NEW YORK – When COVID-19 struck the region with a vengeance and people were told to stay home, ridership on Metro-North Railroad fell 95 percent.
The Hudson Valley is now in phase two of economic recovery and New York City this week entered phase one and as people are returning to work, train ridership is creeping ahead, said railroad President Cathy Rinaldi.
“The Mid-Hudson opened two weeks ago and now the city is starting to reopen, our ridership is starting to claw back, but even after all of that, we are still down 90 percent,” she said. “That five percent is not nothing. We are happy to see things moving in the other direction, but you can’t sugarcoat the fact that our ridership is still down 90 percent, give or take.”
Rinaldi said many people switched to tele-commuting when COVID-19 hit, so it may be a while for them to revert to commuting by train to the office.