An agreement bringing scheduled transit service into Summerland has been needed for many years, but a bus service by itself is not good enough.
The system needs to be planned and scheduled so it can meet the needs of those who need it the most.
For this reason, there are some concerns about the system which has been proposed for the community.
It is much better than the existing paratransit service, but still far from ideal.
The proposed system offers four trips to Penticton each weekday. This is a good start, but when the buses run is just as important as the frequency.
Unless the service allows commuters to ride to and from Penticton in time for work each day, it cannot meet the needs of a large number of potential riders.
Unless it has evening service, it will not help the youths who want to go to Penticton for various activities.
Since the schedule has not yet been finalized, it is possible to create the service which is right for our community, however despite the best efforts to make the schedule work, it may be lacking.
The information so far calls for a weekday service, but says nothing about weekend bus service.
For those with Monday to Friday work or school commitments, weekday service appears adequate, but for those who want to go to Penticton for shopping or social activities and for those who work anything other than a Monday to Friday shift, weekend service is necessary.
The service must then be weighed against the cost to the municipality.
There is a cost to basic transit. Additional service adds to this cost.
If it is planned carefully, it is likely the service would be well used. If the service is inadequate or poorly scheduled, it will be nothing but a waste of money.