>Counterexample to PARP denial

>After having my PARP request for hourly Metrorail ridership numbers denied due to a security concern, I was surprised to see this data posted on the WMATA webpage.

My original PARP request is below:

This is in response to your request for data that WMATA currently collects on time-based ridership. Based on our conversation on January 23, 2008, you clarified your request to the amount of customers who ride Metrorail during rush hour and non-rush hour periods. Specifically, you requested ridership data for each line, for 3 typical weekdays during rush hour and non-rush hour by increments of 15 or 30 minutes or an hour. WMATA is not subject to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA),
but we have adopted a Public Access to Records Policy (PARP), which is based on the federal FOIA. Thus, your request for records is being processed pursuant to WMATA’s PARP. Enclosed is a copy of the weekday boardings by station determined by faregate readings for December 1 – 31, 2007.

June 26, 2008 10:04 PM


About perkinsms

I'm an engineer and father interested in transit, parking and economics.
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3 Responses to >Counterexample to PARP denial

  1. Mark says:

    >A ‘security concern’?Huh? What kind of breach of security would be caused by a better understanding of ridership? It is obvious that the peak is at (what a surprise) rush hour. It is obvious that it is “a lot”. What possible risk is there in listing the details?

  2. Mark says:

    >Incidentally, Big Bone Lick State Park has the best idea for public transportation, as listed athttp://quotation-marks.blogspot.com/The sign reads (quotes included):”SHUTTLE””VAN””PARKING””Shawn saw this at Big Bone Lick State Park (really) in KY and writes, “I half-expected to see a monkey on a tricycle roll up and offer people rides, […]””Forget your subways and trolleys and streetcars and monorails! DC should just hire thousands of monkeys to ride tricycles around town! More expensive? Yes. Less efficient? Sure. Slower? Definitely. But would it be worth it? Absolutely!

  3. Michael says:

    >I think WMATA’s concern is that a terrorist or group would use the PARP request to determine where and when was the best location for an attack. Like you said, if you just spent a week hanging out at stations during rush hour, you could figure out the location and time within some margin.

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