Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, announced the federal, provincial and local governments in B.C. will be contributing $136 million to five transit projects across B.C. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)

UPDATED: $136M in transit funding coming to B.C.

The announcement was made at the BC Transit yard in Langford on Friday morning

The federal government announced that more than $136 million in joint funding will be coming to the province for five transit projects across B.C.

The Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, Patty Hajdu, made the announcement at the BC Transit yard in Langford Friday morning.

“We know that as we make these investments in infrastructure, we’re starting to see a return on investment,” Hajdu said. “First of all it’s getting people back to work…but also it’s making things easier for our citizens…to get to where they need to go.”

READ MORE: BC Transit spends over $600,000 on new Victoria buses

The five transit projects will involve adding 118 new buses to the BC transit fleet, refurbishing existing buses, introducing on-board cashless fare and GPS tracking technologies to 790 buses, building 100 new transit shelters and purchasing generators for transit facilities in Whistler, Kamloops and Nanaimo so service can continue during power failures.

“We know people will take public transit when they can get from point A to point B in an efficient and reliable way,” Hajdu said.

The federal government is contributing $60 million to the project with the province matching the dollar amount.

“We have a very strong mandate in our government to make sure we are giving people options for transit,” said Lana Popham, B.C. Minister of Agriculture and MLA for Saanich South.

Local governments will also be contributing funding to the projects, bringing the investment amount to around $136 million.

One of the new technologies being added to buses is the ability for individuals to check when buses are available or arriving using their smartphones. The technology has already been implemented in Nanaimo, Comox Valley, Whistler, Squamish and Kamloops. The next two cities receiving it will be Kamloops and Victoria.

READ MORE: BC Transit tests second electric bus on Victoria streets

“It’s making the ride experience easier for our customers,” said Aaron Lamb, vice president of asset management for BC Transit.

There will also be cashless options for payment using smartphones or cards added to buses.

New buses with GPS and cashless fares can be expected to roll out in the late summer or fall of 2019. Bus shelters will be coming out right away, Lamb said.

“We know that efficient public transit systems are one of the ways that citizens count on us,” Hajdu said. “It enhances productivity, it enhances quality of life and is a key component in our other agenda which is protecting the environment.”

shalu.mehta@goldstreamgazette.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Rio Tinto responds to U.S. aluminum import tariffs

The tariffs were imposed by President Donald Trump Aug. 6

Black bear spotted at Christy Park in Terrace

Bear could be the same individual spotted on the bench recently

Coastal GasLink breaks ground on meter station in Kitimat

Meter station marks final point on pipeline that stretches from Northeast B.C.

Signs of the times: Terrace sign makers’ businesses evolve during COVID-19 pandemic

Scaife Signs and Silvertip Promotions & Signs Inc. created COVID-19 related materials in Terrace

New statue placed at George Little Park in Terrace

Kermode bear cub to commemorate Terrace Kinsmen’s contribution to the park’s renovations

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

VIDEO: Internet famous Yukon-based bhangra dancer explores Vancouver Island

Gurdeep Pandher spreads joy through dance, forms cross-cultural connections amid pandemic

Unofficial holidays: the weird and wonderful things people celebrate around the world

On any given day of the year, there are several strange, silly or serious holidays to observe

Moving on: Tanev scores 11 seconds into OT as Canucks oust Wild

Vancouver beats Minnesota 5-4 to move into first round of NHL playoffs

Gene editing debate takes root with organic broccoli, new UBC research shows

Broccoli is one of the best-known vegetables with origins in this scientific haze

VIDEO: U.S. Air Force pilot does fly-by for B.C. son amid COVID border separation

Sky-high father-son visit plays out over White Rock Pier

3 Vancouver police officers test positive for COVID after responding to large party

Union president says other officers are self-isolating due to possible exposure

New mothers with COVID-19 should still breastfeed: Canada’s top doctor

Dr. Theresa Tam made the recommendation during World Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

Most Read