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June 13, Transit Commission Update

Image - June 13, Transit Commission Update

On June 13, members of the Transit Commission received an update on our city's preparations for Canada Day, the upcoming O-Train Line 1 maintenance activities, and the successful conclusion of the On-Demand Transit demonstration pilot project.

If you didn’t get a chance to tune in, The Next Stop Blog is here to bring you up to speed on the best ways to get around Ottawa on Canada Day, maintenance plans for Line 1, and other important transit news.

Canada Day

OC owl holding a Canadian flag and waving to the passengers on the O-Train

OC Owl holding a Canadian Flag and waving to the passengers on the O-Train

Transit is the best way to travel to Canada Day events across the city, with free service all day on O-Train Line 1, buses, and Para Transpo. We will have extra service running throughout the day and into the evening. Para Transpo service will run until 3 a.m., with last trips booked for 2 a.m.

Maintenance Plans

Mechanic performing bus maintenance inspections

Mechanic performing bus maintenance inspections

We also provided an update on the progress of the bus maintenance plan and annual O-Train Line 1 maintenance. Our maintenance teams have resolved the backlogs of preventative bus maintenance inspections, and we've improved both the apprenticeship program and mechanics training program. We're continuing to work on the technology upgrade project, leveraging analytics to enhance the preventative maintenance plan. These efforts increase our available resources and vehicles, supporting a more reliable bus service.

O-Train maintenance work is scheduled between Tunney’s Pasture and Rideau stations from July 15 to 28. During this period, a replacement bus service will run between Tunney’s Pasture and Hurdman Station to cover this section of Line 1 during normal service hours. We'll provide regular updates, including signage at stations, to help you stay informed and plan your travel.

Ridership Update

Updates on performance and service delivery for bus and rail were also shared. In May, O-Train service delivery was at 99.8 percent, and conventional bus service delivery was at 98.6 percent. Para Transpo ridership in May reached a total of 74,700 customer trips.

On Demand Transit Pilot Project

Minibus for on-demand service

Minibus for on-demand service

Councillors also received an update on the conclusion of the On-Demand demonstration pilot project, which tested the feasibility of on-demand transit service. After a successful trial period, this pilot project in Blackburn Hamlet will end on Sunday, June 23. Results from the pilot will inform future on-demand services, including selecting service areas and enhancing software to meet customers' travel needs. Additionally, the purchase of ten new minibuses for on-demand service is underway.

Capital Projects

Members of the Transit Commission authorized the closing of completed capital projects and adjustments to the budgets of ongoing capital projects. This resulted in the return of $7.7 million to the Transit capital reserve, $365,000 to the federal gas tax reserve, and the elimination of $1.7 million in debt authority.

The Commission also reviewed contracts awarded under delegated authority during the second half of 2023. During that period, 96 service area contracts were awarded, totalling $168.5 million. Additionally, members received an update on the transit budget for the first quarter of this year, which shows a revenue shortfall of approximately $10.7 million and a reduction of expenditures by about $4.4 million, resulting in a net deficit of around $6.3 million.

What to expect next

Transit Commission will be back in September, after taking a brief break for the summer.

To find out more information about our latest update, you can watch the presentation here or read the reports discussed here.