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General News · 25th October 2016
Kate Maddigan
Local passenger bus services have been springing up on Gulf Islands in recent years, with new ones in the works. Salt Spring, Gabriola, and tiny Mayne Island all have had success with their buses, with Pender and Galiano Islands now planning pilot projects for limited service.

Gabriola spent 6 years getting theirs off the ground. In 2013, after building support for the idea in the form of a petition signed by hundreds of Gabriolans, figuring out all the details around funding, the choice of vehicle, and insurance coverage for volunteer drivers, they were almost ready to launch. In July of that year they held a “name the bus” vote (GERTIE was the winner), fitted each bus with bike racks, and rolled out both buses on a limited route.

Since then, with their 3-year pilot project complete, Gabriola buses have carried over 43,000 passengers on regular runs from June 2013 to July 2, 2016, and is considered a huge success.

Mayne Island, with a population of about 1000 residents, began their 2-year pilot a month around the same time in the summer of 2013. Using volunteer drivers, the Mayne Island Bus Society established an operating cost of about $8000 annually, funded using donations and fares. The buses operate during specific days and times of the week according to high or low season.

To read more about the Gabriola Community Bus Foundation's journey to get bus service, click here

Read more about the Mayne Island Bus Society here

Looking forward to seeing you all at the Cortes Transportation Study's Open House, Wednesday, November 2, at the Gorge Hall between 6 and 8 pm!
re Comment #3
Comment by Wendy on 2nd November 2016
re comment #3:
Spot on Walker!
It seems like the Tideline articles act as the proverbial carrot dangled before our eyes to whip up interest. If this is a survey why not simply send it to us by blanket mail box delivery that creates little fuss, then we won’t have to waste fuel getting to the Open House.
Do just get on with it, and let Mr. Potter finish eating his apple.

Isn't Cortes Connection...
Comment by Walker Evans on 1st November 2016
...already doing that ? 2-3 times per week the CC goes across Quadra and to downtown Campbell River. I don't think it would be right to use gas tax funds to compete with an already viable business. Perhaps this IS what's possible given our low population and how spread out we are.
What is possible?
Comment by Max Thaysen on 27th October 2016
It's hard to know until one takes a look at the available information. That's what we're doing with this study. What information is relevant? Well, it helps to imagine possibilities even if they're unlikely...

Yes, some transit service across Quadra would be nice too. And we'll investigate transit in CR too - maybe that needs to be tuned up as well.
Community bus
Comment by Don Tennant on 26th October 2016
Not to rain on anyone's parade, but Cortes is more sparsely populated, and our population is wider spread than Gabriolas. I'm not as familiar with the bus on Mayne.
The Gabriola service meets all their ferries. Their ferry connects to the middle of downtown Nanaimo.
If we have a bus that goes to, and from our fine vessel, where is the connection at Heriot Bay?