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Streetcar Summer Passes Getting Cheaper

Jay Hanselman

Summer promotional passes for the Cincinnati Bell Connector will cost $33 a month and go on sale sometime next month.  

The pass will allow unlimited rides on the streetcar each month during June, July and August.  
The price started at $70 a month, dropped to $50, then finally a city council majority voiced support for the $33 rate during a special committee meeting Wednesday.  

Council Member Chris Seelbach proposed the lower price tag after reviewing data from fares purchased using the Cincy EZRide app in March.

"We do know of the 1,444 customers who purchased tickets, only three paid more than $40 in a month," Seelbach said. "Eight paid more than $33 per month. So, that's why I'm introducing this motion."

The Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority, which is managing streetcar operations for the city, can track unique customers who use the app, which account for about 30 percent of ticket sales. It can't do the same for people buying fares with cash at vending machines.

Council Member Kevin Flynn said the goal of the summer pass is to get people to ride the streetcar.

"We're not trying to just make it easier, we're trying to capture people that otherwise aren't regular riders of the streetcar," Flynn said. "Any we're trying to offer an incentive."

Streetcar supporters would like a monthly pass offered on a regular basis. That still may happen, but it must follow a federal process before being implemented.

Another similar three-month promotion could be offered in the fall.