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A number of bus routes no longer run through campus. Photo: Rame Abdulkader/Fulcrum

Overcrowding, delays, and other issues are causing many transit users headaches

Some OC Transpo buses are back in service this week at the request of the mayor and transit commissioner chair after issues with Ottawa’s recently launched LRT.

The buses are back on the road after weeks of issues since the reduction of many bus routes on Oct. 6, which followed the launch of the LRT on Sept. 14. Delays, overcrowding, shortened routes and other issues have many transit users frustrated with the new line.

Mayor Jim Watson and transit commissioner Allan Hubley said in a joint press release on Friday that city officials met to find short-term solutions to bring stability to transit users with both buses and the LRT.

“Chair Hubley and I also want to reassure residents that these LRT issues are being taken extremely seriously,” said Watson in the release. “Finding solutions to these problems continues to be the number one priority at City Hall – both at the political and staff level.” 

Forty bus routes will be reinstated to help with the delays and overcrowding, and 19 more buses will be added to the fleet in January 2020 as well.

An additional $3.5 million has been added to help with transit services, according to the release.

The Rideau Transit Group’s (RTG) October payment will be reduced by $2.8 million from their October payment as a result of the issues. The release says the RTG will continue to be hit with pay deductions until the performance of the system improves and stabilizes.

The mayor and chair apologized to transit users as they work through the “growing pains” of the launch of the Confederation Line.