Greyhound cuts won’t speed transit service

While Greyhound wants to cut its service in the region, B.C. Transit is not rushing to replace the bus with a regional transit service.

While Greyhound wants to cut its service in the South Okanagan, B.C. Transit is not rushing to replace the bus with a regional transit service.

The municipality has been working to bring a regional service to the area for several years. Although Summerland now has transit bus shelters in place, nothing more than a rudimentary service is in place.

“We have to learn more,” Summerland Mayor Janice Perrino said. “We have to look at what the costs are.”

Greyhound has announced it is cutting its service because of low ridership.

Instead of offering four buses in each direction each day, the proposed cuts will bring the service to two buses each direction each day.

Perrino said the low ridership should be a concern.

“If Greyhound’s doing that badly, will it be that bad for B.C. Transit?” she asked.

Greyhound uses 54-passenger buses for all its routes, including the Summerland to Penticton route. The buses do not reach capacity. The least used of the buses averages 3.9 passengers.

Perrino said a regional service must be planned carefully to ensure people will use it.

She said potential passengers will not use a service if it is a significant inconvenience to them.

“We need to have it at least four to six times a day,” she said.