Clipper Card Gains Traction

By Matt Baume
|  Monday, Dec 6, 2010  |  Updated 11:45 AM PDT
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Clipper Card Gains Traction

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After years of roadblocks and failure, the Clipper card is finally enjoying widespread adoption.

In the past month, Clipper usage has risen by 43% across all transit agencies. The credit for the bump goes to the elimination of paper passes by some agencies, particularly Muni. Half of the Clipper users are Muni riders.

Most paper passes have gone the way of the dinosaur on Muni. If you want to ride the bus now, you'll need one of the cards or cash.

BART also accounted for a ridership spike, with nearly 100,000 weekday boardings. The agency is planning to incorporate the card into its parking program, allowing riders to pay for their spot by waving their card.

Later this month, BART will deactivate its EZ Rider program. That's caused some concern, since many riders still rely on the EZ Rider cards. BART came under fire for an insufficient outreach campaign about the switch.

Also this month, Clipper will expand to SamTrans. And by next year, it'll be in place in Santa Clara.

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