A Message from Niagara’s regional government
Posted July 11th, 2017 on Niagara at Large
Niagara, Ontario – Thanks in large part to the feedback and continued support of Niagara’s growing number of transit users, Niagara is set to begin making service improvements and governance changes to prepare for a new region-wide transit system.
The Niagara Region Transit pilot service has been in operation for the past six years.
During that time customer feedback has helped to shape a number of service improvements, such as the enhancement of Routes 40/45 to service the Niagara Outlet Collections in Niagara-on-the-Lake, later hours servicing Brock University and Niagara College, and the realignment of several routes to better integrate with local systems. Ridership has also risen during that time as more and more residents rely on the inter-municipal connections the service provides.
Following unanimous support from all local area municipalities in Niagara for the Region to formally become a transit provider, the second phase of the inter-municipal transit (IMT) project will see the formation of an IMT Steering Committee that will guide and direct the implementation of service enhancements and provide governance for Niagara’s future transit system. The Steering Committee will be composed of elected members of Regional Council and St. Catharines, Welland and Niagara Falls city councils.
A Working Group will also be struck comprising staff from each of Niagara’s 12 area municipalities, tasked with undertaking the work associated with implementation of the service delivery and governance recommendations.
Some of the recommendations that will be worked on for implementation are:
- · Later evening and weekend service
- · More regular service intervals to improve local connections
- · Integrated and innovative fare systems
- · Shared scheduling, maps and online resources
Phase two of the IMT project will also see improvements for Niagara Region Transit, which has begun its transition from a pilot program to a more permanent service.
Work was undertaken by the current transit operators to develop a plan for more seamless, integrated and a future unified inter-municipal transit system and delivered in a comprehensive report titled “Niagara Transit Service Delivery and Governance Strategy.” The report, which was based on comprehensive community consultation, calls for the creation of a consolidated transit service to provide inter-municipal transit service to all of Niagara.
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