With our low population density and vehicle dependent lifestyle, the delivery of an efficient and cost-effective transit service in Regina is an ongoing challenge.
Over the last 25 years or so, the pressure placed on Regina Transit to serve ever more geographically spread out subdivisions without a significant boost in the overall transit budget has generally resulted in a decline in frequency and directness of service. Buses after 9 p.m. and on Sunday, for instance, only run once an hour; while route amalgamations over the years have typically resulted in “scenic tour” type routes that meander all over hell’s half acre before delivering passengers to desired locations like the downtown, university and outlying malls.
Awhile back, the city undertook a transit study to determine how service could be improved. With business activity in the downtown increasing, so that the downtown workforce is expected to grow by 5000 in the next few years, it’s imperative that transit use rise beyond its traditional five per cent or so of the population to prevent even more gridlock and parking chaos than already exists in the downtown and surrounding neighbourhoods during peak traffic periods.
I’m not sure if the transit study has been completed, but Friday morning at 10 a.m. a press conference is being held to discuss proposed changes to Regina’s transit system. The press conference is at the Regina Transit Operations Centre at 333 Winnipeg St., and will feature a presentation by the Manager of Business Development for Regina Transit Nathan Luhning. Not sure if anyone from our office will be able to make it to the briefing, but at some point tomorrow we’ll have additional information.