The Regional District of Nanaimo transit select committee is recommending the Route 30 NRGH bus be adjusted to return to Nelson Street, Hallen Avenue and Strathmore Street. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)

Transit committee recommends returning bus stop to Kiwanis Village

Residents of Nanaimo seniors’ housing not happy about new bus stop placement

After route adjustments removed a bus stop in front of Kiwanis Village Nanaimo, Regional District of Nanaimo’s transit select committee is backtracking and recommending re-establishment of the stop.

The Nanaimo Regional General Hospital route (Route 30) was among those evaluated as part of the RDN’s South Nanaimo Local Area Transit Plan in 2017, and in January, NRGH buses saw the route changed with two bus shelters planned for Boundary Avenue and a crosswalk to the northbound stop, noted a staff report.

While concerns about Kiwanis seniors’ affordable housing was not cited in initial public consultation, the report said RDN staff met with residents in November and February to hear concerns. Residents stated they were unaware of changes or related public engagement, and the longer walks to get to new stops is leading to reduced access to busing. In addition, travelling down “varying sidewalk terrain” is proving difficult for some, the report said.

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A petition to have the route run past the front of the residence again garnered 1,200 signatures.

Darren Marshall, RDN transit operations manager, said at the meeting that RDN Transit has the ability to track boarding and disembarking of passengers and monitor how many people use the bus stop.

The committee is recommending the route be adjusted to again include the stop on Nelson Street. Final approval could come at the March 24 board meeting. If approved, Nelson Street would be re-incorporated to Route 30 on April 5.

Kiwanis Village Nanaimo did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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