The Atlanta Streetcar began operation in 2012 and is accessible in the Downtown Atlanta area. Many find it very useful for sightseeing. However, MARTA found its competition. A very little, actually, because ridership decreased for the Atlanta Streetcar. Nonetheless, the Streetcar is beneficial to those that want a free ride throughout the city. Although, the Atlanta Streetcar costs, it is not enforced for riders.
The Atlanta Streetcar has changed over the course of the past five years. Initially, the Streetcar was busy and had a high ridership. Today, ridership is extremely low for the Atlanta Streetcar. More people find driving or riding MARTA to be more useful.
Also, the Atlanta Streetcar has the least amount of support regarding transportation in Downtown Atlanta, due to safety issues. Bikers near Edgewood Avenue and Woodruff Park have found the Atlanta Streetcar to be an inconvenience to them. The Atlanta Streetcar’s route has led to several accidents with bikers. Recently, no accidents have been reported, so an improvement is being made.
Furthermore, the Streetcar began operating with a free fare. Unfortunately, the price for riders increased to one dollar per ride over the course of three years, causing ridership to decrease drastically. The Atlanta Streetcar company has found this to be problematic, because they can no longer receive the funds that they thought would become available to cover operation costs.
Differently, some riders, both Atlanta residents and non-U.S. citizens find the Streetcar to be useful and worthy of their one-dollar fare.
The Atlanta Streetcar isn’t all bad, though. There have been no findings that it is harmful to the environment nor is it of danger to any individuals, besides bikers. The Streetcar welcomes all ages and races, as many tourists from outside of Atlanta and outside of the United States have found it to be a comfortable way to travel when exploring the city. Nonetheless, there are streetcars in other U.S. cities that have a better operating system than the Atlanta Streetcar. These streetcars may be more successful, because fare is enforced.
Clearly, several issues exist with the Atlanta Streetcar, so action needs to take place to improve it. Some may find that making the Streetcar free again would increase ridership, but technically, it’s still free today and if it did increase ridership, the operation costs will still be uncovered. A few options to cover these costs are to reach out to sponsors, accept donations, and/or create a campaign to encourage Atlanta residents to support the Streetcar better.