Public transportation – statistics & facts

Public transit systems are beneficial in ensuring cities and metropolitan areas become and remain hubs of employment and socioeconomic growth. A means of connecting businesses with labor sources and households with offices or places of leisure, public modes of transportation – such as buses, light rail, and the metro – are essential, as they significantly improve mobility for the entire population of a city or region.

Not only is public transportation important when it comes to providing the labor force with means to travel to work and around a certain region generally; it enables congestion levels to be better distributed across different transport modes, thus usually contributing to the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions, for example, if individuals opt for public transport rather than driving by car.

Public transport: what and where?

The public transportation system can be structured into various types of transit: bus transit, light rail transit, rapid transit, and ferries. Bus transit is one of the most frequented mode of transit used, providing street transportation services on an extended network of lines. Latin America currently boasts the highest number of daily passengers on its bus rapid transit (BRT) systems, and São Paulo is one of the busiest cities globally in terms of passenger journeys. Over in Asia, China and India are forecasted to welcome the highest growth in their respective heavy-duty transit bus markets between now and 2022.

Light rail transit is a semi-rapid mode of transit, providing transport services on separated rail infrastructure in metropolitan areas. Tramway systems are more predominant in Europe, where ridership is also generally greater than in any other global region; Budapest’s light rail system, for example, carries around 430 million passengers every year.

Subway is the way

Rapid transit is by far the most popular form of transit. With more than 180 metro systems in operation worldwide, it provides passenger railway transportation in urban areas with a high capacity and frequency of service and adds quality to living in the big cities. The modal split in New York is dominated by its subway system, which has over 460 stations on almost 400 kilometers of rail tracks. Asian-Pacific cities were at the forefront in terms of ridership; Tokyo’s metro system carries around 3.5 billion passengers annually.

Interesting statistics

In the following 3 chapters, you will quickly find the 21 most important statistics relating to "Public transportation".

Statistics on the topic


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