This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 29, 2008 12:42 PM. The previous post in this blog was Double partial governorectomy. The next post in this blog is Look! Look!. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Back in the day

A reader who's been following our car-free tales sends along the following:

You have been writing about taking the bus around town. I used the bus and MAX to commute to work for over 33 years.

When Tri-Met began issuing bus passes in February, 1975, I started collecting mine. Attached is a sample of the first ones that Tri-Met issued (I'm missing March and May, 1975 and May, 1976) and some from 1980-81. I think I have all the others through July, 2002.

In 1975, the bus pass cost $13.00. Now, it looks like the All-Zone pass will cost $86.00 starting in September, 2008.

The reader has scanned a couple of years' worth of passes into pdf files, and they are here and here.

Comments (10)

So Tri-Met's monthly pass has increased 660% since 1975. Gas was aroun 50 cents a gallon back then, so for the same period, the increase has been over 800%.

Wow, trimet passes were actually cool back in the day. Bring back the nature pics TriMet!

According to this inflation calculator: http://www.westegg.com/inflation/
what cost $13 in 1975 would have been $54.10 in 2007 dollars. A monthly pass is currently $76 so TriMet fares have outpaced inflation by 40%. (76/54.1=~1.40). Arguably TriMet's service area has increased so that all zone pass will take you more places.

I'm not a big fan of using general inflation numbers for something like this. The price of diesel fuel might be a better comparison. I also note from our reader's scans that the price went up to $29 by 1980.

Let's not forget that less and less of Tri-Met's annual operating budget is subsidized by municipal and federal dollars now with more of its budget paid for through fares alone which would greatly account for the fare increases surpassing that of inflation.

Tri-Met is mostly paid for by payroll and self-employment taxes. Farebox revenues pale in comparison as a revenue source.

Last figure I heard was that fares cover ~20% of the cost. That figure was supplied by Mary Fetch (sp?), spokeslady for trimet.

Hey, that's pretty dang cool. Thanks for sharing!

The current Trimet passes are ugly beyond belief. As if my fellow Portlanders weren't fashionably challenged enough, now we have to parade around downtown with bright baby blue and hot pink bus passes at our side. As for July's pass, I can't even tell what the picture being used is. Pictures of nature and houses would be a huge improvement.

There was someone from New York (I'm pretty sure) selling old Portland Traction weekly and TriMet monthly passes like the one you have on eBay recently.

Clicky Web Analytics