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Columbus Bus Ridership Spikes

A new snapshot of public transit shows Columbus had the highest percentage increase in bus ridership in the nation. During the last three months, the Central Ohio Transit Authority boosted ridership by nearly 11 percent. That's far above the national average increase of 1.4% COTA president Bill Lhota says continued high gas prices and more attention to clean buses and timely routes account for part of the surge in ridership. But, he says, COTA is also attracting some first time commuters. "People are trying transit, they find that it works and they're telling their colleagues at their places of employment and that's bringing others to the buses." Lhota says the transit agency is also expanding service by adding about 30,000 hours annually. The American Public Transportation Association says about 60% of all transit riders are commuting to and from work.