Whistler’s free weekend and holiday summer transit program will include the Victoria Day and Thanksgiving weekends, and National Day for Truth and Reconciliation this year.
“In my view, transit is one of the most important things we can push for as we work to reduce greenhouse gases and provide workers access to an affordable, reliable means of moving about town,” says Mayor Jack Crompton. “We will continue to lobby for funds to expand our service and we are thankful for the creativity of RMOW staff who are reallocating driver time and routes to ensure our system works for our people.”
The additional free weekends were originally recommended before the pandemic, but could not be implemented due to COVID-19 restrictions. With ridership back at 2019 levels, the free weekend transit is being implemented to accommodate regular summer and holiday tourism patterns. “it will also assist the resort in achieving its Big Moves Climate Action goals, and is funded through Day Lot 1- 5 revenues, through the Community Transportation Initiative Fund,” RMOW said.
On Tuesday, Whistler Council also received the Whistler 10 Valley Express Service Review, reporting on community engagement done on the popular route in December. It has resulted in increasing morning and afternoon frequency on the Route 10-Valley Express for summer 2023, starting Saturday June 17. Three additional Route 7 trips will also be added. Route 10-Valley Express will also continue with its Whistler Village and Function Junction route deviations. At the Village, this includes travelling along Lorimer Road, Northlands Boulevard, and Village Gate Boulevard and at Function Junction along Millar Creek Road.
Other changes riders should watch for:
RMOW staff are working with BC Transit to create an annual base transit schedule to which extra service will be added seasonally. This is intended to make year-round service more predictable and the transit schedule easier to understand.
Umo electronic fare technology will be rolled out provincewide this year and will arrive in Whistler this Fall. It will add pre-pay cards and pay-by-phone payment options. Council approved a review of the fee structure timed to land with the new system, and approved converting monthly pass products to 30-day passes. On-board credit card and debit tap pay will also follow at a later date.