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More Than 6 Million Customers Ride Subways on Five Separate Days in September

Ridership is breaking records on our subways. The system reached unprecedented milestones in September, breaking the previous single-day ridership record five times in a single month.

Newly available figures show 6,106,694 customers rode the subway on Tuesday, Sept. 23, making it the highest ridership ever since daily figures were first recorded in 1985. Four other September days also saw more than 6 million customers, and the 149 million customers over the month were more than in any other September in more than 60 years.

“New Yorkers and visitors alike continue to vote with their feet, recognizing that riding the subway is the most efficient way to get around town,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Thomas F. Prendergast. “This is a phenomenal achievement for a system that carried 3.6 million daily customers just 20 years ago. As ridership increases, the MTA Capital Program is vital to fund new subway cars, higher-capacity signal systems and improved stations to meet our customers’ growing needs and rising expectations.”

Subway ridership has grown steadily in recent years, approaching levels last seen during the World War II era when the subway network included more elevated lines, many customers were counted twice as they transferred between different systems, and far fewer New Yorkers owned cars. The previous ridership record of 5,987,595 was set Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013. The five record-breaking dates in September were:

• Sept. 23, 2014 6,106,694

• Sept. 18, 2014 6,094,684

• Sept. 19, 2014 6,073,580

• Sept. 17, 2014 6,051,863

• Sept. 10, 2014 6,012,270

Record-breaking ridership was recorded on September weekends as well. Fueled by ridership generated by the People’s Climate March, 2,953,948 customers rode the subway on Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014. This was the highest Sunday ridership since daily records began in 1985 and likely the highest since the late 1940s.

“The trend towards increasing ridership is not expected to slow down. Improved transit services, combined with a growing population and an improved economy, have resulted in the strongest subway ridership growth occurring among discretionary riders and during off-peak times,” said MTA New York City Transit President Carmen Bianco. “This presents new challenges for maintaining and improving a system that operates around the clock, while introducing important innovations for our customers such as countdown clocks, Help Point intercoms and a new fare payment system.”

 

HIGHEST RIDERSHIP PER YEAR

SINCE 1985

year

ridership

day and date

1985

3,761,759

Thursday, Dec. 5*

1986

3,874,967

Tuesday, Oct. 28

1987

3,914,766

Friday, Dec. 18

1988

4,031,087

Wednesday, Dec. 7

1989

3,948,484

Thursday, Sept. 28

1990

3,738,315

Thursday, Nov. 15

1991

3,653,968

Monday, June 10

1992

3,611,682

Thursday, Dec. 3

1993

3,789,553

Wednesday, March 17

1994

3,966,953

Friday, Dec. 2

1995

3,957,479

Wednesday, Oct. 25

1996

4,144,680

Tuesday, Oct. 29

1997

4,132,332

Wednesday, Dec. 10

1998

4,524,588

Friday, Oct. 23

1999

4,753,803

Friday, Oct. 29

2000

4,992,479

Friday, Dec. 15

2001

4,921,044

Thursday, April 26

2002

4,977,247

Thursday, Dec. 12

2003

4,945,487

Wednesday, Sept. 24

2004

5,092,471

Thursday, Dec. 9

2005

5,176,933

Thursday, Dec. 15

2006

5,351,916

Friday, Dec. 15

2007

5,569,581

Friday, Dec. 14

2008

5,695,006

Thursday, Oct. 30

2009

5,681,615

Friday, Nov. 6

2010

5,677,686

Thursday, Oct. 28

2011

5,822,581

Friday, Oct. 28

2012

5,938,726

Thursday, Oct. 11

2013

5,987,595

Thursday, Oct. 24

2014

6,106,694

Tuesday, Sept. 23 (to date)

*1985 data begins April 1.