BART will continue providing service on Sundays for now even though its ridership plunged 92 percent this week in the wake of shelter-in-place orders due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, a transit agency spokeswoman said on Friday.
Eliminating Sunday service because of the declining ridership was a possible scenario presented by BART staff members at the transit agency’s board meeting on Thursday.
But BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost wrote in an email on Friday:
“The Sunday service elimination is the last resort of the options presented (at Thursday’s meeting) and at this time is unlikely.”
“Many board members clearly stated they were not in favor of that option.”
BART is looking at various scenarios for cutting costs and service to save its operating budget or if a high number of its employees become sick and can’t come to work or if it is mandated by government officials to reduce service, Trost said.
BART staff estimated in their presentation Thursday that if the shelter-in-place order continues through the end of the fiscal year at the end of June that fare revenue will decline 30 percent, or $140 million, below budget for the fiscal year.
BART has already reduced its service hours based on its declining ridership due to Covid-19.
Other cost-saving possibilities suggested by BART staff include reducing train frequency to 30 minutes between most weekday trains, to 40 minutes between trains on Saturdays, and to 48 minutes between trains on Sundays.