Voyago picked for London-Sarnia bus service

A sign for Hwy. 402 to Sarnia. (Photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News)

When bus service between London and Sarnia is launched next year, it will be a London company that provides the buses.

The municipalities of London, Sarnia, and Strathroy-Caradoc announced Thursday that Voyago has been selected as the service provider for the Intercommunity Transit Service. The service, which will see buses run between London and Sarnia with stops Komoka, Mount Brydges, and Strathroy, is expected to be up and running in April 2020.

According to a news release issued by the three communities on Thursday, Voyago expected to have three round trips each weekday and two round trips on the weekend. The buses will be fully accessible and will seat between 20 and 25 passengers.

“Improving transportation, specifically getting people to and from work quickly and conveniently, has been an area of intense focus during my term as Mayor,” London mayor Ed Holder said in a statement released Thursday. “This focus is not only local, it is also regional. With support from the Ontario government and Voyago, this investment will connect our communities like never before, while providing new opportunities for employers and job seekers alike.”

Voyago began operations in London in 1979. It currently offers a wide range of transportation services to about 50,000 daily passengers in Ontario.

“We’re confident that this contract with Voyago will provide an affordable transportation option that links Strathroy-Caradoc to Sarnia and London,” said Joanne Vanderheyden, mayor of Strathroy-Caradoc.

It’s expected that route, scheduling, and fare information will be provided in the new year. Funding for the service has been provided by the Ontario government and will be in place until March 2023. For Sarnia mayor Mike Bradley, the service is a big step toward improving transit connectivity in southwestern Ontario.

“Another few kilometres down the road on inter-city bus service with the selection of Voyago as the provider,” Bradley said. “Time to speed up the process and get the service up and running by mid-2020. Important on the next and final step in implementation of the service that it connects to VIA Rail and local transit services to truly be inter-city and multi-use for all users across the region. To do that successfully means engaging rail and transportation advocacy groups across Southwestern Ontario and the citizens using the service.”