Three changes on the way for Halifax Transit
Route changes from the Moving Forward Together Plan, new ferries and Transit Priority Measures are coming to Halifax in 2018-19.
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Halifax Transit presented its 2018-19 budget at Halifax City Hall on Wednesday, and updated councillors on what to expect this year.
Here are three changes coming to Halifax Transit in the year ahead.
The next phase of the Moving Forward Together Plan, approved by council in 2016, will take shape this year.
That means some routes – mainly focused in Clayton Park, Fairview, Timberlea – will either be replaced or changed.
The popular crosstown Route 52 bus will be replaced by the new Route 3 and 28 and an adjustment of the existing Route 64.
Routes 2 and 4 will be replaced by a new Route 2, servicing Fairview, and Route 30 servicing Clayton Park.
The new Route 4 will replace routes 17 and 42, and Route 39 will replace Route 16.
There will also be a series of new express routes, 123, 135, 136, 137, 138 and 433, replacing 23, 31, 33, 34, and 35. Those changes are mostly being made to conform to the Moving Forward Together Plan’s new system, where express routes get a 100-series number.
The changes, at a total cost of more than $3 million, are tentatively scheduled to happen at the end of August.
Go to halifax.ca to see detailed maps of the new routes, and stay tuned for updates on the exact date of the changes.
New ferries and terminals
Two new ferries will hit the harbour this year, replacing the oldest in the fleet and ensuring Halifax doesn’t need new ones for decades.
The Vincent Coleman is in the water now in Meteghan River, where they’re built, transit director Dave Reage told councillors on Wednesday.
A crew will make the wintery journey to Halifax later this month, and the new ferry will start taking passengers across the harbour.
Later this year, the second new ferry, the Rita Joe will hit the water as well.
An update of the Halifax ferry terminal will be completed this year, with new washrooms and a modernized security desk.
And lastly, Big Lift ferry service – more mid-day and late night frequency – could be extended into the next year after a vote on Wednesday. Council will make the decision in March as part of its budget process.
Transit Priority Measures
Bus routes running along Gottingen Street could get a speed boost later this year, with Transit Priority Measures likely to be complete by 2019.
Transit Priority Measures (TPMs) are things like advanced lights at intersections for buses, and specialized stops that keep them from having to pull in and out of traffic.
Planning and design is well underway for TPMs on Gottingen Street, and Halifax Transit will present the proposed changes to council’s Transportation Standing Committee next month.
If approved, they could be done by the end of the year.
Bayers Road is also in line to get some new infrastructure and the planning and design could be finished this year, but because that project will likely involve dedicated bus lanes, it won’t be completed till at least 2019.