Walking, using a bike, taking a bus or driving the car if you must: all items on the Integrated Mobility Advisory Committee.

News 100 greenBy Pepper Parr

November 27th, 2019

BURLINGTON, ON

 

There are changes taking place within the transit service and in the way people are using transit.

Three of the new buses are now part of the fleet bringing it to 59 buses that require 111 operators.

The new grid system is in place and people are getting used to the improved connectivity that is seeing an increase in the number of connections between the routes.

Grid routes

It took close to a decade for the transit people to come up with a grid system. Fine tuning and tweaking is being done now.

Director of Transit, Sue Connors, is now well into applying her years of transit experience to Burlington’s situation. It was a mess before she arrived. The decision to hire her was one of the best former city manager James Ridge made.

Connor is in the process of putting together a five year Business Plan and at the same time readying the city for electric buses. She has pointed out that making the decision to go electric (which is really a given) is the easy part. Training staff and hiring mechanics who can keep the buses going is what will take time.

Edmonton is doing a pilot that everyone is watching: if the electric bus can work in the Edmonton environment they will work almost everywhere.

The expectation is that Oakville will be the first community in the Halton Region to start using electric buses.

bus - late

If a bus is late – it can signal a traffic light and will be given priority to run through the intersection. System is being piloted on Fairview

Traffic lights technology– or what is often called “priority transit signals” are going to be piloted along Fairview. The system will know if a bus is on time – if it isn’t, traffic lights will give the bus priority so that it can get caught up. If bus service is going to get people where they want to go – connections between routes will be critical.

The GO train system allows dogs on their equipment; Burlington doesn’t. The transit people are working on sorting out that problem.

An interesting bit of information came to the surface during the Integrated Mobility Advisory meeting. The city is measuring almost everything that moves in the city. They want to know where people walk; where they bike, how and when they use transit; we will all know how often cars are used.

Portal along Elgin promenade

The Elgin Promenade begins at Brant and runs east.

The Elgin promenade which stretches from Brant Street east to Pearl, is part of a bigger trail system that gets you to the canal in the west and eventually all the way to the Oakville border. A traffic counter has been installed along the Promenade – it measure how many people walk by – a surprising 500 people each day. People are out walking.

Using bikes on city streets has its own set of problems. The bike lane on Maple was made a little wider but unfortunately had to end at Lockhart – a block or two from Lakeshore – there just wasn’t room enough for the bike lane.

That cut-off prevents people from cycling along to Lakeshore Road and through the Beachway to the canal or into Spencer Smith Park.

A problem that has to be worked on.

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2 comments to Walking, using a bike, taking a bus or driving the car if you must: all items on the Integrated Mobility Advisory Committee.

  • Joy H.

    @Eve St. Clair. You are absolutely wrong. Just because you have 3 cars and live in a big house. People need transit. The more people that takes transit, and better the traffic will be. I take the bus at a regular basis and I have a car that stays home.. Burlington is a transit town, it’s like saying Hamilton and Oakville is a not a transit town. The whole GTA is enlarging and transit is required. It’s enjoyable to ride the bus, knowing that you can relax and your in safe hands in a safe vehicle. Go electric Burlington, that’s the way to go. Job well done Burlington.

  • Eve St Clair

    Another fancy named committee that gets nothing resolved except study transportation patterns .Burlington is not a “transit” town nor will never be, why waste money on electric buses etc

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