LETTERS: Base bus service on riders’ needs, not economics

Editor:

Re: Proposed bus-route changes found lacking, June 14.

I wish to raise the following points:

1. Non-Standard Space Requirements:

(a) #351 In particular, coming from Crescent Beach and Ocean Park, there are often two or more persons who require the flexibility of non-standard space – those in wheelchairs, parents with strollers, seniors with grocery carts, people with luggage going to the airport, etc.

Most of these people require the entry stairs to be lowered for them to access/leave the bus.

The #351 configuration permits flexibility in raising some seats at the front of the bus to temporarily create more floor space.

(b) Community Bus – Transit confirmed to me that the maximum capacity of the bus is 24 passengers, including those standing.

TransLink also confirmed to me that their policy, for safety reasons, is to take only one person per bus who requires a ramp to enter/exit the bus.

There is no flexibility to temporarily change the space configuration on this bus.

This means people with luggage or large parcels, etc. will take up an additional seat for those items, thereby decreasing the overall capacity for passengers.

2. Use of transit to and from the airport:

TransLink has actively encouraged passengers to use transit facilities to access the airport. As noted above, the proposed changes to Route #351 will significantly interfere with those persons’ usage.

This proposal by TransLink is a matter which significantly impacts White Rock and South Surrey residents who depend on public transit along this route.

TransLink should not base their decisions about changes of such magnitude solely on the economics of ridership.

Anne Helps, White Rock

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