highest ridership day to date, with more than 65,000 people catching a ride.

In October, light rail also experienced its highest Saturday ridership average in the system's history.

The first 20-miles of light rail opened December 2008. Now, six light rail extensions are under way that will create a 57-mile system by the year 2032.