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Report outlines long list of transit problems

A city hall report gives several reasons for Guelph Transit’s problems during 2012:
• lack of sufficient “supervisory oversight” at transit hubs, because supervisors were busy dealing with “a wide variety of scheduling and routing issues” elsewhere
• “inconsistent operator performance” by the city’s bus drivers, with wide variations in the time needed to complete a given route, depending who was driving the bus
• heavy road traffic when bus ridership loads are at their peaks, an issue magnified this year by traffic diversion onto Gordon Street – the main spine of the Guelph Transit route system – as a result of large road projects on Victoria Road, the Hanlon Expressway and Speedvale Avenue. The rerouted traffic and detours “have dramatically increased travel time and negatively impacted the ability of Guelph Transit to make scheduled connections,” the staff report says. It adds: “Major construction projects are scheduled on key arterial routes in the (city’s) capital forecast over the next 10 years”
• “ridership mobility,” with bus drivers reporting that “the number of riders who require additional time (seniors, mothers with small children or individuals with mobility aids) is continuing to increase, and this trend will continue
• “traffic friction” related to unavoidable delays caused by such things as trains, road accidents and vehicle breakdowns
• failure of the plan for “customized service” for the city’s industrial areas, which went into effect Jan. 1 in a bid to stop buses with few passengers from running during off-peak times in these areas. This partial service is being abandoned, so industrial areas will get regular bus service during both peak and non-peak times, the report says
• inclement weather – “while poor performance during inclement weather is not unusual, we are concerned that any amount of precipitation with the current (15-minute peak) service model may create conditions where connections cannot be met,” the report say.

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