City awaits taxi system review

Thunder Bay residents may find it easier to catch a cab in the coming months.

Report due before police services board in May or June

Officials hope a review due in May or June will shed light on Thunder Bay's apparent lack of available taxis.

Thunder Bay residents may find it easier to catch a cab in the coming months.

The city’s manager of licensing and enforcement, Ron Bourret, says changes can be expected if a consultant — who is currently studying the taxi system — recommends his department assume oversight from police.

For the time being, the question remains, where are all the cabs?

"That'll be part of the enforcement factor," says Bourret. "If you've got x amount of licences — why aren't all those vehicles on the road? And how come you're pulling them off the road at certain times?"

Another issue needing review is the number of licences, says Bourret, noting the current formula for issuing them was developed 30 to 40 years ago.

Area man Nathan Adams says he's tired of waiting over half an hour for a cab. Compared to other cities, the wait times for a taxi in Thunder Bay are too long and the fares are too high, he says.

"Peak time availability is a huge issue," he said.

He's also tired of what often happens at night when the crowds hit the streets.

"The cab shows up and it's just every man for himself," says Adams. "If you can get in that car, that cab is yours. It's the first guy to open the door."

Officials have been waiting for months for the consultant's report to come out.

Bourret says a review of the city’s taxi situation will presented to the police services board in May or June.

From a report by CBC’s Jeff Walters