GRTC Pulse Ridership Continues to Exceed Expectations Three Months In

GRTC Pulse opened its doors to the public on Sunday June 24, 2018, with an incredible 56,952 riders during the first week of service when rides were also free. Now three months into revenue service, ridership has steadily increased since the week after free rides. There are now about 30,000 – 36,000 riders per week. On an average weekday, GRTC Pulse now carries more than 6,000 riders daily, far exceeding and almost doubling the goal of 3,500 daily riders.

Even Sundays are well above expectation. The ridership goal for Sundays (and holidays) is 1,600, but now the Pulse averages between 2,000 – 3,000 riders on Sundays.


The red line on this table reflects the ridership goal, where the blue lines represent actual ridership. Data from June 24, 2018 – September 8, 2018.

Excitement about the new rapid service, coupled with free rides for VCU students, faculty and staff through the VCU-GRTC Pilot Program that began August 1, 2018, continues to support increased ridership on the Pulse. This week, Pulse weekday daytime frequencies increased to every 10 minutes. Pulse service operates until 1AM every night (schedule). The Pulse is GRTC’s busiest route, carrying approximately 20,000 more riders every week than GRTC’s next busiest route the 1A Chamberlayne/Hull/Midlothian.

The fare to ride the Pulse is the same as local routes at $1.50 per ride or $0.75 for reduced fare customers. The Pulse is free to ride for CARE customers. To learn more about the Pulse and explore how to ride this new service, please visit:

GRTC's innovative and groundbreaking project was funded and built in partnership with generous support from the USDOT's TIGER grant program, the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation, the Virginia Department of Transportation, the City of Richmond, and Henrico County.

GRTC Pulse is a modern, high quality, high capacity rapid transit system that serves a 7.6-mile route along Broad Street and Main Street, from Rocketts Landing in the City of Richmond to Willow Lawn in Henrico County. GRTC Pulse is jointly sponsored by Bon Secours Richmond Health System and VCU Health System. The Pulse links the public to many exciting destinations, businesses, services and restaurants.

The service remains in its integration period. With service now underway, drivers, cyclists and pedestrians are encouraged to pay close attention to traffic signage, lane markings and signalization. For everyone’s safety, please do not drive, bike, walk, or skateboard in Bus Only lanes. Bicyclists are welcome to use the Downtown Bus Only lanes between 4th and 14th Sts., and drivers are permitted to make right-turns from these Downtown Bus Only lanes. Please yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. Pedestrians, please do not walk down the median; use sidewalks and marked crosswalks. Remain alert for Pulse buses and bus movements that may be different from neighboring lanes.