On Wednesday, the Chicago Transit Board decided to raise fares by 25 cents as the board approved a hefty $1.51 billion operating budget that will keep both bus and rail service levels where are currently.
According to both Fox32, the Chicago-Sun Times and the CTA — bus fares will increase to $2.25 and train fares will go up to $2.50.
“As the nation’s second-largest transit agency, CTA provides vital transit services for millions of riders every year. I am pleased that this responsible, structurally sound budget continues our efforts to better serve Chicagoans across our city and our service area,” Chicago Transit Board Chairman Terry Peterson said according to the news outlets.
The CTA additionally said reduced fare rides will also be increased: up 10 cents for bus travel and up 15 cents for rail. The 30-day unlimited ride pass will also cost an additional $5, according to Fox32.
All remaining fares and passes [which includes discounted student fares] will remain at their current prices. The fare hike will be implemented on Jan. 7 according to the news outlet.
On Nov. 22 – the agency announced their plans to raise fares and at the time, CTA President Dorval Carter said he understood if riders would be angry by the increase according to Fox32.
“This is not something that I wanted to do,” Carter said. “It is not something that I had planned to do. I’ve gone nine years without having done this. No other transit system in the country has gone that long without raising their fares.” he told the news outlet.
The last time CTA raised fares by 25 cents was back in 2009 – almost a decade ago. Rahm pointed the finger at a $33 million cut in state funding for the CTA according to Fox32.
“The state cut the CTA by $33 million. So I said, `One, you’re not gonna cut any aspect of service. In fact, they expanded service on the South Side. Two, you’ve got to find cuts inside management before you go to commuters. Third, the state has cut us. Fourth, the budget is less by $9.7 million. And fifth, we’ve gone eight years without a fare increase,” Emanuel said to the news outlet.