January 9, 2023 County Executive George Latimer Gives Westchester Weekly Update
Watch full briefing here: https://youtu.be/igFXWFcokmU
During his weekly Westchester briefing, Latimer discussed:
- Guest: Town of Rye Supervisor Gary Zuckerman
- Office of Economic Development to discuss Launch1000 Initiative
BEE-LINE SPREADS HOLIDAY CHEER WITH A SUCCESSFUL FREE RIDES PROGRAM
The benefit to the traveling public was approximately $2.9 million
In November, Westchester County Executive George Latimer announced the return of fare-free Bee-Line buses just in time for the holidays. The program ran from November 19 through November 27, and again on December 7 through December 26.
Over the course of the program, more than 1.7 million passengers rode the fixed route bus system, generating a 10 percent increase in ridership on weekdays and Saturdays compared to average fall 2020 ridership. Weekdays and Saturday ridership during the fare-free period reached 95 percent of pre-pandemic ridership, while Sundays were closer to 90 percent.
The free fares were also valid on Bee-Line’s ParaTransit system, a shared ride service for which reservations must be made in advance. Throughout the fare-free period, over 19,000 ParaTransit reservations were made.
The benefit to the traveling public was about $2.8 million on the fixed route bus system and over $95,000 on ParaTransit.
Latimer said: “My Administration is constantly looking for ways to save Westchester residents money – and when it came to fare-free buses – Westchester residents certainly took advantage. By both saving some extra cash around the holiday season and taking the environmentally friendly mass transit option to get where they needed to go, our state-of-the-art Bee-line bus system showed just how valuable it is for those who live, work or visit Westchester.”
During the summer of 2022, the County offered its first free rides program and saw a dramatic increase in ridership. The system experienced a 37 percent increase in ridership during the three-month period of June, July and August, compared to the prior three-month period in March, April and May.
The Bee-Line is Westchester County's bus system, serving over 27 million passengers annually with convenient service connecting residents to jobs, recreation, shopping and other regional transportation services. It is the second largest transit bus fleet in New York State, operated by the County’s Department of Public Works and Transportation (DPW&T).
Over 65 percent of all Westchester County residents are within walking distance of a Bee-Line bus route, making the bus both close and convenient. The system has over 3,300 bus stops and almost 60 routes. All Bee-Line buses are accessible, and designed with many accessibility features including “kneeling” buses, ramps and lifts.