The Metropolitan Council voted Wednesday to raise metro area bus fares by 25 cents. The cost to take a local off-peak bus or light-rail ride will rise to $2. Express bus fares would go up to $2.50.
New fares will go into effect on Oct. 1. Twin Cities bus fares were last raised in 2008.
The regional planning body anticipates a $110 million deficit by fiscal 2020-21, mainly due to "inflationary pressures," growing demand for federally mandated Metro Mobility service, and an anticipated reduction in revenue from the motor vehicle sales tax.
The fare hike would raise an estimated $6.7 million in 2018, but would come with a projected ridership decline of 3.8 million rides, the council said.
Metro Transit provided more than 80 million rides to passengers in 2016.
In comparison, here is what it costs to take a non-peak bus ride in other U.S. cities according to cash fares posted on transit websites. Omaha and Houston had the lowest fares while Denver had the highest:
Omaha and Houston: $1.25
Kansas City: $1.50
Indianapolis and Los Angeles: $1.75
Phoenix, Boston, Chicago, St. Louis: $2
Miami and Milwaukee: $2.25
Atlanta, Dallas, Portland, Cleveland, Salt Lake City, Philadelphia: $2.50