At Long Last, A New Consolidated Transit System Has Been Launched In Niagara

A News Release from a now fully merged Niagara Transit Commission and Niagara Region Transit System

Posted January 5th, 2022 on Niagara At Large

(A Brief Foreword from Doug Draper At Niagara At Large –

Well here we finally are in Niagara!

More than 20 years after Waterloo Region which, like Niagara, works with a two-tier system of local and regional municipal councils, amalgamated a  public transit system that proved to be highly successful, Niagara has at long last done the same.

How frustrating it has been for public transit supporters in Niagara over the past two or three decades to watch so many politicians and bureaucrats in Niagara, pandering to parochial interests void of vision for our region’s future, do everything they could to deprive us of a fully-consolidated public transit system.

As the tired old saying goes though, better late than never.

Yet  at this late stage of the game, Niagara’s new, fully consolidated transit system  will also face major  challenges.

For starters, Ontario Premier Doug Ford has made it clear through his announcement and declarations that he is more interested in spending billions of dollars of our tax money building more highways to accomodate cars than he is in public transit.

After more than two decade sof delay, Niagara is finally moving foreward with  one consolidated transit system to serve the whole region.

When Ford gets going on constructing more highways, how much money will be left to invest in and operate  high quality and accessible for all transit systems?

The Ford government is also working to gut urban planning decision making at the regional level so it may be harder for transit operators to work with planners to ensure we are building our towns and cities in ways that assure cost-efficient access to transit.

If the Ford government is going to continue its push to build affordable housing out in the rural lands of the Greenbelt or on Conservation Authority lands it may sell to its friends in the development industry, how much is it going to cost all of us who pay taxes to create bus routes out there for people who may not have cars and probably aren’t living anywhere near the likes of a grocery or pharmacy store?

I am afraid we are soon going to be finding out what a lack of sound urban planning, combined with sprawling residents out into the countryside is going to mean in terms of cost to taxpayers and the possible loss of transit to essential services for those now struggling to have a roof over their head.

  • Doug Draper, Niagara At Large

Now here is the news release about the launch of a consolidated transit system in Niagara –

NIAGARA REGION- On Jan. 1, 2023, Niagara Transit Commission launched a new consolidated transit system in Niagara called Niagara Region Transit.

Niagara Region Transit is the result of an effort from Niagara Region and the 12 local municipalities to connect all of Niagara by combining the existing Niagara Region Transit, Niagara Falls Transit, St. Catharines Transit, Welland Transit and Fort Erie Transit systems into one transit operator.

The new Niagara Region Transit will facilitate better access to jobs and services in Niagara, opening up new options for residents in neighbouring municipalities, and new markets for businesses. In addition, it will provide residents with more sustainable and environmentally-friendly public transit options which will help our local environment by reducing traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions.

Although riders will not experience any changes to bus routes, schedules, On Demand and specialized transit services, they might see a change in fare prices and technology helping to align transit fares and services across Niagara.

Having one transit system will prepare Niagara for the future, by making sure our transit options can scale up to meet the needs of our growing population and job market as well as support the expansion and connectivity of GO Transit service to the region.

To learn more about the new consolidated transit system in Niagara, please visit
nrtransit.ca.

Quote

“One goal of our new consolidated transit system in Niagara is to make it easier for riders to connect between towns and cities by using a common fare structure. Having new harmonized fares and a new mobile option to pay for trips provides our riders with an easy, consistent way of using transit in Niagara making us one step closer to achieving our commitment of enhancing transit services for all users.” – Carla Stout, General Manager, Niagara Transit Commission

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

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One response to “At Long Last, A New Consolidated Transit System Has Been Launched In Niagara

  1. I wouldn’t make the mistake of saying Ford is interested in building “affordable” housing on the Greenbelt or Conservation lands because there’s absolutely no guarantees that any of the housing built there will be “affordable.” There’s no public dollars committed for such. If anything, I’d bet that not one unit built will actually be affordable!

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