Transit stats: MBTA ridership is southbound

Public transit fans (not to be confused with foamers) should head over to the American Public Transportation Association to get ridership stats for the first six months of 2007. The bottom line is that more people are going public — 78 million more trips compared the first six months of last year — but Boston’s MBTA lags on all counts.

Ridership on commuter rail was up 5.5 percent nationwide and up 2.7 percent in the Boston area. Light rail (trolleys) was up 4.1 percent nationally but down 2.0 percent in Boston; buses were up 0.6 percent nationally but down 4.3 percent in Boston. And ridership for heavy rail was up 2.8 percent nationally but down 8.0 percent in Boston — which was the steepest slide among all 13 systems in the US with subway systems.