Upper Left Coast

Thoughts on politics, faith, sports and other random topics from a red state sympathizer in indigo-blue Portland, Oregon.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Raise the tram fares!

So, the city of Portland is considering charging $4 per ride on the new aerial tram. The reason, according to city officials, is because construction and operating costs have increased by about 400 percent, and they don't want to subsidize any more than they have to.

(Never mind that they promised the fares would be less than half that amount, and Tri-Met users could show their bus and light rail passes to use the tram. Never mind the irony of being concerned about a $2 subsidy when they city is paying tens of millions of dollars more than it said would come out of city coffers.)

Personally, I say if it avoids further subsidies, they should set the tram fare at $4, if not more. And while they're at it, they should raise bus and MAX fares to erase subsidies. After all, Tri-Met's own numbers (PDF in link) show that they only recover about a quarter of their operating costs through fares.

Because there are different levels of fares, it's difficult to determine the necessary fare increase -- those Tri-Met numbers show an operating cost per boarding ride of $2.58 on the bus and $1.52 on MAX, with passenger revenue of 66 cents (bus) and 80 cents (MAX) per rider. However, if all fares were adult all-zone, the fare would increase to more than $6 per ride.

But they can't do that. It would hurt the poor. Of course, I guess the poor won't be using the tram -- it's just for the rich doctors on Pill Hill.

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  • At 1/31/2007 10:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    isn't this the way democrats due they build the tram going agains't the will of the voters I would like to see the voter poll on this one how many voters were for it or agains't?
    than they raise the price more that you pay for it.than blue oregon claims to want to hire oregon companies only but do they hire oregon companies only?no in fact they hire out of state companies to do the job this is interesting.why do they go above the will of the voters hire out of area companies?
    when blue claims they want to buy everything in oregon when they do not
    more Judicial Tryanny


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