Cause to Celebrate
MVTA awarded twice over and ridership continues to climb
Minnesota Valley Transit Authority (MVTA) is on a winning streak with multiple departments earning high honors and pandemic ridership woes becoming a thing of the past.
The MVTA Finance Department recently produced a comprehensive annual financial report that earned a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Finance Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association. Each year, the report is judged by an impartial panel and graded based on the program’s high standards. MVTA demonstrated a constructive "spirit of full disclosure" to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate potential users and user groups to read the report. This honor is the highest form of recognition in governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by a government and its management.
Another feather in the MVTA cap comes via the Federal Transit Administration’s “Sustainable Transit for a Healthy Planet” initiative and the Sustainability Plan that the MVTA planning team created and submitted. The plan was honored as the Most Transformative in the nation and by winning it, MVTA became one of only four transit agencies nationwide to be recognized. The challenge, in its second year, is set forth by the FTA for agencies to develop their plans in support of federal goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, as well as to serve as a technical resource in the development of plans and strategies.
On the streets, riders are flocking back to transit in droves. For MVTA, March 2023 saw a 22,655 rider increase when compared to March 2022. That’s a 30% uptick! Even more impressive: year-to-date express ridership is up 52% with rider numbers increasing from 92,210 to 138,354. Overall ridership across all service types in the first quarter of 2022 vs the first quarter of 2023 is up 42% with an increase from 180,463 to 257,048.
As of March, year-to-date individual route numbers are also climbing exponentially with popular U of M routes seeing some of the strongest growth. Route 465 – Burnsville to the U of M -- saw a 2022-23 increase of 37% from 23,973 to 32,953. Route 475 from Apple Valley to the U of M climbed 48% from 8,851 to 13,094. Route 490 -- Prior Lake/Shakopee to the U of M -- may be the most impressive with an 85% jump in ridership from 3,102 to 5,734.
Connect is joining the MVTA ridership upward trend with a 28% increase from 19,647 in the first three months of 2022 to 25,206 from January to March 2023. March of this year has the distinct honor of being MVTA’s highest Connect ridership month ever with 8,999 rides!
People are flocking to MVTA, when is your next ride?