Hornby Island hopes for year-round bus service

Hornby Island hopes for year-round bus service

A warm welcome awaits those who ride the summer bus on Hornby Island.

The Hornby bus only runs in July and August. In three years of operation, ridership has increased 60 per cent, says Karen Ross of the Hornby Island Community Economic Enhancement Corporation.

Appearing Nov. 5 at regional district committee of the whole, Ross asked directors to remember Hornby when the time comes to evaluate transit in the Comox Valley.

Since the late-90s, she said Hornby has contributed about $63,000 a year in taxes towards transit in the region.

“We’ve never had a link to that transit. We would like to get a Denman connector.”

The corporation is asking for some of the tax money to be repatriated to Hornby and Denman.

“This isn’t about sharing, this is about getting nothing,” Ross said. “I would really like that to be considered when we look at transit.”

On Hornby, she said the community supports a motion from the ratepayers group to acquire an electric bus.

“I will be working on that, and looking at the gas tax money for Hornby as being an obvious way to provide that. The bus we have now is a bit of an old clunker, but if we get good ridership it still makes sense from a transit point of view to use it.”

Along with increased funding, the corporation hopes the CVRD will support the Denman connector, and support a collaboration with the school district.

“We see that’s our avenue to getting year-round busing,” Ross said. “It would be a very efficient use of public money in the big picture.”

The corporation is in a two-year contract with the CVRD. The Hornby project has already signed the 2020 contract for $20,000 of funding.


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