The major US cities with the best public transportation

A subway in New York, New York.

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A subway in New York, New York.
source
Michael Semensohn / flickr

New York City’s public transit is long over-due for repairs and suffers from over-crowding largely due to the city’s ever-growing population. On Monday, for example, New York commuters shared videos and photos of rain pouring into subway platforms, creating waterfalls in some stations.

NYC’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority is not in great shape, but in like most US cities, the situation has been dire for decades.

Two nonprofit research institutes, the Center for Neighborhood Technology and TransitCenter Center for Neighborhood Technology, have created a project that quantifies the state of public transit in cities across the country.

The institutes created a metric called the AllTransit Performance Score for subways, light rails, bike shares, and buses in US cities and towns. Using open data from 7,236 cities, researchers looked at factors like affordability, access to jobs, frequency of service, quality, and number of stops. The goal is to encourage policymakers to improve public transportation.

The researchers compiled an ultimate ranking of public transportation in all of these cities and towns. On the site, you can filter by zip code and population.

Here are the top cities with at least 250,000 residents.


17. St. Paul, Minnesota

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A bus at the University of Minnesota east bank campus.
source
Wikipedia Commons

There are 271,861 jobs located within a half-mile of transit in St. Paul.


16. Seattle, Washington

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Oran Viriyincy/Flickr

Seattle has over 416,000 jobs accessible with a commute of less than 30 minutes.


15. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

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REUTERS/David Denoma

More than 138,000 Pittsburgh residents live within a half-mile of public transit.


14. Oakland, California

There are more than 418,000 jobs located within a half-mile of transit in Oakland.


13. Portland, Oregon

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Tilikum Crossing in Portland, Oregon.
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Atomic Taco/Flickr

Portland’s public transit services 3,781 trips on average per week.


12. Minneapolis, Minnesota

In Minneapolis, there are 167,407 households within a half-mile of transit.


11. Miami, Florida

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A subway car in Miami, Florida.
source
Wikipedia Commons

Over 423,00 of Miami residents (99% of all commuters) live within a half-mile of public transit.


10. Newark, New Jersey

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David Wilson/Flickr

99% ofNewark’spopulation lives within a half-mile of transit.


9. Baltimore, Maryland

source
Wikipedia Commons

There are 313,115 jobs located within a half-mile of transit in Baltimore.


8. Long Beach, California

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Brad Davis/Flickr

In Long Beach, over 470,000 residents live within a half-mile of a transit stop.


7. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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Paul Sableman/Flickr

Philadelphia has over 371,000 jobs accessible with a commute of less than 30 minutes.


6. Chicago, Illinois

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jphilipg/Flickr

More than 2.7 million Chicago residents live within a half-mile of public transit.


5. Jersey City, New Jersey

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Pablo Maneiro/Flickr

Public Transportation costs just 10.1% of what an average household earns per year in Jersey City.


4. Washington, DC

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ChrisDag/Flickr

Over 644,000 DC residents live within a half-mile of public transit.


3. Boston, Massachusetts

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Boston’s orange line train.
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Notorious R.O.B./Flickr

Subways and buses in Boston make over 8,000 trips in an average week.


2. New York, New York

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Flickr / Stefan Giorgi

New York City and San Francisco are tied for the best subways, buses, and bike share in the country.

NYC has 19 transit routes within a half mile of an average block and over 1.37 million jobs available within an average 30-minute commute.

This is particularly impressive considering the city has over 8.4 million residents.


1. San Francisco, California

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Kārlis Dambrāns/Flickr

99% of San Francisco’s population lives within a half-mile of transit, and 11.1% commute by walking in addition to taking other forms of public transportation.