The Guelph Transit Priority Project is about the big-picture items along with smaller details, all of which could shave minutes from routes which can add up to hours system-wide.
In 2015, Guelph Transit undertook a Transit Priority Project to gain insights on improvements that would enhance transit within Guelph. The study looked at the long-range challenges facing Guelph such as population growth and travel demand, and recognized the need to invest in the future of transit.
Transit Priority Project can be broken down into 2 areas:
- Transit Priority Measures that give an advantage to buses and/or can facilitate the faster movement of all vehicles.
- Bus Rapid Transit which is a high-quality rapid transit service that runs on asphalt rather than on rails. BRT offers a faster, more reliable transit service without the large capital costs of rail. BRT is offered alongside conventional transit, providing service along corridors with the highest volume of passenger activity.
Read the proposal on the Guelph Transit Priority Plan Website here.
Read the report Transit Priority Project that went to Transit Advisory Committee.
Guelph Transit’s priority project will identify transit priority measures for the short-term (0 to 5 years), medium-term (6 to 10 years) and long-term (11 to 15 years), and study the feasibility of developing bus rapid transit along key corridors in Guelph.
Transit priority measures give preferential treatment to buses on the road. They include a wide variety of options, including:
- bus by-pass lanes;
- special turn signals and lanes for buses;
- implementing or enforcing parking restrictions along roadways;
- physically improving intersections;
- traffic signals that favour approaching buses;
- and many more.
Bus rapid transit commonly features a bus-only lane but can also include:
- paying fares “off-board” (meaning not aboard buses);
- large, specially branded low-floor vehicles;
- more widely spaced stops than local bus service;
- traffic signals that give priority to bus rapid transit vehicles;
- platforms that align with the low-floor buses; and
- amenities at sheltered stops that offer real-time information and comfort for waiting riders. With permanent stations, a simple easily-understood route and fast, frequent service, a BRT line can function as the rapid transit spine of a city and attract new transit riders.
Both measures improve transit and the overall rider experience by creating a faster, more reliable and convenient system. A better transit service can attract more riders and be a catalyst for transit-supportive development around stations. These features can increase the percentage of travel by transit in Guelph, which allows growth to occur without continued reliance on the car.
But these tools are only useful in the right circumstances. The City is studying a number of key intersections and corridors to identify the site-specific opportunities and constraints for speedier bus service.
As part of the project, it is investigating potential locations for transit priority measures at intersections and on road segments throughout Guelph where buses currently experience long delays and difficulty keeping on schedule during rush hour.
It’s also lookin at investigating the potential for bus rapid transit along several corridors, including:
- Gordon / Norfolk / Woolwich street (Woodlawn Road to City limit)
- Stone Road (Watson Parkway to Hanlon Parkway)
- Speedvale Avenue (Elmira Road to Victoria Road)
- Woodlawn Road (Elmira Road to Victoria Road)