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Long Island, Metro North railroads post ridership gains in December


MTA Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and MTA Metro-North Railroad reported that holiday shopping and tourism activities helped boost ridership on both commuter systems during December.

Metro-North carried an average 151,000 riders to and from New York City on the weekends of Dec. 3-4, 10-11 and 17-18, representing a 9.2 percent increase compared with the first, second and third weekends of December 2010, railroad officials said in a prepared statement.

“For years, Metro-North has been expanding weekend service during the holidays and people have been voting with their feet,” said Metro-North President Howard Permut.

Metro-North also posted ridership gains during November. Total East of Hudson ridership climbed 3 percent versus November 2010 levels.

Meanwhile, LIRR’s ridership on the three December weekends rose 8 percent compared with the same periods a year ago. The railroad also posted a 3.8 percent increase in ridership in November, when LIRR served 252,000 more customers than in November 2010.

“The November increase in ridership is significant … [because] it’s the third month in a row our ridership has rebounded,” said LIRR President Helena Williams.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 12/27/2011