Whistler buses getting upgrades to make service safer, cleaner

Politicians from the federal, provincial and municipal level have announced more than $3 million in funding to expand transit in Whistler to support buses that run on compressed natural gas, have security cameras and GPS tracking.

$3.2 million in funding will pay for compressed nautral gas buses, security cameras and gps tracking

Federal, provincial and municipal goverments are providing more that $3 million dollars to upgrade public transit in Whistler. The money will go towards buses that run on compressed natural gas, have closed-circuit cameras and GPS tracking. (BC Transit)

Politicians from the federal, provincial and municipal level have announced more than $3 million in funding for transit in Whistler.

The funding will pay for buses that run on compressed natural gas, have security cameras and GPS tracking.

"This investment in improved transit infrastructure for Whistler is important for the future of our community and our ability to grow in a sustainable way," said Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden in a release Friday.

The money, which comes from a federal fund, the province and the municipality itself, will help pay for a new natural gas compressor and fuelling station in Whistler.

It will support B.C. Transit buses that run on compressed natural gas (CNG), which officials hope will, "meet future demands for increased ridership and improve operational effiiency."

Friday's announcement follows previous commitments to installing closed-circuit television cameras for security and a real-time GPS tracking system to improve scheduling.

"B.C. was the first province to sign an agreement with Canada under the new Public Transit Infrastructure Fund, which demonstrates our commitment to investing in transit communities throughout the province," said Minister of Transport Todd Stone, in the release.

"This funding will enable Whistler to move into the future with cleaner burning CNG-fuelled buses and technology upgrades that will help meet rising demand for service while lowering our carbon footprint."

According to the municipality, Whistler's permanent population grew from 9,094 people in 2000 to 10,447 in 2014.

Meanwhile officials with Whistler Blackcomb say over the past ten years the resort has seen — on average — 2.7 million ski visits per year.