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More on than off


Transit ridership holds steady

Ridership numbers for the Whistler and Valley Express transit service were both up and down – mostly up – from May 25 to June 7. In total, 45,055 people used the service during that time, a three per cent increase over the same period last year.

On the down side, ridership on the Emerald Estates route was down 20 per cent; Alpine Meadows was down seven per cent and the Village Shuttle was down 14 per cent.

"When I saw the Village Shuttle was down I started getting worried, but in fact ridership as a whole is up three per cent. When you consider that everything’s flat, that the population and number of visitors is about the same, we’re still three per cent higher than last year’s numbers. The number of people riding the bus is increasing," said WaVE manager Scott Pass.

Pass credits the lower numbers on some routes to the good weather, the fact that the May long weekend fell outside the test period, and to fewer conferences in town.

The bus schedule also changed, with fewer Emerald or Alpine buses and more combined Alpine-Emerald buses on the roads. The combined Alpine-Emerald route experienced an 18 per cent increase in ridership during the sample period.

Other increases in ridership went to Whistler Creek with an 8 per cent increase and the Tapley Connector with a 14 per cent increase.

According to Pass, small two-week samples in the off-season can be misleading. In order to get a clearer picture of ridership, he says it will be necessary to take larger samples.