Abbotsford’s three GoLine bus routes may be altered next year to hopefully boost efficiencies and ridership.
GoLine routes running from UFV and McKee Road are each proposed to be extended all the way to HighStreet, according to a draft of Abbotsford’s new Transportation Master Plan, which will go before council in the weeks to come. Meanwhile, the route running north from from Huntingdon will stop in the Historic Downtown, but bypass the South Fraser Way malls and end in Clearbrook.
The changes won’t require any new resources and would be part of the first of three phases of transit improvements. After the 2019 tweaks to routes, significant increases in service levels are planned between 2020 and 2024 as Abbotsford’s new transit depot comes on line. That facility will allow Abbotsford to boost the number of buses it uses considerably; the city’s current Riverside Road depot is at capacity.
The City of Abbotsford is hosting an open house regarding the draft master plan for transportation and transit, as well as other new plans for its utility systems, on April 24 from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Clearbrook Library.
The plan envisions the construction a new $2 million bus hub in the historic downtown around 2022, with improvements to hubs at UFV, HighStreet and Whatcom taking place over the next decade. The Bourquin Exchange is also planned to be phased out.
Over the long-term, the plan suggests the city should develop a “more comprehensive plan” for the a “rapid transit corridor” linking UFV with the historic downtown, the South Fraser Way Malls and HighStreet. It also suggests considering “opportunities for LRT.”
But the first changes will be those tweaks to the city’s core bus routes.
Here is how they might change:
Route 1: Currently McKee – Blueridge GoLine
This route currently runs from the neighbourhoods on the western flanks of Sumas Mountain through the Historic Downtown, down Bevan Avenue, and past Mill Lake to the Bourquin Exchange. From there it goes down South Fraser Way to Clearbrook, before jogging north to the Blueridge neighbourhoods. Its heads south down Ridgeview, Ponderosa, Upper Maclure and Southern, before heading back north on Townline, from where it runs in the opposite direction back towards central Abbotsford..
The proposed changes (see map below) would add bus stops in the area around Abbotsford Christian School. From there, its route would remain mostly the same. But on Townline Hill, the bus would omit Southern Drive. And instead of heading back east once it reached the intersection of Townline Road and Blueridge, it would continue west to the route’s terminus at HighStreet.
Route 2: Currently HighStreet – Huntingdon
The Number 2 bus currently runs from HighStreet to Sumas Shopping Centre and Huntingdon. At its western end, it passes the Blueridge Sikh Temple and runs south down Blue Jay, before taking MacLure Road to Clearbrook. It runs past the South Fraser Way malls before heading north on Bourquin Crescent West to George Ferguson Way, from which the bus runs to the historic downtown. From there, the bus runs down McCallum and Marshall, past Walmart and to its easternmost terminus around Huntingdon.
The route has some of the most significant changes (see map below). The eastern portion of the route will remain much the same, but instead of passing the South Fraser Way malls, the bus will head south on Bourquin to the bus exchange, then head back north to George Ferguson Way, from which the route resumes western travel to Clearbrook Road. The route no longer continues past Clearbrook to HighStreet. Instead it ends in a triangle loop via Clearbrook, Peardonville and South Fraser Way. To reach HighStreet, riders would be able to switch buses around the intersection of Clearbrook and Old Yale Road.
Route 3: Currently Clearbrook – UFV
The Number 3 bus currently runs from UFV, north to the historic downtown, and down South Fraser Way to the Bourquin Exchange via Ware. From there, it heads north to George Ferguson Way, then west to Clearbrook Road. Its terminus is a triangle loop that includes Clearbrook, Peardonville and South Fraser Way.
Instead of heading north from the Bourquin Exchange to George Ferguson Way, this route would run in a near-straight line down South Fraser Way, Old Yale Road, and MacLure all the way to HighStreet (see map below).