MARTA: Things to know about the Atlanta transit agency

A MARTA rail rain rolls on a line in the center of Georgia 400 near Sandy Springs. (AJC file)

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A MARTA rail rain rolls on a line in the center of Georgia 400 near Sandy Springs. (AJC file)

MARTA, the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, marked 40 years of rail service in 2019. The metro Atlanta transit agency provides rail and bus service in DeKalb and Fulton counties, including the city of Atlanta, with plans to expand into Clayton County.

MARTA was proposed by an act of the Georgia Legislature in 1965. Voters in DeKalb and Fulton counties approved a 1% percent sales tax to fund MARTA operations in 1971, with construction of the rail system beginning in 1975.

Ridership: People take 488,000 MARTA trips a day. Since the service began in 1979, it has carried more than 5 billion riders. It’s the eighth-largest system in the country.

The buses: Nearly 550 MARTA buses serve 101 routes along 1,439 miles of road.

The trains: Rail lines span 48.1 miles and carry 338 rail cars through 38 stations.