Freedom Fourth Park & Ride Draws 2nd Highest Ever Number of Riders
ALBUQUERQUE-A near-record number of riders took advantage of ABQ RIDE’s Park and Ride buses this year to attend the recent Freedom Fourth celebration at Balloon Fiesta Park.
Preliminary totals gathered from fareboxes show ABQ RIDE ferried a total of 8,776 passengers from the Park & Rides at Coronado Center in the Northeast Heights and St. Pius X High School and St. Joseph on the Rio Grande Church on the Westside to Balloon Fiesta Park. Assuming everyone who took the bus to Balloon Fiesta Park rode it back to a Park and Ride location, ABQ RIDE provided 17,552 passenger trips on July 4.
"Perhaps the near-record crowds were part of a sincere desire by many Albuquerque residents to keep neighborhoods fireworks-free," said Mayor Richard J. Berry. "Or perhaps people heeded the advice of our city officials and left the fireworks to the professionals."
This year’s Park and Ride totals represent an increase of about 35% over 2012’s 5,685 boardings. And, this year’s figures are only eclipsed by 2008’s record total of 10,873 boardings.
ABQ RIDE’s Park & Ride program for the Freedom Fourth celebration actually began in 2003 as a shuttle to Balloon Fiesta Park from the parking lot on the south side of Alameda NE. In 2005, it expanded to include the current Park & Ride locations at Coronado Center and St. Pius High X School and St. Joseph on the Rio Grande Church.
"ABQ RIDE is pleased to provide this convenient park-and-ride service for Albuquerque residents and visitors," said Bruce Rizzieri, Director of ABQ RIDE. "We are happy that we can contribute to a safe and fun city event."