March 25, 2004

York Region Transit to acquire new buses and enhance routes in 2004

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NEWMARKET As part of the 2004 Business Plan and Budget approved by York Regional Council today, York Region Transit (YRT) will add 35 new buses to its conventional transit service and five to its Mobility Plus specialized transit service.  Council also approved a number of route enhancements to expand service to new areas.
 
"An effective, comprehensive transit system is extremely important if we are to ensure the movement of people and goods through York Region," said Markham Regional Councillor Jim Jones, Chair of the York Region Transit Committee.  "I'm confident that our commitment today will help York Region Transit evolve into a complete transit model necessary to attract additional riders."
 
The approved York Region Transit budget for 2004 is $88.8 million.
 
Six of the new conventional buses will be used to replace older buses currently in operation, with the other 29 to assist with route expansion. Three of the five new Mobility Plus buses will be used to replace older models, while the remaining two will be used for expansion.
 
As part of YRT's ongoing review of route operations, a service rationalization project was completed in 2003.  The analysis recommended service changes to routes not meeting their minimum ridership targets.  These modifications, representing less than one per cent of the transit budget, will begin to take effect in May 2004.  A promotional campaign to educate residents about new services and modified existing services will begin in April 2004.  
 
"Expanding the bus route network is important to ensure that YRT will be a viable alternative to car travel," said Kees Schipper, Commissioner of Transportation and Works for York Region.  "As part of this improvement process, it is essential to modify service where it is not performing to standard to ensure that funds are used where they will get the greatest benefit."
 
York Regional Council also approved $82.1 million for the York Rapid Transit Plan Quick Start project.
 
For more information on York Region Transit, and the services they provide, please visit www.yorkregiontransit.com or call 1-866-MOVE YRT.
 
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, the services we offer and links to our nine area municipalities, please visit our Web site at: www.region.york.on.ca
 
 
Contact:  Michael Kemp, Corporate Communications, York Region
   1-877-464-9675, ext. 1232 or Email: michael.kemp@region.york.on.ca

The Regional Municipality of York is committed to providing cost-effective, quality services that respond to the needs of our rapidly growing communities.  York Region is comprised of the following nine area municipalities:  Aurora, East Gwillimbury, Georgina, King, Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, Vaughan and Whitchurch-Stouffville.  For more information, visit our Web site at:  www.region.york.on.ca

Contact: Patrick Casey, Senior Media Relations Specialist, York Region

 
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