Antrim Councillor Alan Lawther said: “These figures are very heartening in that they show that more people are leaving their cars at home and taking the train.
“The Executive must act on this research and look to extending the rail network. Currently rail travel is not option for many local people because of the limited nature of our network.
“Its time to be ambitious about public transport because this not only about improving services, its about protecting the environment.
“More and more people are opening their eyes to the fact that public transport is the way forward and we have to keep up this positive momentum. The best way to keep up this progress is by offering people more frequent trains and a wider network.”