City embarks on next steps for 2018 BOLT Service Level Review

Council endorsed a new governance body to investigate alternative models.

At their May 28, 2018, regular meeting Council accepted Burman University’s student UPass proposal and endorsed the establishment of a governance body to investigate alternative public transit models.

“Based on Council’s direction, we are working with Burman University to develop agreement terms for their student bus pas proposal,” said Acting Chief Administrative Officer Brenda Vaughan. “We are also reaching out to our partners to establish a regional transit governance committee, to explore opportunities for improving the reach and usability of the current service, and examine different options to provide effective, efficient transit service to area residents.”

The planned governance committee will provide input from the partner communities’ respective councils, administrations, stakeholders and the public-at-large. The group’s discussion will focus on ways to improve ridership and cost recovery, provide valuable insight into issues beyond regular operational concerns, and establish key performance measures for the service.

Burman University’s proposal includes a three-year commitment for a low-cost universal pass for each student in exchange for additional bus service tailored to the school’s needs. Service changes include an additional Monday to Friday evening trip, Sunday charter service, and cancellation of the current Saturday service.

“The proposed partnership with Burman University will positively impact cost recovery efforts, thereby bolstering service viability,” said Community Economic Development Manager Guy Lapointe. “It also promotes greater connection between Burman University and the City of Lacombe, which long has been a strategic priority of Council.”

BOLT Transit was launched on August 26, 2014, to fill a service need created by the departure of Greyhound Canada from Lacombe. The regional partnership is cost-shared equally by the City of Lacombe and Town of Blackfalds.

The City of Red Deer (through Red Deer Transit) operates the service.

-Submitted by the City of Lacombe

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