British Columbia

Improved bus service coming to Prince George

Prince George will be improving its bus service on weekends, evenings and statutory holidays after hearing it was the number one issue for post-secondary students living in the city.

Better transit identified as number one priority for college and university students in the city

Bus passengers in Prince George are about to see improved service on holidays, weekends and evenings. (Andrew Kurjata/CBC)

Buses in Prince George will be running on statutory holidays and have improved weekend and evening service starting in the fall of 2017.

The change comes after city council heard improved transit services are the number one priority for students at the College of New Caledonia and the University of Northern British Columbia.

The list of priorities was prepared by the city's Select Committee for Student Needs, which also identified housing, jobs, and nightlife as concerns for post-secondary students.

Arctica Cunningham is a UNBC student who sat on the committee. She says transit was a consistent theme during the group's consultation. 

"We really see a need to connect students to the city and get students, you know, going downtown, participating in activities," she said. "[It] also benefits the city by improving air quality and reducing congestion on the road."

Prince George largest city in B.C. without transit on holidays

The improvements were already part of B.C. Transit's plans for improving bus service in Prince George. According to an official from B.C. Transit, Prince George is the largest city in the province to not have bus service on statutory holidays.

Cunningham says this is a particularly frustrating part of the transit system for students. 

"That's usually the days when there's the biggest events and the most community participation in the city, and then you're losing that experience for those students."

Cunningham says a lack of transit options affect where students are able to live, as well.

"There's a limited number of off-campus housing options that are available on good house routes," she pointed out. "There's definitely places in Prince George where it's easy to rent a house, but if you don't have a car, you're not going to be able to get to school."

Listen to Arctica Cunningham speak about the importance of transit for students:

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