Grey County rolls out public transportation proposal image

Plans to enhance rural transportation in Grey County are moving forward.

Project coordinator Stephanie Stewart says Grey County has received $1.85 million over four years to support the effort.  She said the need for transit within Grey is significant and a coordinated, affordable transit service could benefit many.

In October, a local transit solution will support student transportation to and from the Launch Pad in the Hanover area. The county will offer regular, scheduled transit service along Highway 26 and along Highway 10. The intercommunity project start date will be released upon the successful selection of a third-party transit operator.

Service will be three days per week between Owen Sound and Wiarton along Highway 6. A fixed route will operate between Markdale and Owen Sound.  A connection southbound between Markdale and Dundalk will be developed in collaboration with the Township of Southgate.  The Highway 26 Corridor route will connect Owen Sound, Meaford and Town of Blue Mountains for employment, medical appointments, shopping and Georgian College campuses. A connection to South Georgian Bay Transit will be available for those travelling further east. There will be one vehicle deployed per route. The route will have two runs a day, five times a week and be aligned with connecting service requirements.  The Ministry of Transportation has been contacted to request project-funded vehicles to put into circulation for on-demand service between the fixed-route times.

Funding for the Community Transportation Grant has been divided over four years, with project completion by March 31, 2023.

Next steps include community consultation and a call for transportation operators. Grey County will be seeking transit operators who are interested in working together to provide coordinated transit service for residents.  Plus transportation software will enable transit operators to appropriately dispatch drivers to riders and increase vehicle utilization.