Alan Mason listens in as Lorna Johanssen

Alan Mason listens in as Lorna Johanssen

Seniors express concerns about bus route changes in advance of open house

A group of seniors is worried changes to Revelstoke’s bus routes could lead to loss of service. BC Transit hosts open house on Thurs.

A group of seniors is worried that changes to Revelstoke’s bus routes could lead to the loss of service, and they expressed their views in a meeting with Alan Mason last week.

Mason is the City of Revelstoke’s director of economic development and the point person on the BC Transit file. He listened as the six women went through their concerns, which ranged from the quality of the buses to the location of bus stops. Most importantly, they were concerned over the proposed changes to the routes.

Lorna Johanssen and Florence Fitzpatrick were the main spokeswomen for the group; they were joined by Pauline Goodman, Vivian McMillan, Evelyn Daniels and Margaret Blainey.

The meeting took place last Tuesday in the board room of the Chamber of Commerce offices. The women initially believed Mayor David Raven would be present but he was away at the Union of British Columbia Municipalities conference in Victoria.

Their meeting came in advance of an open house BC Transit is holding about the changes this Thursday, Oct. 4, from 3–7 p.m. at the community centre

Their concerns came from recently announced changes to the services that would see two buses in Revelstoke – one that services Southside and Arrow Heights, and the other Columbia Park and the Big Eddy. Currently one bus services a route that crosses the whole city.

Their biggest fear was that any changes to service would lead to a reduction in ridership and, eventually, a loss of service.

“If you spoil it for us, we will lose it,” said Johannsen, noting that Golden recently lost its bus. Golden lost its bus service when town council decided to stop funding it due to low ridership.

One concern with the proposal was that if the buses only ran to Grizzly Plaza, they would have to transfer to get to Cooper’s, one of the main stops on the route.

“We want it left the way it is now with one bus running the whole route,” said Johannsen.

Mason, for his part, listened to their concerns and said he would bring them up with BC Transit. He said that at the last open house there was overwhelming support for the proposed  changes and he encourage the women to attend Thursday’s open house.