A longtime BC Transit route that was axed last year in Saanich will be coming back, a move local residents say they’re grateful for.
Route 11 has been a point of contention for Gorge-Tillicum residents for the past few months.
Construction along Gorge Road West originally meant a modified route for transit users, but when construction finished earlier this year, the route did not return.
Instead riders would have to take Route 25, a trip that they say was longer and offered less service.
“We were given a bus every hour, whereas for the past 50 years we’ve had a bus every 10 to 15 minutes serving that part of the community, and we were looking to have that old service restored,” said Gorge Tillicum community association member Mauricio Curbelo on Saturday.
Bus shelters along the route were also rendered irrelevant as they turned into drop off points instead of pick up points.
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BC Transit says they would be consulting with community members, but as of Oct. 13, it seems that consultation process is finished.
In a statement to CHEK News, BC transit said, “In response to feedback received from customers on changes to Route 11, BC Transit will be re-instating the route to its alignment prior to June 27, 2022.”
The community association is calling this latest announcement a small win for those who rely on transit.
“We’re happy that service is being restored to that part of the community, but the new service is going to be about every 20 minutes, and previously, in 2022 ,we had service every 10 to 15 minutes,” said Curbelo.
“So we would like frequent transit service ideally, but we’re happy that it’s being restored.”
Route 11 will be reinstated on Jan. 8, 2024, but until then, residents will have to stick with the modified Route 25 .