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BC Transit (Victoria Regional Transit System) news and issues


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#41 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 13 September 2006 - 01:15 PM

It shouldnt be too hard for them to figure out that maybe there should be an express shuttle from UVIC/Camosun to downtown.


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#42 Mike K.

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Posted 13 September 2006 - 07:55 PM


It shouldnt be too hard for them to figure out that maybe there should be an express shuttle from UVIC/Camosun to downtown.


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Unfortunatley in this town transit doesn't operate by such principles. They'd rather run an almost empty bus through Fairfield then consider expanding inner-city shuttles or inner-city express routes.

Btw, just for the record, I was passed by three 14s in a row while waiting for the bus up at UVic's last outbound bus stop. Three. I stood there, along with a growing pool of peeps, for over 45 minutes after my class let out at 6PM. Actually the whole situation was quite comical to most. One driver even stopped and apologized because he realized that his bus wasn't the first to pass up students.

Was it an anomaly? Nope. It happened almost every night for until transit began sending more buses for that general time. I can't blame the transit planners as sometimes class schedules make for unique ridership situations (they can't plan for popular classes coinciding with certain travel demands), but the whole experience convinced me to stop taking the bus and grab for the keys to get to class.

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#43 Scaper

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Posted 13 September 2006 - 08:43 PM

Do people still ride the buses these days?

#44 aastra

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Posted 13 September 2006 - 08:59 PM

I saw some packed buses the last time I was over there.

#45 G-Man

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Posted 14 September 2006 - 08:28 AM

Yes people ride the bus quite a bit to UVic. I take the bus up there if I have to rather than drive especially if it is an off-peak time.

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#46 Jada

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Posted 14 September 2006 - 09:23 AM

I know one of the Victoria transit planners personnally, and I she tells me her job is very stressful.

From what I can tell, transit cant afford to run more buses with more drivers, but instead they make the current drivers run more routes in a shift, narrowing the time margins between stops, and increasing the amount of runs a driver will make in one shift.

#47 Galvanized

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 10:47 AM

BUS DRIVER PUNCHED IN NOSE

Oct 27, 2006

A B-C TRANSIT DRIVER HAS BEEN ASSAULTED AFTER A VIOLENT INCIDENT ON A BUS IN SAANICH TONIGHT.

AROUND 7:15 TWO MEN GOT ON A U-VIC BOUND BUS NEAR QUADRA AND MCKENZIE. THE BUS DRIVER THEN NOTICED ONE OF THE MEN WAS DRINKING BEER. HE TOLD THEM TO LEAVE, BUT ON THEIR WAY OUT, ONE OF THE SUSPECTS PUNCHED THE DRIVER IN THE NOSE.

WHILE WALKING AWAY THE SUSPECT, WHO POLICE BELIEVE IS NAMED 'TOM', SMASHED THREE BUS WINDOWS.

SAANICH POLICE ARE LOOKING FOR TWO MEN; 'TOM' IS DESCRIBED AS ABOUT 20 YEARS OLD, 6'0'', WITH LIGHT BROWN SHORT SPIKY HAIR, WEARING A SHIRT WITH 'CHEAP AND DIRTY' IN WHITE LETTERING.

THE SECOND SUSPECT IS ALSO IN HIS EARLY 20'S, WITH A MEDIUM BUILD AND ACNE. HE WAS WEARING A BLUE BALL CAP, T-SHIRT AND JEANS. ANYONE WITH INFORMATION IS ASKED TO CALL SAANICH POLICE.

- NIKKI EWANYSHYN CFAX 1070
Past President of Victoria's Flâneur Union Local 1862

#48 Mike K.

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 03:58 PM

I don't understand why bus drivers or cab drivers aren't protected by plexiglass cages.

I've seen bus drivers in harms way plenty of times yet nothing is done about it.

Btw, in Vancouver, late-night bus routes have transit security following each bus to protect drivers. I think that's a good idea and perhaps should be used on some of the more boistrous routes here.

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#49 Holden West

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 05:09 PM

While cages, bars, screens and glass may protect drivers from assault, there is some evidence to suggest that these isolating devices may actually encourage aggressive behaviour in potentially violent passengers.
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#50 bcradio

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 05:34 PM

I would think that would be the case too. What needs to happen is that day to day folks need to experience what's going on the busses at night. Try any evening on the 6 route through Esquimalt. Or the UVIC to downtown on a Thursday night. People are acting insane on board, and its getting worse.

I hope these punks are arrested and given some serious time.

While cages, bars, screens and glass may protect drivers from assault, there is some evidence to suggest that these isolating devices may actually encourage aggressive behaviour in potentially violent passengers.



#51 Walter Moar

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Posted 30 October 2006 - 11:50 AM

The TC (canada.com) site says that the guy turned himself in (registration required to read the article, but that's the gist of the teaser).

#52 aastra

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Posted 30 October 2006 - 01:14 PM

I thought the taxi drivers had already called for dividers/separation between themselves and their passengers but the city nixed the idea because it would send the wrong message to tourists? Didn't this all come out in an article in the TC maybe a year or so ago? Did I imagine it?

#53 aastra

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Posted 30 October 2006 - 01:16 PM

The wrong message being, "Taxi drivers in Victoria bleed when stuck by sharp objects."

#54 Mike K.

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 10:01 AM

Bus fares set to rise by 25 cents, taxes by $20
BY SANDRA MCCULLOCH Times Colonist staff
Rising fuel and maintenance costs could boost B.C.

Transit fares by 25 cents and the typical property taxes of Greater Victoria residents by up to $20 next year.
The hikes were among options discussed yesterday by the Victoria Regional Transit Commission as it looked at how it would meet its obligations over the next five years.
The cost of monthly passes was increased by $5 in 2004 to $65 while cash fares have remained stable at $2 since 2001.
“We’ve been challenged already by fuel prices, maintenance costs for an aging fleet, benefits costs for an aging workforce and so we’re going to have to look at a fare increase or a property tax or a combination of the two to fund transit service next year,” Ron Drolet, senior vice-president of B.C. Transit, said following the meeting.
Currently, the typical homeowner pays $53.50 in taxes for transit service. An increase of about $9 to $20 and a onezone fare hike of 25 cents “would probably sustain the transit system in both today’s service and the improvements we’re looking at for up to three years and still bring up our fares up to near the average for Canadian transit systems of this size,” Drolet said.
A decision on the increases will be made at next month’s meeting of the commission. If it is implemented, the fare hike would take effect on April 1, 2007.
Transit is also considering investing $72 million of its own funds and federal subsidies in “a moderately ambitious plan” of expansion and improvements to service quality and frequency, said Drolet. Also on the horizon is the introduction of “bus-based rapid-transit elements” over the next five years.
“That covers the range of things from express buses all the way up to exclusive bus lanes for transit,” said Drolet.
The federal government announced yesterday it is spending $37 million to boost security on urban transit systems in six major centres — but not in Greater Victoria. Drolet said he’s not surprised, but believes similar funding will come down the line.
Also at the meeting, several North Saanich and Sidney residents voiced displeasure over changes in transit service to downtown. Drolet said the problem stems from a new stop at Royal Oak that delays Victoria-bound commuters by about 10 minutes.
“There’s certainly frustration with that,” he acknowledged.
“What we’ve done ... is increase the frequency of that regional routing and give people many more options to go from the Peninsula to downtown. Eventually we’ll end up with a series of express routes on their own alignments that will make some of those trips quicker.”
But until then, he said, the routes are set, and there aren’t any more buses to add.
Meanwhile, a provincial study on the possible link between transit buses in Greater Victoria and the Cowichan Valley should be complete by Christmas.

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#55 Galvanized

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 11:52 PM

N E W S R E L E A S E

Victoria Regional Transit System

PROPOSED PUBLIC TRANSIT FUNDING OPTIONS BCT 6403

NOVEMBER 14, 2006: VICTORIA –– The Victoria Regional Transit Commission is reviewing fare
and taxation options to improve transit service in the next three years. The Commission has invited
residents to comment on these local funding options.
BC Transit staff presented two Options for the Commission’s consideration at today’s Commission
meeting. Option 1 offers incremental increases to fares and property taxes each year for the next
three years. Option 2 offers higher increases in 2007 with no further increases for the following
two years.
These fare and taxation increases will allow transit service to be expanded to accommodate the
growing demand for public transit in the Greater Victoria region. Funding to purchase additional
buses and construct transit facilities will be secured through senior government programs.
September 2007:
• Express bus service to Langford in peak hours including five minute frequency; fewer stops
• local connecting neighbourhood service will double
• Extra buses on major corridors
• Increased weekend service
• handyDART service increases
• Bus fleet would increase by ten 40-foot buses and eight community buses
September 2008:
• Express bus to Sidney in peak hours including 7 minute service frequency from downtown,
15 minute frequency to Saanichton and 15 minute frequency to McTavish via Pat Bay.
• local connecting bus service will double
• Increased service on major corridors
• Increased weekend service
• handyDART service increases
• Bus fleet would increase by 16 conventional buses and 10 community buses
The fare and property taxes are required for the Victoria Regional Transit Commission to fund its
share of the $74 million cost of running the transit system.
The system carried over 21 million passengers last year, a five percent increase. On a typical
weekday, transit now boards more than 90,000 passengers.
The last full fare increase was in July, 1997. An increase in 2001 only affected monthly and other
pass products. Tickets, cash fares and daypasses remained the same. In 2004, an increase to
monthly passes was implemented.
- 30 –
CONTACT: Ron Drolet – 995-5610 (direct) 216-1196 (
Past President of Victoria's Flâneur Union Local 1862

#56 Mike K.

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 11:56 PM

Am I reading that right, or will "local connecting bus service" double twice, once in 2007 and once in 2008? Or does it imply that it will double once in the western communities and once in the Saanich Peninsula? Otherwise we're looking at an increase of over 400% in local connecting service :smt017

Btw, how many buses are currently in service here?

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#57 Galvanized

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 11:58 PM

^211 conventional. In 2007 Langford will double then in 2008 Saan Pen will double.
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#58 Mike K.

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 11:58 PM

Cool, thanks.

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#59 Galvanized

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 12:02 AM

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release

2006TRAN0039-001387

Nov. 15, 2006


Ministry of Transportation

Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources

Ministry of Environment

$10M FOR FIRST STAGE OF HYDROGEN HIGHWAY DEVELOPMENT

VICTORIA – The Province has committed $10 million to the first phase of developing the world’s first fleet of hydrogen buses, supporting the Hydrogen Highway project, announced Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon, Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources Minister Richard Neufeld and Environment Minister Barry Penner today.

“This government is committed to developing the hydrogen highway as a viable transportation option,” said Falcon. “This important first step demonstrates our leadership in improving our transportation infrastructure to meet the needs of the future.”

“Developing hydrogen buses in British Columbia will reinforce our position as a leader in the development of alternative energy projects,” said Neufeld.

“Hydrogen buses will improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and position British Columbia to realize our goal of leading the world in sustainable environmental management,” said Penner.

BC Transit will issue a Request for Proposals today that calls for the development of a prototype hydrogen fuel cell bus for commercial use. The ultimate goal of the project is to demonstrate for the first time the integration of hydrogen fuel cell buses into the regular operational service of an urban transit system, allowing monitoring of operations, maintenance and fuelling over a sustained period.

Hydrogen fuel cell-powered vehicles produce no smog-creating emissions, and no greenhouse gas emissions, and can be twice as efficient as internal combustion engines. Life cycle costs for fuel cell buses once they become commercially available are expected to be lower than existing internal combustion engine technology. These buses will reinforce British Columbia’s commitment to hydrogen and fuel cell development as a zero-emission transportation solution.

BC Transit is the provincial Crown Corporation charged with the delivery of public transit throughout British Columbia outside Greater Vancouver. BC Transit has been at the forefront of Canadian and North American urban transit systems in identifying and adopting innovative technology and alternate fuels to maximize efficiency and reduce harmful emissions and greenhouse gases.

-30-
Past President of Victoria's Flâneur Union Local 1862

#60 Mike K.

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 12:07 AM

Falcon is making it sound like hydrogen fuel cell buses are something new, but Vancouver used several prototypes in the mid-90s.

The hydrogen highway, btw, is a joint project with west coast states and southern BC to develop hydrogen gas stations along a west coast highway to allow hydrogen vehicles to travel the entire coast.

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