Calgary Transit expands fall schedule to accommodate more users

Passengers on a Calgary CTrain on July 22, 2020.

Calgary Transit is expanding its schedule to prepare for higher levels of ridership as the school year kicks off and more businesses welcome staff back to their offices.

After seeing a significant drop in ridership in May due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Calgary Transit reduced service for CTrain and bus users to stem financial losses. Calgary Transit is reintroducing some of those services starting Aug. 31, to lessen the load per bus or CTrain car as ridership is expected to increase.

“As ridership increases, and we increase services as well, it should help for people to maintain the physical distancing that we’re going for. Our mask compliance is really strong right now so we’re confident people will be able to keep their distance and wear their masks,” said Amanda Bradley, transit relations specialist.

CTrains will be outfitted with four cars again and the frequency of buses will increase as needed, Bradley said.

About 95 per cent of CTrain riders are wearing masks, as required by the City bylaw, and 80 per cent are wearing masks on buses, according to Calgary Transit’s latest count. This exceeds what was expected with the introduction of mandatory masks, Bradley said, and the hope is that riders will continue to comply.

“We’re really pleased how people have stepped up with mask compliance. They are keeping workers and the community safe. We’re happy to be increasing our service but, as always, we will be monitoring it and making any changes that need to be made,” said Bradley.

On Aug. 17, seating for Calgary buses returned to full capacity. That means that all seats can be be occupied, but the standing room on a bus is considered overcapacity.

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