B.C. Transit purchasing new buses, launching service review for Greater Victoria

Review will look at ridership, possible expansion options, infrastructure changes

B.C. Transit has the green light to purchase two new conventional buses ahead of plans to review and possibly expand Greater Victoria’s transit service.

The addition to the fleet for 2013-14, approved Tuesday by the Victoria Regional Transit Commission, would potentially add 5,000 hours annually to the busing schedule.

The buses will be ordered in July, and will arrive as early as February 2013. Each will cost about $500,000.

Commission members expressed unease about approving the purchase without knowing the full details of future service expansion plans.

But those details won’t be available until information comes back from the upcoming service review, as well as from a three-year service and financial strategy, which will get underway this summer.

Due to the time it takes to acquire a new bus, Mike Davis, B.C. Transit chief operating officer said a delay in purchasing new buses would mean a delay in freeing up buses during rush hour.

The new vehicles could help address the service gap, said commission member, Victoria Coun. Marianne Alto.

“I just can’t imagine that a year from now we’re not going to be in a position to use two buses,” she said.

Through the development of a three-year service and financial strategy, B.C. Transit will look at creating a fare strategy, three-year base budgets, expansion scenarios and related infrastructure investments. A draft report will be presented to the commission in September.

Staff are also starting a 20-month service review that will analyze ridership and ultimately identify improvements to the transit service, potential service expansions and infrastructure options. The Crown corporation hasn’t conducted a service review in 10 years in Greater Victoria.

Approved minor service review recommendations, such as scheduling changes, could come into effect as early as fall 2013.

At Tuesday’s meeting, commission members also had the option of not purchasing any buses, or purchasing four new vehicles that would boost annual service levels by 10,000 hours.

emccracken@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Free firework safety courses coming to the West Shore right before Halloween

No permit? You could be fined anywhere between $100 and $10,000

Fairfield-Gonzales residents aim to establish senior care phone line

The Fairfield-Gonzales Village would allow seniors living alone to have a direct line to resources

Vendors open doors to new futures at Black Press Extreme Education & Career Fair

More tham two dozen employers, educators signed on for Victoria event

Persons Day to be marked with literary readings in Sidney

Peninsula authors to read from their new books relating to women and courageous journeys, Oct. 18

Antimatter 2019: The best in experimental media art comes to Victoria

22nd annual festival of film, performance art and more biggest ever – 120 artists, 30 countries

VIDEO: Greater Victoria, here’s the news you missed this weekend

Dog killed in alleged hit and run, Goodlife Marathon takes over city and more

‘Save the kids!’ Dorian survivor tells the harrowing story of his Canadian wife’s death

Family held a funeral and placed Alishia Liolli’s remains in a niche at a cemetery in Windsor, Ont.

Okanagan woman, 91, votes at advance polls despite broken hip, shoulder and wrist

Angela Maynard has voted in almost every election during her lifetime

Heiltsuk Nation open first Big House in 120 years in northern B.C.

Opening means the community now has an appropriate space for spiritual and ceremonial events

Singh says NDP would form coalition with the Liberals to stop Tories

Singh was in a Liberal-held riding Sunday afternoon in Surrey where he was pressed about his post-election intentions

‘My heart goes out to the mother’: B.C. dad reacts to stabbing death of Ontario boy

Carson Crimeni, who was also 14, was bullied relentlessly, his dad says

The one with the ‘Friends’ photoshoot: Kelowna group recreates TV show intro

A friend’s departure prompted them to create something that really says, “I’ll be there for you”

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Share crash data, private insurers tell David Eby, ICBC

B.C. monopoly makes drivers retrieve their own records

Most Read