Category Archives: Blog

International Public Transit: Advocating For Transportation Systems Change

SACRAMENTO, Calif., April 15, 2013 — Elevators on subways stop working, bus stops aren’t announced and pathways or sidewalks are inaccessible. Every day, these types of problems create major issues for people living with disabilities when simply trying to get from one place to another. A U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics study found that 6 million people living with disabilities had difficulties accessing needed transportation. Concerns about accessible transportation have led many Independent Living Centers (ILCs) in California to increase their advocacy efforts to create long-term transportation systems change.

“Accessibility to transportation continues to be a significant issue for people living with disabilities,” said Executive Director of the California State Independent Living Council (SILC) Liz Pazdral. “In addition to providing education and training on transportation options, ILCs throughout California are focusing on creating meaningful transportation systems change within their areas.” Continue reading

International Public Transit: Alexa Edinburgh: Boost public transit to keep young grads here

Dear Editor: As a student about to finish my undergraduate degree at the  University of Wisconsin-Madison, I am troubled by aspects of Gov. Scott Walker’s  proposed state budget that fail to meet Wisconsin’s transportation needs.

Easily accessible public transit is a major factor in deciding where I’ll  settle and start my career. Throughout college I have relied on the bus system  in Madison. Although campus routes are good, taking the bus to other  destinations can be hit or miss, especially on evenings or weekends. If these  services are reduced due to funding reductions, graduates may relocate to other  cities. I don’t relish the idea of trading the transit service and bike paths  I’m used to for the traffic, pollution, and high cost of commuting by car in  places where driving is the only option. Choosing transit over driving and  maintaining a car will also help me pay off my student loans.

Chicago offers trains that facilitate an easy commute into and around the  city. Bus service is also excellent, with frequent service and low fares. Even  though we don’t have the same population density, Madison stands to lose out if  we ignore growing traffic issues on the Beltline and the isthmus over the next  decade.

Wisconsin should do all it can to avoid losing bright, young professionals to  other states. Legislators can help do that with a budget that continues to  support transit through the transportation fund, reduces highway spending, and  expands public transit.

Alexa Edinburgh



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 The Rural Overland Utility Transit (TROUT) Public Transit Service is proud to play a prominent role in the sustainability of our regional community. We provide transportation service to seven municipalities in the north half of Hastings County and one municipality in the County of Haliburton, in a sparsely populated area of Southeastern Ontario.

The Town of Bancroft, Ontario, goods and services hub of the region, has undertaken a sustainability initiative, striking a Committee of Council to define sustainability concepts, explore avenues of sustainability, and plan for a better future.

The Committee states that, “Sustainable Bancroft is about sharing a common purpose: sustaining a community where people thrive and enjoy a good quality of life.”

A comprehensive report titled, Sustainable Bancroft: An Integrated Community Sustainability Plan sustainable-bancroft-logo-webfor Bancroft, Ontario, was prepared to serve as a guide.  The plan identifies four “pillars of sustainability” – Economic, Environmental, Social, and Cultural – that contribute to the growth, health, and wellbeing of a thriving community. The report identifies transportation as “a core component of a sustainable community,” and TROUT Public Transit addresses all four sustainability pillars.

From an economic standpoint, public transit supports the local economy by connecting riders with goods and services. The TROUT connects riders to 95 percent of Bancroft businesses. Further, our public transit service provides local jobs for bus drivers and administration staff, and contributes dollars to local businesses for bus maintenance, fuel, media promotion and a host of other expenditures.

Environmentally, public transit conserves fuel and limits harmful emissions into the atmosphere by transporting groups of people in one vehicle, a green alternative to personal vehicle transportation.

From a social perspective, public transit facilitates social interaction among bus riders, allowing them to meet and greet others on the bus and in the stores. TROUT Transit Operators are aware of, and sensitive to, the social and mental health benefits of social interaction and actively encourage, and engage in, conversation and fellowship on the bus.

And, finally, public transit supports the cultural pillar of sustainability by affording non-driving residents access to cultural events and activities.

The TROUT is an active and enthusiastic participant in the sustainability of our community. We are committed to embracing our culture, promoting our economy, protecting our environment, and enhancing the social wellbeing of our citizens with safe, comfortable, and affordable transportation.

Author: John Keith, Manager of Transportation Services

Provincial Public Transit:Wynne calls on business to help support public transit

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne speaks on transportation issues at the Toronto Region Board of Trade in Toronto on Monday. Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press

TORONTO — Business leaders must help shore up support for a contentious provincial plan to raise billions of dollars for public transit in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area, Premier Kathleen Wynne said Monday.

People want to reduce congestion and get moving again, she said in a speech to the Toronto Region Board of Trade. But she needs help to “develop real momentum” for new investment in transit.

Measures like taxes or tolls to pay for transit are politically unpopular, which has stopped other governments from making those hard decisions, she acknowledged.

“Parties do polling, they don’t see easy answers. They don’t see easy wins,” she said.

“But you and I know that improving infrastructure … it’s not about scoring political points. This is not a partisan issue. It’s about ensuring Ontario’s success.” Continue reading

Global Public Transit: Google Maps Now Empowered with Live Public Transit Information

Google Maps just keeps getting more powerful and more comprehensive. The latest enhancement to the tool is live transit information, which will be incredibly helpful to the masses of people who rely on public transportation to get around.

Google says that it now offers information for 100 million miles of daily public transit in 800 cities spread across 25 countries; that data includes everything from fares to departure times to estimated travel times.

Google Maps

There are more specific additions, too, including live departure times for seven lines of the subway in New York City and buses and trams in Salt Lake City as well as live service alerts for the Metrorail in Washington, D.C.

Google Maps

The Google Maps update is available for Android and iOS devices.


International Public Transit: Home Values Performed 42 Percent Better When Located Near Public Transportation During Last Recession

WASHINGTON, DC –  Location, location, location near public transportation may be the new real-estate mantra according to a new study released today by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and the National Association of Realtors® (NAR). Data in the study reveals that during the last recession, residential property values performed 42 percent better on average if they were located near public transportation with high-frequency service.

“When homes are located near public transportation, it is the equivalent of creating housing as desirable as beach front property,” said APTA President and CEO Michael Melaniphy. “This study shows that consumers are choosing neighborhoods with high-frequency public transportation because it provides access to up to five times as many jobs per square mile as compared to other areas in a given region. Other attractive amenities in these neighborhoods include lower transportation costs, walkable areas and robust transportation choices.” Continue reading

National Public Transit: Province puts $3.4M to expanding public transit between Edmonton, Leduc, Nisku

The provincial government announced plans Tuesday to invest millions to help  expand public transit between Leduc, Nisku, Leduc County and Edmonton.

On Tuesday, the province said $3.4 million in funding to expand the “C-Line”  inter-municipal bus service currently running between those communities.

The “C-Line” runs from Century Park in Edmonton, to bus stops in Nisku and  Leduc, before looping back to Century Park – with a total of five trips running  during morning and afternoon peak times Monday to Friday. Continue reading

National Public Transit: Student transit U-Pass deal extended three years at 10 universities and colleges in Metro Vancouver

VANCOUVER — The province is putting forward nearly $35 million to extend its discounted transit program to all public colleges and universities in Metro Vancouver.

According to a news release from the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, the government has committed $34.5 million to help TransLink offset the costs of the U-Pass B.C. over the next three years, so students can purchase a transit pass for $35 per month — saving them between $56 and $135 each month.

The discounted pass is an initiative from the government, TransLink, students and their schools, to help encourage 140,000 students to use public transit. Continue reading

TROUT Unique Public Transit Service Mix

Centred in Bancroft, Ontario, The Rural Overland Utility Transit (affectionately known as the TROUT), offers a unique four-component fully accessible public transit service in seven municipalities comprising the north half of Hastings County, and one Haliburton County municipality in a sparsely populated rural region of Southeastern Ontario.

Among challenges the TROUT faces are its large service area and small population base. The permanent population in the region is only 15,000, and the area served is 3380 km2, about two-thirds the size of Prince Edward Island. That’s an average population density of only 4.4 people per km2, requiring creative service strategies to accommodate the ridership base.

Therefore, the TROUT employs a four-part public transit service mix to meet its demographic and geographic challenges.  We call it “TROUT Blended Flex Public Transit Service.” Continue reading

National: Gas tax revenue would be well spent locally: MPP

The Liberals could do a lot to win favour of small-town Ontario by pushing along a bill to give gas tax money to rural municipalities, MPP Laurie Scott says.

The private members bill, introduced by Renfrew-area MPP John Yakabuski, specifies that provincial gas tax money should be given to rural municipalities to help maintain roads and bridges. Currently, that money only goes to fund public transit systems, which Scott says demonstrates how little rural Ontario is considered by the governing Liberals.

“Our public transit is our roads and our bridges,” she said in an interview.
“We pretty much have to drive everywhere.” Continue reading