Oct 16, 2008

Hoile loop remains intack

At this time I have nothing else to say on this subject. I am just posting it for your information only.

The bus stops here. And there. And over there.

And at 5:30 this morning, Rashna Dadachanji will happily climb on board Route 222 to get to work. Not so happily, Wayne and Sandra Cassidy will hear the bus rumble past their bedroom window, having just lost a months-long battle to stop it.

Yesterday, Durham Region Transit's executive committee sided with Dadachanji and dozens of riders in the south Ajax subdivision and made a swift decision to keep the route intact. That means the bus will continue its run past the Cassidys' lakefront house every half-hour during rush hours.

The Audley Rd. S. couple had asked the transit commission to eliminate a loop of several blocks, arguing the bus is smelly, exceeds noise standards (they paid to have sound studies done), and poses a safety hazard on the narrow street. They also said the three bus stops along the loop were barely used.

Phil Meagher, DRT's deputy general manager of operations, said the loop averages 28 riders per hour.

But Wayne Cassidy told commissioners his own survey disproves the numbers. "I'm there every day at 5:30 and I'm not seeing anyone get on the bus."

Transit users must be wearing "invisible cloaks," he said.

Cassidy said rerouting the bus would only mean an extra minute's walk for a handful of people.

But Dadachanji argued the longer walk in howling winds along ice- and snow-covered streets would take some "at least 15 minutes."

"The service is a benefit and convenience to the entire community."

Not so for John Fisico, who supported the Cassidys' proposal.

"It's a slam dunk," he told commissioners. "I'd rather have more peacefulness than convenience."

Shortening the route, he pointed out, would save buses five to six hours of driving time a week.

For Vivian Huang, who goes to work in Toronto every day, it's faster to take the bus to the GO station than drive there, find parking and walk back to the train. Route 222 connects to the rest of Ajax and the GTA, and "is really appreciated in the winter" by workers, students and senior citizens alike, she said.

Route 222 was added in 2006 as part of a mandate to offer service within 400 metres of customers.

Ajax Councillor Scott Crawford said he'd never seen so much correspondence from residents on a single transit issue. The majority urged them not to change the route.

TheStar.com | GTA | Ajax couple loses battle against bus.


David Harrison said...

It's all been said already, hasn't it?

Andy said...

David... I'm glad it's over.

Anonymous said...

Guess who will be putting up a FOR SALE sign up on their lawn???
Alaska is a great place to live...so quiet, no buses at all, no crime to speak of, fresh fish to eat all the time...perhaps that is that is the place they need to go! Oh and no noisy neighbours for miles and miles--they won't even need to gate the property!