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Big drop on MARC Brunswick Line

The Maryland Transit Administration says ridership on MARC's Brunswick Line was down 9.3 percent last month compared to a year earlier.

Ridership on all three MARC lines fell 1.1 percent from July 2009, with an average of 31,748 riders per day, and about 6.4 percent from June. But the Brunswick Line, which runs from Washington to West Virginia, saw a 9.3 percent drop compared to a year earlier, with an average of 6,819 daily riders.

Maryland Transit Administration officials attribute the drop to summer vacation season.

The Camden Line, which runs between Baltimore and Washington, saw a 3 percent drop, but the Penn Line, which runs from Perryville to Washington, posted a 2.2 percent increase with an average of 21,047 daily riders.

-- Associated Press

By Michael Bolden  | August 30, 2010; 5:03 PM ET
Categories:  Commuter Rail, Commuting, MARC, Maryland  
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The drop in ridership is easy to understand. The train service is unreliable and very slow. So slow that even when there is a major traffic jam on 270, it is still faster to drive. I switched to a my car pool instead of the train; I get to work in half the time it takes to ride the train and for less money.

Posted by: infrederick | August 30, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Do you think perpetual heat restrictions because CSX can't or won't maintain its tracks might have something to do with it?

Posted by: ceebee2 | August 30, 2010 10:26 PM | Report abuse

As a current MARC rider, I am not surprised and I don't think that it's from "summer vacations." The past 6 months, MARC has had notoriously bad service. From trains breaking down on the track, to missing stations, and making people stand next to the tracks at US for 25 minutes in the heat before the train arrived.

It is truly unfortunate that the service is so dismal. If CSX (by the persuasion of MD MTA) maintained their signals better and if MTA was able to fix or purchase reliable equipment the MARC would be a joy... now, it's often just an extra headache.

Posted by: DLfromDC | August 30, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Well, that's just about the biggest surprise I've ever heard...NOT.

When it works, great -- but you never know from one day to the next whether you're going to have an incident-free ride to work and back or a coronary-inducing commute from h-e-double_hockey_sticks.

Posted by: wings100 | August 30, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

"Maryland Transit Administration officials attribute the drop to summer vacation season." I guess people didn't take vacations last year?? This response is lazy, laughable, ignorant and arrogant.

Posted by: smirkman | August 31, 2010 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Maryland needs to seize the tracks between here and the border, install catenary, and put down cement ties.

Posted by: anarcho-liberal-tarian | August 31, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse


And you propose that Maryland is going to pay for that, how?

Posted by: ceebee2 | August 31, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

tax the richest Marylanders, their money is endless

Posted by: jiji1 | August 31, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

MTA obviously does not realize that the drop is also due to lay-offs and continuing unemployment. The Brunswick line is used by people all the way from Hagerstown, MD to Martinsburg, WV and the areas surrounding Brunswick, MD, not just the people living in WV.

Posted by: dksummer | September 1, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

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