Cost of expanding Winnipeg's Handi-Transit to city limits pegged at $410K

It would cost the city about $410,000 annually to expand Handi-Transit services citywide, says a report to city council’s public works committee.

Close to 13,000 more people would be eligible for the service, report to city council committee says

A report to the city's public works committee says expanding Handi-Transit services citywide would cost about $410,000 annually. (Samuel Rancourt/CBC)

It would cost the city about $410,000 annually to expand Handi-Transit services citywide, says a report to Winnipeg city council's public works committee.

City officials estimate that would mean a potential increase of 143 registrants for the service, which provides door-to-door transportation for people who are unable to regularly use the fixed-route transit system because of a physical disability.

It's estimated the expansion would also result in an increase of 10,409 trips annually, based on 2017 data and the ratio of current registrants to the general population. 

However, an additional 13,290 would be eligible for the service. This represents the number of residents who currently live outside of the Handi-Transit service area, which currently operates within the same geographical area as Winnipeg's general transit system.

Currently, the origin and destination of Handi-Transit rides must be within 500 metres of a bus route.

The costs associated with expanding Handi-Transit include adding three more cars and two more full-time staff for screening, scheduling and handling call centre volume.

It's estimated the change could bring in additional revenue of approximately $13,500, which would reduce the overall estimated cost of expanding the service area to $396,500 per year, the report says.

The committee had asked Winnipeg Transit to come back with a cost estimate for expanding the service at a meeting in May.

The report is for recommendation only, so it's not expected that councillors will make any decision on the matter at their Sept. 7 meeting.