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MARTA gained huge ridership boost from Super Bowl weekend

More than 500,000 people used MARTA’s system last weekend.
Photo – APTA


The Metropolitan Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) registered more than 500,000 riders during the three-day Super Bowl weekend Feb. 1-3.

Massive crowds took advantage of 24-hour rail service, MARTA officials said in a press release. The agency marked its busiest travel day in decades Feb. 2, when it handled 270,000 rail passengers — more than double typical Saturday ridership, they said.

On Super Bowl Sunday, MARTA logged 155,000 passengers, who were greeted by more than 600 transit ambassadors positioned throughout the agency's 38 rail stations. The ambassadors worked more than 3,000 hours during a 10-day operational period to serve residents and visitors.

"I am proud of how [our] team handled these record crowds," said MARTA General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Parker. "We set a new standard in service this weekend and we want to maintain that as we move forward as an organization."

MARTA aimed to keep its rail operations flexible during the 10-day period by adjusting service, adding trains and launching 24-hour service a day earlier to accommodate the addition of a late-night concert to the event schedule, agency officials said.

Only two minor issues surfaced that didn't greatly impact service: one involving a trespasser near tracks and one involving a small fire on adjacent CSX property, said MARTA Chief of Rail Operations David Springstead.

"On Sunday, the team worked quickly and efficiently to clear large crowds within 90 minutes of the end of the game," he said.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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