A new transit shuttle will carry students and staff between the three Surrey and Langley campuses of Kwantlen Polytechnic University.
The university and its student association partnered to bring in the inter-campus shuttle to fill in gaps in TransLink bus service, which students previously lampooned by staging a campus-to-campus race where a cyclist and runner beat a student taking the bus.
The new shuttle – contracted not to TransLink but a private firm – is being paid for through Kwantlen’s new Multi-Pass, which is a variation on the standard $30-a-month U-Pass taking effect at all other Metro Vancouver universities.
Students at Kwantlen balked at paying $30 for unlimited access on TransLink’s system, saying the service wasn’t useful enough, especially in Surrey and Langley.
They instead voted to pay extra – $40 a month – for the customized pass that includes U-Pass access but also finances the inter-campus shuttle, along with discounts on gym memberships and a grocery delivery service.
“We’ve been able to make a vast improvement in service between those campuses in terms of frequency and travel time over what TransLink is currently offering,” said Nathan Griffiths, media coordinator at the Kwantlen Student Association.
The shuttle will initially run between the Newton, Cloverdale and Langley campuses, but won’t go to the Richmond campus, which Griffiths said wouldn’t be cost-effective at this point.
Another pass benefit gives each student 20 free minutes per month on the Car2Go car-sharing service.
Car2Go cars will now be based at the four Kwantlen campuses and Griffiths said students – or anyone – will be able to sign up for the service and use them.
“We’re building overlapping systems of transportation between the campuses so if somebody misses the bus they can hop on Car2Go and still get to class on time,” Griffiths said.