"The subway is crucial to mobility in the city of New York. Over the last 10 years, ridership increases on the subway have been more than that of all other transit services in the United States combined. It was not always this way."
Between 2005 and 2015, 100% of ridership increase in America's transit was in the New York subway! New York has always been special when it comes to transit, it is the only truly effective transit system in the US, and that is because of the incredible density of jobs in a very small area of Manhattan. No other city in America has this necessary element which allows transit to be effective.
"The New York City subway accounts carries nearly 2.5 times the annual ridership of the other nine largest metro systems in the nation combined (Figure 2). This is 10 times that of Washington’s Metro, which is losing ridership despite strong population growth , probably partly due to safety concerns (see America’s Subway: America’s Embarrassment?). Things have gotten so bad in Washington that the federal government has threatened to close the system (See: Feds Forced to Set Priorities for Washington Subway)."
This will only continue, and likely increase.
"With these gains, the New York City Subway's share of national transit ridership has risen from less than one of each five riders (18 percent) in 2005 to more than one in four (26 percent) in 2015. This drove the New York City metropolitan areas share of all national transit ridership from 30 percent in 2005 to over 37 percent in 2015.
Subway ridership dominates transit in the New York City metropolitan area as well, at 67 percent. Other New York City oriented transit services, including services that operate within the city exclusively and those that principally carry commuters in and out of the city account for 28 percent of the ridership. This includes the commuter rail systems (Long Island Railroad, Metro-North Railroad and New Jersey Transit) and the Metro from New Jersey (PATH) have experienced ridership increases of approximately 15 percent over last decade (Note 2)."
The subway, and transit more generally is uniquely suited to transport New Yorkers, but not Americans in other cities.
The self drive car combined with share-ride vehicles, share-ride commute apps, share-ride carpool apps, share-ride student bus apps, and others will all deeply damage, or replace transit in much of the rest of the country. These changes will take more than a decade to come to complete, but they will come, and they will change the world of transit by providing everyone with the gold standard: door to door, safe, efficient, low cost, comfortable transportation.