SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – BART is increasing their weekday service for the first time since the pandemic first hit back in March.

Starting Monday, commute trains on most lines will run every 15 minutes during peak hours.

There’s no doubt traffic in San Francisco is busier now than it was back in late March.

Total bridge traffic in the Bay Area was down nearly 52-percent on a Tuesday in April, when compared to that same day in April of last year.

Now, total bridge traffic is down just 18.6-percent when compared to a day in September last year.

“Mobility, broadly speaking is back to about 80-percent of where it was a year ago,” Metropolitan Transportation Commission spokesperson John Goodwin said. 

The Bay Bridge back on March 26 had barely anyone on the road and on Thursday, smoky skies and more cars.

Transportation officials say commuters have been slowly getting back on the move since mid-April. We saw a big rise over the summer and it has remained fairly steady since.

“The fact is that car travel rebounded a lot faster than transit,” Goodwin said. 

BART is used to about 400,000 commuters a day.

They bottomed out earlier this year at about 25,000 riders. On Thursday, they’re at about 45 to 49,000.

“Ridership is still really really low which is a huge financial burden on us but right now our focus is for our riders to feel comfortable riding the trains,” BART spokesperson Alicia Trost said. 

Beginning Monday, riders will find trains running every 15 minutes during peak times on most of the lines. This is to reflect their current ridership levels and welcome more riders back to BART.

Officials there say commuting on their trains is safe.

“We are running. We are safe. We have good airflow. We have mask requirements. We have hand sanitizer at every single station,” Trost said. 

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