The Regional District of Nanaimo is undergoing some substantial changes to its transit services. (PQB News file photo)

The Regional District of Nanaimo is undergoing some substantial changes to its transit services. (PQB News file photo)

Residents invited to have say on proposed Regional District of Nanaimo transit improvements

Public can view proposed changes online

The Regional District of Nanaimo wants the public to provide input on proposed changes to transit services in the region.

Residents can view and provide comments on the substantial changes being considered for the RDN’s routes, services and infrastructure on the RDN Get Involved website at getinvolved.rdn.ca/trs or in person at the RDN transit office until Nov. 3, 2021.

The feedback is part of phase 2 of the Transit Redevelopment Strategy public engagement process that has been underway since June.

“Improving transit service is a priority for the RDN and the public’s participation in helping to shape the services they use is a vital part of the process. We’ve been listening to feedback on how to make our transit system even better and are pleased with the level of response we have received during phase 1 of public engagement,” said Tyler Brown, RDN chair. “We encourage all transit users and the broader community to take advantage of the opportunity to again share their thoughts and ideas during this next phase.”

READ MORE: Regional District of Nanaimo survey aims to help shape future of transit services

The RDN’s strategy is focused on developing a plan for improving conventional transit services over the next five years. The draft service and infrastructure proposals are based on analysis, best practices and feedback heard from transit customers, staff and residents in the project’s first round of engagement.

In keeping with the public’s top priorities for a more direct, frequent and easy to use transit system, the draft proposal features a wide range of recommended improvements including:

• Restructured routes with service and infrastructure added to better connect across the region. For example, the near-term introduction of a new RDN Rapid Line route that would offer limited-stop service every 15 minutes or better along the Island Highway from Woodgrove to downtown Nanaimo, with extension to south Nanaimo in the medium term.

• Further improvements to the directness, frequency and hours of operation of routes serving key corridors and destinations such as Vancouver Island University, Nanaimo Regional General Hospital, the Oceanside area and the Departure Bay ferry terminal.

• Local route adjustments to better serve existing ridership and new development.

• Service to new areas such as the Rutherford neighbourhood and Duke Point.

• Future connections to interregional destinations.

• Draft priorities for infrastructure investment at exchanges, Park & Rides and stops.

“The Transit Redevelopment Strategy provides the opportunity to not only restructure our system to better meet existing and future needs, but also make transit wayfinding easier through improvements to resources such as route maps,” said Stuart McLean, RDN transit select committee chair. “It is important we hear from residents on whether we have achieved the right balance and how we could further improve the draft recommendations before they are finalized and presented to the board in the coming months.”

— NEWS Staff

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