From Portland Afoot
The MAX, or Metropolitan Area Express, is the light rail system for the Portland metropolitan area. It's operated by TriMet, the same agency that operates the local bus lines, paratransit, streetcar and tram.
In all, construction costs on the full system have added up to $2.8 billion in 2010 dollars, with the Orange Line extension to Milwaukie poised to add another $1.5 billion to the total when it opens in 2015.
 MAX lines
- The 50-station Blue Line from Hillsboro to Gresham, opened 1986.
- The 29-station Red Line from the Portland Airport to Beaverton, opened 2001.
- The 22-station Yellow Line from the Expo Center in North Portland to Portland State University in Southwest Portland, opened 2004.
- The 28-station Green Line from Clackamas to Portland State University, opened 2009.
 Fares on MAX
Fares are required on MAX, but on most of the system the requirement is enforced only by fare enforcement officers who conduct random checks of the trains. This honor system leads to fare-jumping by people who think they will not get caught.
 Bikes on MAX
However, TriMet does not allow bicycle trailers, tandems, three-wheeled bikes, or recumbents larger than a standard bike.
Bicycle trailers in particular can become a problem if, as happens from time to time, a parent becomes separated from his or her child while trying to board.
"If a passenger gets off the train, there is no way to know they intend to get back on." TriMet Bicycle Coordinator Colin Maher wrote in May 2011, after one such incident.
 TriMet's busiest MAX stations
Portland's 10 busiest MAX stations, in combined ons and offs per stop daily, are (as of fall 2010):
- southbound Gateway/NE 99th Ave Transit Center: 8,027
- northbound Gateway/NE 99th Ave Transit Center: 6,825
- eastbound Pioneer Square South MAX station: 6,679
- eastbound Lloyd Center/NE 11th Ave MAX station, 6,554
- westbound Lloyd Center/NE 11th Ave MAX station 6,277
- northbound Beaverton Transit Center: 6,110
- westbound Pioneer Square North MAX station: 5,530
- eastbound Rose Quarter Transit Center: 5,119
- southbound Pioneer Place/SW 5th Ave MAX station: 5,050
- soutbhound PSU/SW 5th & Mill St MAX station: 4,990
However, if all four Pioneer Courthouse Square MAX stops and all four Rose Quarter stops were counted together, Pioneer Courthouse Square would be TriMet's busiest with 21,827 ons or offs, followed by Gateway with 14,852, then Rose Quarter with 13,647.
For full data, see our list of ons and offs at every TriMet stop. Data provided by TriMet, May 2011.
"I used to read him these picture books and there was a character - I think he’s a rabbit - his name was Max," Frane told the newspaper. “The ad agency had a list of criteria. The name had to be simple, had to be friendly. I was playing around with acronyms. Max just seemed like a really friendly name."
For winning the contest, Frane got the cash equivalent of a TriMet annual pass, about $400. Frane put it toward a down payment on his house, the Tribune reported.
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