Fasano Statement on Governor Malloy’s Celebration of CTfastrak and Inflated Ridership Numbers

March 28, 2018

HARTFORDSenate Republican President Pro Tempore Len Fasano (R-North Haven) released the following statement regarding Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s press conference celebrating the third anniversary of CTfastrak.

“For the governor to tout CT Fastrak as one of his biggest successes speaks to how misguided the governor is when it comes to helping Connecticut. We see the CTfastrak buses every day in Hartford; they’re big, they’re green, and they’re empty.

“The governor is not even being honest about the numbers, which show continuing high costs eating up taxpayer dollars that could have been better spent investing in roads, bridges and sustainable public transit needs. The governor’s inflated numbers are looking at every single bus throughout the entire greater Hartford region, even those routes that were in operation before CTFastrak was built. The 9.4 mile busway system has cost an unbelievable $570 million, and $226 million of that could have been utilized to support Connecticut’s other transportation needs. The 9.4 mile route also costs the state $21.9 million to run annually. That means taxpayers are subsidizing the busway construction at a cost of $95,966 per rider, and the busway operation at an additional $9,299 per rider. Is that really the best value for Connecticut taxpayers?

“The governor’s past actions have driven transportation funding into crisis, and continue to strain our state budget. The busway has been yet another burden that makes it that much harder to fund other transportation needs. He’s funding a program that’s draining transportation dollars when the system is broke.”


  • The 9.4 mile New Britain to Hartford busway is a bus rapid transit (BRT) system that cost $570 million to construct of which $113 million was financed by the State of Connecticut.  Of the $457 million in federal funds, $113 million was discretionary federal dollars to the state, meaning that those funds could have been repurposed for other state projects.  A total of $226 million could have been utilized for a purpose other than the busway, such as to address Connecticut’s many other transportation issues.


  • The annual operating cost to run CTfastrak is $25.1 million.  The system generates only $3.2 million in revenue. Therefore, the state pays $21.9 million annually to run CTfastrak.  The annual operating subsidy has increased from $17.5 million to $21.9 million in just one fiscal year.


  • While the DOT touts ridership figures for CTfastrak appear at first to be above what was anticipated, in actuality these ridership numbers used by the governor include riders on routes that were in place prior to the construction of the 9.4 mile busway.  In fact, while DOT is claiming average weekday riders of 20,016, the number of riders on the $570 million 9.4 mile busway is only 2,355 unique riders per trip (4,710 individual trips. Therefore, if riders take the bus round trip the amount of riders is half of that figure).


  • This means that taxpayer subsidization of the construction of the 9.4 mile busway equates to $95,966 per rider ($226 million divided by 2,369 average unique weekday riders) and the annual operating deficit subsidization is $9,299 per average unique weekday rider ($21.9 million divided by 2,355 riders).