All aboard the bus, because LINX has expanded again.
On Tuesday morning, county councillors, local dignitaries and representatives from Metrolinx gathered to celebrate the success of its new routes, with the goal of connecting communities within the County of Simcoe.
“We’re very proud of the LINX and LINX+ services and of the efficiencies we have found through the implementation processes, including our partnership with Metrolinx to purchase buses,” said county chief administrative officer Mark Aitken.
Route 1, which connects Penetanguishene/Midland to Barrie, launched in 2018 and has seen ridership increase on a monthly basis.
New this month are Route 2 (connecting Wasaga Beach to Barrie (south) with stops in Clearview and Essa), Route 3 (connecting Orillia to Barrie (north) with stops in Oro-Medonte) and Route 4 (assuming the existing Collingwood to Wasaga Beach Link with no alternations to current operations).
Ridership on the three new routes is free from Aug. 6 to Sept. 2, with regular fare rates starting after Labour Day.
According to Aitken, in the first week alone, the new routes had seen 1,800 passengers.
“As Warden, I’ve had the opportunity to tour the county. I’ve put lots of miles on the car and I’ve learned we do have large distances to travel, but through these services we can better connect our communities, services and residents,” said Warden George Cornell.
Two more routes are planned to be added to the list in 2020: a route that will connect Orillia to Midland and another that will connect Alliston to Bradford.
“The order’s already in for eight new buses for that,” said David Parks, director of planning, development, and tourism.
After the final planned routes roll out, the county is open to suggestions.
“The next step after that is, what are we missing?” said Parks. “These were the big corridors, but what else can we do to satisfy the need? We want to know what we’re missing that the public hasn’t told us about yet.”
If you have suggestions you’d like to make about where the LINX transit should expand to next, contact the County of Simcoe transit department by clicking here.
For information on fares to ride the LINX buses, click here.