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Aging transit systems grapple with repair backlog

Aging transit systems attracting more riders, but struggle with outdated equipment, facilities By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) ' Americans are turning to trains and buses to get around in greater numbers than ever before, but the aging trains and buses they're riding face an $80 billion maintenance backlog that jeopardizes service just when it's most in demand.

Pain at the gas pump and the sluggish economic recovery are part of the reason for increased ridership, along with a migration of young adults to cities and new technology that makes transit faster and friendlier. The number of transit trips over a 12-month period will likely set a new record later this month or next, say Federal Transit Administration officials.

But decades of deferred repairs and modernization projects have many transit agencies scrambling to keep trains and buses in operation.

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