Just shy of 75 per cent of buses on the routes 1, 2 and 3 stayed on time over the summer.                                File photo

Just shy of 75 per cent of buses on the routes 1, 2 and 3 stayed on time over the summer. File photo

Abbotsford buses more reliable after summer service upgrades, BC Transit says

More buses are on time, but some are still forced to bypass riders to keep to schedule

Buses along Abbotsford’s busiest transit routes have been better at keeping to their schedules since changes to the system were made at the start of the summer.

BC Transit officials told the city’s transportation advisory committee that just shy of 75 per cent of buses on the routes 1, 2 and 3 stayed on time over the summer. That’s well up from 59 per cent the previous year and follows tweaks to the three bus lines’ routes at the start of July.

The moves saw BC Transit re-allocate some buses from fringe areas of the city to the three key east-west connecting routes.

“Overall, we’ve had a positive response from the community,” senior transit planner Levi Megenbir told the committee.

Challenges still exist, Megenbir said, and reductions in service in certain outlying areas have generated some complaints.

Those three routes have continued to see some buses by-pass waiting riders, a problem that has plagued the system in recent years. Officials hope that four new buses on their way this January will further improve service levels.

The addition of 10,000 annual service levels will see increased weekday and weekend services on routes 1, 2 and 3, along with minor improvements on the Sumas Mountain Route 7, one of those lines that saw cuts this summer.

BC Transit is starting work on several other initiatives, including a study looking at the potential design and cost of creating five new transit exchanges. Those five exchanges would be spread around the city, with sites eyed at Highstreet, in Clearbrook, near the Whatcom Road highway interchange, at the University of the Fraser Valley, and in the historic downtown.

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