The 'old' bus system is back up and running in Medicine Hat

By Brittney Matejka
November 27, 2017 - 5:24pm Updated: November 27, 2017 - 7:46pm

 

MEDICINE HAT, AB. - The City of Medicine Hat’s transit system has officially reverted back to the previous route system.

On September 18th, city council voted in favour of returning to the old system after hearing negative feedback from residents who were unhappy with the changes which took effect September 5th.

Miki Cullihall was one of those residents. She relied on public transit as her primary source of transportation. When the new transit system was implement, the route near Cullihall’s home was removed and made her life very difficult.

Cullihall decided to take charge and began circulating a petition. It collected over 6,000 signatures from residents who were also struggling with the new public transportation system.

“I didn’t think I would get that much support on it, I am glad the community got to speak out with me,” she said.

Simon Amos, manager of community access with the City of Medicine Hat, said this change does come with a cost to the city.

“The cost to taxpayers is $640,000," he explained. "Operating this is an annual cost and this cost will cover fuel, maintenance for buses and wages for the extra staff."

City council had originally voted to change the public transportation system as part of their Financially Fit for the Furture model due to their $23 million budget shortfall last December. However, the changes were only made public in August.

Amos said the system will be reviewed after 2018 for possible changes for the future.

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