News   Apr 03, 2020
 7.8K     3 
News   Apr 02, 2020
 8.8K     0 
News   Apr 02, 2020
 2.9K     0 

ETS Bus and General Transit Improvements

Free transit for Edmonton’s most vulnerable people
May 9, 2017

The PATH (Providing Accessible Transit Here) program offers Edmonton’s most vulnerable better access to education, employment opportunities and various social services by providing free monthly transit passes. Increasing the accessibility of critical services allows individuals to make stronger connections, stay safe and improve their situation.

“The City of Edmonton, through End Poverty Edmonton, is committed to breaking the unintentional consequences of poverty, namely, for being fined for not being able to afford a bus ticket,” said Mayor Don Iveson. “Making transit reliable, accessible and affordable for all Edmontonians is critical.”

PATH is sponsored by the City of Edmonton and provided through various social agencies. The program gives homeless Edmontonians or those at a high risk of homelessness free public transit access in order to get food, go to school, travel to work, find housing, attend medical appointments and access social services.

“iHuman is grateful to be one of the initial partners in the youth-focused pilot which now includes adult vulnerable populations. Many have put their heads and hearts together to provide a solution for individuals facing barriers to transportation,” said Catherine Broomfield, Executive Director, iHuman Youth Society.

“Seeing other people getting fines is scary, and it makes me feel glad I have a pass,” said Trent Pierre with Native Counselling Services of Alberta. “I can now see my friends and family more and get to places on time.”

PATH expanded upon a youth transit access project between the City and social agencies serving local youth. PATH is another avenue the City offers to people who cannot afford to access transit. DONATE A RIDE is another program which, thanks to the generosity of Edmontonians, provides free transit tickets for short term needs.

For more information:


Media contact:
Adrienne C. Hill
Communications Advisor
City of Edmonton
Major ETS service changes improve bus performance in 2016
May 10, 2017

To improve customer service, Edmonton Transit System (ETS) reallocated over 50,000 hours in the fall of 2016 - the most in two decades. By transferring service hours from very low-demand routes to high-demand routes, ETS addressed schedule reliability and overcrowding issues.

Last year’s reallocated hours have effectively improved on-time bus performance, addressing many of the observations released in the 2015 City Auditor’s Annual Report.
  • On-time weekday arrivals at transit centres have increased from 57.9 per cent in December 2014 to 65.4 per cent in December 2016.
  • On-time weekday departures also increased from 77.5 per cent in December 2014 to 81.4 per cent in December 2016.
The trips that were added to address overcrowding have better ridership than the previous trips that were cancelled.
  • Cancelled trips had an average of nine passenger boardings per hour while the trips that were added have an average of 42 passenger boardings per hour.
  • Frequency improvements on Route 3, 33, 133 and 322 resulted in increased ridership of 27, 9, 136 and 34 per cent respectively in the affected time periods.
ETS makes service adjustments five times a year in order to improve customer service based on customer feedback and ridership patterns. Another major reallocation is scheduled for fall 2017 in order to further improve customer service.

Media contact:

Jennifer Badry
Communications Advisor, Edmonton Transit System
Office: 780-496-5751
Mobile: 780-690-1605
Edmonton wants to have conversation on distance-based fare transit model
Should transit users pay more for travelling longer distances? It’s a conversation city planners want to have.

Sarah Feldman, the city’s general supervisor of transportation, said Tuesday that planners working on Edmonton’s new transit strategy want to explore potentially adopting a “distance-based” fare model after the city implements a new electronic fare payment system.

Feldman said conversations would have to happen at a regional level, as the electronic payment system would apply to suburban routes in communities like St. Albert and Strathcona County.

Discussions over potentially changing the fare system are part of the city’s new transit strategy, a massive overhaul that proposes changes to routes and riders’ experiences.
City looks to improve transit with second phase of major service changes
May 11, 2017

Transit customers can expect more service improvements by this fall when it comes to overcrowded buses and buses arriving on time as Edmonton Transit System (ETS) seeks to reallocate another 50,000 hours.

Starting July 2, major changes include removing certain timeframes (such as late evening) or select trips. Four underused routes are being cancelled altogether: Routes 73, 96, 157, and 316. In addition, some routes will change where or how far they go and a transfer may now be required. A full list of the changes is online.

The service hours from July’s cancelled routes and trips will be moved to higher demand routes come September in order to provide better service and improved schedules. Much success was realized when the first 50,000 service hour reallocation took place in September 2016. Customers are encouraged to double check their route brochures and plan their trips in advance.

City council approved standards require a minimum of 30 passengers per hour for peak times and 15 passengers per hour in other times on regular routes. ETS makes service adjustments five times a year in order to meet these standards and provide value for taxpayer investment, improve customer service based on feedback, and serve new ridership patterns.

For more information:

Media contacts:
Jennifer Badry
Communications Advisor, Edmonton Transit System
Office: 780-496-5751
Mobile: 780-690-1605
Last edited:
Transit union fighting the ‘Uberization’ of Edmonton transit
Major changes are coming to the vehicle for hire bylaw and Edmonton transitregarding companies like Uber and TappCar.

A memo, obtained by 630 CHED, from the president of the transit union to members suggests the city is planning on dropping Edmonton Transit Service (ETS) from lower volume areas and replacing it with subsidized ride sharing.


A memo obtained by 630 CHED talks about possible plans to subsidize ride sharing in place of transit service.

Bylaw changes will be covering off, what Councillor Mike Nickel calls, the shortcomings that have plagued the industry from the get go. While those amendments are coming, parallel changes for ETS prompted the union to hold a town hall meeting Tuesday night.

“I’m not going to be putting any spoiler alerts out there,” Nickel said. “I think we’ve solved a lot of the major areas about dispatch ambiguity, about enforcement, questions regarding identification of vehicles, and the issue of street hailing.
Alberta students get break on cost of public transit pass
The province said thousands of students who take public transit will save as much as $550 each on their passes.

Starting in September, students who live 2.4 kilometres or more from their school will pay the difference between the cost of a public transit pass and the provincial transportation funding from An Act to Reduce School Fees.

The province said Edmonton students will save at least $300 and Calgary students will save about $550 per school year.
“We recognize the burden that school and busing fees have placed on parents and our government is working hard to make life more affordable for Alberta families,” Education Minister David Eggen said.

About 33,000 Alberta students will benefit from the reduced fees, the province said.

Students who receive the reduced the rate will still be able to use the pass outside school hours.

Province cuts transit fees for students who ride the city bus to school

Education minister announces transit fee rebate for qualifying students


Elise Stolte‏ @estolte 14 minutes ago
Here's how the new transit strategy affects local neighbourhoods - example is from the Heritage Valley area. Now/future. #yegcc #yegtransit



Elise Stolte @estolte 13 minutes ago
Here's northeast Edmonton with the new transit strategy. Route maps for current versus proposed. #yegcc #yegtransit



Elise Stolte‏ @estolte 11 minutes ago
Finally, Capilano area with the new transit strategy - principles are good, details are the hard part, says @ben_hen #yegcc #yegtransit

Major new transit strategy for Edmonton released Thursday

More documents and details here:
City releases new Transit Strategy
June 23, 2017

The City of Edmonton invites media to attend a presentation on Edmonton’s new 10-year Transit Strategy. Sarah Feldman, General Supervisor of City Wide Strategy and Eddie Robar, Branch Manager of Edmonton Transit, will be available for questions and comments.

Date: Friday, June 23, 2017
Time: 12:45 p.m.
Location: Media Room, City Hall, 1 Sir Winston Churchill Square, Edmonton

For more information:
Urban Planning Committee Agenda- July 5 - Edmonton’s Transit Strategy

Media contact:
Charity Dyke
Communications Manager
City of Edmonton
Cell: 780-405-7924
New maps highlight which parts of Edmonton will get biggest transit cuts
With Edmonton days away from reducing service to 70 bus routes due to flagging ridership, a local advocacy group has released new maps showing which parts of the city will be hardest hit.

Progress Alberta created the maps using City of Edmonton data.

The city is planning to reduce service to 66 routes and cancel four (the No. 73, 96, 157 and 316) starting July 2, and shift the resources to 23 higher demand routes starting in September.

According to the maps, communities in Ward 11, in the southeast, will see 20 routes cut or cancelled. Wards 1 and 2, which represent Edmonton’s north and west neighbourhoods, will also see a combined 24 routes cut or cancelled.

But Andrew Gregory, a senior transit engineer, said in an email that the affected routes just aren't that busy.

“The transit services that were selected for reallocation in 2017 have an average of 12 passenger boardings per hour,” he said said.
City of Edmonton launches Ride Transit Program
New subsidized transit pass connects more people to opportunities

July 4, 2017

Lower income adults and youth across Edmonton will benefit from a new initiative aimed at providing more affordable transportation. Beginning July 4, up to 40,000 eligible Edmontonians can begin applying for a monthly ETS transit pass at a subsidized rate of $35/month.

“We look forward to seeing more Edmontonians in need better connected to opportunities and essential services through the Ride Transit program,” said Eddie Robar, Edmonton Transit Service Branch Manager. “By introducing an affordable transit pass program, the City is supporting EndPovertyEdmonton goals and building a better, more inclusive community.

The Ride Transit program is for Edmontonians ages 6-64, with incomes below federal thresholds:


Not eligible: Transit passes for seniors are already offered at a very affordable rate. Children five and under ride free. University students are already part of the UPass program.

People must be pre-approved for the Ride Transit Program in order to purchase this pass. Applications are available online or in person. The subsidized rate takes effect on August 15 when the September subsidized monthly transit passes become available for purchase from 11 locations throughout the city:
  • Libraries: Abbottsfield, Westmount, and Jasper Place
  • Recreation Facilities: ACT, Clareview, Commonwealth, Confederation, O’Leary, Mill Woods, and Terwillegar.
  • Edmonton Service Centre (Edmonton Tower)
The pilot Ride Transit Program runs until the end of 2018. It includes support from Edmonton Public Library and City recreation facilities, as well as, funding from the Alberta government.

For more information, visit Ride Transit Program.

Media contact:
Tarra Kongsrude
Communications Advisor
Office: 780-496-6159
Low-income transit pass to benefit more Edmontonians than originally planned
A new subsidized transit pass is now available for low-income Edmontonians and it will benefit twice as many people as originally thought.

The new pass aims to provide affordable transportation to low-income adults and youth in Edmonton.

When the pass was announced early last year, the city estimated it would help 20,000 people in Edmonton. Now, the city says up to 40,000 eligible Edmontonians will be able to apply for the monthly pass, which costs $35 per month.

“We look forward to seeing more Edmontonians in need better connected to opportunities and essential services through the Ride Transit program,” said Eddie Robar, Edmonton Transit Service branch manager.
Next stop for ETS could be partnership with ride-hailing companies like Uber
t's 6 p.m. You've finished work, you're starving for dinner, it was standing-room only on the bus ride home — and now you've got a 20-minute walk to your house.

Are those 20 minutes too much? Would they dissuade you from taking the bus? What if a cab whisked you home from that stop, as an "add-on" to the regular transit system that almost got you home?

That idea has been adopted in a handful of American municipalities, and is being contemplated by Edmonton in an ambitious transit plan that goes to city hall on Wednesday.

It proposes that the city look into partnerships with vehicle-for-hire companies to get transit-takers that "last mile" home, or farther, if needed.

"This is an important piece for us in keeping up with trends in technology and trends in the transportation industry," said Sarah Feldman, general supervisor of city-wide strategy.

"We see other cities in Canada investigating these ideas. And to be a modern municipality, we have to keep up with these trends and have our eyes open to them."
New Edmonton transit strategy focuses on supply-and-demand service
A new transit strategy that would shift from service being spread equally to a supply-and-demand model was passed by Edmonton’s urban planning committee on Wednesday.

The Way We Move plan includes high-frequency routes closer to the city’s centre, with new crosstown routes and rapid-bus commuter routes from the suburbs.
The plan identifies the different demands between neighbourhoods inside and outside a ring road – made up of four arterials: 170 Street in the west, Whitemud Drive in the south, 75 Street in the east, and Yellowhead Trail in the north.

The plan calls for increased service inside the ring road, about a dozen express routes running between the suburbs and downtown, and fewer buses meandering through neighbourhoods where demand for public transit isn’t as high. That means some transit users might have to walk farther to catch a bus.

Bus system overhaul moves forward after debate
Edmonton's first transit strategy overhaul in 20 years got one step closer to reality on Wednesday, with a commitment to designing more efficient bus routes across the city.

But some councillors said they were "more than a bit nervous" about voting for the plan, which aims for faster, efficient, and more reliable bus service.

Part of that hesitation stemmed from short references in the 82-page transit strategy report to "explore options with private sector transportation services." Those partnerships would be explored for use in areas referred to as the "first mile/last mile" — the distance between a major, busy transit route and someone's home.

A room-full of transit union members arrived at the meeting wearing t-shirts with the words, "Keep Edmonton Transit Public" in response to those passages.They said public transit provides safe and reliable service, and they encouraged looking at systems such as Dial-a-Bus for low-ridership routes.
Edmonton's new transit strategy will not include Uber
Edmonton's new transit strategy, which will not include partnering with Uber or other private ride-sharing operators, passed after a close vote at city council on Tuesday.

Councillors split five-five over exploring the option of using the partnerships in areas referred to as "first mile/last mile," the distance between someone's home and a major, busy transit route.

A tie vote is considered failed.

Three councillors, Michael Walters, Mo Banga and Ed Gibbons, were absent.

Coun. Tony Caterina moved that council take the idea of a partnership off the table.

"Would we like private EPS officers? Would we like private firefighters?" Caterina asked.

"Transit is a service we provide ... this is essential for the well-being of our citizens and it is best handled within house."

'Uberization' no more: City council quashes talks with ride-shares for transit overhaul
The city has officially nixed plans to explore replacing some farflung bus routes with ride share companies like Uber.

As part of a final debate about the new transit plan Tuesday, city council voted down possible partnerships as part of a reimagined transit system, at least for now.

Councillors were split 5-5, and under Edmonton's system a tie vote fails. Three were absent.

City staff had proposed talking to rideshare companies as part of their transit strategy – a plan that would replace Edmonton’s current bus network with high-frequency routes in the core and less frequent lines in the suburbs.

Mayor Don Iveson, who voted in favour of considering rideshare partnerships, said those opposed aren't considering the changing ways people get around the city.

“It was an unfortunately ideological position that didn’t recognize the fact people use taxis today or other ride-share services today for their journey to fill gaps that public transit can’t fill,” he said.