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Buses ready to roll on Upper Wyndham

Council has approved changes to city bus routes that will bring bus service to Upper Wyndham Street. However, city staff warn that this could mean delays in a bus system that already has tight layover times for bus transfers.
Starting Sunday, four inbound and four outbound routes are being rerouted onto Upper Wyndham, which didn’t get any bus stops under a revamped transit-route system introduced this year. The opening of Guelph Central Station on Carden Street in May removed bus transfers from St. George’s Square.
People have complained about having a hard time getting to merchants and social service agencies along Upper Wyndham, and council asked staff in October to look at the issue.d benefits, Guelph Transit officials recommended to council that four routes – 2A/B, 3A/B, 12 and 13 – be adjusted to go along Upper Wyndham, effective Dec. 2.
The Downtown Guelph Business Association supports the change, a city staff report says.
Staff will monitor performance of the transit system after the route changes are made, the report says.
“If these routes cannot consistently meet schedule, then further route adjustments or bus stop elimination may be required.”
Simulated bus runs using Upper Wyndham have indicated the route changes will introduce a 55-second delay, the report says.
“While on the surface a delay of this magnitude may seem innocuous, one must keep in mind the overall system has only an approximate three-minute layover at Guelph Central Station,” it says, so the 55-second delay “is of concern.”
The report also warns that “traffic friction” on busy Upper Wyndham “can easily add more delay on an inconsistent and random basis,” beyond the average 55-second delay. “When this occurs, it is very likely these routes will run late.”
And, it says, reducing the layover time for these four routes “may create additional concern during periods of inclement weather where traffic naturally slows down to take into account road conditions. This may be a challenge that cannot be overcome.”
Making the bus routing changes means as many as 10 parking spaces will be lost on Wyndham, the report says.
As well, adjustments to traffic lights needed to help with bus flow will result in “a minor increase in delay for motorists on Quebec Street travelling through St. George’s Square.”
As well, two pedestrian signals on Upper Wyndham that are push-button activated have been adjusted to “guarantee buses and general motorists will not be inadvertently stopped by crossing pedestrians,” it says.
This change will result in a further delay of as much as 10 seconds for pedestrians wanting to cross Upper Wyndham, the city hall report says.

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