Ridership on the Northstar Commuter Rail Line increased 15 percent during the first six months of 2013, compared with the same period last year. A new station in Ramsey and significant ridership increases in Big Lake and Coon Rapids offset decreases from the Anoka and Fridley stations.
Northstar, which runs 41 miles between Big Lake and downtown Minneapolis, had 384,183 riders during the first six months of the year. That compared with 333,780 from January through June in 2012. The increase included 18,558 riders from the Ramsey station that opened late last year.
Construction near the Anoka station may have prompted riders to use the Coon Rapids or Ramsey stations. Anoka’s ridership was down 1,692 over the six-month period. Coon Rapids’ was up 6,636, the largest increase for any station.
Ridership from the Big Lake Station was 53,566 for the six months — up 2,690 over last year. Fridley attracted only 12,629 riders over the first six months this year — down 451 from the same period in 2012.